Date of Award

5-1-2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. A. Nayena Blankson

Abstract

Early childhood education lays the foundation for academic learning and ranges on the continuum of teacher-directed and child-centered instruction. In recent years, early childhood education has shifted its emphasis from child-development to academic centered in order to improve students' achievement on standardized tests. This shift has led to much debate among early childhood professionals in regards to which instructional approach is most beneficial to children's academic success. Most of the literature compares these instructional types as it relates to academic achievement, and do not consider children's academic self-perceptions; even though they are significant predictors of achievement. Using data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Kindergarten-98-99, this research adds to the literature by examining the relationships between teacher-directed instruction, child-centered instruction, and academic self-concept. Results from the Pearson Correlations showed that both teacher-directed and child-centered instruction were significant inverse predictors of academic self-concept. The Multiple Regression analysis revealed that when both predictor variables were controlled for, only teacher-directed instruction emerged as a significant negative predictor of academic self-concept. Children who spent longer amounts in child-centered instruction were expected to have lower levels of academic self-concept. Findings from this study seeks to provide insight on teachers' contributions to children's academic self-perceptions, as well as identify the appropriate teaching strategies that should be used to promote children's development of positive academic self-perceptions, which are needed to promote the longevity of their academic achievement.

Included in

Psychology Commons

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