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|Title:||Effects of the Problem-Solving Approach on Achievement, Retention, and Attitudes of Vocational Agriculture Students in Illinois|
|Author(s):||Flowers, James L.|
|Department / Program:||Education|
|Degree Granting Institution:||University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign|
|Abstract:||Purpose. The primary purpose of this study was to compare the effects of the problem solving approach and the subject matter approach to teaching a selected problem area of vocational agriculture. Student achievement, retention, and attitudes toward the teaching method were used as criteria to determine the effectiveness of the two approaches. A secondary purpose of this study was to compare the time required to complete instruction in the selected problem area using the two teaching approaches.
Methods. The target population for this study consisted of high school vocational agriculture students enrolled in introductory vocational agriculture courses. Since random assignment of students to treatment groups was not possible, a quasi-experimental design was used. In order to control for teacher effect, the four teachers selected to participate in this study taught one class using the problem solving approach and one class using the subject matter approach. Treatments were randomly assigned to the classes. There were 68 students in the problem solving group and 61 students in the subject matter group. An achievement test and attitude instrument were administered immediately following instruction in the problem area. A parallel retention test was administered one week after the achievement test. In order to control for possible preexisting group differences, grade point averages in the first semester of vocational agriculture and student IQ scores were used as covariate measures in the study. Data were analyzed by means of multivariate and univariate analyses of covariance, t-tests, and descriptive statistics.
Findings. (1) There was no significant difference in student achievement between students taught by the problem solving approach and students taught by the subject matter approach (p = .21). (2) There was no significant difference in student scores on the retention test between students taught by the two approaches (p = .40). (3) There was a significant difference in student retention, as measured by achievement loss (the difference between student scores on the achievement test and the retention test), between the two approaches in favor of the problem solving treatment group (p < .05). (4) There was no significant difference in student attitude toward the teaching method between the two treatment groups (p = .12). (5) The difference in time required to complete instruction in the problem area was not statistically significant (p = .45).
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1986.
|Date Available in IDEALS:||2014-12-15|