Ed.D. Dissertations

Date of Award

6-2018

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

College

College of Education

Department

Education

Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.

Faculty Chair

Neil Mathur, Ph.D.

Content Specialist

Jessica deValentino, Ed.D.

Content Reader

Nesa Sasser, Ed.D.

Keywords

Advanced Placement, gender differences, ethnic differences, Calculus achievement

Abstract

The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine was to test whether increasing the length of the instructional period from one to two hours might increase student achievement and close achievement gaps. This study included two components: an achievement gap analysis and a quasi-experiment. The purpose of the achievement gap analysis was to measure the existence of achievement gaps on the Calculus AB exam in Michigan. The achievement gap analysis included comparisons of Calculus AB exam scores in Michigan to measure gender differences, ethnic differences, and Hispanic gender differences. The purpose of the quasi-experiment was to determine whether increasing the length of the instructional period might close achievement gaps. In the quasi-experiment, the comparison group took Calculus for one hour daily, while the experiential group took Calculus for two hours daily. Both the comparison group and the experiential group took the Calculus AB exam at the end of their year of instruction. The results of the achievement gap analysis confirmed that Michigan has both gender and ethnic achievement gaps that showed up in every year of analyzed data, while a Hispanic achievement gap existed only in the most recent year of data. The results of the quasi-experimental component indicated that increasing the amount of Calculus instruction from one hour to two hours resulted in a statistically significant difference in all four comparisons of the comparison group to the experiential group. The results of this study indicated that schools should consider increasing the length of the period of Calculus instruction to address achievement gaps.

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