Please Review The Attachments For Directions And To Answer The Assignment

Please review Attachment to answer question

  • Review your prior Week’s Discussion on a quantitative and qualitative research problem, purpose, and research question. Given the additional literature you have read about your research problem, consider how you might build on and refine it.
  • Identify a specific psychological or sociological theory or specific aspects of a conceptual framework that guide your quantitative and qualitative scenarios. Depending on the context of each scenario, the same specific theory or specific aspects of a conceptual framework could guide both scenarios.

    Alignment and Misalignment Examples of Scenario Elements

    In PSYC-8412 Research Foundations you build quantitative and qualitative research scenarios that include each of the

    following key elements:

    Social problem or phenomenon of interest

    • Research problem

    • Research purpose

    • Research questions

    • Theoretical or conceptual framework

    • Research design

    • Sampling strategy o Sampling criteria (qualitative only) o Data sources (qualitative only)

    • Data collection method

    • Variables (quantitative only)

    • Analysis plan

    • Trustworthiness (qualitative only)

    All these key elements must logically align. Although the figure depicts

    a linear flow, it is critical to understand that alignment is an iterative

    process. For example, if after identifying a research problem and

    research purpose additional research questions emerge, then the research

    problem and purpose must be refined to align with the additional

    research questions. Similarly, if variables of interest are identified that

    are not represented in the research problem, purpose, or questions, and

    that do not fit with the theoretical or conceptual framework, then those

    elements will need to be refined to capture all of the variables of interest.

    You will be piecing together your scenarios week-to-week, continually

    adding new elements until a solid alignment of your research idea

    emerges. Because of the iterative nature of alignment, you should not be

    surprised that as a new element is added to your scenario that previous

    elements may need to be modified to maintain alignment.

    There are several ways for elements within a scenario to misalign, and it is not possible to provide examples of all

    possible issues. In this document there are week-to-week example scenarios that demonstrate logically aligned elements

    and some examples of the many ways elements become logically misaligned. Studying these will help you avoid some

    common misalignment issues and understand how changing one element, sometimes even a single word, can affect

    alignment. Below is one student’s reflection in Week 5 of the course:

    I too struggled with the concept and terminology. For me, it is in fact the language that is used, and such

    is definitely ‘foreign’ of sorts. As you go along though, it is all beginning to make sense. Initially the

    feedback also was ‘foreign’ but now, going back and reviewing the question, answers, feedback are

    beginning to all make sense. Even feedback that suggests that one simple word be changed makes sense

    as what I submitted could possibly be misconstrued and cause the study to go in a different direction. I’m

    beginning to understand how changing one simple word can make a difference. Research terminology

    requires that things be concise and getting into the habit of relaying information properly makes all the

    difference. I am beginning to speak ‘research’. I believe it merely takes practice. One almost has to

    develop a mental research template and think from another part of the brain and perspective. (K. Jackson,

    Week 5 discussion post, September 29, 2018)

    A table of contents is on the next page with active links to help you navigate the document.

    Page 2 of 43

    Table of Contents

    WEEK 1 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 3

    WEEK 1 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 4 Checking Week 1 Quantitative Alignment ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 5

    WEEK 1 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6 Checking Week 1 Qualitative Alignment ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 7

    WEEK 2 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 8

    WEEK 2 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 9 Checking Week 2 Quantitative Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 10

    WEEK 2 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 11 Checking Week 2 Qualitative Alignment ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 12

    WEEK 3 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 13

    WEEK 3 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 14 Checking Week 3 Quantitative Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 15

    WEEK 4 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 16

    WEEK 4 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 17 Checking Week 4 Qualitative Alignment ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 18

    WEEK 5 MIXED METHOD DESIGN …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 19

    MERGING QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE SCENARIOS INTO A MIXED METHODS DESIGN ………………………………………………………………………… 20

    WEEK 6 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 21

    WEEK 6 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 22 Checking Week 6 Quantitative Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 23

    WEEK 7 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 24

    WEEK 7 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 25 Checking Week 7 Quantitative Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26

    WEEK 8 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 28

    WEEK 8 QUANTITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 29 Checking Week 8 Quantitative Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 30

    WEEK 9 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 32

    WEEK 9 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 33 Checking Week 9 Qualitative Scenario Alignment …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 34

    WEEK 10 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 36

    WEEK 10 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 37 Checking Week 10 Qualitative Scenario Alignment ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 38

    WEEK 11 SCENARIO PIECES OF PRIMARY INTEREST …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 40

    WEEK 11 QUALITATIVE SCENARIO EXAMPLE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 41 Checking Week 10 Qualitative Scenario Alignment ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 42

    Page 3 of 43

    Week 1

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 1 the focus is on identifying a social problem or phenomenon of interest and specifying a research problem,

    research purpose, and research question for both a quantitative and qualitative research scenario. Typically, a thorough

    review and understanding of the relevant literature is needed to identify a bona fide research problem. We know that you

    have not already conducted such a thorough literature review. For purposes of this course, the research problem—

    something the scholarly community does not know—simply needs to be plausible. On the following pages are an example

    of a quantitative scenario and an example of a qualitative scenario with these four elements that demonstrate alignment

    and misalignment.

    Page 4 of 43

    Week 1 Quantitative Scenario Example

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in other

    industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to

    which critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high

    school at which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school

    with lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum?

    The social problem or phenomenon

    can be, and typically is, broad.

    The research problem narrows the

    scope and identifies something

    specific the scholarly community does

    not know.

    It conjectures that differences in

    critical thinking skills may differ

    based on type of curriculum.

    It explicitly, or at least implicitly,

    identifies the population of interest—

    here it is graduating seniors.

    The research purpose identifies the

    study as quantitative and, otherwise,

    simply repeats the research problem.

    This could not be a qualitative study

    because to determine differences in

    critical thinking skills requires a

    quantitative measure.

    If the research purpose focused on

    graduating seniors from public versus

    private high schools, it would not be

    aligned with the research problem,

    which was about type of curriculum.

    The research question simply replaces “the purpose of this

    quantitative study is to determine” from the purpose with “what

    is”—everything else is exactly the same.

    If the research question asked about critical thinking scores and

    overall GPA, it would not be aligned with the problem or purpose,

    neither of which mention GPA.

    Page 5 of 43

    Checking Week 1 Quantitative Alignment

    One way to visually check alignment is to create a table of the key concepts represented in each key element. If every

    concept in one element is contained in the other elements, then it is aligned (see first table below). If, however, a concept

    in one element is missing in the other elements, then it is misaligned (see second table below).

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    If the concepts of critical thinking, graduating seniors, problem-based curriculum and lecture-based curriculum

    are included in the research problem; then, the research purpose and research question should also contain the same

    concepts.

    If these concepts appear in the

    problem statement

    The scholarly community does not

    know the extent to which critical

    thinking skills differ between

    graduating seniors from a high

    school at which the curriculum was

    problem-based compared to a high

    school with lecture-based curriculum.

    Then, they should be contained in the

    purpose statement

    The purpose of this quantitative study

    is to determine the extent of difference

    in critical thinking skill scores

    between graduating seniors from

    high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum.

    and in the research question

    What is the extent of difference in

    critical thinking skill scores between

    graduating seniors from high schools

    with a problem-based versus lecture-

    based curriculum?

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Page 6 of 43

    Week 1 Qualitative Scenario Example

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in other

    industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify classroom

    experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to map the

    developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences across

    elementary grade levels?

    The social problem or phenomenon

    can be, and typically is, broad. And,

    the same social problem or

    phenomenon can be addressed by

    either quantitative or qualitative

    research.

    It is the research problem that

    determines a quantitative or

    qualitative approach.

    Previously, the quantitative scenario

    focused on “differences” in critical

    thinking skills between two groups.

    Here, the research problem focuses on

    “experiences.”

    It conjectures that some classroom

    experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills, and it

    conjectures that the types of classroom

    experiences may depend on the

    developmental range of students.

    It explicitly identifies the population

    of interest as elementary grades.

    The research purpose identifies the

    study as qualitative to “identify”

    classroom experiences and “map” the

    developmental range.

    If the research purpose focused on

    students’ behavior or disciplinary

    practices, it would not be aligned with

    the research problem.

    Because the research problem and research purpose are about two

    different things—(a) classroom experiences, and (b) developmental

    range of experiences—two separate research questions are needed. One

    focused on the classroom experiences that contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills, the other focused on the developmental range of

    those experiences.

    If a research question asked about experiences in accelerated classrooms

    versus regular or remedial classrooms, it would not be aligned with the

    problem or purpose, which only refer to elementary grade levels. If

    understanding experiences in different types of classrooms is of interest,

    then such would need to be incorporated in the research problem and

    research purpose.

    Page 7 of 43

    Checking Week 1 Qualitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Page 8 of 43

    Week 2

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 2 the focus is on adding a theoretical or conceptual framework to the quantitative and qualitative scenarios

    proposed in Week 1. Although not part of the scenarios, learning resources this week help you understand the primary

    purpose of a literature review and to identify and evaluate scientific sources of information.

    A theory or conceptual framework is necessary in designing a dissertation study and plays a key role in guiding the

    research questions and interpreting the results of a study. On the following pages the quantitative scenario example and

    the qualitative scenario example are carried forward from Week 1 with the theoretical or conceptual framework element

    added to demonstrate alignment and misalignment.

    Page 9 of 43

    Week 2 Quantitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem: Critical thinking skills in the United States have been reported

    to be lower than critical thinking skills in other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to

    which critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high

    school at which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school

    with lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning is a dynamic and collaborative process in which students are

    actively involved in their learning, rather than being passive listeners of a

    lecture. This theory fits and guides the research question expecting differences in

    critical thinking skills between students in a problem-based versus lecture-based

    curriculum and will inform the interpretation of the results.

    In this quantitative scenario

    differences in critical thinking skills

    are expected to be different depending

    on type of curriculum: problem-based

    or lecture-based.

    A theoretical or conceptual framework

    needs to be one that leads the

    researcher to that expectation and that

    will aid in the interpretation of the

    results.

    Here, the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning

    provides the foundation for expecting

    and interpreting differences in critical

    thinking skills between those from a

    school that uses a problem-based

    curriculum versus lecture-based

    curriculum.

    A biopsychosocial framework would

    not fit because there is nothing in the

    research problem, purpose, or question

    that refers to biological or

    psychological factors that affect

    critical thinking.

    Nor would a gender roles conceptual

    framework fit because there is nothing

    prior that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Page 10 of 43

    Checking Week 2 Quantitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the quantitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning guides the expectation and interpretation of differences in students’

    critical thinking skills as a result of problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum exposure.

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Biopsychosocial framework would not fit because there is nothing in the research problem, purpose, or question that

    refers to biological or psychological factors that affect critical thinking.

    Gender roles conceptual framework would not fit because there is nothing in prior elements that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Page 11 of 43

    Week 2 Qualitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in other

    industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify classroom

    experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to map the

    developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences across

    elementary grade levels?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning, Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices, and a developmental perspective form the conceptual framework for

    this study. Each of these relate to identifying classroom experiences that

    contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and the developmental perspective

    also allows mapping of classroom experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Each of these elements of the conceptual framework will also guide thematic

    coding of lesson plans and classroom observations, and aid in the interpretation

    of results.

    In the research problem there is

    conjecture that some classroom

    experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills, and that the

    types of classroom experiences may

    depend on the developmental range of

    students across elementary grades.

    A theoretical or conceptual framework

    needs to support the conjectures, guide

    the specific research questions, and

    serve as an aid in the interpretation of

    the results.

    Here, three elements make up the

    conceptual framework.

    1. The cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning

    supports the conjecture that

    critical thinking skills can be

    enhanced by dynamic and

    collaborative classroom

    experiences that actively involve

    students in the learning process.

    2. Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices.

    3. Developmental perspective of classroom experiences.

    The cognitive and social constructivist

    theoretical lens, the eight principles of

    critical thinking teaching practices,

    and a developmental perspective will

    guide data partitioning of lesson plans

    and observations of classroom

    exercises, and the coding and

    interpretation of classroom experience

    themes that contribute to critical

    thinking skills.

    Grounded theory would not fit the scenario because, first, grounded

    theory is a research design not a theoretical or conceptual framework

    and, second, the purpose of the study is to identify and

    developmentally map classroom experiences that contribute to

    students’ critical thinking skills, not to develop a theory, which is the

    end goal of grounded theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm would not fit as a

    conceptual framework because it is about giving voice to

    marginalized groups, which is not a focus of the scenario’s research

    problem, purpose, or questions.

    Page 12 of 43

    Checking Week 2 Qualitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning supports the conjecture that critical thinking skills can be enhanced

    by dynamic and collaborative classroom experiences that actively involve students in the learning process.

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices dovetail with the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning to specifically identify teaching practices that actively involve students in the learning

    process.

    A developmental perspective takes into account the developmental range of teaching practices and actively involved

    students across elementary grades.

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Grounded theory does not fit because it is a research design for the purpose of generating a new theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm does not fit because it is about giving voice to marginalized groups.

    Page 13 of 43

    Week 3

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 3 the focus is only on the quantitative scenario, adding a specific research design, sampling strategy (which

    implies population), and data collection method that aligns with the research problem, purpose, and questions.

    Campbell and Stanley (1963) described several specific quantitative designs that fall under the broad domains of pre-

    experimental, quasi-experimental, experimental, and nonexperimental. Although you are not required in this course to

    discuss threats to validity, identifying a specific design is critical because specific threats to validity are associated with

    specific designs, not with the four broad domains or other generic terms such as exploratory, causal-comparative, cross-

    sectional, or longitudinal.

    The “Quantitative Research Design Concepts” pdf in the Week 3 Learning Resources area of the classroom distinguishes

    between four commonly confused specific designs and addresses common quantitative sampling strategies and data

    collection methods.

    Page 14 of 43

    Week 3 Quantitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem: Critical thinking skills in the United States have been reported to

    be lower than critical thinking skills in other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to which

    critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high school at

    which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-

    based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based versus

    lecture-based curriculum?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning is a dynamic and collaborative process in which students are

    actively involved in their learning, rather than being passive listeners of a lecture.

    This theory fits and guides the research question expecting differences in critical

    thinking skills between students in a problem-based versus lecture-based

    curriculum and will inform the interpretation of the results.

    Research Design: Comparing graduating seniors from a high school at which the

    curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-based

    curriculum on critical thinking skills is a posttest only static group comparison

    design because groups are compared on a current outcome after recently

    experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy: A purposive sampling strategy will be used to invite only

    graduating seniors (age 18 or over) from high schools with a problem-based or

    lecture-based curriculum. Excluded will be freshmen, sophomores, juniors,

    seniors under 18 years old, nongraduating seniors, and any high school senior in a

    school with a curriculum other than problem-based or lecture-based.

    Data Collection Method: Eligible students will be alerted to the opportunity to

    participate through social media, which will contain a link to an online survey.

    The research design must logically fit

    the research problem, purpose, and

    question. As previously noted these

    three elements are aligned in focus on

    comparing graduating seniors from

    high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum on

    critical thinking skills.

    Because this is a current outcome after

    recently experiencing different types

    of curriculum, the appropriate design

    is a posttest only static group

    comparison.

    It could not be an experimental

    posttest only control/comparison

    group design because students are not

    randomly assigned to type of

    curriculum.

    It also could not be a quasi-

    experimental nonequivalent

    comparison group design because

    there is no pretest.

    The sampling strategy is purposive

    because there are specific inclusion

    criteria that also specifies the

    population of interest.

    It is not a convenience sample, even if

    you conveniently invite students from

    local high schools, because of the

    specific inclusion criteria.

    The data collection method of an

    online survey fits the scenario because

    an online survey can contain whatever

    instrument is used to measure critical

    thinking skills.

    It could not be an unstructured

    interview because reliability and

    validity of a critical thinking skills

    measure must ask each participant the

    exact same questions.

    Page 15 of 43

    Checking Week 3 Quantitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the quantitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning guides the expectation and interpretation of differences in students’

    critical thinking skills as a result of problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum exposure.

    Research Design

    A pre-experimental posttest only static group comparison fits because a current outcome (critical thinking skill scores)

    will be compared between two groups recently experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy

    A purposive sampling strategy fits because there are specific eligibility criteria for participants.

    Data Collection Method

    The data collection method of an online survey fits the scenario because an online survey can contain whatever

    instrument is used to measure critical thinking skills.

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Biopsychosocial framework would not fit because there is nothing in the research problem, purpose, or question that

    refers to biological or psychological factors that affect critical thinking.

    Gender roles conceptual framework would not fit because there is nothing in prior elements that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Research Design

    An experimental posttest only comparison group design does not fit because students are not randomly assigned to type

    of curriculum.

    A quasi-experimental nonequivalent comparison group design does not fit because there is no pretest.

    Sampling Strategy

    A convenience sample does not fit because a convenience sample does not have specific participant eligibility criteria.

    Data Collection Method

    An unstructured interview does not fit because reliability and validity of a critical thinking skills measure must ask each

    participant the exact same questions.

    Page 16 of 43

    Week 4

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 4 the focus is only on the qualitative scenario, adding a specific research design, sampling strategy (which

    implies population), and data collection method that aligns with the research problem, purpose, and questions.

    The “Qualitative Research Design Concepts” pdf in the Week 4 Learning Resources area of the classroom clearly

    differentiates six common qualitative research designs, four common qualitative sampling strategies, and common

    qualitative data collection methods.

    For the qualitative design, do not use broad terms such as descriptive, exploratory, hermeneutic, or lived experience. Use

    one of the six specific designs in the “Qualitative Research Design Concepts” pdf, and briefly describe how the design fits

    your scenario. Also, be specific about the sampling strategy and data collection method with brief description of how each

    fit your scenario.

    Page 17 of 43

    Week 4 Qualitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in other

    industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify classroom

    experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to map the

    developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences across

    elementary grade levels?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning, Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices, and a developmental perspective form the conceptual framework for

    this study. Each of these relate to identifying classroom experiences that

    contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and the developmental perspective

    also allows mapping of classroom experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Each of these elements of the conceptual framework will also guide thematic

    coding of lesson plans and classroom observations, and aid in the interpretation of

    results.

    Research Design: A case study design will be used to focus on the bounded

    system of classroom experiences across elementary grade levels. A case study is

    appropriate because multiple sources of information (classroom observations,

    review of lesson plans) will be used for case-based themes common across and

    unique to elementary grade levels.

    Sampling Strategy: The purpose is not to identify rare classroom experiences

    that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or all possible experiences, but

    the normal and usual experience, so a typical sample will be sought.

    Data Collection Method: Data will be collected by observation of activities in

    the natural classroom setting and from archival document review of teachers’

    lesson plans.

    The sampling strategy is “typical”

    because normal and usual classroom

    experiences are sought.

    It is not a “unique” sampling strategy

    because interest is not in rare

    classroom experiences that contribute

    to students’ critical thinking skills,

    though rare events could emerge from

    the analysis.

    The research design must logically fit

    the research problem, purpose, and

    question. As previously noted these

    three elements are aligned in focus on

    identifying and mapping classroom

    experiences that contribute to

    students’ critical thinking skills across

    elementary grade levels.

    A case study design fits this focus,

    particularly because multiple sources

    of information will be used to

    understand the bounded system of the

    classroom.

    It could not be a narrative design

    because it is not about using people’s

    stories to understand the classroom

    experiences, but about direct

    observation and document review of

    lesson plans.

    To identify and map the

    developmental range of classroom

    experiences, direct observation of

    classrooms and document review of

    lesson plans fit the scenario.

    A structured survey asking teachers

    about the frequency of use of

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of

    critical thinking teaching practices

    could provide valuable information,

    but such would make the scenario a

    quantitative study.

    Page 18 of 43

    Checking Week 4 Qualitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning supports the conjecture that critical thinking skills can be enhanced

    by dynamic and collaborative classroom experiences that actively involve students in the learning process.

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices dovetail with the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning to specifically identify teaching practices that actively involve students in the learning

    process.

    A developmental perspective takes into account the developmental range of teaching practices and actively involved

    students across elementary grades.

    Research Design

    A case study design fits the scenario particularly because multiple sources of data 9classroom observations, document

    review of lesson plans) will be used to understand the bounded system of the classroom.

    Sampling Strategy

    The sampling strategy is typical because normal and usual experiences are sought.

    Data Collection Method

    To understand what classroom experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills direct observations of

    classrooms and document review of lesson plans will be conducted.

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Grounded theory does not fit because it is a research design for the purpose of generating a new theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm does not fit because it is about giving voice to marginalized groups.

    Research Design

    A narrative design does not fit because the scenario is not about using people’s stories to understand classroom

    experiences.

    Sampling Strategy

    A unique sampling strategy does not fit because interest is not in rare classroom experiences.

    Data Collection Method

    A structured interview of teachers’ frequency of use of Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices would make it a quantitative study.

    Page 19 of 43

    Week 5

    Mixed Method Design

    From a common social problem or phenomenon of interest you have developed a quantitative research scenario and a

    qualitative research scenario. Neither of these were created specific to a particular mixed method design. In Week 5 the

    focus is on discussing how your quantitative and qualitative scenarios might be combined for a mixed methods study.

    Creswell and Creswell (2018) describe in Chapter 10 three basic types of mixed methods designs: convergent, explanatory

    sequential, and exploratory sequential. Pay particular attention to pages 217–218, 221–222, and 224. Creswell and

    Creswell also discuss factors important in choosing a design (pp. 236–239) including a recommended design based on the

    study’s objectives and expected outcomes (see Table 10.3, p. 237, particularly the rows related to the three basic types).

    It is possible, perhaps likely, that your quantitative and qualitative scenarios do not fit any of the three basic types of

    mixed methods design because they were not created with mixed methods in mind. The example quantitative and

    qualitative scenarios described in this document do not fit a mixed method. First, the populations of interest are different,

    graduating high school seniors in the quantitative scenario and elementary grade levels in the qualitative. Second, the

    quantitative is about measuring and comparing critical thinking skill scores, while the qualitative is about identifying and

    mapping classroom experiences that contribute to critical thinking skills.

    Even though the separate scenarios do not fit as mixed methods, it’s possible to add something to one or the other scenario

    to align with one of the three basic types of mixed methods design. The most critical addition, from which all other

    elements would logically follow, is a second research problem. Examples are provided in the table on the next page. In

    your Week 5 discussion post it is sufficient to simply add an additional qualitative research problem to your quantitative

    research problem, or an additional quantitative research problem to your qualitative research problem, identify the

    appropriate mixed method design, and briefly explain how the design fits with the original and added research problem.

    The three basic mixed method designs are described below:

    Explanatory Quantitative-Qualitative Sequential Design: In this design the plan for the qualitative portion depends on

    and must be conducted after analysis of the quantitative results. The purpose of the qualitative portion is to explain

    (hence, explanatory) “confusing, contradictory, or unusual” (Creswell 7 Creswell, 2018, p. 222) quantitative findings, or

    to gain a better understanding of selected participants’ thought process, perspectives, or experiences related to the subject

    matter of the quantitative portion.

    Exploratory Qualitative-Quantitative Sequential Design In this design the plan for the quantitative portion depends on

    and must be conducted after analysis of the qualitative results. For example, the quotes, codes, and themes from the

    qualitative analysis might reveal new variables or constructs of interest from which items and scales could be developed

    and tested.

    Convergent Design: In this design the quantitative and qualitative data are typically collected at the same time and

    address the same concepts or constructs, one for the purpose of quantitatively relating or testing group differences on the

    concepts or constructs, the other to gain a rich, in-depth understanding of the concepts or constructs from participants’

    perspectives.

    Page 20 of 43

    Merging Quantitative and Qualitative Scenarios Into a Mixed Methods Design

    Original Research Problem Additional Research Problem Mixed Method Design

    Quantitative: The scholarly

    community does not know the extent

    to which critical thinking skills differ

    between graduating seniors from a

    high school at which the curriculum

    was problem-based compared to a

    high school with lecture-based

    curriculum.

    Qualitative: The scholarly

    community does not know the

    classroom experiences of graduating

    high school seniors in problem-based

    versus lecture-based curricula that

    might explain differences, or not, in

    critical thinking skills.

    Explanatory quantitative-

    qualitative sequential: The

    qualitative piece follows the

    quantitative piece for the specific

    purpose of trying to explain critical

    thinking skill score differences based

    on classroom experiences.

    Qualitative: The scholarly

    community does not know what

    classroom experiences contribute to

    students critical thinking skills or the

    developmental range of experiences

    across elementary grad levels.

    Quantitative: The scholarly

    community does not know the extent

    to which public and private

    elementary schools differ in the use of

    classroom experiences and the

    developmental range of experiences

    that contribute to critical thinking

    skills.

    Exploratory qualitative-

    quantitative sequential: After

    identifying in the qualitative piece the

    classroom experiences and

    developmental range of experiences,

    the coded list is used to create a

    quantitative study to explore the

    frequency of use of these in public

    and private elementary schools.

    Quantitative: The scholarly

    community does not know the extent

    to which critical thinking skills differ

    between graduating seniors from a

    high school at which the curriculum

    was problem-based compared to a

    high school with lecture-based

    curriculum.

    Qualitative: The scholarly

    community does not know the types

    of challenges high school teachers

    face in creating lesson plans and

    classroom activities that might

    contribute to students’ critical

    thinking skills.

    Convergent: The qualitative data

    does not depend at all on the

    quantitative results. The quantitative

    and qualitative data are simply

    merged to provide a fuller

    understanding of the critical thinking

    skills social problem

    Page 21 of 43

    Week 6

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 6 the focus is only on the quantitative scenario, adding a description of each variable, each variable’s range of

    measured values, the level of measurement of each variable, and the identification of each variable as independent or

    dependent that aligns with the research problem, purpose, and questions.

    For example, sex has two levels (male, female) and according to Stevens’s (1946) framework is a nominal level of

    measurement. If you asked males and females how many minutes of news programming they watched or listened to, on

    average, each day, the number of minutes would be a ratio level of measurement. If you expected males and females to

    differ in the number of minutes, then sex would be the independent variable and number of minutes the dependent

    variable.

    Make sure you familiarize yourself with Stevens’s four levels of measurement and the other Week 6 Learning Resources.

    Page 22 of 43

    Week 6 Quantitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem: Critical thinking skills in the United States have been reported

    to be lower than critical thinking skills in other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to which

    critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high school at

    which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-

    based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning is a dynamic and collaborative process in which students are

    actively involved in their learning, rather than being passive listeners of a lecture.

    This theory fits and guides the research question expecting differences in critical

    thinking skills between students in a problem-based versus lecture-based

    curriculum and will inform the interpretation of the results.

    Research Design: Comparing graduating seniors from a high school at which the

    curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-based

    curriculum on critical thinking skills is a posttest only static group comparison

    design because groups are compared on a current outcome after recently

    experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy: A purposive sampling strategy will be used to invite only

    graduating seniors (age 18 or over) from high schools with a problem-based or

    lecture-based curriculum. Excluded will be freshmen, sophomores, juniors,

    seniors under 18 years old, nongraduating seniors, and any high school senior in

    a school with a curriculum other than problem-based or lecture-based.

    Data Collection Method: Eligible students will be alerted to the opportunity to

    participate through social media, which will contain a link to an online survey.

    Variables: Critical thinking skill scores (dependent variable) are expected to

    differ based on type of curriculum (independent variable). Type of curriculum

    has a nominal level of measurement with two levels: (a) problem-based, and (b)

    lecture-based. Critical thinking will be measured using the California Critical

    Thinking Skills Test (CCTST). The CCTST is a 34-item multiple choice format with an overall score of correct answers

    reported on a 100-percentage point ratio level of measurement.

    The variables of interest should be

    apparent in the research problem,

    research purpose, and research

    question.

    The task this week is to operationalize

    the variables.

    From the research problem, purpose,

    and question it is clear that type of

    curriculum has two levels or values:

    problem-focused and lecture focused.

    It is important to understand that

    problem-focused and lecture-focused

    are not separate variables, but separate

    values of the variable “type of

    curriculum.”

    It is also important to understand that

    graduating seniors is not a variable—

    all participants will be graduating

    seniors, so this would not vary; a

    variable must vary in its values.

    In this example critical thinking skills

    is operationalized as measured by the

    California Critical Thinking Skills

    Test.

    No variable should be identified that

    isn’t included in the research problem,

    purpose, or question. For example, it

    might be of interest to also compare

    males and females on critical thinking.

    But to identify sex as a variable, one

    would have to modify the research

    problem, purpose, and question to also

    include sex.

    Page 23 of 43

    Checking Week 6 Quantitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the quantitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning guides the expectation and interpretation of differences in students’

    critical thinking skills as a result of problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum exposure.

    Research Design

    A pre-experimental posttest only static group comparison fits because a current outcome (critical thinking skill scores)

    will be compared between two groups recently experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy

    A purposive sampling strategy fits because there are specific eligibility criteria for participants.

    Data Collection Method

    The data collection method of an online survey fits the scenario because an online survey can contain whatever

    instrument is used to measure critical thinking skills.

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Sex (males vs. females)

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Biopsychosocial framework would not fit because there is nothing in the research problem, purpose, or question that

    refers to biological or psychological factors that affect critical thinking.

    Gender roles conceptual framework would not fit because there is nothing in prior elements that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Research Design

    An experimental posttest only comparison group design does not fit because students are not randomly assigned to type

    of curriculum.

    A quasi-experimental nonequivalent comparison group design does not fit because there is no pretest.

    Sampling Strategy

    A convenience sample does not fit because a convenience sample does not have specific participant eligibility criteria.

    Data Collection Method

    An unstructured interview does not fit because reliability and validity of a critical thinking skills measure must ask each

    participant the exact same questions.

    Page 24 of 43

    Week 7

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 7 the focus is only on the quantitative scenario, adding a specific statistical analysis procedure that aligns with

    the research problem, purpose, and questions.

    The appropriate statistical procedure depends on the research question and the level of measurement of the variables. Last

    week focus was on Stevens’s (1946) nominal, ordinal, interval, and ratio levels of measurement. This can be simplified as

    nominal (or categorical) and metric (which includes ordinal, Likert-type, interval, and ratio).

    The “Statistical Analysis Decision Table” pdf in the Week 7 Learning Resources area guides you to the proper analysis

    based on simply categorical versus metric classification of your variables. The table only includes the basic types of

    analysis that you are expected to know at this point in your professional development.

    Page 25 of 43

    Week 7 Quantitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem: Critical thinking skills in the United States have been reported

    to be lower than critical thinking skills in other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to which

    critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high school at

    which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-

    based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning is a dynamic and collaborative process in which students are

    actively involved in their learning, rather than being passive listeners of a lecture.

    This theory fits and guides the research question expecting differences in critical

    thinking skills between students in a problem-based versus lecture-based

    curriculum and will inform the interpretation of the results.

    Research Design: Comparing graduating seniors from a high school at which the

    curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-based

    curriculum on critical thinking skills is a posttest only static group comparison

    design because groups are compared on a current outcome after recently

    experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy: A purposive sampling strategy will be used to invite only

    graduating seniors (age 18 or over) from high schools with a problem-based or

    lecture-based curriculum. Excluded will be freshmen, sophomores, juniors,

    seniors under 18 years old, nongraduating seniors, and any high school senior in

    a school with a curriculum other than problem-based or lecture-based.

    Data Collection Method: Eligible students will be alerted to the opportunity to participate through social media, which

    will contain a link to an online survey.

    Variables: Critical thinking skill scores (dependent variable) are expected to differ based on type of curriculum

    (independent variable). Type of curriculum has a nominal level of measurement with two levels: (a) problem-based, and

    (b) lecture-based. Critical thinking will be measured using the California Critical Thinking Skills Test (CCTST). The

    CCTST is a 34-item multiple choice format with an overall score of correct answers reported on a 100-percentage point

    ratio level of measurement.

    Statistical Analysis: To determine the mean difference on CCTST scores between graduating seniors from high schools

    with problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum, an Independent Samples t Test will be conducted.

    In this scenario there are only two

    variables: (a) type of curriculum with

    two levels (problem-based, lecture-

    based), and (b) critical thinking

    measured as a percentage correct on

    the 34-item California Critical

    Thinking Skills Test.

    Type of curriculum is a categorical

    variable with two levels. Critical

    thinking scores are metric.

    From the Statistical Analysis Decision

    Table pdf we find the combination of

    categorical variable and metric

    variable as either an Independent

    Samples t Test or a One-Way

    ANOVA. (Either is correct, the results

    would be the same).

    It is important to understand that if the

    categorical variable has three or more

    levels, then the Independent Samples t

    Test would be inappropriate because it

    can only analyze categorical variables

    with two levels.

    A Chi Square Test of Independence

    would not align because it is for

    analyzing two categorical variables.

    Page 26 of 43

    Checking Week 7 Quantitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the quantitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning guides the expectation and interpretation of differences in students’

    critical thinking skills as a result of problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum exposure.

    Research Design

    A pre-experimental posttest only static group comparison fits because a current outcome (critical thinking skill scores)

    will be compared between two groups recently experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy

    A purposive sampling strategy fits because there are specific eligibility criteria for participants.

    Data Collection Method

    The data collection method of an online survey fits the scenario because an online survey can contain whatever

    instrument is used to measure critical thinking skills.

    Statistical Analysis

    Independent samples t test to compare mean difference on California Critical Thinking Skills Test between graduating

    seniors from high schools with problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Page 27 of 43

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Sex (males vs. females)

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Biopsychosocial framework would not fit because there is nothing in the research problem, purpose, or question that

    refers to biological or psychological factors that affect critical thinking.

    Gender roles conceptual framework would not fit because there is nothing in prior elements that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Research Design

    An experimental posttest only comparison group design does not fit because students are not randomly assigned to type

    of curriculum.

    A quasi-experimental nonequivalent comparison group design does not fit because there is no pretest.

    Sampling Strategy

    A convenience sample does not fit because a convenience sample does not have specific participant eligibility criteria.

    Data Collection Method

    An unstructured interview does not fit because reliability and validity of a critical thinking skills measure must ask each

    participant the exact same questions.

    Statistical Analysis

    A Chi Square Test of Independence would not align because it is for analyzing two categorical variables

    Page 28 of 43

    Week 8

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 8 the focus is only on the quantitative scenario. This is an opportunity to tighten up the specificity and

    alignment of all prior elements and to think about and briefly describe positive social change implications of potential

    findings.

    Although not required to specifically discuss the internal and external validity of your quantitative scenario, it is important

    to understand that positive social change implications are bounded by the validity of your study, particularly the specific

    research design, population, sampling strategy, reliability of measured variables, and the actual findings. It is important to

    avoid grandiose positive social change implications.

    When thinking about potential positive social change, considered implications applied to one or more of the following:

    individuals, groups, settings, communities, professional practice, or policy.

    Page 29 of 43

    Week 8 Quantitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem: Critical thinking skills in the United States have been reported

    to be lower than critical thinking skills in other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know the extent to which

    critical thinking skills differ between graduating seniors from a high school at

    which the curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-

    based curriculum.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this quantitative study is to determine the

    extent of difference in critical thinking skill scores between graduating seniors

    from high schools with a problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Research Question: What is the extent of difference in critical thinking skill

    scores between graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based

    versus lecture-based curriculum?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist

    theory of learning is a dynamic and collaborative process in which students are

    actively involved in their learning, rather than being passive listeners of a lecture.

    This theory fits and guides the research question expecting differences in critical

    thinking skills between students in a problem-based versus lecture-based

    curriculum and will inform the interpretation of the results.

    Research Design: Comparing graduating seniors from a high school at which the

    curriculum was problem-based compared to a high school with lecture-based

    curriculum on critical thinking skills is a posttest only static group comparison

    design because groups are compared on a current outcome after recently

    experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy: A purposive sampling strategy will be used to invite only

    graduating seniors (age 18 or over) from high schools with a problem-based or

    lecture-based curriculum. Excluded will be freshmen, sophomores, juniors,

    seniors under 18 years old, nongraduating seniors, and any high school senior in

    a school with a curriculum other than problem-based or lecture-based.

    Data Collection Method: Eligible students will be alerted to the opportunity to

    participate through social media, which will contain a link to an online survey.

    Variables: Critical thinking skill scores (dependent variable) are expected to

    differ based on type of curriculum (independent variable). Type of curriculum

    has a nominal level of measurement with two levels: (a) problem-based, and (b) lecture-based. Critical thinking will be

    measured using the California Critical Thinking Skills Test (CCTST). The CCTST is a 34-item multiple choice format

    with an overall score of correct answers reported on a 100-percentage point ratio level of measurement.

    Statistical Analysis: To determine the mean difference on CCTST scores between graduating seniors from high schools

    with problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum, an Independent Samples t Test will be conducted.

    Social Change: “Critical thinking correlates with workplace and academic success, certification and licensure, and

    survival of some of life’s most difficult challenges” (Insight Assessment, 2016, p. 16). If critical thinking scores are

    higher for graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based curriculum, then further understanding of how

    problem-based instruction increases critical thinking might lead to improved educational, workplace, and professional

    success.

    This scenario is about the effect of

    type of curriculum on critical thinking

    skills.

    It is not a controlled experiment, so

    even if critical thinking scores are

    higher in those from a problem-based

    curriculum, you cannot conclude the

    curriculum “caused” the improved

    scores.

    Moreover, the results of one study

    does not “prove” anything. So, any

    social change implications need to be

    cautiously framed.

    Avoid definitive conclusions by using

    words such as “might,” “could,”

    “may,” and so on.

    Also, it is good practice to couch

    potential social change implications

    with need for further research to

    validate the findings.

    Even though the potential social

    change implications for this scenario

    is premised on prior research findings

    that critical thinking correlates with

    life success, it would be inappropriate

    to claim that students from a problem-

    based curriculum will have better

    success in life because you did not

    actually measure any form of

    success—such would go beyond the

    bounds of the findings.

    Page 30 of 43

    Checking Week 8 Quantitative Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the quantitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning guides the expectation and interpretation of differences in students’

    critical thinking skills as a result of problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum exposure.

    Research Design

    A pre-experimental posttest only static group comparison fits because a current outcome (critical thinking skill scores)

    will be compared between two groups recently experiencing different types of curriculum.

    Sampling Strategy

    A purposive sampling strategy fits because there are specific eligibility criteria for participants.

    Data Collection Method

    The data collection method of an online survey fits the scenario because an online survey can contain whatever

    instrument is used to measure critical thinking skills.

    Statistical Analysis

    Independent samples t test to compare mean difference on California Critical Thinking Skills Test between graduating

    seniors from high schools with problem-based versus lecture-based curriculum.

    Social Change

    If critical thinking scores are higher for graduating seniors from high schools with a problem-based curriculum, then

    further understanding of how problem-based instruction increases critical thinking might lead to improved educational,

    workplace, and professional success.

    Page 31 of 43

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research Problem Research Purpose Research Question Variables

    Critical thinking Critical thinking Critical thinking California Critical Thinking

    Skills Test

    Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Graduating seniors Population—not a variable

    Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Problem-based curriculum Type of curriculum

    Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum Lecture-based curriculum

    Public high schools

    Private high schools

    GPA

    Sex (males vs. females)

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Biopsychosocial framework would not fit because there is nothing in the research problem, purpose, or question that

    refers to biological or psychological factors that affect critical thinking.

    Gender roles conceptual framework would not fit because there is nothing in prior elements that refers to gender roles

    affecting critical thinking.

    Research Design

    An experimental posttest only comparison group design does not fit because students are not randomly assigned to type

    of curriculum.

    A quasi-experimental nonequivalent comparison group design does not fit because there is no pretest.

    Sampling Strategy

    A convenience sample does not fit because a convenience sample does not have specific participant eligibility criteria.

    Data Collection Method

    An unstructured interview does not fit because reliability and validity of a critical thinking skills measure must ask each

    participant the exact same questions.

    Statistical Analysis

    A Chi Square Test of Independence would not align because it is for analyzing two categorical variables

    Social Change

    It would be inappropriate to claim that students from a problem-based curriculum will have better success in life because

    you did not actually measure any form of success—such would go beyond the bounds of the findings.

    Page 32 of 43

    Week 9

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 9 the focus is only on the qualitative scenario, adding specific sample selection criteria that aligns with the

    research problem, research purpose, research question, theoretical or conceptual framework, research design, sampling

    strategy, and data collection method developed in Weeks 1-4.

    In particular, the sample selection criteria element refocuses on and makes more specific the sampling strategy and data

    collection procedures, identifying who or what will be included or excluded.

    Page 33 of 43

    Week 9 Qualitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in

    other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify

    classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to

    map the developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade

    levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences

    across elementary grade levels?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning, Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical

    thinking teaching practices, and a developmental perspective form the

    conceptual framework for this study. Each of these relate to identifying

    classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and

    the developmental perspective also allows mapping of classroom experiences

    across elementary grade levels. Each of these elements of the conceptual

    framework will also guide thematic coding of lesson plans and classroom

    observations, and aid in the interpretation of results.

    Research Design: A case study design will be used to focus on the bounded

    system of classroom experiences across elementary grade levels. A case study

    is appropriate because multiple sources of information (classroom

    observations, review of lesson plans) will be used for case-based themes common across and unique to elementary grade

    levels.

    Sampling Strategy: The purpose is not to identify rare classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking

    skills or all possible experiences, but the normal and usual experience, so a typical sample will be sought.

    Sampling Criteria: A public K-6 elementary school will be invited to participate. Classroom observations and lesson

    plan review of teachers with at least five years of experience will be included. Remedial and accelerated classrooms and

    lesson plans will be excluded.

    Data Collection Method: Data will be collected by observation of activities in the natural classroom setting and from

    archival document review of teachers’ lesson plans.

    Elementary grade levels are

    referenced in the research problem,

    purpose, question, and design. Some

    school districts categorize

    “elementary” grade levels as K-5 and

    middle school grade levels as 6-8,

    others as K-6 elementary and 7-8

    middle, and others use a K-6

    elementary scheme with 7-9 labelled

    junior high.

    So, it is important to operationalize as

    part of the sampling criteria element

    what specifically will constitute

    elementary grade levels for this study.

    The sampling strategy specified a

    “typical” sample, so charter schools

    and private schools will be excluded,

    as well as remedial or accelerated

    classrooms in an otherwise eligible

    public school.

    A typical sample also applies to

    teacher experience, so only

    classrooms and lesson plans of

    teachers with at least 5 years

    experience will be included.

    Page 34 of 43

    Checking Week 9 Qualitative Scenario Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning supports the conjecture that critical thinking skills can be enhanced

    by dynamic and collaborative classroom experiences that actively involve students in the learning process.

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices dovetail with the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning to specifically identify teaching practices that actively involve students in the learning

    process.

    A developmental perspective takes into account the developmental range of teaching practices and actively involved

    students across elementary grades.

    Research Design

    A case study design fits the scenario particularly because multiple sources of data 9classroom observations, document

    review of lesson plans) will be used to understand the bounded system of the classroom.

    Sampling Strategy

    The sampling strategy is typical because normal and usual experiences are sought.

    Sampling Criteria

    Public K-6 elementary school. Classes and lesson plans taught be teachers with at least five years of experience. Regular

    classrooms and lesson plans only (remedial and accelerated excluded).

    Data Collection Method

    To understand what classroom experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills direct observations of

    classrooms and document review of lesson plans will be conducted.

    Page 35 of 43

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Grounded theory does not fit because it is a research design for the purpose of generating a new theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm does not fit because it is about giving voice to marginalized groups.

    Research Design

    A narrative design does not fit because the scenario is not about using people’s stories to understand classroom

    experiences.

    Sampling Strategy

    A unique sampling strategy does not fit because interest is not in rare classroom experiences.

    Sampling Criteria

    Charter school. Second and third grade classrooms only. First year teachers.

    Data Collection Method

    A structured interview of teachers’ frequency of use of Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices would make it a quantitative study.

    Page 36 of 43

    Week 10

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 10 the focus is only on the qualitative scenario, adding specific sources of data that align with the research

    problem, research purpose, research question, theoretical or conceptual framework, research design, sampling strategy,

    sampling criteria, and data collection method developed in Weeks 1-4 and 9.

    In particular, the sources of data element refocuses on and makes more specific the sampling strategy and data collection

    procedures, identifying specific data that will be included or excluded. Often, in qualitative research, sources of data are

    guided by a protocol.

    Page 37 of 43

    Week 10 Qualitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in

    other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify

    classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to

    map the developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade

    levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences

    across elementary grade levels?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning, Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical

    thinking teaching practices, and a developmental perspective form the

    conceptual framework for this study. Each of these relate to identifying

    classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and

    the developmental perspective also allows mapping of classroom experiences

    across elementary grade levels. Each of these elements of the conceptual

    framework will also guide thematic coding of lesson plans and classroom

    observations, and aid in the interpretation of results.

    Research Design: A case study design will be used to focus on the bounded system of classroom experiences across

    elementary grade levels. A case study is appropriate because multiple sources of information (classroom observations,

    review of lesson plans) will be used for case-based themes common across and unique to elementary grade levels.

    Sampling Strategy: The purpose is not to identify rare classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking

    skills or all possible experiences, but the normal and usual experience, so a typical sample will be sought.

    Sampling Criteria: A public K-6 elementary school will be invited to participate. Classroom observations and lesson

    plan review of teachers with at least five years of experience will be included. Remedial and accelerated classrooms and

    lesson plans will be excluded.

    Data Collection Method: Data will be collected by observation of activities in the natural classroom setting and from

    archival document review of teachers’ lesson plans.

    Sources of Data: An observation and lesson plan protocol will be developed guided by the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning and Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices. The protocol

    will help to focus observations and lesson plan review on teaching methods, student-teacher engagement, student-student

    engagement, making real life connections, problem solving, and creating.

    The sampling criteria narrowed the

    focus on a public K-6 elementary

    school and regular classrooms (not

    remedial or accelerated) taught by

    teachers with at least five years of

    experience.

    The data collection method already

    limited data to classroom observations

    and review of lesson plans.

    But what, specifically, will be looked

    for and coded needs to be described.

    Here, a protocol is proposed to focus

    on broad categories, such as teaching

    methods, student-teacher engagement,

    student-student engagement, making

    connections to real life, problem

    solving, and creativity.

    Students perceptions about school or

    teacher’s perceptions about student

    discipline would not be sources of

    data that would align with other key

    elements.

    Page 38 of 43

    Checking Week 10 Qualitative Scenario Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning supports the conjecture that critical thinking skills can be enhanced

    by dynamic and collaborative classroom experiences that actively involve students in the learning process.

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices dovetail with the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning to specifically identify teaching practices that actively involve students in the learning

    process.

    A developmental perspective takes into account the developmental range of teaching practices and actively involved

    students across elementary grades.

    Research Design

    A case study design fits the scenario particularly because multiple sources of data 9classroom observations, document

    review of lesson plans) will be used to understand the bounded system of the classroom.

    Sampling Strategy

    The sampling strategy is typical because normal and usual experiences are sought.

    Sampling Criteria

    Public K-6 elementary school. Classes and lesson plans taught be teachers with at least five years of experience. Regular

    classrooms and lesson plans only (remedial and accelerated excluded).

    Data Collection Method

    To understand what classroom experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills direct observations of

    classrooms and document review of lesson plans will be conducted.

    Sources of Data

    An observation and lesson plan protocol will be developed guided by the cognitive and social constructivist theory of

    learning and Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices. The protocol will help to focus

    observations and lesson plan review on teaching methods, student-teacher engagement, student-student engagement,

    making real life connections, problem solving, and creating.

    Page 39 of 43

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Grounded theory does not fit because it is a research design for the purpose of generating a new theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm does not fit because it is about giving voice to marginalized groups.

    Research Design

    A narrative design does not fit because the scenario is not about using people’s stories to understand classroom

    experiences.

    Sampling Strategy

    A unique sampling strategy does not fit because interest is not in rare classroom experiences.

    Sampling Criteria

    Charter school. Second and third grade classrooms only. First year teachers.

    Data Collection Method

    A structured interview of teachers’ frequency of use of Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices would make it a quantitative study.

    Sources of Data

    Students perceptions about school. Teachers perceptions about student discipline.

    Page 40 of 43

    Week 11

    Scenario Pieces of Primary Interest

    In Week 11 the focus is only on the qualitative scenario, adding ways to ensure trustworthiness that align with the

    research problem, research purpose, research question, theoretical or conceptual framework, research design, sampling

    strategy, sampling criteria, data collection method, and sources of data developed in Weeks 1-4, 9-10.

    Trustworthiness is the qualitative paradigm analogue to quantitative concepts of internal and external validity.

    Trustworthiness includes credibility, consistency, dependability, confirmability, and transferability. Some common

    strategies for promoting these elements of trustworthiness include triangulation, member checks, adequate engagement,

    reflexivity, audit trail, rich and thick descriptions, saturation. Some of these terms are defined in the “Qualitative Research

    Designs Concepts” pdf in the Learning Resources area of Week 11. Also, chapter 9, particularly Table 9.2 on p. 259 of the

    Merriam and Tisdell (2016) textbook covers trustworthy elements and strategies.

    Page 41 of 43

    Week 11 Qualitative Scenario Example

    (Highlighted element is new this week)

    Social Problem or Phenomenon of Interest: Critical thinking skills in the

    United States have been reported to be lower than critical thinking skills in

    other industrialized countries.

    Research Problem: The scholarly community does not know what classroom

    experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills or the developmental

    range of experiences across elementary grade levels.

    Research Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study is to identify

    classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills and to

    map the developmental range of these experiences across elementary grade

    levels.

    Research Question 1: What classroom experiences contribute to students’

    critical thinking skills?

    Research Question 2: What are the developmental range of experiences

    across elementary grade levels?

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework: The cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning, Kurfiss’s (1988)

    eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices, and a developmental perspective form the conceptual framework

    for this study. Each of these relate to identifying classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking skills

    and the developmental perspective also allows mapping of classroom experiences across elementary grade levels. Each of

    these elements of the conceptual framework will also guide thematic coding of lesson plans and classroom observations,

    and aid in the interpretation of results.

    Research Design: A case study design will be used to focus on the bounded system of classroom experiences across

    elementary grade levels. A case study is appropriate because multiple sources of information (classroom observations,

    review of lesson plans) will be used for case-based themes common across and unique to elementary grade levels.

    Sampling Strategy: The purpose is not to identify rare classroom experiences that contribute to students’ critical thinking

    skills or all possible experiences, but the normal and usual experience, so a typical sample will be sought.

    Sampling Criteria: A public K-6 elementary school will be invited to participate. Classroom observations and lesson

    plan review of teachers with at least five years of experience will be included. Remedial and accelerated classrooms and

    lesson plans will be excluded.

    Data Collection Method: Data will be collected by observation of activities in the natural classroom setting and from

    archival document review of teachers’ lesson plans.

    Sources of Data: An observation and lesson plan protocol will be developed guided by the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning and Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices. The protocol

    will help to focus observations and lesson plan review on teaching methods, student-teacher engagement, student-student

    engagement, making real life connections, problem solving, and creating.

    Trustworthiness: Trustworthiness will be enhanced by conducting protocol-driven classroom observations and review of

    lesson plans (triangulation). Observations and lesson plan reviews will be adequately conducted at each grade level K-6

    until saturation is reached. A detailed account of procedures, issues, and decision points in data collection will be

    maintained (audit trail), and a reflexive journal will document critical self-reflection and bias that might influence data

    collection, coding, or interpretation.

    Trustworthiness will be enhanced by

    triangulation of data (observations and

    review of lesson plans), saturation of

    observations and lesson plan review at

    each K-6 grade level, and audit trail

    and reflexive journal.

    Observing just one class period at

    each grade level K-6 (inadequate

    engagement in data collection) or

    keeping a journal of my own

    experiences in elementary school

    (focus on personal biases) would not

    ensure trustworthiness.

    Page 42 of 43

    Checking Week 10 Qualitative Scenario Alignment

    The tables below extract the key concepts in the qualitative scenario and the additional concepts that were described that

    would result in misalignment.

    Aligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Cognitive and social constructivist theory of learning supports the conjecture that critical thinking skills can be enhanced

    by dynamic and collaborative classroom experiences that actively involve students in the learning process.

    Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices dovetail with the cognitive and social

    constructivist theory of learning to specifically identify teaching practices that actively involve students in the learning

    process.

    A developmental perspective takes into account the developmental range of teaching practices and actively involved

    students across elementary grades.

    Research Design

    A case study design fits the scenario particularly because multiple sources of data 9classroom observations, document

    review of lesson plans) will be used to understand the bounded system of the classroom.

    Sampling Strategy

    The sampling strategy is typical because normal and usual experiences are sought.

    Sampling Criteria

    Public K-6 elementary school. Classes and lesson plans taught be teachers with at least five years of experience. Regular

    classrooms and lesson plans only (remedial and accelerated excluded).

    Data Collection Method

    To understand what classroom experiences contribute to students’ critical thinking skills direct observations of

    classrooms and document review of lesson plans will be conducted.

    Sources of Data

    An observation and lesson plan protocol will be developed guided by the cognitive and social constructivist theory of

    learning and Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching practices. The protocol will help to focus

    observations and lesson plan review on teaching methods, student-teacher engagement, student-student engagement,

    making real life connections, problem solving, and creating.

    Trustworthiness

    Triangulation of data (observations and review of lesson plans). Saturation of observations and lesson plan review at

    each K-6 grade level. Audit trail and reflexive journal.

    Page 43 of 43

    Misaligned Concepts Across Elements

    Research problem Research purpose Research question

    Classroom experiences Classroom experiences Classroom experiences

    Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences Developmental range of experiences

    Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills Critical thinking skills

    Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels Elementary grade levels

    Students’ behavior

    Disciplinary practices

    Accelerated classrooms

    Regular classrooms

    Remedial classrooms

    Theoretical or Conceptual Framework

    Grounded theory does not fit because it is a research design for the purpose of generating a new theory.

    The transformative emancipatory paradigm does not fit because it is about giving voice to marginalized groups.

    Research Design

    A narrative design does not fit because the scenario is not about using people’s stories to understand classroom

    experiences.

    Sampling Strategy

    A unique sampling strategy does not fit because interest is not in rare classroom experiences.

    Sampling Criteria

    Charter school. Second and third grade classrooms only. First year teachers.

    Data Collection Method

    A structured interview of teachers’ frequency of use of Kurfiss’s (1988) eight principles of critical thinking teaching

    practices would make it a quantitative study.

    Sources of Data

    Students perceptions about school. Teachers perceptions about student discipline.

    Trustworthiness

    Observing just one class period at each grade level K-6 (inadequate engagement in data collection) or keeping a journal

    of my own experiences in elementary school (focus on personal biases) would not ensure trustworthiness.

 
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