Senior Honors Projects, 2010-current

Date of Award

Spring 2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Department

Department of Educational Foundations and Exceptionalities

Advisor(s)

Dr. Laura Desportes

Abstract

The purpose of this research study is to compare the prevalence rates of students diagnosed with a primary disability of Emotional Disabilities (ED) grades kindergarten through twelfth, in Virginia in 2010 and 2015, and to examine patterns of change and differences. The results shown throughout the study will help identify regions and counties where there is a larger chance for over- or under-identification of emotional disabilities. This in turn will help identify areas where training about teacher efficacy, working with students diagnosed with emotional disturbances, is needed. The objective is to collect the public-school records from the counties, regions, and the state to calculate the average amount of difference from the regional and state means as expressed in z-scores. The data will then be compared to identify any outliers that might be present. After determining specific outliers, 1.5 standard deviations from the norm, a second study will occur to investigate teacher efficacy as a potential variable influencing over or under identification of emotional disabilities. The primary target of this paper is public school LEAs in Virginia; however, various teachers with all levels of experience who support children with emotional and behavioral challenges may find useful ideas in the study.

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