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What are the Factors Facilitating Successful Inclusion of Students with Behavioral Disabilities?

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Dissertation Proposal

Submitted to University

School of Education

in Partial Fulfillment of the

Requirements for the Degree of

DOCTOR OFEDUCATION

by

Covington, Georgia

October 2021

Abstract Comment by Northcentral University: The abstract should be included in the dissertation manuscript only. It should not be included in the dissertation proposal. The word Abstract should be centered, bolded, and begin on its own page.

Begin writing here… Comment by Northcentral University: The text should be left-justified (not indented) and double-spaced with no breaks.

Checklist:

☐ Briefly introduce the study topic, state the research problem, and describe who or what is impacted by this problem.

☐ Clearly articulate the study purpose and guiding theoretical or conceptual framework of the study.

☐ Provide details about the research methodology, participants, questions, design, procedures, and analysis.

☐ Clearly present the results in relation to the research questions.

☐ State the conclusions to include both the potential implications of the results on and the recommendations for future research and practice.

☐ Do not include citations and abbreviations or acronyms, except those noted as exceptions by the American Psychological Association (APA).

☐ Do not exceed 350 words. Strive for one page.

Acknowledgements Comment by Northcentral University: You may include an optional acknowledgements page in normal paragraph format in the dissertation manuscript. Do not include such a page in the dissertation proposal. The word Acknowledgements should be centered, bolded, and begin on its own page.

Begin writing here…

Table of Contents Comment by Northcentral University: Use the Table of Contents feature in Word. For additional information on creating a table of contents, click here. For information on updating the table of contents, click here, and for video resources from the Academic Success Center on formatting the table of contents, click here. Do not manually add headings into the Table of Contents. The headings in the table of contents are populated from the Styles gallery using the APA Level 1 and Heading 2 styles. Only include APA heading levels 1 and 2 in the table of contents. Use the Heading 2 style from the Styles gallery to add level two headings in the document. Update the table of contents to reflect any new level 2 headings added to document. Comment by Northcentral University: For Academic Success Center resources on formatting the table of contents, click here. For assistance, use the videos in the Tables and Headers tab and handouts in the Format tab. Comment by Northcentral University: Ensure the headings in the table of contents match those in the document. Please note the place holders are included in this table of contents: “XXX” under Chapter 2 must be replaced with the themes generated from the integrative critical review of the literature. If your study is qualitative, “Operational Definitions of Variables” under Chapter 3 must be deleted. “XXX” under Chapter 4 must be replaced with “Trustworthiness” for a qualitative study, “Validity and Reliability” for a quantitative study, and “Trustworthiness/Validity and Reliability” for a mixed methods study. The number of research questions listed under Chapter 4 must align with the number of research questions in your study. Under Appendices, each “XXX” must be replaced with the titles of the appendix.

Chapter 1: Introduction 1

Statement of the Problem 2

Purpose of the Study 2

Introduction to Theoretical or Conceptual Framework 3

Introduction to Research Methodology and Design 4

Research Questions 4

Hypotheses 4

Significance of the Study 5

Definitions of Key Terms 6

Summary 6

Chapter 2: Literature Review 7

Theoretical or Conceptual Framework 7

Subtopic 8

Summary 8

Chapter 3: Research Method 10

Research Methodology and Design 10

Population and Sample 10

Materials or Instrumentation 11

Operational Definitions of Variables 12

Study Procedures 13

Data Analysis 13

Assumptions 14

Limitations 14

Delimitations 14

Ethical Assurances 15

Summary 15

Chapter 4: Findings 16

XXX of the Data 16

Results 17

Evaluation of the Findings 18

Summary 18

Chapter 5: Implications, Recommendations, and Conclusions 19

Implications 19

Recommendations for Practice 20

Recommendations for Future Research 20

Conclusions 20

References 22

Appendix A XXX 23

Appendix B XXX 24

List of Tables Comment by Northcentral University: The words List of Tables should be centered, bolded, and begin on its own page Use the Table of Figures feature in Word and select “Table” as the caption label. For additional information and guidance, click here. Tip: For formatting the caption for tables, table headings should be double spaced and placed above the table. The word “Table” and the number should be bolded. The table title is in title case and italics. Comment by Northcentral University: Click here to review a video from the Academic Success Center on creating the List of Tables.

Begin list of tables here…

List of Figures Comment by Northcentral University: The words List of Figures should be centered, bolded, and begin on its own page Use the Table of Figures feature in Word and select “Figure” as the caption label. For additional information and guidance, click here. Tip: For formatting the caption for figures, figure headings should be double spaced and placed above the figure. The word “Figure” and the number should be bolded. The figure title is in title case and italics. Comment by Northcentral University: Click here to review a video on creating the List of Figures.

Begin list of figures here…

1

1

Chapter 1: Introduction Comment by Northcentral University: When preparing pagination, lowercase Roman numerals are used for the front matter pages prior to the first page of Chapter 1. The Roman numerals need to be centered and placed in the footer of each front matter page. Starting in Chapter 1, page numbers need to be placed at the upper right of each page header. Chapter headings are formatted as Level 1. Review a formatting APA headings video in the Academic Success Center here. APA Style recommends one space between sentences.

Education is an important exercise where an individual receives learning services or offers learning services to another party using a structured format described as the curriculum. Education is an important resource that everyone in society deserves to receive, especially the youth, and it should be facilitated through teaching programs and development with the best curriculum. Education is expected to be offered to all the students despite the differences and diversity that are experienced in the society and the differences present including race, color, gender and physical challenges (OHRC, 2021). Students with disabilities are a group of students that encounter various challenges in receiving their education that make it difficult for them to compete favorably with other students without physical defects. Students with disabilities are known to lack the required support system and resources that are likely to boost them to compete favorably in the access to education (Newman et al., 2020). There is the push for a more equitable society. In terms of access to basic resources that includes education that is key to everyone and various governments globally are struggling to allocate more resources to support the students with disabilities to also access quality education like their counterparts, but there is still a huge gap that has not been filled (OHRC, 2021). Students with disabilities are the most affected group among the other cases of disparities when it comes to the access of education and this is what makes their access to education difficult.

The challenges that are encountered by the students living with disabilities include the lack of technology that supports their access to education, lack of trained and skilled teachers, and lack of professional development for teachers. Students with disabilities have not been prioritized when it comes to their access to education since their teachers lack the required training and skills that are necessary for them to deliver quality instruction. Teachers require specialized training to acquire skills necessary to handle the sensitivity attached to people living with disabilities (OHRC, 2021). The teachers that work with students requiring special attention must be patient and empathetic about the students situation and have the willingness to support them. Flexible communication skills also are necessary for the teachers to have in order to make sure that they are communicating well with the student for a productive outcome. In addition, there is the need for professional development for the teacher that is not available and because the work at times is stressful, the teachers that lack motivation through empowerment in their career development result to a poor productivity when it comes to attending to the students (OHRC, 2021). Lack of technology is another problem that is experienced by the students with disabilities making it difficult for them to receive a quality education like normal students. There is the need for assistive technology for the students living with disabilities that includes videotaped social skills and variable speed recorders and many other technologies (Newman et al., 2020).

Students with behavioral disorders must get connected to society due to the critical needs which require supervision at all times. It is imperative to facilitate development of valid solutions for the problems as they affect possibility of creating suitable solutions for affected persons. Inclusive education is imperative to facilitate proper improvements in students’ after discovering how they get affected when working with students in similar learning environments. The process of making sure children with learning disabilities get included in general education is imperative to facilitate societal improvement. This is possible by determining the students’ characteristics, abilities, and needs to ensure they get placed in the proper environment.

Inclusion of students requires teachers that have positive attitude towards all students regardless of any barriers to their learning. This would get facilitated after accessing instructional strategies and targeting them to the proper students. Learners have diverse behavioral disorders like inattention, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning disorders, depression, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and conduct disorders (Barrington, 2019). Issues develop in the entire learning environment when there are problems for learners who do not feel that their issues get addressed. There is a strong need to promote equality in the entire learning environment after performing and discovering how learners get affected by internal learning improvement barriers.

There would be a reliable teaching environment once learners understand diverse instructional strategies and how they get focused on for all learning management procedures. Creation of a dependable method to assess all learners’ needs is the best process for educators to develop productive learning environments. Application of collaboration is a crucial activity that facilitates internal educational improvement after accessing students’ needs and using the knowledge to facilitate attainment of full learner potential. Some students with behavioral disorders often feel discouraged due to appearing to be different from other learners. This affects required development as it gets hard for the students to reach full potential. In this case, limited access of learning resources affects learners’ improvement as it gets difficult for them to display how their unique activities facilitate full educational improvement.

Inclusive education is strongly dependent on teachers’ attitudes as students depend on them to facilitate learning improvements. Students with disabilities get affected due to difficulty in promoting sufficient educational resources. Resources can include technological tools, departments that deal with disabled children, learning supervisors who assess students’ needs, and source of funding for the learners’ issues. All these problems affect sufficient change management for learners’ issues as it can be difficult to facilitate proper internal changes without transforming the learning environment’s needs. Cate et al. (2018) mentioned that development of a positive relationship between teachers and learners is the best method to enhance development of valid knowledge. From this perspective analysis of diverse educational improvement methods is crucial to allow student to receive holistic learning. All the procedures of enhancing valid educational improvements require frequent assessments to determine the best outcome for learners’ issues. This paper shall perform research to determine the best outcome for learners by accessing valid knowledge in all areas to determine the best solutions for learners’ problems.

The basic explanation behind the failure of offering all the mentioned needs is the fact that there is not enough funding and finance necessary to equip the learning institution and the teachers with the required resources. Elementary and secondary special education services were delayed and reduced as a result of this, according to the report. Often, accommodation decisions are made solely on monetary considerations, rather than the assessment of the real needs of disabled students. Some programs include eligibility rules and limits that create human rights concerns at the post-secondary level (Viner et al., 2020). There are a number of reasons why most schools are unable to provide the required accommodations for impaired pupils. Many schools around the world struggle with funding. The pupils suffer when their school does not have books, laptops, and other materials. If these students are impaired, the repercussions are even more severe. Disability specialists are rare in many educational institutions. In some school and college administrations, teachers and professors are not trained on how to interact with students who have special needs (McNicholl et al., 2019). As a result, schooling is rendered essentially ineffectual in most cases. Moreover, a lack of suitable measures in the curriculum can lead to a catastrophe because they cannot learn as they should.

Assistance technology may be more effective than traditional treatments in helping students with disabilities achieve the goals set in their Individual Education Plans. In addition to helping the student understand how to perform the assignment, assistive technology can also allow the student to avoid a tough section. In the case of students who choose digital versions of books, they are circumventing a tricky issue (McNicholl et al., 2019). While reading aloud, the learner can acquire unfamiliar words if he or she concentrates on the computer screen. In computer-assisted training, software and programs are used on a variety of devices to teach and practice. Students with learning impairments can benefit from this nonjudgmental automated exercise and practice. There is evidence that computer-assisted education can help children with learning difficulties improve their spelling and expressive writing skills by reducing distractibility.

According to research, teachers’ endure continuous frustration with coping with their students’ learning challenges, as well as the educational system’s flaws in connection to correcting teachers’ lack of special education knowledge and teaching tactics (Crispel & Kasperski, 2019). However, after going through a retraining session in special education the teachers pointed to two important disparities. The first adjustment was related to practical issues, especially, the adoption of instructional methodologies and strategies depending on the particular student’s degree of functional skills. An intriguing discovery acquired from this study was the homogeneity of the interviewees’ viewpoints, independent of their age, the ages of their children or their teaching experience. This homogeneity of opinion reveals that despite the actions the school system professes to have adopted addressing inclusion, their influence is minor at best (Crispel & Kasperski, 2019). Furthermore, the teachers acknowledged that the knowledge they had obtained regarding learning challenges signals a turning point, not just in their profession but also in their personal life.

To make teaching more caring and attentive to the needs of students in general, as well as kids with learning disabilities in particular, a new technique was developed. During this period, they established a less intuitive, more informed teaching method. It is crucial to keep in mind that good perspectives towards inclusiveness may not automatically convert into empathy for children with learning issues while the majority of instructors expressed good opinions regarding inclusion, their teaching techniques vary, according to a recent poll (Crispel & Kasperski, 2019). When it comes to training students with learning difficulties, one group of teachers employed a pedagogical strategy. However, the other group of teachers utilized an empathic approach, generating a more protective atmosphere for students with problems. Teacher empathy must be developed in this situation in the direction of students who have learning disabilities.

Statement of the Problem Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Applied dissertations should be practice-based. The documented problem might be a practical problem or issue in the profession or study context for which there is not already an acceptable solution. When defining the problem, a clear distinction must be drawn between what exists currently and what is desired. An applied study does not necessarily require generalizable results beyond the study site; however, it must address a problem relevant and exists outside of the study site. Similarly, a PhD dissertation must focus on a problem relevant and exists outside of the study site. Additionally, the study must make a substantive, scholarly contribution to both the research and theory. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Review the limitations and calls for future research in the relevant scholarly literature for guidance in identifying a problem. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: There are a couple of group sessions in the Academic Success Center per week in which students can engage with a live academic coach as well as other students who share the goal of enhancing their problem statement development skills. Learn more about this session and find the link to register here.

The problem to be addressed in this study is the lack of trained and skilled teachers to service the students with disabilities, lack of technology devices to facilitate learning, and lack of professional development to provide teachers and administration on better ways to handle students with disabilities. According to the scholarly articles, the problems of financial costs were experienced by the institutions, this made it difficult for the institution to provide a better training session to their staff members, the training session is said to be more expensive than many institutions could afford, and if they could afford to pay for the session then it could only be done once in a year. Lastly, financial issues lead institutions not to hire qualified and advanced teachers because they require a high salary that they could not afford. (Simpson, 2017).

When the institutions are experiencing unstable finances, they face several problems compared to those in a stable state. Students who require special needs care are seen to be more affected hence a need to implement a solution to safeguard the education that is meant to model them to be better people in society despite their disabilities. A solution that needs to be implemented to resolve the problem faced in an institution that takes care of students with disabilities is to seek financial assistance from a financial institution that is concerned with education and use the finances to develop better facilities, and purchase the technology devices needed for their learning activities.

Administrators should be involved in the development and training sessions that prepare educators to be able to take care of the needs of students with disabilities and provide them equal student rights. They should strive to come up with ways to improve the overall school performance of students, and use opportunities to build relationships between teachers and students with disabilities. There should be a willingness to be part of change and make adjustments that will lead to better performance. Additionally, there should be the availability of technology that supports the students with special needs to overcome the challenges they face, leading to poor performance.

Purpose of the Study Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on Purpose Statements. Learn more about this session and find the link to register here.

The purpose of this qualitative study is to perform research on the problem of limited support in education curriculum for children living with disabilities. It will include proving that students receive limited support, explaining why the support is limited, and providing possible fixes for the problem. There have been issues related to lack of trained teachers and technology that creates better environment for learning. Use of surveys is the applicable study method to generate insight into the current curriculum and how it provides development for students. It is common to encounter problems when the curriculum does not get structured to handle educational improvement for students. Special education requires technology use to facilitate differentiation learning and flexibility (Dikusar, 2018). In this way, it would be easy to encourage students and to track their progress.

Descriptive design would get applied as the study design since it adopts the use of variables to generate insight into the research process (Ranganathan & Aggarwal, 2018). It would be easy to facilitate learning once teachers receive technical assistance and are able to provide services suitable to their students’ needs. The independent variable is ability of special needs students to gain educational improvement while the dependent variable is the need to improve on technological adaptations. The target population is children in high school in Lithonia,Ga and those living with physical and learning disabilities. Solution of issues like lack of enough technology for the school with special needs students will hinder the school staff from learning the federal guidance put by the society (Dikusar 2018).

The study will be conducted at a High School, in Lithonia, Georgia. This particular High School has one of the highest Special Education populations in the county. The targeted population for the study will be a total of 50 participants, including teachers, parents, and special needs students. The data collection tools will be questionnaires, focus group discussions, and interviews.

After application of the study method, it would be easy to generate reliable techniques of handling support for students based on the ability to implement programs aimed at educational improvement. Issues like lack of trained teachers is detrimental and requires training handled early for proper learning environment (Mader, 2017). Application of sample size determination and hypothesis testing are suitable techniques of handling the educational improvement for students (Dillard, 2018).

Introduction to Theoretical or Conceptual Framework Comment by Northcentral University: Select the heading that reflects whether you are using a theoretical or conceptual framework, but do not keep both words in the title. For PhD – Theoretical Framework, for applied doctorate Conceptual Framework.

Begin writing here..

Checklist:

☐ Identify the guiding framework. Present the key concepts, briefly explain how they are related, and present the propositions relevant to this study. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on Theoretical and Conceptual Framework. Learn more about this session and find the link to register here.

☐ Explain how the framework guided the research decisions, including the development of the problem statement, purpose statement, and research questions.

☐ If more than one framework is guiding the study, integrate them, rather than describing them independently. Do not select a separate framework for each variable/construct under examination.

☐ Do not exceed two pages. A more thorough discussion of the theoretical/conceptual framework will be included in Chapter 2.

Introduction to Research Methodology and Design

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Provide a brief discussion of the methodology and design to include a description of the data collection procedure and analysis. Do not include specific details regarding why the methodology and design were selected over others. More detailed information will be included in Chapter 3.

☐ Cite the seminal works related to the selected methodology and design.

☐ Indicate why the selected research methodology and design are the best choices for the study by explaining how they align with the problem and purpose statements as well as the research questions. Do not simply list and describe various research methodologies and designs.

☐ Devote approximately one to two pages to this section.

Research Questions Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Research questions beginning with “To what extent…” or “Under what conditions…” yield more meaningful data than questions that generate yes/no responses such as “Is Variable 1 significantly related to Variable 2?”

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RQ1 Comment by Northcentral University: Sub questions are allowed if you want to examine more in-depth research questions. For example, if the first research question has two sub questions, they would be denoted as RQ1a and RQ1b. Use APA level 3 headings for each research question. The level 3 heading is flush left, title case, bolded, and italicized. The text begins as a new paragraph. Apply level 3 headings using the Heading 3 style under the Styles gallery. Review Section 2.27 in the APA 7th edition manual, and locate more information on APA headings here.

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RQ2 Comment by Northcentral University: Repeat this process for each research question.

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HypothesesComment by Northcentral University: Hypotheses are only listed in quantitative and mixed methods studies. Comment by Northcentral University: The hypotheses must align with the research questions so RQ1 matches H1, etc.

H10

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H1a

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H20

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H2a Comment by Northcentral University: Repeat this process for each hypothesis. Maintain Level 3 heading formatting for each hypothesis.

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Checklist:

☐ Present research questions directly answerable, specific, and testable within the given timeframe and location identified in the problem and purpose statements.

☐ Include the exact same variables/constructs, participants, and location mentioned in the problem and purpose statements. No new variables/constructs should be introduced.

Significance of the Study Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Consider the professional and academic audiences who might be interested in the study results and why.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Describe why the study is important and how it can contribute to the field of study.

☐ For applied studies, explain how the results might both be significant to leaders and practitioners in the field and contribute to the literature. For PhD studies, explain how the results advance the guiding framework and contribute to the literature.

☐ Describe the benefits of addressing the study problem, achieving the study purpose, and answering the research questions. Whereas the problem statement should articulate the negative consequences of not conducting the study, this section should highlight the positive consequences of completing the study.

☐ Do not exceed one page.

Definitions of Key Terms

Term 1 Comment by Northcentral University: Replace “Term 1” with the first term and provide the definition and citation(s). Repeat this process for all the key terms.

Text… Comment by Northcentral University: Maintain Level 3 heading formatting for each term.

Term 2

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Checklist:

☐ Alphabetize and bold terms directly related to the dissertation topic and not commonly used or understood.

☐ Paraphrase the definitions of the terms using complete sentences and provide a citation for each one.

☐ Do not define theories, conceptual frameworks, statistical analyses, methodological terms, or the variables/constructs under examination.

Summary

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Briefly restate the key points discussed in the chapter. Review the headings and/or table of contents to ensure all key points are covered.

Chapter 2: Literature Review Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Think of Chapter 2 as a funnel and lead the reader from the broad context of the study to an explanation of why this specific study is needed. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: To ensure your study is relevant and current, continue to expand and update the literature review through the final dissertation manuscript draft. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: For exemplars on what synthesis and critical analysis look like, try searching for published literature using the following terms “critical review of the literature [school]”, inserting the name of your school. Comment by Northcentral University: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on Synthesis and Analysis. Learn more about this session and find the link to register here.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Begin with the first sentence of the purpose statement and problem statement that leads to a brief explanation of the organization of the literature review. Do not simply cut and paste the Purpose Statement section from Chapter 1.

☐ Provide an overview of the sub-headings in the literature that will be discussed.

☐ At the end of this section, indicate the databases accessed and the search engines used. Discuss all the search parameters, including the search terms and their combinations (with more detailed search terms located in an appendix, if appropriate), range of years, and types of literature.

☐ Devote approximately 30 to 60 pages to this chapter to include citations to at least 50 relevant sources. Comment by Northcentral University: Chapter 2 includes the statement that it is to have 30-60 pages. Depending on the topic this can be shorter. Refer to your Chair for guidance.

Theoretical or Conceptual Framework Comment by Northcentral University: Select the heading that reflects whether you are using a theoretical or conceptual framework, but do not keep both words in the title. For PhD – Theoretical Framework, for applied doctorate Conceptual Framework.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Describe the guiding theoretical/conceptual framework of the study, including the definitions of all the concepts, an explanation of the relationships among the concepts, and a presentation of all the assumptions and propositions.

☐ Explain the origin and development of the framework. Demonstrate detailed knowledge of and familiarity with both the historical and the current literature on the framework.

☐ Identify existing research studies that used this framework in a similar way. Mention alternative frameworks, with a justification of why the selected framework was chosen.

☐ Describe how and why the selected framework relates to the present study and how it guided the development of the problem statement, purpose statement, and research questions.

Subtopic Comment by Northcentral University: Replace “Subtopic” with an idea from the integrative critical review of the literature. Repeat this process until each idea is included.

Begin writing here…

Level 3 Heading Comment by Northcentral University: The level 3 heading is flush left, bolded, and italicized. The title should be in tile case, and the text begins as a new paragraph after the heading. Apply additional level 3 headings using the Heading 3 style options under the Styles gallery. Use APA’s Headings guide to assist with proper header formatting. Comment by Northcentral University: If additional subheadings are needed, use this format per APA guidelines.

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Level 4 Heading. Text… Comment by Northcentral University: The level 4 heading is indented and bolded. The title should be in tile case, and the title ends with a period. The text begins directly after the heading in normal paragraph format. Apply additional level 4 headings using the Heading 4 style option in the Styles gallery. Use APA’s Headings guide to assist with proper header formatting.

Checklist:

☐ Critically analyze (i.e., note the strengths and weaknesses) and synthesize (i.e., integrate) the existing research. Rather than reporting on each study independently, describe everything known on the topic by reviewing the entire body of work.

☐ Present a balanced integrative critical review of the literature, ensuring all points of view are included. Cover all the important issues with a discussion of areas of convergence (i.e., agreement) and divergence (i.e., disagreement). Provide potential explanations for areas of divergence. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Use the Academic Success Center’s Synthesis and Analysis guide that has several resources, including a synthesis matrix to assist with this section.

☐ Address issues of authority, audience, and/or bias/point of view in the sources used.

Summary Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: In essence, the summary is the “take-home” message of the integrative critical review of the literature with a specific emphasis on how the literature supports the need for your study.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Briefly restate the key points discussed in the chapter. Review the headings and/or table of contents to ensure all key points are covered.

☐ Highlight areas of convergence and divergence as well as gaps in the literature that support the need for the study. This discussion should logically lead to Chapter 3, where the research methodology and design will be discussed.

Chapter 3: Research Method

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Checklist:

☐ Begin with an introduction and restatement of the problem and purpose sentences verbatim. Comment by Northcentral University: You can copy and paste from your Chapter 1.

☐ Provide a brief overview of the contents of this chapter, including a statement that identifies the research methodology and design.

Research Methodology and Design Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on Writing Research Design. Learn more about this session and find the link to register here.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Describe the research methodology and design. Elaborate upon their appropriateness in relation to the study problem, purpose, and research questions.

☐ Identify alternative methodologies and designs and indicate why they were determined to be less appropriate than the ones selected. Do not simply list and describe research methodologies and designs in general.

Population and Sample Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Depending on the study design, the population might include but not be limited to a group of people, a set of organizations, documents, or archived data.

Begin writing here…

Checklist:

☐ Describe the population, including the estimated size and relevant characteristics.

☐ Explain why the population is appropriate, given the study problem, purpose, and research questions.

☐ Describe the sample that will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) obtained.

☐ Explain why the sample is appropriate, given the study problem, purpose, and research questions.

☐ Explain the type of sampling used and why it is appropriate for the dissertation proposal methodology and design. For qualitative studies, evidence must be presented that saturation will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) reached. For quantitative studies, a power analysis must be reported to include the parameters (e.g., effect size, alpha, beta, and number of groups) included, and evidence must be presented that the minimum required sample size will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) reached.

☐ Describe how the participants will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) recruited (e.g., email lists from professional organizations, flyers) and/or the data will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) obtained (e.g., archived data, public records) with sufficient detail so the study could be replicated. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Many qualitative and mixed methods studies require multiple sources of data. Describe how the data will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) obtained from each source.

Materials or Instrumentation Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: In quantitative studies, the development of a new instrument is discouraged due to the time and skills required to create a valid and reliable instrument. A thorough and extensive search of the literature should be done to locate an appropriate psychometrically sound instrument. However, if such an instrument is not located after a thorough search, and you plan to develop a new instrument, consult survey item and instrument development resources and plan piloting and validation procedures. Describe the development process in detail and provide evidence of the instrument’s validity and reliability. Include the final instrument developed based on those findings. The evidence of validity and reliability should be reported in Chapter 4. In qualitative studies, using a newly developed interview protocol based on the literature is more common and acceptable. Describe the development process in detail followed by the field testing processes used and subsequent modification made. Comment by Northcentral University: Select the heading that reflects which of the two you will be doing.

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Checklist:

☐ Describe the instruments (e.g., tests, questionnaires, observation protocols) that will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) used, including information on their origin and evidence of their reliability and validity. OR as applicable, describe the materials to be used (e.g., lesson plans for interventions, webinars, or archived data, etc.).

☐ Describe in detail any field testing or pilot testing of instruments to include their results and any subsequent modifications. Comment by Northcentral University: Verify with the IRB whether permission is needed or a pilot application needs to be completed. Locate IRB resources here.

☐ If instruments or materials are used that were developed by another researcher, include evidence in the appendix that permission was granted to use the instrument(s) and/or material(s) and refer to that fact and the appendix in this section.

Operational Definitions of Variables Comment by Northcentral University: Include this section in quantitative/mixed methods studies only. Comment by Northcentral University: Operational definitions are distinct from the conceptual definitions provided in the Definition of Terms section. Specifically, operational definitions indicate how the variables will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) measured. Comment by Northcentral University: A paragraph is not required to introduce the operational definitions; a single sentence introducing this section is sufficient.

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XXX Comment by Northcentral University: Replace “XXX” with the first study variable. Repeat this process for all the study variables. Maintain Level 3 heading formatting for each variable.

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Checklist:

☐ For quantitative and mixed methods studies, identify how each variable will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) used in the study. Use terminology appropriate for the selected statistical test (e.g., independent/dependent, predictor/criterion, mediator, moderator).

☐ Base the operational definitions on published research and valid and reliable instruments.

☐ Identify the specific instrument that will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) used to measure each variable.

☐ Describe the level of measurement of each variable (e.g., nominal, ordinal, interval, ratio), potential scores for each variable (e.g., the range [0–100] or levels [low, medium, high]), and data sources. If appropriate, identify what specific scores (e.g., subscale scores, total scores) will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) included in the analysis and how they will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) derived (e.g., calculating the sum, difference, average).

Study Procedures

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Checklist:

☐ Describe the exact steps that will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) followed to collect the data, addressing what data as well as how, when, from where, and from whom those data will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) collected in enough detail the study can be replicated.

Data Analysis Comment by Northcentral University: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on both Writing Quantitative and Writing Qualitative Analysis. Learn more about these sessions and find the link to register here.

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Checklist:

☐ Describe the strategies that will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) used to code and/or analyze the data, and any software that will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) used.

☐ Ensure the data that will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) analyzed can be used to answer the research questions and/or test the hypotheses with the ultimate goal of addressing the identified problem.

☐ Use proper terminology in association with each design/analysis (e.g., independent variable and dependent variable for an experimental design, predictor and criterion variables for regression).

☐For quantitative studies, describe the analysis that will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) used to test each hypothesis. Provide evidence the statistical test chosen is appropriate to test the hypotheses and the data meet the assumptions of the statistical tests.

☐For qualitative studies, describe how the data will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) processed and analyzed, including any triangulation efforts. Explain the role of the researcher.

☐For mixed methods studies, include all of the above.

Assumptions Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Assumptions, limitations, and delimitations are related but distinct concepts. For additional information, click here.

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Checklist:

☐ Discuss the assumptions along with the corresponding rationale underlying them.

Limitations Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: The study limitations will be revisited in Chapter 5.

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Checklist:

☐ Describe the study limitations.

☐ Discuss the measures taken to mitigate these limitations.

Delimitations Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Limited time and resources are not considered to be limitations or delimitations, as all studies are limited by these factors.

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Checklist:

☐ Describe the study delimitations along with the corresponding rationale underlying them. An example of delimitations are the conditions and parameters set intentionally by the researcher or by selection of the population and sample.

☐ Explain how these research decisions relate to the existing literature and theoretical/conceptual framework, problem statement, purpose statement, and research questions.

Ethical Assurances Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: When research involves human subjects, certain ethical issues can occur. They include but are not limited to protection from harm, informed consent, right to privacy, and honesty with professional colleagues.

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Checklist:

☐ Confirm in a statement the study will (proposal) or did (manuscript) receive approval from Northcentral University’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) prior to data collection.

☐ If the risk to participants is greater than minimal, discuss the relevant ethical issues and how they will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) addressed. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: For guidance on ethical considerations in human subjects research, click here.

☐ Describe how confidentiality or anonymity will be (proposal) or was (manuscript) achieved.

☐ Identify how the data will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) securely stored in accordance with IRB requirements.

☐ Describe the role of the researcher in the study. Discuss relevant issues, including biases as well as personal and professional experiences with the topic, problem, or context. Present the strategies that will be (proposal) or were (manuscript) used to prevent these biases and experiences from influencing the analysis or findings.

☐ In the dissertation manuscript only, include the IRB approval letter in an appendix.

Summary

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☐ Summarize the key points presented in the chapter.

☐ Logically lead the reader to the next chapter on the findings of the study.

Chapter 4: Findings

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Checklist:

☐ Begin with an introduction and restatement of the problem and purpose sentences verbatim and the organization of the chapter.

☐ Organize the entire chapter around the research questions/hypotheses. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Review peer-reviewed research articles to locate examples of how to report results generated using the research design used in your study.

XXX of the Data Comment by Northcentral University: Replace “XXX” with “Trustworthiness” for a qualitative study or “Validity and Reliability” for a quantitative study. For mixed methods studies, replace “XXX” with “Trustworthiness/Validity and Reliability.”.

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Checklist:

☐ For qualitative studies, clearly identify the means by which the trustworthiness of the data was established. Discuss credibility (e.g., triangulation, member checks), transferability (e.g., the extent to which the findings are generalizable to other situations), dependability (e.g., an in-depth description of the methodology and design to allow the study to be repeated), and confirmability (e.g., the steps to ensure the data and findings are not due to participant and/or researcher bias).

☐ For quantitative studies, explain the extent to which the data meet the assumptions of the statistical test and identify any potential factors that might impact the interpretation of the findings. Provide evidence of the psychometric soundness (i.e., adequate validity and reliability) of the instruments from the literature as well as in this study (as appropriate). Do not merely list and describe all the measures of validity and reliability.

☐ Mixed methods studies should include discussions of the trustworthiness of the data as well as validity and reliability.

Results Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Present sufficient information so the reader can make an independent judgment regarding the interpretation of the findings.

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☐ Briefly discuss the overall study. Organize the presentation of the results by the research questions/hypotheses.

☐ Objectively report the results of the analysis without discussion, interpretation, or speculation.

☐ Provide an overview of the demographic information collected. It can be presented in a table. Ensure no potentially identifying information is reported.

Research Question 1/Hypothesis Comment by Northcentral University: Repeat this process for each research question.

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☐ Report all the results (without discussion) salient to the research question/hypothesis. Identify common themes or patterns.

☐Use tables and/or figures to report the results as appropriate. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Tables and figures should not be included on the same page. If you introduce a table or figure in the middle of the page and there is not enough room to include the entire table or figure on the page, it must be placed on the next page. Perform a hard right return (hold down the shift key while hitting the return key) and begin the table on the next page. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Tables and figures should be placed with the corresponding research question. The formatting of tables varies, depending on the statistical test. Follow APA formatting requirements for tables, titles, figures, and captions. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Tables and figures must be referenced in the text. Please refer to APA guidelines regarding when and how to use tables and figures. Do not fully describe data in the text and also present them in a table.

☐ For quantitative studies, report any additional descriptive information as appropriate. Identify the assumptions of the statistical test and explain how the extent to which the data met these assumptions was tested. Report any violations and describe how they were managed as appropriate. Make decisions based on the results of the statistical analysis. Include relevant test statistics, p values, and effect sizes in accordance with APA requirements.

☐ For qualitative studies,describe the steps taken to analyze the data to explain how the themes and categories were generated. Include thick descriptions of the participants’ experiences. Provide a comprehensive and coherent reconstruction of the information obtained from all the participants. Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Review published articles that used the same design for examples of how to present qualitative, thematic findings.

☐ For mixed methods studies,include all of the above.

Evaluation of the Findings Comment by Northcentral University: The Academic Success Center has a weekly group session on both Writing Quantitative and Writing Qualitative Analysis. Learn more about these sessions and find the link to register here.

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Checklist:

☐ Interpret the results in light of the existing research and theoretical or conceptual framework (as discussed in Chapters 1 and 2). Briefly indicate the extent to which the results were consistent with existing research and theory.

☐ Organize this discussion by research question/hypothesis.

☐ Do not draw conclusions beyond what can be interpreted directly from the results.

☐ Devote approximately one to two pages to this section.

Summary

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Checklist:

☐ Summarize the key points presented in the chapter.

Chapter 5: Implications, Recommendations, and Conclusions Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: A common tendency is to rush through Chapter 5 and fail to develop ideas fully. Take time to remember why the study was important in the first place and ensure Chapter 5 demonstrates and reflects the depth and importance of the study. Refer back to the study problem and significance and consider what professional and academic organizations might be interested in your research findings. As you complete Chapter 5, seek out avenues to present and publish your research.

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Checklist:

☐ Begin with an introduction and restatement of the problem and purpose sentences verbatim, and a brief review of methodology, design, results, and limitations.

☐ Conclude with a brief overview of the chapter.

Implications

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Checklist:

☐ Organize the discussion around each research question and (when appropriate) hypothesis individually. Support all the conclusions with one or more findings from the study.

☐ Discuss any factors that might have influenced the interpretation of the results.

☐ Present the results in the context of the study by describing the extent to which they address the study problem and purpose and contribute to the existing literature and framework described in Chapter 2.

☐ Describe the extent to which the results are consistent with existing research and theory and provide potential explanations for unexpected or divergent results.

☐ Identify the most significant implications and consequences of the dissertation (whether positive and/or negative) to society/desired societal outcomes and distinguish probable from improbable implications.

Research Question 1/Hypothesis Comment by Northcentral University: Repeat this process for each research question.

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Recommendations for Practice

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☐ Discuss recommendations for how the findings of the study can be applied to practice and/or theory. Support all the recommendations with at least one finding from the study and frame them in the literature from Chapter 2.

☐ Do not overstate the applicability of the findings.

Recommendations for Future Research

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Checklist:

☐ Based on the framework, findings, and implications, explain what future researchers might do to learn from and build upon this study. Justify these explanations.

☐ Discuss how future researchers can improve upon this study, given its limitations.

☐ Explain what the next logical step is in this line of research.

Conclusions

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Checklist:

☐ Provide a strong, concise conclusion to include a summary of the study, the problem addressed, and the importance of the study.

☐ Present the “take-home message” of the entire study.

☐ Emphasize what the results of the study mean with respect to previous research and either theory (PhD studies) or practice (applied studies).

References Comment by Northcentral University: Tip: Create your reference list as you develop each section. As each citation is included in the paper, insert the reference in this section. Use the level 1 heading for the References title. If using a citation software, ensure all information is included and properly formatted. Although such programs can be helpful, they are not always correct. Comment by Northcentral University: For each reference listed, there must be at least one corresponding citation within the body of the text and vice versa. The References should be alphabetized by the last name of the first author. Note. Academic Writer, an APA Style resource provided to NCU students, has over 150 sample references. Learn how to register for an account here.

Barrington, K. (2019). Common Behavioral Issues in School-Age Children and How Alternative Schools Can Help. com/blog/common-behavioral-issues-in-school-age-children-and-how-alternative-schools-can-help“>https://www.publicschoolreview.com/blog/common-behavioral-issues-in-school-age-children-and-how-alternative-schools-can-help.

Cate, I. M. P., Markova, M., Krischler, M., & Krolak-Schwerdt, S. (2018). Promoting Inclusive Education: The Role of Teachers’ Competence and Attitudes. Insights into Learning Disabilities 15(1), 49-63, https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1182863.pdf.

Crispel, O., & Kasperski, R. (2019). The impact of teacher training in special education on the implementation of inclusion in mainstream classrooms. International Journal Of Inclusive Education25(9), 1079-1090. https://doi.org/10.1080/13603116.2019.1600590

Dikusar, A. (2018) The Use of Technology in Special Education Retrieved on 27th June 2021 from https://elearningindustry.com/use-of-technology-in-special-education

Dillard, J. (2018). 5 Most Important Methods For Statistical Data Analysis. Retrieved 25 June 2021 from https://www.bigskyassociates.com/blog/bid/356764/5-Most-Important-Methods-For-Statistical-Data-Analysis

McNicholl, A., Casey, H., Desmond, D., & Gallagher, P. (2019). The impact of assistive technology use for students with disabilities in higher education: a systematic review. Disability And Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology16(2), 130-143. https://doi.org/10.1080/17483107.2019.1642395

Newman, L. A., Madaus, J. W., Lalor, A. R., & Javitz, H. S. (2020). Effect of accessing supports on higher education persistence of students with disabilities. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/dhe0000170

OHRC. (2021). Main barriers to education for students with disabilities (fact sheet) | Ontario Human Rights Commission. Ohrc.on.ca. Retrieved 31 July 2021, from ca/en/main-barriers-education-students-disabilities-fact-sheet“>http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/main-barriers-education-students-disabilities-fact-sheet.

Ranganathan, P., & Aggarwal, R. (2018). Study designs: Part 1 – An overview and classification. Perspectives in clinical research, 9(4), 184186. https://doi.org/10.4103/picr.PICR_124_18.

Simpson, R. (2017). Inclusion of Students with Behavior Disorders in General Education Settings: Research and Measurement Issues. Behavioral Disorders30(1), 19-31. https://doi.org/10.1177/019874290403000104

Viner, M., Singh, A., & Shaughnessy, M. (2020). Assistive Technology to Help Students With Disabilities. Advances In Early Childhood And K-12 Education, 240-267. https://doi.org/10.4018/978-1-7998-1431-3.ch012

Appendix A XXX Comment by Northcentral University: Each appendix referenced in the text should appear in this section at the end of the manuscript. Appendices should be listed in the order referenced in the text. Remember to include each appendix in your Table of Contents. Apply the level 1 heading for each appendix title and the appendix name. Replace “XXX” with the appendix name.

Insert Appendix A content here… Comment by Northcentral University: Be sure to de-identify all materials so readers cannot identify participants or where data were specifically collected.

Appendix B XXX

Insert/type Appendix n content here…

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