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Emprirical Research Project

The Academic Effects of Teaching High School Students for Two Consecutive Years

Tara Payor

on 28 April 2010

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Transcript of Emprirical Research Project

The Academic Effects of Teaching High School Students for Two Consecutive Years

An Empirical Research Project
by Tara Payor & Aimee Frier
A Review of Available Literature Definitions Denault (1999) states that looping “is a plan in which the teachers and students remain together long-term as an instructional unit” (p. 19).
Nichols and Nichols (2002) include that looping involves a “core group of students” (p. 18).
In research conducted at Brown University, the phrase “similarly aged students” was woven into the definition (p. 5).
Brown University also makes mention of the following terms used when referring to looping: “continuous learning, continuous progress, persisting groups, multi-year grouping, [and] teacher/student progression” (p. 3).
History A 1913 U.S. Department of Education memo
poses the question:

“Shall teachers in graded city schools be advanced from grade to grade with their pupils…so that they may come to know the children…and be able to build the work of the latter years on that of the
earlier years…”

***The German model, the Waldorf School, is regularly referenced and lauded in the literature. *** Benefits of Looping Increased instructional time when students loop.
In her study, Denault (1999) found that 100% of teachers saw an increase in time on task when looping was in place: “There was no time lost to organizational issues in September, making that month academically richer for the looping students” (p. 21).

Improved teacher-student, student-student,
& parent-teacher dynamics.
Hume (2007) echoes a sentiment found in all of the “looping” literature reviewed: “Students, parents and teachers develop a sense of community and stability” (p. 63).

Denault poses a fitting question:
“Where else (but at school) do you keep changing significant people in your life and think
it’s good?”
Concerns Concerns shared by students,
teachers, & parents:

Getting stuck with an ineffective teacher for two years.

Getting stuck with a teacher (or student) with whom one cannot seem to build an agreeable relationship.
Rationale Little quantitative research has been done.

Much of the available literature on looping comes in the form of case study.

Both the qualitative & limited quantitative data available focus on elementary and middle grades.
Purpose & Research Question This study aimed to uncover whether or not students’ academic performance was impacted when they had the same teacher, for a specific subject, for two consecutive years.

The looping study was centered on one question: Do students who have the same teacher in a given discipline for two consecutive years show higher achievement than those who don’t.

The null hypothesis for the study was stated as follows: Having the same teacher for two consecutive years does not impact student achievement.

Participants Subjects for this study were either tenth, eleventh, or twelfth grade students from Tampa Catholic High School.

Faculty members involved in the study taught in one of the following subject areas: English, mathematics, science, or social studies.

Data from five teachers was used.

245 students’ (loopers and non-loopers) 2009 midterm grades were used. Instrument Pearson’s software: Power School Gradebook 1.6

The software reports the mean, median, and mode for each assignment entered.

Power School grade reports containing each student’s (loopers and non-loopers) 2009 midterm grade were collected.

Grades were reported as percentageswith 100% being the highest possible score.
Descriptive Statistics Median Scores:
Non-loopers - 83%
Loopers - 87%

Non-loopers - 81%
Loopers - 86%

Standard Deviation:
Non-loopers - 8.31%
Loopers - 7.31%

Even though the group sizes weren't balanced, the test was sound

Probability was <.05

The results indicate that there is a statistically significant difference between the mean midterm exam scores of looping and non-looping students (t value = -4.01, p = .0001).
Students enter the classroom, take a seat, and begin making vocabulary flash cards. Shortly thereafter, a lively discussion ensues as students share journal entries written in response to the previous day’s reading. Downstairs, students are working collaboratively to create multimedia presentations of the Puritans’ arrival in America. The teacher makes his way through the circles of studentsengaging the small groups in relevant dialogue and able to refer to individuals by name. It may be hard to imagine these scenes playing out during the second week of school. When students loop, such scenes are realized from the onset of the academic year. SAS
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