AN ASSESSMENT OF LEARNER KNOWLEDGE OF CHILD DEVELOPMENT CONCEPTS CONTAINED IN THE PENNSYLVANIA ACADEMIC STANDARDS FOR FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCES AS A RESULT OF PARTICIPATION IN A HIGH SCHOOL CHILD DEVELOPMENT COURSE
The purpose of this study was to investigate high school student achievement in child development concepts that are reflected in the Pennsylvania Family and Consumer Sciences Child Development Standards. A secondary goal of this research was to compare student achievement in child development concepts in child development courses that include a laboratory as an integral part of the course with achievement in child development courses that do not include a laboratory component. The design was a pretest-posttest experiment using an instrument which was developed for this study. The treatment was exposure to a high school semester-long family and consumer sciences course in child development. The subjects were 431 students from nine high schools in Pennsylvania. The experimental group consisted of two subgroups; one of the subgroups consisted of high school students enrolled in a semester-long child development course that was didactic in nature, without a child development laboratory experience. The second subgroup consisted of high school students enrolled in a semester-long child development course that was a combination of didactic instruction and experience in a child development laboratory. Students who were never enrolled in a child development course participated in the control group.
The findings from this study offer evidence that participation in a high school semester-long child development course has a positive effect on students knowledge of child development concepts. After the experimental group participated in a child development course, they differed significantly in their knowledge compared to the comparison group who did not participate in a child development course. A high school child development semester course, as evaluated in this study, does appear to have a significant impact on students knowledge of child development concepts. Students who took a child development course showed significant improvement on posttests compared to pretest scores.
Child development students who participated in a laboratory experience showed a significantly greater improvement on tests scores over child development students who took a didactic-style child development course with no laboratory experience.
Advisor:Linda Nelson; Roger Klein; Karen Vander Ven; Louis Pingel
School:University of Pittsburgh
School Location:USA - Pennsylvania
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:psychology in education
Date of Publication:07/18/2005