Faculty of Education -- Graduate Theses

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Graduate theses completed in the department of Education as part of:
  • Master of Education (Concentrations in: Lifelong Learning, Curriculum Studies, Educational Foundations, Educational Psychology, Elementary and Middle School Education, Literacy Education, School Psychology)
  • Master of Arts in Education (Research)
  • Master of Arts in Education
  • Master of Arts in School Psychology

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Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 5 of 288
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    Supporting Teachers Working With Children With Attentiondeficit/Hyperactivity Dissorder in the Inclusive Classroom.
    (Mount Saint Vincent University, 2022-12) Rath, Maria
    Students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often present with behavioural, academic, and social difficulties in the school context. Teachers are often not adequately trained to address the varied needs of students with ADHD, which can result in impairment and a lack of support. The purpose of this implementation study was to assess an online intervention designed for use by classroom teachers of students with ADHD. Teachers were recruited from across Canada to participate. 151 teachers were enrolled in this study and as such were given access to the ADHD module of Accessible Strategies Supporting Inclusion for Students by Teachers (ASSIST) and asked to respond to a variety of questionnaires assessing effectiveness, implementation, satisfaction, and possible impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Data was collected using a mixed-methods approach. Descriptive statistics, computer-generated statistics, paired-sample t-tests, and content analyses were used to examine the data using the RE-AIM (reach, effectiveness, adoption, implementation, and maintenance) framework. Analysis showed that recruitment resulted in a diverse sample of teachers whose attitudes and beliefs about students with ADHD improved significantly after completing the program. Participants reported being highly satisfied with ASSIST for ADHD but that the COVID-19 pandemic imposed some barriers to the implementation of ASSIST strategies in their classrooms. The results of this study suggest that ASSIST has enormous potential to become an affordable and accessible way to provide teachers with evidence-based strategies for supporting students with ADHD in the inclusive classroom.
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    Supporting Teachers When Working With Students With Autism Spectrum Disorder in the Classroom
    (Mount Saint Vincent University, 2022-12) Trask, Maggie
    ASD symptomology can make aspects of the general inclusive classroom challenging for students with the disorder, and classroom teachers report lacking the knowledge and the skills necessary to provide adequate instruction to their students with ASD. The Accessible Strategies Supporting Inclusion for Students by Teacher (ASSIST) program introduces evidence-based strategies for teachers of students with neurodevelopmental disorders in an adaptable, feasible, accessible, and manageable way. This study explores the implementation, effectiveness, and satisfaction of the ASSIST for ASD module using the RE-AIM framework while considering the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Method: Data was collected from Canadian classroom teachers using a mixed methods approach. Results: After completing the program, teachers reported using many of the ASSIST strategies semi-regularly and continued to do so 6-months post-intervention. There was no indication of clinical effectiveness and teachers were overall satisfied with the program. However, results were likely impacted by the COVID19 pandemic as engagement was an issue. Clinical implications and future directions were discussed.
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    Supporting Teachers Woring with Students with Learning Disabilities in the Inclusive Classroom
    (Mount Saint Vincent University, 2022-12-15) Villars, Kelsey
    Teachers have reported lacking the training and knowledge to support students with learning disabilities (LDs), thus the Accessible Strategies Supporting Inclusion for Students by Teachers (ASSIST) has been developed to support teachers in their work with students with LDs. This hybrid implementation-effectiveness study employed the RE-AIM framework to address research questions on the implementation, effectiveness, satisfaction of the ASSIST for Learning Disabilities (LD) program, and the effects of COVID-19 on implementation. Method: Data was collected from Canadian general classroom teachers using a mixed-methods approach. Analysis: Descriptive statistics, computer-generated statistics, paired-sample t-tests, and content analyses were used. Results: After completing the program, teachers’ attitudes and beliefs about students with LD significantly improved and teachers were highly satisfied with ASSIST for LD. ASSIST for LD was able to reach a wide array of teachers, was implemented with fair fidelity, but COVID-19 proved to be a major limitation to implementation. Conclusions: It is hoped that the results of this study encourage the use of ASSIST among teachers to support them in their work with students with LD.
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    Does How We Measure Vocabulary Breadth Influence its Relationship to Reading Comprehension in Young Elementary School Students?
    (Mount Saint Vincent University, 2022) Innes, Olivia
    A large body of research exists supporting the relationship between vocabulary and reading comprehension, and for younger children between vocabulary and phonological awareness. Vocabulary is frequently measured using the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT), and several recent studies have used shortened versions of the PPVT in explorations of oral language contributions to reading comprehension. This study examined whether these shortened versions of the PPVT are as strongly predictive of reading comprehension (in a sample of first and second grade students; N = 62) and of phonological awareness (in a sample of kindergarten and first grade students; N = 45) as the full test. A second focus of this study was on the relationship between children’s reaction times to correctly identifying items on this vocabulary measure and reading comprehension, as it has been suggested that speed of recognition may account for unique variance in children’s understanding of texts. It was found that the two shortened forms and the full version of the PPVT-5 were not differentially predictive of phonological awareness (in kindergarten and first grade students) or of reading comprehension in first grade students. However, for the second-grade students, one shortened version (every fourth item included) was not as strongly related to reading comprehension as the full version of the PPVT. Turning to the second focus of this study, reaction times to recognize vocabulary items did not explain unique variance in reading comprehension in equations which accounted for the variance explained by grade, word reading, and vocabulary breadth. Overall, the findings from this study raise questions about substituting shortened versions of the PPVT in examinations of the relationship between vocabulary and other reading measures. Furthermore, individual differences for recognizing vocabulary items may not be meaningfully related to reading comprehension in young first and second grade students; a question to be further explored in future research.
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    A Multi-Tiered System of Support for Teacher Professional Development in Social-Emotional Learning in Nova Scotia
    (Mount Saint Vincent University, 2022) Lewis, Sarah
    This thesis will propose a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) for sustainable and embedded teacher professional development in social-emotional learning in the province of Nova Scotia. Since teachers in Nova Scotia are now responsible for supporting the well-being of their students after the implementation of the Inclusive Education Policy in Nova Scotia in 2020, there exists a gap in available teacher professional development for social-emotional learning. This thesis will provide an overview of MTSS models, including critical components like being data-driven and using evidence-based practices. After explaining the importance of evidencebased practices, it will provide an overview of the literature on effective professional development and social-emotional learning. The proposed model will consider the resources and structures already in place in Nova Scotia, including the specialization of school psychologists.