Supporting teachers' use of data-based instruction to improve students' early writing skills

Kristen L. McMaster, Erica S. Lembke, Jaehyun Shin, Apryl L. Poch, R. Alex Smith, Pyung Gang Jung, Abigail A. Allen, Kyle Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We examined the effects of a professional development (PD) system designed to support teachers' use of data-based instruction (DBI) to improve early writing outcomes for children with intensive needs. The PD system, called DBI-TLC, provided tools for early writing assessment and intervention, learning modules including face-to-face workshops followed by classroom application, and ongoing coaching to support DBI implementation. Special education teachers in 19 classrooms in 2 Midwestern districts were assigned randomly to receive DBI-TLC or to a business-as-usual control group. All teachers completed pre- and posttests of DBI knowledge and skills and self-efficacy, and DBI-TLC teachers' fidelity to DBI was assessed. Fifty-three students (2 to 3 from each classroom) completed pre- and posttests of early writing using curriculum-based measures (CBM) and the Test of Early Written Language-3 (TEWL-3). DBI-TLC teachers outperformed controls at posttest on DBI knowledge and skills (Hedge's g = 2.88) and reported a more explicit writing instruction orientation compared to controls (g = 1.63). DBI fidelity varied (on average, 84% for assessment, 79% for intervention, and 52% for decision-making). Students whose teachers implemented DBI showed a pattern of stronger early writing performance compared to control students on CBM, with effect sizes of 0.23 to 0.40, but not on the TEWL-3 (0.02 to 0.13). We discuss the promise of DBI-TLC to improve teacher practice and student outcomes, as well as the need to continue to explore ways to support teachers' implementation of DBI with fidelity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Volume112
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2020

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Students
instruction
teacher
student
Curriculum
Language
Special Education
Self Efficacy
Information Systems
written language
Decision Making
system development
Learning
classroom
Education
Control Groups
writing instruction
curriculum
coaching
special education

Keywords

  • Coaching
  • Data-based instruction
  • Early writing
  • Professional development

Cite this

Supporting teachers' use of data-based instruction to improve students' early writing skills. / McMaster, Kristen L.; Lembke, Erica S.; Shin, Jaehyun; Poch, Apryl L.; Alex Smith, R.; Jung, Pyung Gang; Allen, Abigail A.; Wagner, Kyle.

In: Journal of Educational Psychology, Vol. 112, No. 1, 01.2020, p. 1-21.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

McMaster, KL, Lembke, ES, Shin, J, Poch, AL, Alex Smith, R, Jung, PG, Allen, AA & Wagner, K 2020, 'Supporting teachers' use of data-based instruction to improve students' early writing skills', Journal of Educational Psychology, vol. 112, no. 1, pp. 1-21. https://doi.org/10.1037/edu0000358
McMaster, Kristen L. ; Lembke, Erica S. ; Shin, Jaehyun ; Poch, Apryl L. ; Alex Smith, R. ; Jung, Pyung Gang ; Allen, Abigail A. ; Wagner, Kyle. / Supporting teachers' use of data-based instruction to improve students' early writing skills. In: Journal of Educational Psychology. 2020 ; Vol. 112, No. 1. pp. 1-21.
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