"Ethnic Composition and Heterogeneity in the Classroom: Their Measurement and Relationship with Student Outcomes"
Distinguished Professor Jacquelynne Eccles has published with colleagues in the Journal of Educational Psychology: "Ethnic Composition and Heterogeneity in the Classroom: Their Measurement and Relationship with Student Outcomes."
This study explores various measures of the ethnic makeup in a classroom and their relationship with student outcomes. We examine whether measures of ethnic diversity are related to achievement (mathematics, reading) and feeling of belonging with one’s peers over and above commonly investigated composition characteristics. Multilevel analyses were based on data from a representative sample of 18,762 elementary school students in 903 classrooms. The proportion of minority students and diversity measures showed negative associations with student outcomes in separate models. Including diversity measures and the proportion of minority students, diversity of minority students mostly lost its significance. However, the results suggest that diversity measures may provide additional information over and above other classroom characteristics for some student outcomes. The various measures of diversity led to comparable results.
Rjosk, C., Richter, D., Lüdtke, O., & Eccles, J. S. (2017). Ethnic composition and heterogeneity in the classroom: Their measurement and relationship with student outcomes. Journal of Educational Psychology, 109(8), pp. 1188–1204.
Assistant Professor Constance Iloh Invited Speaker for Distinguished Presidential Symposium for Association for Study of Higher Education (ASHE)
Assistant Professor Constance Iloh is an invited speaker and panelist on a presidential symposium for the national convening of the Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE). The presidential symposium titled, "We the People Presidential Symposium: Community College Students", will take place on Friday, November 10, at 11:45am to 1:00pm in the Marriott Marquis, Houston.
Joining Professor Iloh as invited panelists are Professor Regina Deil-Amen (University of Arizona), Associate Professor Cecilia Rios-Seres (UCLA), Professor J. Luke Wood (SDSU), Senior Researcher Octaviano Chavaín (Community College Research Center), and PhD student Adrian Trinidad (USC).
Iloh will also present the two of her new empirical papers at the conference in addition to serving as a discussant on the session, "Fissures of College Access.”
Distinguished Professor Jacquelynne Eccles has published with colleagues in the Journal of Research in Science Teaching: "Uncovering Young Children's Motivational Beliefs about Learning Science."
Oppermann, E., Brunner, M., & Eccles, J. S. (November 2017). Uncovering young children's motivational beliefs about learning science. Journal of Research in Science Teaching. DOI: 10.1002/tea.21424
Young children, ages 5–6 years, develop first beliefs about science and themselves as science learners, and these beliefs are considered important precursors of children's future motivation to pursue science. Yet, due to a lack of adequate measures, little is known about young children's motivational beliefs about learning science. The present two-part study explores the motivational beliefs of young children using a new measure—the Young Children's Science Motivation (Y-CSM) scale. Initial measurement development involved a thorough literature review of existing measures, and an extensive piloting phase until a final instrument was reached. To establish scale reliability, measurement invariance as well construct and criterion validity, the final instrument was administered to a new sample of 277 young children, ages 5–6 years, in northern Germany. Results reveal that children's motivational beliefs can be empirically differentiated into their self-confidence and enjoyment in science at this young age. Older children were more motivated in science, but no significant gender differences were found. Importantly, children in preschools with a science focus reported significantly higher science motivation. This finding stresses the importance of early science education for the development of children's motivational beliefs about science.
Professor Elizabeth Peña is presenting a course at the American Speech Language Hearing Association (ASHA) convention on Friday, November 10, in Los Angeles. The title of her course is "SC19 Differentiating Language Difference from Language Impairment in Multicultural Preschool and School-Aged Children: Practical Tools." The topic area is Cultural and Linguistic Issues. Co-presenters are Celeste Roseberry-McKibbin and Catherine Crowley.
Professor Peña's research interests include bilingualism, language impairment, language development, and assessment bias and measurement.
Course Abstract: This session is developed by, and presenters invited by, SIG 14: Cultural and Linguistic Diversity and Cultural and Linguistic Issues. Invited speakers will provide evidence-based approaches to distinguish language disorder from language differences when evaluating early childhood and school-aged children from bilingual/multicultural backgrounds. With a focus on dynamic assessment, participants will learn to assess the ability to learn new content instead of prior knowledge. The course will also target appropriate ways to elicit and analyze language samples.
Melanie Gerling graduated from the UCI CalTeach Science and Math Program in 2012. She has been teaching mathematics at Palos Verdes Peninsula High School for the past five years. At the recent CalTeach alumni gathering, she reflected on her educational journey.
November 2, 2017
When I entered UC Irvine as a freshman in 2008, I had a much different plan in mind than when I left. I started out studying ballet as a Dance Major but also had a love for mathematics – I wanted to do something with math, but just didn’t know what that would be at the time. I took a job as a math tutor - not because I had an interest in education, but because I knew I was good at helping others with mathematics. After about six months of working at the tutoring center, I realized how much I loved the challenge of creating different ways to convey mathematical concepts that were individualized to how my clients learned mathematics. In that moment, I knew I wanted be a math teacher. I looked into teaching credential programs that UC Irvine offered, found the CalTeach Science and Mathematics Program, and enrolled in their first course.
My experience with the CalTeach program was beyond extraordinary. Kris Houston and Terry Shanahan provided each prospective teacher with vast insight and individualized support and encouragement throughout the entire program. The wide range of courses that CalTeach offers prepares prospective teachers for what they will encounter in their classroom (i.e. differentiating lessons to meet the needs of students with wide ranges math and language proficiencies, and learning modalities). When it came time to start my career as a teacher, I felt confident with my ability to teach whatever course was placed on my roster, wherever I was hired.
I am currently in my 5th year of teaching at Palos Verdes Peninsula High School in Rolling Hills Estates, California. In the last few years, I have integrated dynamic geometry software (GeoGebra) within the Geometry courses that I teach. Most recently, I led professional development sessions at the district level on how to incorporate GeoGebra in math classrooms, and I plan to submit and share my work with GeoGebra at the CMC South Conference in Palm Springs in 2018.
As an educator, I am constantly seeking opportunities to expand my knowledge and understanding and share what I have learned. In August 2017, I graduated from CSU Long Beach with a Masters in Mathematics, specializing in Mathematics Education for Secondary School Teachers. Now I am serving as a new teacher mentor in the South Bay area for the California Teacher Induction program (formerly known as BTSA).
After many years in my own classroom, I hope to become a Master Teacher in a program similar to UC Irvine’s CalTeach program. I am passionate about math education, and I wish to spread the knowledge that I gain from my classroom experience with the next generation of math teachers.
I am very grateful for the CalTeach program, what that they offer their prospective teachers, and what they continue to offer to their alumni. I cannot thank UC Irvine and CalTeach enough for everything they have done for me!
The School of Education's Credential Advisory Council held its fall meeting on Friday, November 3, in the Dean's Conference Room at UCI. Present were representatives from Capistrano USD, Fountain Valley USD, Huntington Beach USD, Irvine USD, Los Angeles USD, Newport Mesa USD, Orange County Department of Education, Saddleback Valley USD, Santa Ana USD, UCI's Division of Continuing Education, and faculty from the School of Education.
UCI Director of Teacher Education Virginia Panish welcomed members and provided updates on the following five topics:
New business included presentations and discussion of the following:
The Advisory Council will hold its 2018 Spring meeting in April.
Principal William Skelly and Assistant Principal Sylvia Martinez have partnered with Professor George Farkas, PhD student Melina Pinales, and UCI undergraduates in Professor Farkas’ course on Effective Reading Interventions, as well as UCI work study students, to improve the reading skills of first and second graders at Heninger Elementary School in the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD).
With generous support from Crevier Family Foundation and Lakeshore Learning Materials, the Reading One-to-One program is pairing university tutors with Heninger students who need focused support in reading.
The Reading One-to-One initiative grew from Professor Farkas' extensive background as a researcher, scholar, mentor, and program implementer. His accolades include recognition from the Clinton administration for his contribution to the America Reads program, pioneered by Farkas in Texas and subsequently scaled up for national distribution in the late 1990s. (Read more)
Professor Farkas began the program at Heninger in fall, 2016, placing UCI undergraduates trained in his Reading One-to-One curriculum with low-performing first graders. Statistical research (pre-post testing, fall and spring test scores for the Heninger tutored students and a matched control group selected from five other schools) showed that the tutored students who participated in at least 40 tutoring sessions during fall and spring gained an average of 10.4 percentile points greater than the control group (p<.083) and a significantly greater proportion of tutored students (50%) scored above the 38th percentile compared to the control group (20%) (p<.035).
During the 2017-18 academic year, Reading One-to-One is providing the neediest Heninger students with UCI undergraduate tutors, so that each Heninger student is tutored one-on-one, four times per week, for a total of 21 weeks. Tutors work with students on identifying and sounding out letters of the English alphabet, identifying beginning and ending sounds in spoken words and blending sounds together in written words so as to sound out the word, using a mini-white board and plastic letters to sound out and spell words, and most importantly, reading level-appropriate English books and answering questions about the story. The UCI undergraduates, under the guidance of PhD student Melina Pinales, maintain a portfolio of the Heninger student's work, chart the student's progress, and write journal entries about each day's experience.
In addition to the instructional assistance, many of the UCI students are first-generation college students, and serve as college-going role models for first generation students in Santa Ana. At the end of Spring, Ms. Pinales and Professor Farkas will be documenting student progress during the 2017-2018 academic year, with the goal of further expanding the program to include additional UCI and SAUSD students.
Members of the Century High School TEACH Advisory Board met at UC Irvine on November 1 to discuss activities planned for the 2017-2018 school year. Attending were representatives from partner institutions: California State University, Fullerton; Century High School; Concordia University; Discovery Tube; Madison Elementary School; National University; Orange Coast College; Project Tomorrow; Santa Ana College; Santa Ana Unified School District; and UC Irvine.
UCI's Director of Teacher Education Virginia Panish welcomed members to UCI, followed by TEACH Director James Oveson welcoming members to the fall meeting and providing a Century High School update. Board members then reviewed TEACH's Career Technical Education Curriculum, which includes the following:
Each participant shared updates from his or her organization and discussed paid internships and the Concordia University Scholarship.
The Advisory Board will meet again on February 28, 2018 at CSU Fullerton and on April 11 at Concordia University.
About TEACH: The TEACH Academy at Century High School is a school within a school program for sophomores, juniors and seniors who are interested in careers in teaching. The mission of the program is to develop a strong foundation for college bound students who are interested in becoming educators and role models in their community. TEACH students progress through an integrated curricular path with a focus on elementary, middle, and secondary teaching careers. Students who successfully complete the three-year pathway will have earned 15 units of articulated credit through Santa Ana College. Interspersed with classes and career development opportunities, students participate in team building activities (Alpine Center, Academy Orientation Day), university visits (UCI, CSU Fullerton, Concordia), and curricular experiences (Discovery Cube, Knott's Berry Farm, Tanaka Farms, Ed. Rising).
YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2wN0dkwinAwww.youtube.com/watch?v=o2wN0dkwinA
Assistant Professor Constance Iloh is sole author of a newly published article in the Journal of Latinos and Education: "Paving Effective Community College Pathways by Recognizing the Latino Post-Traditional Student.” Professor Iloh studies the changing landscape of postsecondary education and its impact on underrepresented students.
Community colleges are the primary destination for Latinos entering higher education. Unfortunately, this is also the sector where the greatest likelihood of interruption to Latino college educational attainment and completion occurs. In this paper, the author argues that the growing Latino “non-traditional” student population must be better recognized and prioritized for community colleges to increase their effectiveness for Latino students. In particular, the author highlights the critical role of community colleges in educating underserved post-traditional students, the unique identities, motivations, and challenges of Latino post-traditional students, and new directions for improving conditions in the community college sector.
Learning Ovations, Digital Promise, UCI, and MDRC Awarded U.S. Department of Education EIR Grant to Scale Personalized Literacy Instruction
Five-Year Expansion Grant Aims to Have 90+ Percent of Students Reading at Grade Level by Third Grade, and to Improve District, School, and Teacher Capacity
October 24, 2017; Washington, D.C. – Learning Ovations, Digital Promise, the University of California, Irvine and MDRC have been awarded a U.S. Department of Education five-year Education Innovation and Research (EIR) expansion grant totaling $14.65 million for the United2Read project.
United2Read project partners will bring Learning Ovation’s “A2i” technology professional support system to students and teachers nationwide with the goal of improving literacy skills and closing the achievement gap, which are national priorities. A2i, or assessment-to-instruction, has strong evidence of efficacy based on results of randomized controlled trials and quasi-experiments conducted since 2005 in 30 schools and more than 190 classrooms in Florida and Arizona. The first study in 2005-06, published in Science magazine, with 10 schools randomly assigned to treatment or control conditions, showed that first graders whose teachers used A2i and received professional development achieved stronger literacy skills than their peers in the control classrooms. Funding for this project was provided by the U.S. Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.
“A2i is a researched-based instructional tool that informs teachers on the right amount and type of reading instruction so that they can effectively differentiate instruction for all students’ needs,” explains Amanda Jacobs, principal at Phoenix Collegiate Academy and user of the A2i professional support system. “A2i was a major relief to our literacy teachers. They had the data to tell them what to do and the tools to help them build concrete lessons and next steps. They felt confident in their instructional decision-making. As a result, students are growing much faster and teacher morale is much higher.”
“Our mission is to close the Digital Learning Gap and create an environment where everyone has the opportunity to learn, supported by technology and research,” said Karen Cator, president and CEO of Digital Promise. “We are thrilled to join with our esteemed partners and take this research-based strategy to the League of Innovative Schools and beyond to help ensure students are reading at or above grade level.”
“Partnerships of this character can serve as a model for improving education in the 21st Century. By leveraging external partners, our extraordinary faculty can accelerate the broad dissemination and use of evidence-based solutions to literacy and other pressing educational needs facing our nation. It’s truly thrilling to see the work of professors Carol Connor and Deborah Vandell impacting the educational lives of tens of thousands of students in more than 300 schools,” said Richard Arum, dean of UCI’s School of Education.
Many high-need students do not achieve literacy proficiency because they do not receive effective personalized literacy instruction during the early elementary grades. The A2i professional support technology is a data-driven system that was designed by and for teachers.
While the grant emphasizes high-need student success, the partnership’s ability to expand nationwide is made possible by the fact that the individualization afforded by A2i benefits ALL children. Subsequent studies of the cumulative effects (2012) of using the A2i’s professional support systems from kindergarten through third grade, have shown children finishing third grade reading at an average fifth grade level. These results were only possible given that both struggling and successful readers showed significant improvement. At least 300 schools and 100,000 students in K-3rd grade will be served through the grant.
One hundred and fifty-five schools have already been identified, many including Digital Promise’s League of Innovative Schools network. “We are excited to be the partner in this project that evaluates scale-up strategies for a state-of-the-art reading program that leverages technology in many creative and useful ways,” said Fred Doolittle, Vice President and Director of K-12 Education at MDRC.
Partners and Roles:
1) Learning Ovations will provide the A2i software platform, individual school partners, teacher coaching, online assessments, full data reporting, and customized technology support to each district based on their choice of curricula, assessment, and LMS. Learning Ovations supports schools and shares accountability in achieving these results for children.
2) Digital Promise will act as the overall project manager and fiscal agent, engage school participants through its League of Innovative Schools network, provide qualitative research, and offer guidance in line with its Learner Positioning Systems initiative, which provides research-based personalized learning supports for the full diversity of learners.
3) UCI will serve as the research lead and will advise on all aspects of professional development, partnering with schools, and improving the A2i technology (isilearn.net). The School of Education is ranked in the top 25 in the country, according to U.S. News & World Report.
4) MDRC, the evaluation partner in the project, will conduct a school-level randomized controlled trial study of the expansion of United2Read.
The outcomes of the initiative are twofold:
(1) Achieve strong student literacy outcomes for students using the A2i professional support system in at least 300 schools across the nation, serving over 100,000 students; and
(2) Identify and remove critical barriers to scale including a literacy scan, an independent evaluation of the professional development protocols to test the cost effectiveness of moving to technology-based PD, and investigate how IBM-Watson can facilitate administrative processes.
About Learning Ovations
Learning Ovations Inc. was founded to bring evidence-based and rigorously tested interventions and instructional practices to schools with the aim of raising learning outcomes for all students. Learning Ovations combines technology and professional development to provide educators with the tools, data, and know-how to effectively individualize literacy instruction from kindergarten through third grade. The patented, A2i technology platform, coupled with professional development is proven to raise reading achievement for all students to at or above grade level by the end of third grade. The A2i professional support system links language and literacy assessment results to recommendations for specific amounts and types of reading instruction thru evidence-based algorithms.
About Digital Promise
Digital Promise is a nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to spur innovation in education to improve the opportunity to learn for all Americans. Through its work with educators, entrepreneurs, researchers, and leading thinkers, Digital Promise supports a comprehensive agenda to benefit lifelong learning and provide Americans with the knowledge and skills needed to compete in the global economy. For more information, visit the Digital Promise website and follow @digitalpromise for updates.
About the University of California, Irvine
Founded in 1965, UCI is the youngest member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. The campus has produced three Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 30,000 students and offers 192 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $5 billion annually to the local economy. For more on UCI, visit www.uci.edu.
Founded in 1974, MDRC is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that develops, evaluates, and improves education and social programs that serve low-income children, adults, and families. Visit our website (www.mdrc.org) or follow us on Twitter (@MDRC_News) for more information.
Learning Ovations: Joseph A. Connor
Founder / CEO
Digital Promise: Kristin Atkins
UCI: Pat Harriman
MDRC: John Hutchins