Exploring Teachers’ Collective and Individual Adaptations to an Evidence-Based Summer Literacy Program
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CitationBurkhauser, Mary A. 2016. Exploring Teachers’ Collective and Individual Adaptations to an Evidence-Based Summer Literacy Program. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard Graduate School of Education.
AbstractWhile the field of educational research has produced an enormous amount of literature relevant for improving teaching and, ultimately, student achievement, the field has been less successful at producing deep and lasting instructional change at scale. In this dissertation, I present three papers that explore an approach to program implementation that attempts to cultivate conditions to support scale by involving teachers in a process of collaborative inquiry around an evidence-based program called READS for Summer Learning (READS). While many have called for implementation approaches that give educators an opportunity to make adaptations, few studies have examined the ways in which teachers respond to such an approach, including: the process that teachers go through as they are making their adaptation decisions, the kinds of adaptations they make, and the ways in which participation in such an approach may affect their perceptions of the program. In this thesis, I begin to address these gaps.
Together, the papers in this dissertation explore how teachers at three high-poverty schools in one urban district responded when given opportunities—both as individuals and as teams—to make structured adaptations to READS. In the first study, I focus on individual teachers’ enactments of READS in their classrooms. The purpose of this study was to explore individual teachers’ fidelity to and adaptations of the core component of READS in which teachers have the most responsibility—teaching the READS lessons. In the second study, I consider the adaptation decisions that grade-level teams arrived at through a collaborative inquiry process. In my third study, I use interview data, collected after the implementation of the school-based components of READS (including the lessons) but before the end of the summer, to explore teachers’ expectations of the program’s effectiveness for their students and the basis for these expectations. Taken together, these studies provide insight into what success might look like when it comes to giving teachers greater autonomy over the implementation of evidence-based programs, as well as how researchers and school leaders might support these kinds of efforts.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:32663234