Utilization of a systemic design and learning styles model as a paradigm for restructuring education
The purpose of this study was to determine if using strategies from a learning style model which are supported by a design-based, systemic implementation is more effective than the strategies prescribed by regular textbook programs in elementary school. This investigation was conducted to determine if teachers who adapt to students' learning styles get better results. More specifically, what are the effects of this design with instructional strategies which are prescribed by students' reading styles on academic achievement. This was a quasi-experimental pretest-posttest quantitative study involving 282 students from the lower elementary grades of 3 and 4 and the upper elementary grades of 6, 7, and 8. The experimental treatment provided learning styles instruction in reading based on the Dunn and Dunn Model as prescribed by the Carbo's Reading Styles Profile and supported by a design for systemic implementation. The principles which formed the basis for systemic implementation as well as ensuring pathways for internalization and institutionalization were: (1) develop teamwork through learning activities which involve cooperative strategies; (2) develop thinking processes through problem-solving and hands-on activities in constructivist process learning; (3) develop partnerships and become community-based initiatives; (4) maintain strong family support; (5) use technology, not as an end in itself, but as a vehicle to gain information; (6) develop high performance; (7) develop metacognitive behavior as the learner becomes responsible for the learning; and (8) maintain an ongoing program of developing the staff. Findings of the study included that when students' instruction was based on strategies which matched their learning style in reading and systemically applied: (1) the experimental treatment significantly affected grade levels differently in total reading, vocabulary, and social studies; (2) students' academic achievement scores on tests for reading were statistically significantly higher in both lower and upper elementary grades; (3) Chapter I students' academic achievement scores on tests for vocabulary and social studies were statistically significantly higher; and (4) the academic achievement scores on tests for reading and social studies were statistically significantly higher in reading and social studies when the students participated two consecutive years.
Curricula|Teaching|School administration|Elementary education
Ann Emery Snyder,
"Utilization of a systemic design and learning styles model as a paradigm for restructuring education"
ETD Collection for Tennessee State University.