Board of Regents grant notice
document includes a notice of the Board of Regents grant on
differentiated instruction and the final report submitted to the
Board of Regents.
Southeastern Louisiana University
survey. Dr. Edwards added that this eventually led to a
BoR grant to improve
the program to better meet the needs of candidates. ...
- 2007-12-03 -
The 3 Dimensions of Diversity for Inclusion
Final Report~LEQSF (2003-2004)-ENH-TR-58
One Year Enhancement Grant with a Contract Extension
A. Accomplishments in Meeting Stated
Goals and Objectives of the Project
Compare goals and objectives with those
set forth in the original proposal and explain. Also describe
variances, if any, from the original plan described in the
The Board of Regents funded grant
project, “The 3 Dimensions (3D) of Diversity for Inclusion,” began
in the summer of 2003 and continued through December 2004. In the
spring of 2004, a request for extension was approved to allow the
completion of all objectives through December of 2004. From the
beginning to the final report date, the proposed objectives for
the funded project were achieved.
Outcome #1: Membership in the 3D Task
Force on Inclusion expanded its membership since the beginning of
the project. Eight new members were added to the original ten
task force members. Primarily through the workshops, we
identified two more Region II teachers, an elementary school
principal, a former teacher candidate trained in differentiated
instruction, and a faculty member who serves as a supervisor of
student teachers. Task force membership will always represent
schools that are practicing differentiated instruction. Minimally,
quarterly meetings are held. While the training sessions were
being planned, more frequent meetings were held. Members receive
e-mail notification of meetings and updates on the project.
Outcome #2: The 3D Task Force on
Inclusion created an action plan at the beginning of the project.
Most tasks were completed according to the initial action plan. An
extension was requested and granted to complete research and a
report on the differentiated instruction workshops. In addition
to completing a questionnaire prior to the workshops, participants
completed the questionnaire again at the end of the school year.
Findings were reported in a paper that was presented at the SERA
Annual Meeting in February 2005. A manuscript will be submitted
for publication during the summer of 2005.
Since the extension was granted, the action
plan was revised to reflect minor changes, which are referenced in
Outcome #3: The literature on
differentiated instruction was reviewed to develop a self-report
survey instrument to measure educators’ knowledge and pedagogical
practices for meeting the needs of diverse learners in
classrooms. This instrument was administered to participants
prior to the differentiated instruction workshops (pre-survey) and
to the same individuals at the end of the 2003-2004 school year
(post-survey). A code was also developed to identify survey
subjects, so the results for each can be compared. Before
administration, the instrument was approved by Southeastern’s
Institutional Review Board (IRB). The grant extension provided
the additional time needed during the summer and fall to complete
and disseminate the report on the survey findings. Findings were
reported at the SERA Annual Meeting in February 2005, and the
paper is included on the project website.
Outcome #4: Through the survey, the
task force identified knowledge and pedagogical practices of
Southeastern’s teacher educators, elementary school teachers, and
teacher candidates. This information was used by the task force to
identify resources for purchase and to plan additional tasks to be
completed during the 2004-2005 and 2005-2006 school years.
Outcome #5: The task force designed
professional development workshops for faculty, elementary school
teachers and principals, and teacher candidates. The workshops
were based on findings from a literature review and findings of an
informal survey of faculty. Outcome #6: The task force
implemented professional development workshops on February 16-18,
2004. This highlight of the project’s accomplishments was
conducted by Dr. Marcia Imbeau, a training consultant with the
Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. About 100
persons participated in the workshops. School teams of teachers
and principals from ten Region II elementary schools participated
in the workshops. Discussions among task force members and a
review of literature led the task force to invite school teams,
rather than individual teachers and administrators, to participate
as it was proposed that school teams are more likely to follow
through on ideas and activities learned a the workshops. Another
highlight was a workshop presented by 3D members Dr. C. Edwards,
Dr. S. Carr, and Dr. W. Siegel at the annual meeting of the
Southwest Educational Research Association (SERA). An article will
be forthcoming on findings of the research conducted in
association with this project.
Outcome #7: Since the initial task
force was established, two years prior to applying for a Board of
Regents Education Enhancement Grant, many educational materials on
differentiated instruction and related topics had been collected
for the resource library of books, articles, videotapes, software
and Internet references. The resources purchased through the
grant will be held in the Create Lab, a location in the Teacher
Education Center. These resources are available to teacher
candidates, faculty, and teachers. The resources and schedules
for training opportunities are listed on the 3D website. Through
this site, information will be available to all educators and
other interested persons. The task force expanded its resource
library of books, articles, videotapes, and Internet weblings on
differentiated instruction. Primarily books were purchased with
Board of Regents grant funds. The resources are housed in the
Create Lab in the Cate Teacher Education Center at Southeastern.
The resources will be listed on the 3D Task Force for Inclusion
website and will be available for loan to educators.
Outcome #8: The task force
established a website to provide information, resources, and
opportunities for the exchange of ideas on differentiated
instruction. The website is a link on the Department of Teaching
and Learning’s website and is accessible by all educators at
Southeastern and schools.
Outcome #9: The initial task force
plan included objectives focused on providing opportunities for
educators to observe classroom teachers practicing differentiated
instruction. Two of the school teams participating in the
workshops, for instance, adopted differentiated instruction as the
focus of their faculty studies. While it will be possible for
visitors to observe classes, the focus has been changed to
videotaping lessons that exemplify differentiated instruction, as
this approach would reach a larger number of educators over time.
These videotapes will then be available. Releases for videotaping
will be secured before videotapes are offered for the preservice
and inservice education of teachers, administrators, and
university faculty. During 2005-2006, at least two teachers in
area schools will be videotaped.
Outcome #10: Related to Outcome #9,
mentors will continue to be identified to provide workshops and
individual assistance to teachers and candidates interested in
differentiating instruction. Identifying mentor teachers is an
ongoing goal. As teachers are identified, their names and those of
university faculty will be made available to interested parties.
Outcome #11: The task force prepared a
report on the project’s activities, findings, and recommendations
that will guide future plans for better meeting the needs of
diverse learners in inclusive elementary school classrooms. The
report was not copied and disseminated as originally planned.
Instead, the report will be available on the website. The 3D
project generated and disseminated research findings.
A workshop presented at the SERA annual meeting detailed the
project and research findings. An article is being prepared for
submission to an education journal. Additionally, Dr. C. Edwards
and Dr. S. Carr presented activities for differentiated
instruction at a meeting of approximately 100 student teachers. An
article will be submitted for publication over the summer of 2005.
B. Accomplishments in Enhancing the
Quality of the Involved Department(s)/Units: Explain how the
implementation of this project made significant advances in
enhancing the quality of the department(s) or unit(s) involved.
Provide specific evidence.
Meeting the needs of all learners is a
fundamental purpose of schools. The 3 Dimensions (3D) of
Diversity for Inclusion project, representing 1. academic
diversity, 2. behavioral diversity, and 3.
cultural diversity, is consistent with NCATE, No Child Left
Behind, Louisiana’s Blue Ribbon Commission, and other reform
initiatives founded on research, standards, and accountability.
The project was designed to contribute to the preparation of
educators to meet the needs of a full spectrum of students in
inclusive elementary classrooms.
The project addressed a need
identified two years prior to the application for funding.
Results of the student teacher exit survey evidenced a continuing
need to better prepare candidates to meet the needs of diverse
learners in schools. A group of faculty members decided on their
own to form a task force to address this need. After a few months,
during which more information was collected, it became clear that
formal training was needed to focus attention on differentiated
instruction; to educate large groups of faculty, teachers; and
boost participation in this effort.
Since the project’s inception, a
collection of resources (primarily books and tapes) has grown.
The materials purchased with funds from the grant and other
resources are located in the Create Lab, a location in the Teacher
Education Center that is easily accessible for all teachers,
teacher educators, and candidates. A plan was developed to
identify specific materials for each undergraduate and graduate
course. Faculty teaching the identified courses are encouraged to
incorporate the materials in their curricula, which would provide
a developmental approach for preparing candidates to use
differentiated instruction to meet the needs and interests of
their own students.
The website created for the 3D project
is a link on the Department of Teaching and Learning website,
making information on differentiated instruction a click away. As
teacher educators, teachers, and candidates become familiar with
the site, we plan to promote interaction among educators to
further expand and enhance the use of differentiated instruction.
C. Accomplishments in Enhancing
Louisiana’s Economic Development and Diversification: Describe
the impact of this project on economic development and/or
diversification in the State, now and in the near future. Provide
The impact of the project on
Louisiana’s economic development and diversification is indirect
and long-range. Specific contributions are the project’s
underlying intent to build a strong foundation to educate all
elementary school students for their future roles as citizens and
contributing members of society, and to enable them to adequately
support themselves and their families and have an otherwise
fulfilling life. All students must have opportunities for an
education that meets their diverse needs and provides them the
wherewithal to meet these life goals. It is hoped that by helping
teachers meet the needs of all learners they will experience more
success in the classroom and remain in the profession.
D. Statement of Objectives: Describe
plans related to this project to be accomplished within the next
five years. Include any pertinent evidence to support your
There has been progress in the
realization of the project’s vision: Graduates of
Southeastern Louisiana University’s teacher preparation program
and Region II teachers are Effective Educators who meet the
needs of the full spectrum of learners in inclusive classrooms.
And, the project goals were achieved. Faculty of the
Department of Teaching and Learning have been educated on the
principles and practices of differentiated instruction to help
them better prepare candidates to meet the needs of their
students. Teacher candidates, teachers, and administrators were
also educated. The achievement of the goals was limited to the
number of educators who could be educated, but since the funded
project was completed, more educators have learned about
I expect this project, which
was begun in 2001, will continue to function for the purpose of
promoting differentiating instruction to better meet the needs and
interests of all students. The findings of our research, survey
results, observations, and discussions corroborate research we
reviewed to prepare the BoR grant application. In general,
teachers have difficulty meeting the needs of all students in
their classes, which can affect students’ academic achievement and
The one-size-fits-all model
of education has been shown to be an ineffective approach to
teaching, because the needs and interests of all students
are not being met. It seems that everywhere we look we see some
variation of the diversity theme. Louisiana’s Components of
Effective Teaching, No Child Left Behind, and specialized learning
association (SPAs) call attention to teaching all learners—as
individuals. The drumbeat can be overwhelming for teachers, if
they perceive the directive as a huge whole—another thing—added
immediately to an already jam-packed school day. Differentiated
instruction is not something else to be added to the curriculum.
Differentiated instruction is a concept—an approach to teaching
and learning. There are many but ways teachers can differentiate
instruction to meet the needs of learners. Moreover, teachers can
choose to begin by implementing one way of differentiating
instruction. Others can be added as they become comfortable with
the some aspect of the approach.
Some teachers will reject
differentiated instruction outright, but I expect others to at
least try. When teachers experience some modicum of success,
others learn about possibilities and have models to follow. While
the number of teachers differentiating instruction is still small,
it’s growing, as evidenced by the school faculties that are
addressing the topic and requests for information from teachers
and administrators. The task force will encourage faculty and
graduate students, in particular, to focus on differentiated
instruction as a subject for action research. As we learn more
from research conducted at Southeastern, other universities,
departments of education, and school systems, some ways of
differentiating instruction will be supported and others will be
changed or eliminated.
With new courses focusing on
diversity in the redesigned undergraduate and graduate programs
and the incorporation of differentiated instruction in more
courses, candidates and teachers will be afforded opportunities
for learning ways to meet the needs of diverse learners in their
classes. Time and effort will determine the path of differentiated
instruction—if it is adopted by teachers and if their experiences
indicate its effectiveness. If teachers in a school differentiate
instruction, it is more likely that new teachers, educated on
differentiated instruction at the university, will adopt the
approach with their own classes.
F. Other Comments: Comment briefly on
any pertinent topic not listed which you believe are important in
adequately and completely describing the results and
accomplishments of your Support Fund Enhancement project.
One topic that comes to mind is
broadening the concept of diversity to include all types of
difference among students. Diversity is usually associated with
ethnic and cultural groups. Special education focuses on students
with academic deficits and behavioral problems. But diversity, as
it relates to differentiated instruction, considers needs of these
students, but also those with special talents, giftedness, and
differences in learning styles, types of intelligence, interests,
and more. Educating teachers to create student profiles is one way
they can enhance their students’ academic achievement and overall
success in school. Also, through this project, we have learned
that many candidates and teachers misundertand the meanings of
modifications and accommodations. This project will provide
another source of information about these concepts, by contrasting
them and providing examples. In the workshop presented by two
task force members to all student teachers at the end of the
2004-2005 school year, both student profiles and modifications and
accommodations were featured. We will encourage other presenters
to incorporate these topics in their workshops.
G. Complete necessary forms found on the
Welcome page. The Cover Page and Personnel forms MUST be
completed. Complete Presentations, Publications, Patents,
External Funding Activity, and Nuggests forms if applicable to
your contract. See each item for specific instructions.
The online forms have been completed.
The paper presented at the 2005 SERA
annual meeting follows this report. An article on the study was
also published in a national refereed journal.