All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

James R Ernest

Advisory Committee Members

Jenna M Lachenaye

Linda K Emfinger

Richard V Rector

Jennifer L Summerlin

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2019

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Education (EdD) School of Education

Abstract

The purpose of this sequential explanatory mixed methods study was to examine the relationship between teachers’ perceptions of the effectiveness of both the Devereux Early Childhood Assessment (DECA-P) and the Conscious Discipline program and their connections with teaching practices that support children’s social and emotional development. Quantitative data collected during phase one of the study examined the relationship between teachers’ perceptions of the effectiveness of the DECA-P and the Conscious Discipline program used for undertaking social and emotional assessments and supports for teaching practices. Quantitative data was collected through the distribution and completion (n = 72) of an adapted Treatment Evaluation Questionnaire (TEQ), which assessed teachers’ perceptions of the acceptability of the social and emotional assessment (DECA-P). Qualitative data collected during phase two examined the relationships between teachers’ perceptions of the effectiveness of the social and emotional assessments (DECA-P) in connection with the Conscious Discipline program when supporting children’s social and emotional development. Qualitative data was collected through the implementation of voluntary individual follow-up interviews (n = 10). Quantitative findings indicated that teachers believe that the DECA-P assessment is an acceptable, effective, and timely intervention for improving children’s social and emotional development. Coefficient of determination results reported indicated small effect sizes. Qualitative findings also indicated that the majority of participants used the DECA-P assessment, and when probed, teachers indicated that the DECA-P assessment was an effective tool. Participants used the DECA-P assessment for screening and monitoring their students, for planning their activities, and connecting with parents. However, participants also indicated that they would have liked more training and support in use and implementation of the DECA-P successfully. The study also found the need for both the DECA-P assessment and Conscious Discipline principles to be adapted to be more applicable to children with special needs. The researcher recommends that future studies explore the time and benefits of training paired with implementation, support for assessing the needs of children with special needs, and the implementation of study procedures with a larger sample.

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