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Buescher, Eileen MauraLearning to Teach English Language Arts in Urban Middle Schools: A Cultural and Interactional Perspective
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2017, EDU Teaching and Learning
This dissertation explores the experiences of middle childhood pre-service teachers (PST) across two academic years as they learn to teach English language arts to diverse students from conflicting sociocultural contexts. To help PSTs navigate the tensions across contexts, this study introduced culturally relevant (Ladson-Billings, 1995; 2014) and ethnographic (Heath & Street, 2008) perspectives in one Middle Childhood Education (MCE) teacher education program and then considered how such a perspective shapes PSTs’ instructional approaches during student teaching. Specifically, this study examines how interactions during “mentoring sessions” between one university supervisor (me) and the PSTs foster a cultural perspective within the PSTs’ conceptual and practical development (Grossman, Smagorinsky, & Valencia, 1999). It also follows the PSTs into their student teaching to consider how PSTs appropriated a cultural perspective during interactions with me as their university supervisor and with their peers into their pedagogical decisions in the classroom. It is important for the field of teacher education to understand what and how ideas about teaching ELA in diverse classrooms are taught in pre-service teacher education and how they are taken up by PSTs. Although previous studies have examined some of these conflicting messages that PST must consider, there is a need to study how these conflicts get taken up interactionally (Bloome, Carter, Christian, Otto, & Shuart-Faris, 2005) to better understand the moments in which teacher educators can learn how to support PSTs in becoming reflective teachers with a deep commitment to all of their students. By focusing in on how learning is constructed during specific interactions and then zooming out to consider the larger settings and people that are reflected in and constructions of these interactions, this study provides significant theoretical and pedagogical implications for the field of English teacher education.

Committee:

George Newell, PhD (Advisor); Mollie Blackburn, PhD (Committee Member); David Bloome, PhD (Committee Member); Francis Troyan, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Philosophy; Literacy; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

English teacher education; discourse analysis; urban education;

Dunn, Jeffery WNeoliberalism and the `Religious' Work of Schools: The Teacher as Prophet in Dewey's Democratic Society
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2017, EDU Policy and Leadership
This study explores the deleterious and often dehumanizing effects of neoliberal conceptions of schooling on broader democratic forms of education as John Dewey conceived them. I reveal how Dewey’s notion of the religious and his enigmatic claim that the teacher is a “prophet of the true God” provides a way to think differently about the aims and purposes of education situated now within the riverbeds of twenty-first century neoliberalism. With a renewed vision of education, I position teachers as the prophets of democracy who work to subvert the culture of neoliberal schooling.

Committee:

Bryan Warnick, PhD (Advisor)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Educational Leadership; Educational Theory

Keywords:

Neoliberalism; Dewey; Democratic Schools; Prophetic Teachers

Morrow, Stephen MThe Art Education of Recklessness: Thinking Scholarship through the Essay
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2017, Arts Administration, Education and Policy
This document has been (for me, writing) and is (for you, reading) a journey. It started with a passing remark in Gilles Deleuze’s 1981 book Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation. That remark concerned the cliche. The psychic cliches within us all. The greatest accomplishment of the mind is thinking, which according to Deleuze means clawing through and beyond the cliche. But how? I found in my research that higher education art schools (like the higher education English departments in which I had for years taught) claim to teach thinking, sometimes written as “critical thinking,” in addition to all the necessary skills of artmaking. For this dissertation, I set off on a journey to understand what thinking is, finding that Deleuze’s study of the dogmatic image of thought and its challenger, the new image of thought—a study he calls noo-ology—to be quite useful in understanding the history of the cliche and originality, and for understanding a problematic within the part of art education that purports to use Deleuzian concepts toward original thinking/artmaking. This document is both about original contributions to any field and is my original contribution to the field. A critique and a proposal.

Committee:

JACK RICHARDSON (Advisor); JENNIFER RICHARDSON (Committee Member); SYDNEY WALKER (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Art Criticism; Art Education; Art History; Education; Education Philosophy; Film Studies; Fine Arts; Literature; Philosophy; Teaching

Keywords:

art education; art; cinema; poetry; philosophy; Gilles Deleuze; jan jagodzinski; the image of thought; Recklessness

Groman, Jennifer LynnFrom Calling to Crisis: The Growth Process of Teachers Through Crisis-Like Incidents
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Akron, 2015, Elementary Education
The phenomena of crisis in the formation and development of teacher identity is not unknown in the field of educational research, yet the study of these phenomena tends to focus on preservice and novice teachers. The purpose of this research is to discover through veteran teacher narratives, descriptions of crisis-like incidents, as well as any growth and transformation they may have experienced in the context of the profession. By studying teacher stories I hope to contribute to the understanding of how teachers navigate their teaching lives and shifting identities, especially in the face of difficulty, and gain insight into the value of collectively sharing and talking about the stories together. This Organic and Narrative based inquiry engaged three veteran teachers in conversations about the difficulties and challenges (crisis-like situations) of their teaching lives. The stories of crisis-like incidents (Veteran Stories) varied greatly, but themes emerged, such as: passion for the profession; varying needs for reflection; conflict of personal beliefs and institutional beliefs; conflict of belonging and not belonging; harmed and healed relationships; and the presence of a strongly held core belief. The process of sharing crisis stories in a safe and caring environment was quite transformative for participants. Their reflections indicated increased understanding of self and others, desire to be of service, a sense of wellbeing and personal implications, as well. They concluded that teachers often cause crisis-like incidents for other teachers, and that reflecting on incidents, while emotionally difficult, proved valuable to them. The researcher gained increased awareness of the vulnerabilities and risk in teaching, and now views herself as moving into teacher Elderhood. Early readers responded to the stories of crisis with stories of their own, demonstrating the truly widespread nature of crisis-like incidents in the lives of public school teachers. Recommendations for the profession include increased time and space for teachers to talk to one another about their philosophical beliefs and values and the value of a healthy, trusting school culture. Further research is needed to unearth aspects of critical incidents among teachers with varying philosophical viewpoints, as well as the phenomena of teachers causing critical incidents to other teachers.

Committee:

Gary Holliday, Dr. (Advisor); Renee Mudrey-Camino, Dr. (Committee Member); Alfred Daviso, Dr. (Committee Member); Sandra Spickard-Prettyman, Dr. (Committee Member); Rebecca McElfresh, Dr. (Committee Member); Diane Montgomery, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Adult Education; Early Childhood Education; Education; Education Philosophy; Educational Psychology; Elementary Education; Middle School Education; Pedagogy; Personal Relationships; Philosophy; Psychology; Psychotherapy; Spirituality; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

Crisis, critical incidents, teaching, teacher training, organic inquiry, narrative inquiry, transpersonal psychology, stories, narratives, teacher stories, teacher identity, identity

Minkin, Sarah M.Starting from Here: An Exploration of the Space for Sustainability Education in Elementary Science and Social Studies
Master of Science (MS), Ohio University, 2015, Environmental Studies (Voinovich)
Sustainability education (SE) is a pathway for creating a more socially, economically, and environmentally just and sustainable world. SE involves the incorporation of sustainability concepts into curricula using innovate teaching methods (i.e. place-based education, outdoor education, experiential education, nature-based education). This thesis explores the space for SE in Grade 5 science and social studies classrooms. Using the case study methodology, this study looked to practicing teachers for insights on how SE could be integrated into the public education system. This study investigated teachers’ understanding of sustainability and practice of SE by analyzing their perceptions of sustainability, examples of SE lessons, and their sources of knowledge about sustainability. The results indicated that teachers’ understanding of sustainability is largely focused on environmental aspects and that teachers’ practice of SE also has an environmental focus. This study evaluated the feasibility of teaching SE in the classroom by outlining the challenges and opportunities for SE presented by teachers. While there are some factors that limit teachers’ ability to teach SE (i.e. teachers’ limited knowledge about sustainability, lack of training in SE, and institutional demands), with guidance and support from education institutions and community partnerships current and future teachers can provide SE for their students.

Committee:

Nancy Manring, PhD (Advisor); Danielle Dani, PhD (Committee Member); Stephen Scanlan, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy; Educational Sociology; Elementary Education; Environmental Education; Science Education; Social Studies Education; Sustainability; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

sustainability; sustainability education; place-based education; education for sustainable development; elementary education; science education; social studies education; teachers; teacher education; community partnerships

Alfaddai, Asma HomoudThe Impact of Motivation by School's Administration on The Student's Achievement
Master of Education, Cleveland State University, 2015, College of Education and Human Services
This research set out to examine the effectiveness of motivation (incentive-based programs) by school’s administration on student’s academic and non-academic achievement. Ex post facto design is used. Thirteen students from two schools in Saudi Arabia were chosen for this study. Saudi Arabia General Aptitude Test of achievement is used to measure the motivated students’ achievement. Open-ended interviews with the school’s administrator assisted in providing more information about the impact of incentive-based programs on students' achievement.

Committee:

Frederick Hampton, Ed.D. (Committee Chair); Ralph Mawdsley, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Mark Freeman, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Justin Perry, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy; Educational Leadership

Appleman, Michael JEmerging Adulthood: The Pursuit of Higher Education
Master of Arts, University of Akron, 2015, Educational Foundations-Social/Philosophical Foundations of Education
The introduction of this thesis project will provide an overview of emerging adulthood and the context of higher education in contemporary society. In chapter two, a conceptualization of emerging adulthood will be provided. Given the social psychological nature of emerging adulthood, chapter two will explain the influence of identity development and social factors on emerging adults. In chapter three, self-authorship will be discussed as a theory for considering how emerging adults make meaning of their experiences, progress toward mature thinking, and assume responsible roles in adult life. Next, chapter four will provide an analysis of the relationship between emerging adults and higher education. An emphasis in chapter four will be the Learning Partnerships Model which articulates the potential for higher education to foster the development of self-authorship. This will provide one example of the way higher education cultivates individuals, and the implications for emerging adults. Lastly, a conclusion follows in chapter five to discuss the intersections between emerging adulthood, self-authorship, and higher education, with an emphasis on the social and cultural implications of emerging adulthood as a newly theorized phase in the human lifespan.

Committee:

Suzanne Mac Donald, Dr. (Advisor); Li Huey-Li, Dr. (Committee Member); Sandra Spickard-Prettyman, Dr. (Committee Member); Megan Moore-Gardner, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Adult Education; Aging; Cognitive Psychology; Curriculum Development; Education Philosophy; Educational Leadership; Educational Theory; Higher Education; Individual and Family Studies; Multicultural Education; Social Psychology; Social Structure; Sociology; Teaching

Keywords:

emerging adulthood; higher education; self-authorship; educational philosophy; social and cultural foundations; lifespan; student development; identity development; decision-making; possible selves; future-oriented thinking; student learning outcomes

Silverman, Bryan ACANADIAN IDENTITY, MULTICULTURALISM, AND A COSMOPOLITAN FUTURE
PHD, Kent State University, 2014, College and Graduate School of Education, Health and Human Services / School of Foundations, Leadership and Administration
In this dissertation, the development of a multicultural population in Canada is traced from early European settlement in up through the 20th century. The implementation of official Canadian multicultural policy as a response to demographic concerns and the expanding demands of human rights in a liberal state is then examined through historical and philosophical perspectives. An analysis of present challenges to the policies of Canadian multiculturalism is situated in an argument that suggests continued and expanding tensions to current framework. An argument for a future of rooted cosmopolitanism in Canada is presented as a way to address the concerns raised regarding multicultural policy. Based on the philosophy of Kwame Anthony Appiah, rooted cosmopolitanism is presented as a philosophical and policy perspective that could be implemented in Canadian public education and shape a successful future for the Canadian state.

Committee:

Natasha Levinson, Ph.D. (Advisor)

Subjects:

Canadian Studies; Education; Education History; Education Philosophy; Education Policy

Keywords:

Canada, Education, Multiculturalism, Cosmopolitanism, Rooted Cosmopolitanism

Young, Jennifer(The) Student Body/ies: Cultural Paranoia and Embodiment in the American High School.
Doctor of Philosophy, Case Western Reserve University, 2014, English
This dissertation analyzes contemporary high school rhetorics and institutional discourse, with specific focus on attendance, discipline, and dress code policies. The analysis is employed through an embodiment reading of high school handbooks and high school buildings. A theoretical lens comprised of the work of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Michel Foucault, and Sara Ahmed is utilized throughout the dissertation, and the primary methods of analysis are Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) and primary metaphor analysis. The dissertation suggests that a more thoughtful and informed approach to the development of educational discourse may have the power to radically change (for the better) the way we educate high school students. The core problem addressed is the existence of a rhetorical mismatch between author and audience; current educational discourse/rhetoric fails to connect with its target audience (high school students) on many counts and perhaps in some ways actively alienates them. The appropriate intervention must examine and interrogate that discourse/rhetoric and ultimately suggest alternative modes, tone, and content that might be more effective and productive in engaging the desired audience.

Committee:

Kimberly Emmons, Dr. (Committee Chair)

Subjects:

Composition; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Rhetoric

Keywords:

rhetoric; discourse; high school students; embodiment; critical discourse analysis; primary metaphor analysis; Maurice Merleau-Ponty; Michel Foucault; Sara Ahmed; high school dress codes; high school attendance policies; high school discipline codes

Li, DongdongA Preliminary Study of the Funding Gaps Between Urban and Rural Schools in Shanghai, China 2004-2011: Amartya Sen's Capability Approach
Master of Arts, University of Akron, 2014, Educational Foundations-Social/Philosophical Foundations of Education
This study applied Amartya Sen’s capability approach to analyze the funding differences in the free nine-year compulsory education between rural schools and urban schools in Shanghai. It is critical to bridge the funding gaps between urban and rural schools in China. In line with Amartya Sen’s capability approach, I further recommend that the government in China conduct comprehensive educational needs assessments in rural schools in order to provide rural students with responsive and accessible educational resources and services.

Committee:

Huey-Li Li, Dr. (Advisor); Suzanne MacDonald , Dr. (Committee Member); Xin Liang, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Philosophy

Griswold, Michael RCommunity Schools: Catalyst for Comprehensive Neighborhood-Based Initiatives?
Master of Arts, University of Toledo, 2014, Geography
For over 100 years neighborhood-based initiatives have been enacted as a means to alleviate conditions associated with spatially concentrated poverty. And yet, these sociospatial strategies have shown limited success. The scope of this research attends to the range of initiatives encompassing schools and neighborhood centers and correlations to the contemporary community school reform movement. This point of reference is utilized to weigh the means to which community schools may stimulate broader neighborhood-based improvements. School-centered community revitalization rests upon a participatory development approach funded by an asset-based and capacity building framework for community development that utilizes resident-led initiatives and decision making that is context-based and affected from within. This research travels the recent academic reform of an inner-city public school in Toledo, Ohio. This course of inquiry draws from current literature and case study findings as a means of charting corridors to advance neighborhood-based revitalization efforts. This research also furthers the understanding of the broader issue of neighborhood-based initiatives.

Committee:

Sujata Shetty, Dr. (Committee Chair); Mary Beth Schlemper, Dr. (Committee Member); David J. Nemeth, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Curriculum Development; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Geography; Pedagogy

Keywords:

neighbor-based initiatives, spatially concentrated poverty, community schools, school-center community revitalization,

Li, ShaA Comparative Study of K-12 Foreign Language Education in American and Chinese Public Schools: A Case Study of Six Foreign Language Teachers
Master of Arts, University of Akron, 2013, Educational Foundations-Social/Philosophical Foundations of Education
The present study aims to provide a more complete picture of how the U.S. and China have developed their foreign language education, particularly in secondary public schools, and how it is structured in each country. An analysis of the foreign language education systems from a historical perspective up until the current foreign language curricula setting situation will be addressed as well in this paper in order to compare and contrast the effective and ineffective aspects of what each country has done and is doing in foreign language education. My study focused on a small sample size of focus group involving three foreign language instructors in public middle schools from China, and three in the U.S. The two research instruments that were used in this study were online surveys and focus group. It is thus hoped that this study may make a contribution to the literature, facilitating both countries’ understandings of each other, exploring the problems of both countries, adding new knowledge about the significance of foreign language education, and suggesting the best practices to establish and improve foreign language programs. It is thus also hoped that both country may apply the effective practices and discard the ineffective practices.

Committee:

Suzanne MacDonald, Dr. (Advisor); Lynn Smolen , Dr. (Committee Member); Brad Maguth, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy

Keywords:

K-12 foreign language education; socio-political investment; teachers professional development; curriculum and instruction;

Mosley, Robert ArthurEffects of an early return-to-work program on the costs of workers' compensation
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2003, Physical Activity and Educational Services
One of the major issues confronting employers in the United States today is the high cost associated with workers' compensation insurance. Although many factors contribute to the total overall cost of workers' compensation, the major cost driver besides medical is lost time from work. As time off work due to a disabling injury increases, so do injury-related costs such as indemnity payments, medical and legal expenses, and employee costs. This study will investigate the relationship between the implementation of an Early Return to Work program as a component of an Employers' Disability Management program and its effects on one of the cost drivers affecting their compensation cost (lost time). The purpose of this study is to determine to what extent there is a relationship between early return to work and the length of time off work (TOW) and successful return to work (outcome). This study compares two Early Return to Work (ERTW) programs, one with labor/management support (Toledo), and one without (Cleveland), and it evaluates each program's effect on time off work (TOW) and rehabilitation outcome. This study will seek to find which of the following characteristics were predictors of desired outcome: Program type (labor/management support and non-labor/management support); Occupational group; and Nature of disability.

Committee:

Bruce Growick (Advisor)

Subjects:

Education, Philosophy of

Keywords:

RETURN-TO-WORK; rehabilitation; unspecified; COMPENSATION; RETURN-TO-WORK PROGRAM; injured workers; employee

Sharma, ManishaIndian Art Education and Teacher Identity as Deleuzo-Guattarian Assemblage: Narratives in a Postcolonial Globalization Context
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2012, Art Education

This dissertation examines the idea that the identity of Indian artist educators and consequently Indian art education is an assemblage of socio-cultural and ideological experience and influence, and of disciplinary transgressions into pedagogical borderlands. The primary source for the concept of assemblage as employed in this study is the writing of Deleuze and Guattari.

I identify and analyze three assemblages of identity, namely: a) postcolonial self-consciousness, b) disciplinary organization, and c) social organization, to consider how art education might be approached ‘other’wise in theory and practice. This analysis is based on narratives of learning, teaching and ideology that emerge in engaging composite voices of urban Indian art educators on their practice, with articulations of policy and curriculum voices.

I employ a conceptual framework of ontological hybridity that folds Indian Vedanta philosophy onto concepts of Deleuze and Guattari, such as assemblage, rhizome, and space. I do so in context of developments in curriculum and pedagogy in art education on disciplinary and social levels. I place my dissertation within the discourse of postcolonial globalization theory, exploring the concept of ambivalence in relation to identity. I employ a methodology located in the borderlands of narrative inquiry and grounded theory.

Committee:

Kevin Tavin, PhD (Advisor); Sydney Walker, PhD (Committee Member); Christine Ballengee-Morris, PhD (Committee Member); Deborah Smith-Shank, PhD (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Art Education; Education Philosophy; Multicultural Education; Pedagogy; South Asian Studies; Teacher Education

Keywords:

art education; teacher identity; Deleuze and Guattari; assemblage; hybridity; Vedanta; Indian art; hybrid ontology; postcolonial; globalization; composite narrative;

Alexander, RasheedahExploring the Impact of the Economic Decline on the Literacy of Middle-Class Families in Three Regions of the United States
Master of Arts (M.A.), University of Dayton, 2013, English
This thesis seeks to examine the relationship between literacy attainment and the current recession. The impact of the economy on the global labor force has unquestionably altered the lives of many families in all over the country. Literacy development has altered the social, economic, cultural, and political development of the middle-class families, and current economic realities have become a daily discusses on news outlets around the world. The downturn of this financial crisis is transforming the way working-class families gain access to critical pieces of knowledge and skills to safeguard their position on the literacy ladder. Since money plays a key role in accessing technology, tutors, books, and higher education a collapse or economic downturn can challenge any family’s social class, but it cripples the middle-class. In short, middle class families lives have been—and continue to be—transformed in immense ways as a result of the significant economic disparity, outflow of resources, and the desperate need answers to the social classes dilemma regarding literacy development. The intent of this study is to determine whether the elements of region, race, and place in the class sphere, age, or engagement play a rolel in maneuver through the economic downturn. Through interviews conducted on Facetime, Skype and in-person I chose three distinct families and examined how they negotiate the effect of this economic landscape on their lives and that of their communities. Using documented case studies I reveal that while the middle class' financial status is in economic upheaval, the literacy development of the children is pertinent for community engagement. In fact, literacy of middle class families preserves community literacy, engagement, and builds an infrastructure that enriches communities by example alone. Although, social, political and economic endeavors are weigh in when establishing the direct impact that the economy has on middle class families the more crucial impact however, is the economic impact on literacy development during a recession. Additionally, the roll parents take in ensuring that economics never impact engagement in the development of literacy in their families.

Committee:

Bryan Bardine, Ph.D. (Advisor); James Boehnlein, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Andrew Slade, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

African Americans; Black Studies; Education; Education Philosophy; Gender Studies; Language; Literacy; Multicultural Education; Pedagogy; Social Research; Teacher Education

Keywords:

Economy; economics; recession; economic decline; literacy; achievement; attainment; families; family; literate; literacy development

Larson, Katie TitusAdolescents' Self-Described Transformations and Their Alignment with Transformative Learning Theory
Ph.D., Antioch University, 2017, Leadership and Change
This phenomenological, collaborative inquiry explored the depth of two adolescent girls’ lived experiences during their high school years and the degree to which their self-described transformative incidents aligned with transformative learning theory. Traditionally this theory has been reserved for adults, yet the current paradigm may have overlooked the capabilities of modern adolescents to not only experience, but to describe and interpret transformative learning in ways both similar to and unique from adults. My two 19-year-old co-researchers and I examined four years of their self-identified transformative incidents by breaking them into components, analyzing the language within, and seeking evidence of critical self-reflection throughout; and then compared the extent to which the incidents aligned with the frameworks of adult transformative learning theory. Findings indicate that the co-researchers did experience transformative learning as defined by several theorists and exhibited both adult-like capabilities of: critical self-reflection, rational discourse, and reflective action; and adolescent-like aspects of: the development of identity, self-authorship, and empathy. This study challenges current assumptions in the theory and adds to the holism of the field. This Dissertation is available in Open Access at AURA: Antioch University Repository and Archive, http://aura.antioch.edu and OhioLink ETD Center, http://www.ohiolink.edu/etd

Committee:

Jon Wergin, Ph.D. (Committee Chair); Lize A.E. Booysen, DBL (Committee Member); Carolyn Kenny, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Sharon Daloz Parks, Ph.D. (Other)

Subjects:

Developmental Psychology; Education; Education Philosophy; Educational Psychology; Pedagogy; Personal Relationships; Philosophy; Teaching; Womens Studies

Keywords:

Transformative Learning; Transformative Incident; Shift in Consciousness; Adolescent Development; Self-Reflection; Phenomenology; Cooperative Inquiry; Perspective Shifts; Relationships; Leadership Development; Transformative Education; Co-Research

Smith, Katherine K.A Phenomenological Study of Aesthetic Experience Within an Arts Council's Events and Programs: Finding Joy, Expression, Connection, and Public Good in the Arts
Doctor of Philosophy, Miami University, 2016, Educational Leadership
City Township made a township-level decision to utilize arts events and programming to create community formation within its public. A non-profit entity entitled the Arts Planning Council was established to harness the aesthetic experience within the arts and to address the deep state cuts to the township budget. My aim was to understand the formation of a community based arts education program, how it contributes to the meaning and creation of community, how human connection is created through existential aesthetic experience, and how it can lend a feeling of communitas (V. Turner, 1969) among township members. Through the interpretive discourse and the methodology of hermeneutical phenomenology, I analyzed how the Arts Planning Council made meaning of the aesthetic experiences that occurred in their arts events and programming that result in community creation. For two years, I functioned as a participatory observer and conducted formal and informal interviews with Arts Planning Council board members, township trustees, and township administrators. I applied horizontalization (Moustakas, 1994) to cluster significant statements from their accounts into consistent themes of understanding. Using the emerging themes of the arts as joy, the arts as expression, the arts as connection, and the arts as a public good as generative guides for writing, I divided the study into sections that elaborate on the phenomenon of the aesthetic experiences within the arts events and programming and how those experiences lead to community creation. I concluded that the members of the Arts Planning Council and township trustees understand the receptive joy, expression, and connection derived from the liminal experience of the arts creation and participation. The resulting feeling of spontaneous communitas lends a desire to continue communitas into a normative state. Ultimately, desire engenders a joint aim to deliver the arts as an irreducible, social good. This idea interrupts the discourse that arts education should only occur in schools and makes the responsibility for educating the public one held by all township members. The result is an ecology of education built within the revitalized community of City Township.

Committee:

Kathleen Knight-Abowitz, Ph.D. (Advisor)

Subjects:

Aesthetics; Art Education; Arts Management; Education Philosophy; Educational Leadership

Keywords:

community based art education; community of practice; aesthetics; community; arts council; communitas; public good; joy; expression; connection; ecology of education

Wang, JianfenAn Ecology of Literacy: A Context-based Inter-disciplinary Curriculum for Chinese as a Foreign Language
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2016, East Asian Languages and Literatures
Traditional approaches to teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language (CFL) are based on a reductionist view of communication. In the reductionist view, communication is construed as a matter of arriving at understanding through the use of semiotics (verbal and non-verbal behavior). The semiotics is seen as the means to understanding instead of the consequences of understanding. Literacy is construed as an endpoint ability achieved through reading and writing. Constrained by the reductionist view of communication, the constructive nature of conversation has not been appropriately taken advantage of by CFL programs. This dissertation proposes a conversation-driven approach based on a complex, systemic view of communication, which has been informed by an extensive literature in related disciplines, such as biology, developmental psychology, linguistic anthropology, sociolinguistics, neuroscience, information theory, systems theory, media studies, phenomenology, and philosophy of mind. In the systemic view, communication is construed as complex and dynamic processes that are embodied as coordinated behaviors among the participants. Behavior is not something a person does by himself. Rather, it is constituted by the changes of a participant’s position or attitude, which an observer describes as movements or actions in relation to a certain environment. Therefore, communication is irreducible to the physical sum of verbal and non-verbal behaviors that we observe. We conclude that learning to communicate in Chinese is not reducible to “mastering” isolated verbal and non-verbal behaviors we observe from acts of communication. Rather, learning to communicate is to orient one’s behavior toward Chinese-speaking contexts. This can only be done through personally enacting processes of communication over a sufficient period of time. Complex, dynamic processes of communication constitute an ecology of literacy (EOL) – a system that sustains itself by the diverse and interrelated communication processes that bring texts into being. The construal of “literacy as communication-related processes” has been promoted by scholars of Multiple Literacies Theory (MLT) and applied to educational research on literacy development of children in multilingual societies and on principles of curriculum formation. The construal of literacy as processes shifts our understanding of the relationships between literacy, texts, and the reader. Literacy is no longer viewed as a matter of endpoint abilities. Instead, it is seen as a system of ongoing processes that produce texts in a broad sense. The readers are essentially ever-evolving products of the texts that they embody. Indeed, they are living texts constituted by the processes of communication in which they are engaged. Conversation is identified as the most fundamental and productive process of communication in an EOL. It drives the evolution of literacy. The second half of this dissertation discusses how we may employ “conversation-driven” as a guiding principle for designing CFL curricula that can effectively accommodate the ever-growing involvement of multimedia in communication and lead to the construction of self-sustainable structures of the Chinese language in the learners’ systems.

Committee:

Galal Walker (Advisor); Charles Quinn (Committee Member); Mari Noda (Committee Member); Xiaobin Jian (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Communication; Curriculum Development; Ecology; Education Philosophy; Foreign Language; Literacy; Pedagogy; Sustainability; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

Chinese as a foreign language; curriculum; context; inter-disciplinary; ecology of literacy; embodied mind; literacy as processes; knowing as doing; learning as transformation; performed-culture; conversation; learner diversity; dynamic assessment

Long, PollyDiminishing the Discipline Gap: Restorative Justice as a Promising Alternative in One Urban School
Specialist in Education (Ed.S.), University of Dayton, 2015, School Psychology
Across the nation, the education system is responding to student misbehavior with zero tolerance policies that parallel the punitive practices found in the juvenile and criminal justice systems. Zero tolerance policies have contributed to the “discipline gap,” wherein schools punish racial and ethnic minorities more often and more severely than they punish whites. One alternative to punitive punishment is restorative justice, which aims to foster respect, responsibility, and empathy in members of school communities. This project evaluates the relationship between restorative justice and out-of-school suspension rates in an urban school district. It also serves as one of the few studies that evaluate the effect of restorative practices on the discipline gap. The results validate previous research findings, as restorative justice is related to reductions in out of-school suspension rates. Further, the results reveal a promising alternative to the punitive practices that plague the education system, as restorative justice is related to reductions in the size of the discipline gap.

Committee:

Susan Davies, Ed.D. (Committee Chair); Elana Bernstein, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Jamie Longazel, Ph.D (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Philosophy; Educational Psychology; Educational Sociology; Psychology; Special Education; Teacher Education

Keywords:

discipline gap; punitive punishment; restorative justice; mass incarceration; zero tolerance; suspension;

Yue, JunliangA Study of Chinese Students’ Perceptions of American Culture and Their English Language Acquisition
Master of Arts in Education, University of Akron, 2016, Educational Foundations-Social/Philosophical Foundations of Education
Chinese students is the largest international student group in US. Those students are expected to acquire fluent English skills during their study in the US. The reality is the always true. There are several reasons behind this result and culture is one of the important factors impact their English language acquisition. In this study, the author used a qualitative research method and interviewed four Chinese international students about their perceptions of American and their English language acquisition. The researcher found that the participants’ improvements of English language proficiency appeared to be correlated with their degree of acculturation to the American culture. The deeper they adapted to the American culture, a higher level of English language proficiency they could achieve.

Committee:

Huey-Li Li, Dr. (Advisor); Francis Broadway, Dr. (Committee Member); Renee Mudrey-Camino, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Philosophy; Educational Leadership; English As A Second Language

Keywords:

Chinese students, English language learning, Culture

Lewis, James R.SPIRITUAL FITNESS AND RESILIENCE FORMATION THROUGH ARMY CHAPLAINS AND RELIGIOUS SUPPORT
PHD, Kent State University, 2015, College and Graduate School of Education, Health and Human Services / School of Foundations, Leadership and Administration
LEWIS, JAMES R., Ph.D., December, 2015 Cultural Foundations in Education SPIRITUAL FITNESS AND RESILIENCE FORMATION THROUGH ARMY CHAPLAINS AND RELIGIOUS SUPPORT (237 pp.) Dissertation Advisor: Natasha Levinson, Ph.D. Catalyzed by my observations as a U.S. Army Chaplain dealing suicide in the military across the past decade, in this study, I explore and more clearly conceptualize social processes of spiritual fitness and resilience formation in a context of plurality. Guiding questions include: Why do some become suicidal through suffering, while others experience “post-traumatic growth” instead? And if this capacity is a product of resilience, how is such a resilience formed? My research through this interdisciplinary study of literatures of spiritual and social formation through education, has identified three facets of this formation process, entailing 1) socially formed 2) frameworks of meaning 3) that become resilient habitus and habits of mind only through habitual practice, often requiring broad social support, as opposed to being the individual processes often thought. I argue that the integrated components of religious and civic formation, once central to resilience formation through American public education, are now largely ineffective, and have yet to be effectively replaced. It is that process of formation, cultivation and reinforcement of a core of spiritual fitness in resilience which the research of this dissertation is intended to explore and develop. Potential legal ramifications when the language of spiritual fitness is used by public institutions such as the U.S. Army, are also addressed. Army Chaplains have effectively fostered pluralistic models of resilience formation and reinforcement through religious support since before the birth of the United States, uniquely equipping Chaplains as resources for intentional spiritual fitness and resilience formation in the pluralistic context.

Committee:

Natasha Levinson (Advisor); McClelland Averil (Committee Member); Jeffrey Wattles (Committee Member)

Subjects:

American History; American Studies; Armed Forces; Behavioral Sciences; Clergy; Cognitive Psychology; Cognitive Therapy; Comparative; Continuing Education; Counseling Education; Curriculum Development; Education History; Education Philosophy; Educational Leadership; Educational Sociology; Ethics; Individual and Family Studies; Mental Health; Military Studies; Rehabilitation; Religion; Religious Education; Social Research; Spirituality

Keywords:

spiritual fitness, formation, Army suicide, secular age, social formation, spiritual formation, personal formation, socio-cultural change, Constantinian Christian culture, habits of mind, habitus, Chaplaincy, Army Chaplains, Army Chaplain histor

Montgomery, Richard ThomasAn Investigation of High School Teachers’ Epistemic Beliefs in an Urban District
Doctor of Education, University of Toledo, 2014, Educational Administration and Supervision
Investigations in the field of teacher epistemology have been informative in that they have provided a framework for identifying which epistemic beliefs are associated with student- and teacher centered instruction (Schraw & Olafson, 2002) and which beliefs prevent teachers from adopting student centered instructional practices (Gill, Ashton, & Algina, 2004). Understanding teachers’ epistemic beliefs is an important asset to school districts because it provides insight on which teachers may require additional intervention to adopt new teaching practices. However, few studies have examined the epistemic beliefs of high school teachers. There were three objectives of this investigation: (1) to identify the proportions of high school teachers in one urban district whose epistemic beliefs reflect resistance to change teaching practices (Gill et al., 2004; Patrick & Pintrich, 2010) versus those with beliefs amenable to adopting new practices (Feucht, 2010); (2) to identify the proportion of teachers with teacher- and student centered epistemic beliefs by area of certification, and (3) to establish whether relationships exist between high school teachers’ epistemic beliefs and selected demographic variables. Findings showed that 57.9% of teachers surveyed held epistemic beliefs that reflect a student centered orientation. Few relationships were found between high school teachers’ epistemic beliefs and selected demographic factors. Implications for teacher epistemology research and school district leaders were discussed.

Committee:

Nancy Staub (Committee Chair); Dale Snauwaert (Committee Member); Mary Ellen Edwards (Committee Member); Shanda Gore (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Educational Evaluation; Educational Leadership; Educational Psychology; Educational Theory; Epistemology; Pedagogy; Secondary Education; Teacher Education; Teaching

Keywords:

Secondary Teachers, High School Teachers, Epistemic Beliefs, Urban Schools, Teacher Learning, William Perry, Teacher Epistemology, Schraw and Olafson, Domain Specific Beliefs, Domain General Beliefs, Teaching, Educational Policy

Alrefaie, Nadia AFrom Singular to Mixed: A Comparative Study of the Perceptions of Male and Female Saudi Students at The University of Akron in Adapting to the Coeducation Experience.
Master of Arts in Education, University of Akron, 2015, Educational Foundations-Social/Philosophical Foundations of Education
In this study, I had investigated how Saudi students at The University of Akron perceive and experience coeducation as individuals who originate from a cultural environment and educational system that normalizes the separation of sexes, and explore any differences in such perceptions and experiences between male and female Saudi students. The objective of this study was to find answers to four questions; (a) How do Saudi students, as products of a single-sex education system and a gender-segregated culture, perceive the coeducation experience while attending academic programs in the U.S.? (b) Do Saudi women perceive the coeducational experience of the U.S. differently from Saudi men? (c) Is the gender of the student a factor in hindering or accelerating adjustment to this new norm? Or is it the time spent in a coeducation setting? Or is it both? (d) How may the perceived challenges of adapting to coeducation be mitigated or resolved? To address the research problem and questions, I had applied a phenomenological methodology, as to study the perceptions of four randomly selected Saudi students attending the University of Akron, differing in gender, level of education and time spent in the U.S., and to assess the role of gender and time in their adjustment to coeducation. Guided by the focus of this study, I presented a theoretical framework that consisted of several gender identity, social identity and acculturation theories and models, and used this framework in interpreting the responses of the study’s subjects. Additionally, I had discussed the predominant social and gender identities in Saudi Arabia and reviewed previous studies that have researched the experiences of Saudi students attending higher education in western countries in relation to matters of gender and coeducation, as to present a contextual setting for the analysis of the responses. In relation to the research questions, this study suggests that there are indeed differences between the perceptions and experiences of Saudi female and male students attending a coeducation program at The University of Akron. Female participants had found that their initial expectations of experiencing a coeducation program had little impact on their first interaction with non-Saudi students of the opposite sex. Additionally, they had commented that during the first month, their interactions with male teachers were influenced by the norms of their home culture, that they were more concerned with the view of others, that they had preferred to join groups of female only students, and that their perceptions and experiences would be the same had they been men. However, the participants, male and female, had also reported to have similar perceptions and experiences in adjusting to coeducation. They had mentioned that before arriving in the U.S., they had developed a broad premonition about education and coeducation in the U.S., had not identified any specific challenges they wished to avoid whilst in a coeducation program, and believed that any challenges they would meet should be resolved by themselves. They also mutually agreed that on the first day, they had experienced stress and anxiety due to coeducation, and for the duration of the first month they had experienced intense feelings of embarrassment and discomfort when interacting with Saudi students of the opposite sex, and an unexpected ease to interact with non-Saudi students of the opposite sex. All participants had reported to view coeducation as normal by the end of the first semester and their current perceptions to coeducation to be positive, and significantly different from their initial perceptions, thus they would prefer to continue to attend a coeducation program in the U.S. even if they had the choice to transfer to a separate sex program. However, they also reported that they continue to experience various levels of difficulty and embarrassment when interacting with Saudi students of the opposite sex, and that they would prefer to join a separate sex setting when returning to Saudi Arabia. The gender-based concerns and issues not only suggest that Saudi female students may have several different coeducation-related perceptions and experiences, but also that their adaptation to coeducation may be more challenging for them than it is for Saudi male students. Thus, the gender of Saudi female students could be a hindering factor during their adaptation of coeducation, especially during the first semester attending a coeducation program. On the other hand, the mutual points of agreement between male and female participants suggest that Saudi students of both genders would also have similar perceptions and experiences during and post to adapting to coeducation. Therefore, while male and female Saudi students in coeducation would at times face similar challenges, hold similar perceptions and live through similar experiences, at other times, female Saudi students may have different experiences and perceptions that are unique to their gender. These gender-exclusive factors may make adapting to coeducation more challenging, demanding and stressful than it is for male Saudi students. In the context of the previous studies, I found that the themes of this study partially differ from the themes of such studies, and add new themes that were not previously identified. The foremost significant new theme is that Saudi students of both genders, and regardless of length of stay and exposure to coeducation, continue to experience difficulty and embarrassment when interacting with Saudi students of the opposite sex, and not with non-Saudi students of the opposite sex. In the context of theories, this theme may translate as achieving a temporary level of cultural adaptation to coeducation, and acquiring a contextual intercultural social identity. In other terms, and in answering the first research question, this means that Saudi students of both genders who are attending a coeducation program would base their perception of the normality of coeducation, or mixing of genders, on the context of the situation. For when in a context and situation that normalizes coeducation, such as attending their studies in a cultural environment in which coeducation is the norm or when interacting with American students, they would perceive coeducation as normal and appropriate. However, when Saudi students find themselves in a context and situation in which coeducation is not the norm, such as when returning to Saudi Arabia or when interacting with other Saudi students, their would perceive coeducation to be abnormal and inappropriate. Thus, I conclude that Saudi students attending a coeducation program in the U.S. may have different perceptions and experiences while adapting to coeducation, especially during the first semester, which differ according to their gender and consequently make it more the adaptation process more challenging for female Saudi students. However, after gaining sufficient exposure to coeducation, Saudi students, both male and female, would achieve a similar level of adaptation and adjustment to the cultural difference of coeducation and be capable of interacting effectively and stressfully with non-Saudi students of the opposite sex. The exclusion to this conclusion is that they still may experience various levels of stress, difficulty and embarrassment when interacting with Saudi students of the opposite sex. It the recommendation for Saudi students who intend to study abroad, The Ministry of Higher Education in Saudi Arabia, The University of Akron and researchers to further investigate the causations of such issue and recommend resolutions that may mitigate the stress of these experiences.

Committee:

Suzanne MacDonald, Dr. (Advisor); Huey-Li Li, Dr. (Committee Member); Wondimu Ahmed, Dr. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Academic Guidance Counseling; Communication; Comparative; Education; Education Philosophy; Educational Psychology; Educational Sociology; Higher Education; Personal Relationships; Social Psychology; Social Research

Keywords:

Saudi Arabia; coeducation; gender; culture; adaptation; acculturation; international students;

Alvim, Henrique de GodoyLiving Christianly Among Strangers: The Educational, Civic, and Theological Practice of "Being the Church" in the Post-Secular American Academy
PHD, Kent State University, 2014, College and Graduate School of Education, Health and Human Services / School of Foundations, Leadership and Administration
As religion regains prominence in American public life, it becomes increasingly important for institutions of higher learning to recognize the challenges and possibilities in making room for people of faith within the academy. As universities continue to diversify their educational spaces, the recruitment, retention, and success of students who hold an exclusivist view of Christianity points to practical and critical implications that will be addressed in this dissertation; implications that take into account religious perspectives that inform the lives and the learning experiences of many students of faith. This humanities oriented dissertation aims at exploring possible answers to questions that guide the overall inquiry into what a life formed and informed by exclusive Christian convictions has to offer to a shared, pluralistic space where people of the most various secular and religious commitments intersect to live and learn together. The overarching question that guides this project is: How ought Christian students - especially those that hold a particularist worldview informed by their faith - live, express their religious commitments, and practice their social agency "as the church" in public institutions of higher education in America? While this dissertation will address the challenges and possibilities in making room for exclusivist believers in the American academy, it will also press public universities to reevaluate the meaning they attribute to diversity and inclusion with a view to creating spaces that are more hospitable to religious viewpoints. That said, believers will also be encouraged to reflect on the virtues of civility, respect, and hospitality, so that they may become co-workers of a peaceful learning environment where mutual understanding of others might contribute to the formation, transformation, and flourishing of all members of the academy. The dissertation outlines certain ways of living Christianly that while maintaining the legitimacy of exclusiveness of one's religious convictions still lends itself to deeper learning about, with, and from others. With that, it presses exclusivist Christians to answer other important questions, one of which is: How are they to practice, in the post-secular academy, a presence that is neither disinterested nor domineering? Possible answers to this and other questions will lead to an important assertion: that civic and educational pluralism, when intelligibly informed and augmented by a religious worldview, edifies our public life, particularly as people of varying moral and ethical commitments decide to enlarge the conversational space where education takes place. To that end, the idea of respectful dialogue will be discussed as a way by which all members of the academy may become teachers and learners of values that ultimately inform life in a democratic society.

Committee:

Natasha Levinson, Ph.D. (Committee Chair); McClelland Averil, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Kretovics Mark, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

Education Philosophy

Keywords:

Christians in the academy; the intersection of religion and public higher education; exclusivist Christian commitments and convictions; college student formation; respectful dialogues

Toure, Abu JaraadTowards A ‘Griotic’ Methodology: African Historiography, Identity Politics and Educational Implications
Doctor of Philosophy, The Ohio State University, 2011, EDU Policy and Leadership
This study assesses the historical and educational implications of a ‘griotic' methodology that was employed by free African Americans in the antebellum North. This griotic methodology involved a textual production of history by and for African Americans that was derived from a West African oral/performance basis of history. The study therefore examines how a distinctive approach of history production developed among free African Americans from the late 1700s through the 1830s as they appropriated, engaged and/or countered prevailing European American discourses. Most important to the study is how these early intellectuals sought to vindicate, historicize and liberate themselves through re-presenting the idea of ‘Africa’ as the metaphorical source and destiny of their race. Educational implications of this griotic methodology are subsequently highlighted in the study as it is applied as pedagogy in a post-secondary classroom to empower African African students. In order to establish an endogenous prism through which to examine this distinctive African American methodology, this study integrates a number of qualitative and historiographical components: an intellectual autobiography of the author who is an African American male educator; oral histories of African and African American history professors; and assessments of recent African American scholarship that focus on early African identity politics in the Americas. From these analyses, the author delineates and employs a ‘griotic’ framework that involves a dialogue between the present and past, to chart how a West African oral/performance basis of history ascended into the textual productions of Olaudah Equiano, John Marrant, Peter Williams Jr., William Hamilton, Jacob Oson, David Walker and Maria Stewart. The historical usage of this ‘griotic’ methodology is then emphasized within these works as a liberatory praxis by which early free Africans empowered their identity politics. While this African American approach is specifically examined as an framework for historical production and education, the final component of the study consequently involves the application of griotic methodology as pedagogy within a post-secondary humanities course. The griotic methodology’s applicability is ultimately assessed with respect to how it prompts African American educational agency in, and/or ownership of curriculum in a manner that is meaningful to students’ experiences as constructed by race, ethnicity, religion, and/or gender. In final assessment of griotic methodology as pedagogy, seven principles and practices are offered for educators in post-secondary classrooms to promote a sense of educational agency among African American students in such a way that students’ views of themselves and others are expanded and/or challenged.

Committee:

Antoinette Errante, Ph.D. (Advisor); Leslie Alexander, Ph.D. (Committee Member); Ousman Kobo, Ph.D. (Committee Member)

Subjects:

African American Studies; African Americans; African History; African Studies; Black History; Black Studies; Education; Education History; Education Philosophy; Education Policy; Ethnic Studies; History; Multicultural Education

Keywords:

oral history; griot; African historiography; African American education; antebellum free blacks; antebellum free Africans; African Americans identity politics; African American pedagogy

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