Impact of Middle School Scheduling Structure on Student Achievement in Math and Science, as Defined by AEIS Indicators, on Selected Demographic Student Groups in Urban Texas Middle Schools
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Middle school students in the United States are not performing as well as their international peers on standardized math and science exams, and in Texas middle school students’ performance in math and science is not on par with other subjects. Additionally, the achievement gap between White and both African American and Hispanic students is greatest in math and science. The purpose of this study was to further extend the research on how the type of schedule used by a campus can improve learning outcomes for students in math and science. This quantitative analysis used MANOVA to examine how schedule structure influences math and science performance while factoring in teacher experience and minority student population, and a logistic regression explored the predictive value of schedule types on ratings under the Texas accountability system. Schools in the study came from Texas school districts with more than 50,000 total students. The first research question examined the influence of schedule type on math and science achievement school-wide when accounting for the factors of minority student population and teacher experience. There was a statistically significant interaction at the p < .05 level for schedule type and teacher experience in both math and science, but the only of the three variables that was significant in isolation was the campus percentage of students of color. The second research question probed the effect of schedule structure on math and science performance by ethnicity and found no significant interactions. The third and final question explored schedule structure and whether or not schedule can serve as a predictor of a school’s accountability rating. Using a logistic regression, the results showed predictive value in the equation. However, an examination of the correlation matrix showed total campus minority student population to be the primary predictor of accountability rating rather than schedule type. Recommendations from the study include using schedule type as only one factor of many for school improvement efforts, and that only schools with experienced, high-quality teaching staffs should consider employing a Block schedule over a more efficient Traditional schedule.
Coburn, Joseph Ryan (2015). Impact of Middle School Scheduling Structure on Student Achievement in Math and Science, as Defined by AEIS Indicators, on Selected Demographic Student Groups in Urban Texas Middle Schools. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from