Date of Award

Spring 5-22-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Trevor Turner, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Barbara Hill, Ed.D.

Third Advisor

Darrell Groves, Ed.D.


This study examines factors that affect student motivation and achievement in the middle school eighth grade science classroom, including, teacher-student relationships, student-peer relationships, teacher expectations in science, student preference of instructional delivery (labs vs. lecture), teacher demographics (experience at local school, professional experience, qualifications, age range), and student perceptions of teacher expectations in science. One hundred fifty survey participants were used in this quantitative study which included an analysis of the independent variables affecting student motivation and academic achievement. The findings of this study determined that there is a statistically significant relationship between student motivation and student perceptions of teacher expectations, actual teacher expectations, teacher’s age, teacher’s highest level of education, and whether or not a student received free or reduced lunch.