Publications (BMCC authors)

Wladis, C., & Mesa, V. (In Press). What Can Happen When Community College Practitioners Lead Research Projects? The Case of CUNY. Review of Higher Education.

Abstract: Although the majority of college freshmen enroll at community colleges, very few research studies focus on this context. In addition, what research does exist often overlooks important practitioner concerns, such as instruction. In this essay we argue that supporting generalizable education research conducted by community college practitioners can address this gap. We seek to start a conversation about the benefits of such research, to both the education research community and to educational practices at community colleges. We draw on findings from a large community college system where this kind of research has been systematically supported for the last 15 years..

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A.C. and Conway, K.M. (2018). No time for college? An investigation of time poverty and parenthood. Journal of Higher Education. doi: 10.1080/00221546.2018.1442983

Abstract: Postsecondary outcomes are significantly worse for student parents even though they earn higher GPAís on average. This study used institutional records and survey data from a large urban U.S. university to explore whether time poverty explains this trend. The results of regression and KHB decomposition analysis reveal that students with preschool-aged children have a significantly lower quantity and quality of time for college than comparable peers with older or no children, and that time spent on childcare is the primary reason for this difference. Both quantity and quality of time for education had a significant direct effect on college persistence and credit accumulation, even when controlling for other factors. Thus, greater availability of convenient and affordable childcare (e.g. increased on-campus childcare, revised financial aid formulas that include more accurate estimates of childcare costs) would likely lead to better college outcomes for students with young children.

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Wladis, C., Offenholley, K., Licwinko, S., Dawes, D. & Lee, J. K. (2018). Development of the Elementary Algebra Concept Inventory for the College Context. In T. Fukawa-Connelly, N. Engelke Infante, M. Wawro,S. Brown (Eds.), Proceedings of the 21st Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education. San Diego, CA.

Abstract: This study describes the creation and validation of the first concept inventory for elementary algebra at the tertiary level. A 22-item multiple choice/multiple answer instrument was created through a combination of literature review, syllabus review, and collaboration with instructors. The instrument was then revised and tested for content, construct and concurrent validity as well as composite reliability, using a circular process that combined feedback from experts (mathematicians, instructors, and mathematics education researchers), cognitive interviews with students, and field tests using both classical test theory and item response theory. Results suggest that the inventory is a valid and reliable instrument for assessing student conceptual understanding in elementary algebra, as conceptualized in this study.

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Tillman, D., Hachey, A.C., & An, S. (2018). Creative Use of Augmented Reality (AR) in the Classroom: A Synopsis of Three Empirical Studies. In Proceedings of EdMedia: World Conference on Educational Media and Technology, 898-903. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).

Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the findings from three recent empirical studies conducted by the authors’ research laboratory, and which collectively examine several different aspects of employing augmented reality (AR) technologies to support K-12 instruction. The first study examined the use of 3D printers to design and fabricate custom AR headsets that are intended for use by middle school students learning STEM content. The second study examined inservice teachers’ concepts for using AR to support their lesson-plans, and the third study examined preservice teachers’ conceptions of how they would use AR to support their future lesson-plans. Cumulatively, these three studies provide the groundwork for future research continuing this line of inquiry that examines the optimal conditions and supports for effectively incorporating AR into the K-12 classroom.

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Hachey, A. C., Wladis, C., & Conway, K. (2018). What factors influence student decisions to drop online courses? Comparing online and face-to-face sections. In A. Volungeviciene, A. Szűcs (Eds.), Proceedings of the EDEN 2018 Annual Conference, 99-107. Genoa, Italy: European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN).

Abstract: High online attrition is both a concern and a mystery; little data exists on why students so often do not complete online courses. Using a sample of 780 students who dropped fully online courses (or the same course face-to-face) from a large university system in the Northeast, students were asked about their specific reasons for dropping. Results indicate distinct differences in the patterns of reasons given by online and face-to-face students. While the quality of instruction/instructor was the most common reason cited by students in both mediums, face-to-face students cited this much more often than online students. In contrast, online students were much more likely to cite issues of time and workload as a reason for course dropout.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2017). Factors that Predict Differential Online Versus Face-to-Face Course Outcomes: Evidence From Germany and the United States. In A. Volungeviciene, A. Szűcs (Eds.), Diversity Matters! Proceedings of the EDEN 2017 Annual Conference, 296-305. Budapest, Hungary: European Distance and E-Learning Network (EDEN).

Abstract: This study uses data from the 2014-2015 fall/winter semester: from the 18 two- and four-year colleges in the City University of New York (CUNY) system in the U.S.; and from 30 colleges and universities in the German province of Bavaria. At the end of the semester, students were invited to participate in an online survey. Outcomes in online versus face-to-face courses taken by the same student were compared; propensity score matching and multi-level models were also used to control for differences in student characteristics. This research looked at three outcomes: course success, course failure and college persistence. The main independent variable (IV), course medium, was dichotomized to face-to-face or fully online, and covariates included a a wide range of student characteristics. The results varied by country. Native born students in the U.S. are at greater risk of online drop-out, whereas the reverse is true in Germany. Being the parent of a young child was also a risk factor in the U.S. but not in Germany. In both countries, higher course/credit loads contributed to increased drop out, as did lower grade point averages. Colleges wanting to target interventions to students at highest risk in the online environment may want to focus on students with lower grade point averages, student parents (in countries with less state support for parents of young children), and students who are enrolled in higher numbers of courses/credits. Whether native-born or foreign-born students are in need of targeted interventions depends on the national/cultural context, and more research is needed to understand how other factors explain the relationship between nationality and online outcomes.

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Wladis, C., Smith, J., & Duranczyk, I. (2017). Research on Non-university Tertiary Mathematics. In G. Kaiser (Ed.), Proceedings of the 13th International Congress on Mathematical Education. Hamburg, Germany: Springer International Publishing, 693-694.

Abstract: This paper summarizes the research presented and discussed at the ICME Research on Non-university Tertiary Mathematics Research Group.

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Wladis, C., Offenholley, K., Lee, J. K., Dawes, D., & Licwinko, S. (2017). An instructor-generated concept framework for elementary algebra in the tertiary context. In T. Dooley, V. Durand-Guerrier & G. Guedet (Eds.), Proceedings of the Tenth Congress of the European Society for Research in Mathematics Education, 557-558. Dublin, Ireland: Institute of Education Dublin City University and ERME.

Abstract: This study presents a framework generated by a group of experienced elementary algebra instructors describing what the fundamental concepts of elementary algebra are.  An action research spiral was used to generate subsequent revisions of the framework collaboratively, in conjuction with specific conceptual assignments used with students.

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Wladis, C., Offenholley, K., Licwinko, S., Dawes, D. and Lee, J. K. (2017). Theoretical Framework of Algebraic Concepts for Elementary Algebra. In T. Fukawa-Connelly, N. Engelke Infante, M. Wawro, S. Brown (Eds.), Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 1510-1516. San Diego, CA.

Abstract: The long-term aim of this study is to develop a conceptual framework outlining the concepts necessary for college students to be able to successfully complete fundamental tasks of elementary algebra. The first stage of this research, which is the focus of this paper, focuses on instructor perceptions of what concepts are fundamental to successful completion of elementary algebra tasks. The framework presented here is the result of an action research project that was a collaboration among five college instructors who teach elementary algebra. Future stages of the research will include an extensive exploration of the literature as it pertains to those concepts identified by the instructors in the first stage of the research (and to enumerate concepts that might have been overlooked by the instructors) as well as cognitive interviews with students using concept-inventory-type questions to pinpoint specific aspects of student thinking included in the framework.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2017). Online STEM and mathematics course-taking: Retention and Access. In T. Fukawa-Connelly, N. Engelke Infante, M. Wawro, S. Brown (Eds.), Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 1695-1697. San Diego, CA.

Abstract: Using survey data and interviews from a large urban university system, this study explores factors that impact student decisions to take math classes online. The results suggest that access to online math courses likely impacts student course taking patterns, with significantly more students taking a different course if their desired math course is not offered online, compared to non-math courses.

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Conway, K.M. (2017). Community College Developmental Mathematics. In Stage, F. & Hubbard, S. (Eds.), Linking Theory to Practice: Case Studies for Working with College Students, 4. New York: Routledge.

Abstract: This case study presents issues surrounding developmental mathematics reform at a large urban community college and presents a number of questions for consideration.

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Conway, K.M. (2017). Strategies when faced with declining enrollments. In Stage, F. & Hubbard, S. (Eds.), Linking Theory to Practice: Case Studies for Working with College Students, 4. New York: Routledge.

Abstract: This case study presents the example of a business department in a small private college that is facing declining enrollments, and poses questions about potential steps to take to address this.

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Lee, J., & Licwinko S.(2017). Rethinking instruction on the tangent line of a circle. Journal of Mathematics Education at Teachers College, 9(1-2).

Abstract: The concept of a tangent line to a circle is a geometrically and algebraically important mathematics concept. However, finding the tangent line to a circle is not easy to find using ordinary methods. This article introduces how we get the equation of the tangent line of a circle as x1x+y1y= r2 using “Implicit Differentiation”, as well as the concept between a tangent line and a circle, and demonstrate how to teach this method to our students.

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Samuels, J. (2017). A Graphical Introduction to the Derivative. Mathematics Teacher, 111(1), 48-53.

Abstract: Calculus has frequently been called one the greatest intellectual achievements of humankind. As a key transitional course to college mathematics, it combines such elementary ideas as rate with new abstract ideas--such as infinity, instantaneous change, and limit--to formulate the derivative and the integral. Most calculus texts begin with the topic of limits before introducing the limit definition of the deriative and using it to prove derivative formulas. This introduction to the derivative is rigorous and mathematically sound, so it presents only one problem: students generally do not understand it (Davis and Vinner 1986). In this article, the author proposes an alternative approach to teach this. It begins with a graphical introduction to the derivative. This creates, the author surmises, the possibility for students to observe the main ideas in a less formal way and to engage in sense making that is more natural.

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Fisher, B., Samuels, J., & Wangberg, A. (2017). Instrumental genesis and generalization in multivariable calculus. In Fukawa-Connolly, Karakok, Keene & Zandieh (Eds.), Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (CRUME), San Diego CA: The Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (SIGMAA-RUME).

Abstract: Raising Calculus to the Surface is a multi-year project designed to introduce important topics from multivariable calculus through the use of physical manipulatives. This report focuses on data collected through a series of task-based interviews with multivariable calculus students enrolled in a course featuring these manipulatives. To explain the students’ activity, a two-dimensional framework was designed based upon characterizations of their interaction with the instruments and the generality of their mathematical activity. The report concludes by discussing the contributions to the field and possible future uses of the framework.

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Wangberg, A., Hooks, T., Fisher, B., Samuels, J., & Gire, E. (2017). Factors influencing instructor use of student ideas in the multivariable classroom. In Fukawa-Connolly, Karakok, Keene & Zandieh (Eds.), Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (CRUME), San Diego CA: The Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (SIGMAA-RUME).

Abstract: Despite overwhelming evidence of the effectiveness of student engagement in instruction, practicing mathematics instructors often use instructor-centric practices even if they value student engagement. Answering a call by Henderson and Dancy (2007) to study the implementations of researched-based curriculum in the classroom, this paper looks at the change in practices and values of instructors utilizing active-engagement activities in multivariable calculus classes. This curriculum incorporates context and multiple representations, and we look for evidence that addresses whether these features facilitate instructor use of student ideas in instruction.

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Wangberg, A., Fisher, B., Gire, E., & Samuels, J. (in press). A case study on the impact of investigating multivariable calculus concepts through geometry and multiple representations. To appear in Proceedings of the 13th International Congress on Mathematical Education. Springer International Publishing.

 

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Wladis, C., Conway, K.M., & Hachey, A.C. (2016). Assessing Readiness for Online Education – Research Models for Identifying Students at Risk. Online Learning [Special Section: Best Papers Presented at the OLC 21st International Conference on Online Learning and Innovate 2016], 20(3), 97-109.

Abstract: This study explored the interaction between student characteristics and the online environment in predicting course performance and subsequent college persistence among students in a large urban U.S. university system. Multilevel modeling, propensity score matching, and the KHB decomposition method were used. The most consistent pattern observed was that native-born students were at greater risk online than foreign-born students, relative to their face-to-face outcomes. Having a child under 6 years of age also interacted with the online medium to predict lower rates of successful course completion online than would be expected based on face-to-face outcomes. In addition, while students enrolled in online courses were more likely to drop out of college, online course outcomes had no direct effect on college persistence; rather other characteristics seemed to make students simultaneously both more likely to enroll online and to drop out of college.

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Wladis, C., & Samuels, J. (2016). Do online readiness surveys do what they claim? Validity, reliability, and subsequent student enrollment decisions. Computers & Education, 98, 39-56. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2016.03.001

Abstract: Online readiness surveys are commonly administered to students who wish to enroll in online courses in college. However, there have been no well controlled studies to confirm whether these instruments predict online outcomes specifically (as opposed to predicting course outcomes more generally). This study used a sample of 24,006 students to test the validity and reliability of an online readiness survey similar to those used in practice at a majority of U.S. colleges. Multilevel models were used to determine if it was a valid predictor of differential online versus face-to-face course outcomes while controlling for unobserved heterogeneity among courses taken by the same student. Student self-selection into online courses was also controlled using student level covariates. The study also tested the extent to which survey score correlated with subsequent decisions to enroll in an online course. No aspect of the survey was a significant predictor of differential online versus face-to-face performance. In fact, student characteristics commonly collected by institutional research departments were better predictors of differential online versus face-to-face course outcomes than the survey. Furthermore, survey score was inversely related to subsequent online enrollment rates, suggesting that the use of online readiness surveys may discourage some students from enrolling in online courses even when they are not at elevated risk online. This suggests that institutions should be extremely cautious about implementing online readiness surveys before they have been rigorously tested for validity in predicting differential online versus face-to-face outcomes.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2016). Student characteristics and online retention: Preliminary investigation of factors relevant to mathematics course outcomes. In T. Fukawa-Connelly, N. Engelke Infante, M. Wawro, S. Brown (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 1442-1453. Pittsburg, PA.

Abstract: There is evidence that students drop out at higher rates from online than face-to-face courses, yet it is not well understood which students are particularly at risk online. In particular, online mathematics (and other STEM) courses have not been well-studied in the context of larger-scale analyses of online dropout. This study surveyed online and face-to-face students from a large U.S. university system. Results suggest that for online courses generally, student parents and native-born may be particularly vulnerable to poor online versus face-to-face course outcomes. The next stage of this research will be to analyze the factors that are relevant to online versus face-to-face retention in mathematics (and other STEM) courses specifically.

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Lee, J., Licwinko, S., & Taylor-Buckner, N. (2017). Accessing Conceptual Approach to Rational Numbers. International Council of Mathematics Education (ICME). Hamburg, Germany.

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Crocco, F., Offenholley, K., & Hernandez, C. (2016). A Proof of Concept Study of the Effects of Game-based Learning in Higher Education. Simulation and Gaming, 47(4), 403-422.

Abstract: Background. Much literature has theorized on the potential educational benefits offered by game-based learning (GBL). However, recent meta-data analyses of studies conducted on the efficacy of GBL offer mixed results. Furthermore, many of the studies available rely more on close reading, inference, small sample sizes, and qualitative responses than on quantitative, data-driven analyses. Aim. This article describes a proof-of-concept study designed to assess the effects of GBL on enjoyment, engagement, and learning in higher education using a large sample size and quantitative measures. Method. The study uses a large data set (n = 440) involving English, Math and Science undergraduate courses. For the first semester, faculty participants were trained in how to implement game-based pedagogy and created analog game-based lessons. In the following semester, each professor taught one section of a course using games and another section of the same course without games. Students in the game-based and control groups were given attitude surveys about the subject at the beginning of the semester, a post-lesson survey after the game or regular lesson, and a post-lesson quiz with separate questions to assess surface learning and deep learning. Results. Enjoyment correlated with improvements in deep learning in both the game and non-game classes. Games increased reported enjoyment levels, especially in subjects where students reported the greatest anxiety about learning, and this increase in enjoyment correlated positively with improvements in deep learning and higher-order thinking. These results may have particular impact on non-traditional students. Conclusion. While further investigation is necessary to assess the specific affordances and long-term effects of GBL in higher education, this study offers preliminary support for the claim that GBL can improve deep learning in this setting, by increasing enjoyment.

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Fisher, B., Samuels, J., & Wangberg, A. (2016). Student conceptions of definite integration and accumulation functions. In Fukawa-Connolly, Karakok, Keene & Zandieh (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (CRUME), Pittsburgh PA: The Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (SIGMAA-RUME), 761-767.

Abstract: Prior research has shown several common student conceptualizations of integration among undergraduates. This report focuses on data from a written assessment of students’ views on definite integration and accumulation functions to categorize student conceptualizations and report on their prevalence among the undergraduate population. Analysis of these results found four categorizations for student descriptions of definite integrals: antiderivative, area, an infinite sum of one dimensional pieces, and a limit of approximations. When asked about an accumulation function, student responses were grouped into three categorizations: those based on the process of calculating a single definite integral, those based on the result of calculating a definite integral, and those based on the relationship between changes in the input and output variables of the accumulation function. These results were collected as part of a larger study on student learning in multivariable calculus, and the implications of these results on multivariable calculus will be considered

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Wangberg, A., Gire, E., Fisher, B., & Samuels, J. (2016). A case for whole class discussion: Two case studies of the interaction between instructor role and instructor experience with a research-informed curriculum. In Fukawa-Connolly, Karakok, Keene & Zandieh (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (CRUME), 1395-1400. Pittsburgh PA: The Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (SIGMAA-RUME).

Abstract: This paper presents case studies of two instructors implementing a research informed multivariable calculus curriculum. The analysis, structured around social constructivist concepts, focuses on the interactions between the roles of the instructor in facilitating student discussions and the instructors’ experiences with the activities. This study is a part of an effort to evaluate and improve the project’s effectiveness in supporting instructors in implementing the activities to promote rich discussions with and among students. We find these instructors to be focused on their roles as facilitators for student­centered small­group discussion and that they choose not to have of whole class discussions. We argue that initiating whole class discussions would address concerns and negative experiences reported by the instructors.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2015). Which STEM Majors Enroll in Online Courses, and Why Should We Care? The Impact of Ethnicity, Gender, and Non-traditional Student Characteristics. Computers & Education, 87, 285-308. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2015.06.010

Abstract: Using data from roughly 27,800 undergraduate STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) majors in the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS), this research examines the relationship between race/ethnicity, gender and non-traditional student characteristics and online course enrollment. Hispanic and Black STEM majors were significantly less likely, and female STEM majors significantly more likely, to take online courses even when academic preparation, socioeconomic status (SES), citizenship and English-as-second-language (ESL) status were controlled. Furthermore, non-traditional student characteristics strongly increased the likelihood of enrolling in an online course, more so than any other characteristic, with online enrollment probability increasing steeply as the number of non-traditional factors increased. The impact of non-traditional factors on online enrollment was significantly stronger for STEM than non-STEM majors.

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Wladis, C., Conway, K. M., & Hachey, A.C. (2015). Using course-level factors as predictors of online course outcomes: A multilevel analysis at an urban community college. Studies in Higher Education, 42(1), 184-200. doi: 10.1080/03075079.2015.1045478

Abstract: Research has documented lower retention rates in online versus face-to-face courses. However, little research has focused on the impact of course-level characteristics (e.g. elective vs. distributional vs. major requirements; difficulty level; STEM status) on online course outcomes. Yet, focusing interventions at the course level versus the student level may be a more economical approach to reducing online attrition. This study used multi-level modeling, and controlled for the effects of both instructor level and student characteristics, to measure the relationship of course-level characteristics with successful completion of online and face-to-face courses. Elective courses, and to a lesser extent distributional course requirements, were significantly more likely to have a larger gap in successful course completion rates online versus face-to-face, when compared with major course requirements. Upper level courses had better course completion rates overall, but a larger gap in online versus face-to-face course outcomes than lower level courses.

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Wladis, C., Conway, K. M., & Hachey, A.C. (2015). The Online STEM Classroom—Who Succeeds? An Exploration of the Impact of Ethnicity, Gender, and Non-traditional Student Characteristics in the Community College Context. Community College Review, 43(2), 142-164. doi:10.1177/0091552115571729

Abstract: OBJECTIVE: This study analyzes how ethnicity, gender and non-traditional student characteristics relate to differential online versus face-to-face outcomes in STEM courses at community colleges. METHODS: This study used a sample of 3,600 students in online and face-to-face courses matched by course, instructor, and semester from a large urban community college in the Northeast. Outcomes were measured using rates of successful course completion (with a “C-“ or higher). Multilevel logistic regression and propensity score matching were utilized to control for unobserved heterogeneity between courses and for differences in student characteristics. RESULTS: With respect to successful course completion, older students did significantly better online, and women did significantly worse (although no worse than men) online, than would be expected based on their outcomes in comparable face-to-face courses. There was no significant interaction between the online medium and ethnicity, suggesting that while Black and Hispanic students may do worse on average in STEM courses than their White and Asian peers both online and face-to-face, this gap was not increased by the online environment. CONTRIBUTION: These findings suggest that both women and younger students in STEM courses may need extra support in the online environment. Future research is needed 1) to explore whether factors such as stereotype threat or childcare responsibilities impact the outcomes of women in online STEM courses; and 2) to determine which characteristics (e.g. motivation, self-directed learning skills) of older students may make them particularly well suited to the online environment.

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Krenn, J.L., & Hachey, A. C. (2015). Cooking with attitude: How to help promote positive life-long skills in the kitchen.  Texas Child Care Quarterly, 38(4).

Abstract:The research suggests that the early years lay the foundation for future attitudes toward eating. Food insecurities have been linked to many negative outcomes on childhood development and growth and overall life quality. Young children develop feelings about food early on and a palate for what they like and dislike. Natural positive attitudes toward food and cooking may just as easily be smothered and replaced with disinterest or lack of motivation if parents do not nurture it. Even so, children often approach cooking with curiosity, enthusiasm, and an eagerness to get involved. If they have proper guidance, there are many ways they can actively contribute to food choice and preparation. At the same time, many educators and parents are stuck with their negative cooking mindset, avoid the kitchen as a positive learning environment, or do not approach opportunities to cook the same way as children do. This is a problem because children internalize their educators’ and parents’ enthusiasm in a social setting or lack thereof. But just a lack of interest in cooking can negatively impact a child’s attitude toward food.

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Hachey, A.C. (2015). Introduction to the special issue on early childhood mathematics education. Early Education and Development, 263), 315-318. 

Abstract: This paper summarizes the research included in this special issue and ties it to future areas in which early childhood matheamatics education research is still needed.

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Conway, K.L., Hachey, A.C., & Wladis, C.W. (2014). A new diaspora: Latino(a)s in the online environment. In Y. Medina and A. D. Macaya (Eds.), Latinos on the East Coast: A critical reader, 120-138. NY, NY: Peter Lang.

Abstract: The Latino/a diaspora from the Caribbean, Central and South America to the U.S. is well documented. Many of these immigrants have settled in communities where they now constitute a majority. As noted herein, the Latino/a population varies by region, in its ethnicity, immigration status and longevity in the U.S. In the Northeast, the Latino/a population grew at a rate ten times as fast as the rest of the population in the decade ending 2010. Overall, and specifically in higher education, Latino/a students are the largest minority group and the fastest growing. Many of these students begin at community colleges. But as Latino/a students succeed in college in greater numbers, a new migration is occurring in higher education: to the online environment. This chapter examines Northeast Latino/a student enrollments and persistence in online courses in comparison to the traditional face-to-face classroom and in comparison to other ethnicities. Latino/a students, while enrolling in college in large numbers, continue to lag other student groups in graduation rates, and it is critical to understand if an increase in online course offerings will help or hinder Latino/a student success.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A.C., & Conway, K.M. (2014). The representation of minority, female, and non-traditional STEM majors in the online environment at community colleges: A nationally representative study. Community College Review, 43(1), 89-114. doi: 10.1177/0091552114555904

Abstract: Using data from the more than 2,000 community college science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) majors in the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study, this research investigates how ethnicity, gender, non-traditional student risk factors, academic preparation, socio-economic status, and English-as-second-language/citizenship status relate to online course enrollment patterns. Even after controlling for other factors, Blacks and Hispanics (Black and Hispanic men in particular) were significantly underrepresented in online courses, women were significantly overrepresented, and students with non-traditional student risk factors (delayed enrollment, no high school diploma, part-time enrollment, financially independent, have dependents, single parent status, and working full-time) were significantly more likely to enroll online. However, while ethnicity, gender, and non-traditional factors were all important predictors for both two- and four-year STEM majors, at community colleges, ethnicity and gender were more important predictors of online enrollment than non-traditional characteristics, which is the opposite pattern observed at four-year colleges.

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Hachey, A. C., Wladis, C., & Conway, K. (2014). Prior online course experience and G.P.A. as predictors of subsequent online STEM course outcomes. The Internet and Higher Education, 25, 11-17. doi:10.1016/j.iheduc.2014.10.003

Abstract: This study found that G.P.A. and prior online experience both predicted online STEM course outcomes. While students with higher G.P.A.s were also more likely to have successfully completed prior online courses, prior online course experience added significant information about likely future STEM online outcomes, even when controlling for G.P.A. Students who had successfully completed all prior online courses had significantly higher rates of successful online STEM course completion at all G.P.A. levels than students who had failed to complete even one prior online course successfully. Students who had dropped or earned a D or F grade in even one prior online course had significantly lower rates of successful online STEM course completion than students with no prior online experience, even when controlling for G.P.A. This suggests that prior online course outcomes should be combined with G.P.A. when attempting to identify community college students at highest risk in online STEM courses.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A.C., & Conway, K.M. (2014). An investigation of course-level factors as predictors of online STEM course outcomes. Computers & Education, 77, 145-150. doi: 10.1016/j.compedu.2014.04.015

Abstract: This study analyzed students who took STEM courses online or face-to-face at a large urban community college in the Northeastern U.S. to determine which course-level characteristics most strongly predicted higher rates of dropout or D/F grades in online STEM courses than would be expected in comparable face-to-face courses. While career and elective STEM courses had significantly higher success rates face-to-face than liberal arts and major requirement STEM courses respectively, career STEM courses had significantly higher success rates online than would be expected, while elective STEM courses had significantly lower success rates online than would be expected given the face-to-face results. Once propensity score matching was used to generate a matched subsample which was balanced on a number of student characteristics, differences in course outcomes by course characteristics were no longer significant. This suggests that while certain types of STEM courses can be identified as higher or lower risk in the online environment, this appears not to be because of the courses themselves, but rather because of the particular characteristics of the students who choose to take these courses online. Findings suggests that one potential intervention for improving online STEM course outcomes could be to target students in specific courses which are at higher risk in the online environment; this may allow institutions to leverage interventions by focusing them on the STEM courses at greatest risk of lower online success rates, where the students who are at highest risk of online dropout seem to be concentrated.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2014). The role of enrollment choice in online education: Course selection rationale and course difficulty as factors affecting retention. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 18(3). Retrieved from http://olj.onlinelearningconsortium.org/index.php/jaln/article/view/391

Abstract: There is well-documented evidence that online retention rates are lower than face-to-face retention rates; however, most past research on online retention focuses on student characteristics, with little knowledge existing on the impact of course type. This study uses a matched sample of 2,330 students at a large urban community college to analyze two key course-level factors which may be impacting online retention: the student’s reason for taking the course (as an elective or a requirement) and course difficulty level. The results of this study indicate that the online modality increases dropout risk in courses that are taken as an elective or distributional requirement, particularly for lower-level courses. The findings suggest that in the online environment, the student’s reason for course enrollment may be considered a risk indicator and that focused learner support targeted at particular course types may be needed to increase online persistence and retention.

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Hachey, A. C., Wladis, C., & Conway, K. (2014). Do prior online course outcomes provide more information than G.P.A. alone in predicting subsequent online course grades and retention? An observational study at an urban community college. Computers & Education, 72, 59-67. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2013.10.012

Abstract: In this study, prior online course outcomes and pre-course enrollment G.P.A. were used as predictors of subsequent online course outcomes, and the interaction between these two factors was assessed in order to determine the extent to which students with similar G.P.A.’s but with different prior online course outcomes may differ in their likelihood of successfully completing a subsequent online course. This study used a sample of 962 students who took an online course at a large urban community college from 2004 to 2010. Results indicate that prior online course experience is a very significant predictor of successful completion of subsequent online courses, even more so than G.P.A. For students with no prior online course experience, G.P.A. was a good predictor of future online course outcomes; but for students with previous online course experience prior online course outcomes was a more significant predictor of future online course grades and retention than G.P.A.

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Mesa, V., Wladis, C., & Watkins, L. (2014). Research Problems in Community College Mathematics Education: Testing the Boundaries of K–12 Research. Journal of Research in Mathematics Education, 45(2), 173-193. doi: 10.5951/jresematheduc.45.2.0173

Abstract: The purpose of this commentary is to articulate the need to investigate problems of mathematics instruction at community colleges. We briefly describe some features of this often-ignored institution and the current status of research. We also make an argument for how investigations of instruction in this setting can both advance our understanding of this particular context and give practitioners tools to deal with pressures from policy makers to show short-term results. This work is the result of a collaborative effort between community college practitioners and researchers, responding to the needs of their work in mathematics education.

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Wladis, C., Offenholley, K., & George, M. (2014). Leveraging Technology to Improve Developmental Mathematics Course Completion: Evaluation of a Large-Scale Intervention. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 38(12), 1083-1096. doi:10.1080/10668926.2012.745100

Abstract: This study hypothesizes that course passing rates in remedial mathematics classes can be improved through early identification of at-risk students using a department-wide midterm, followed by a mandated set of online intervention assignments incorporating immediate and elaborate feedback for all students identified as “at-risk” by their midterm score. A sample of over 20,000 students was used to evaluate the intervention, which was implemented department wide over several semesters in all developmental mathematics courses at a large diverse urban community college. The intervention was assessed by evaluating course passing rates (a proxy for passing rates on standardized exit examinations) and student time spent in the Intervention Lab. Students from semesters prior to the intervention were used as a control, with fall semesters compared to fall semesters and spring to spring, to control for possible variation in student enrollment. Highly statistically significant differences were found between student passing rates pre- versus post-intervention, with passing rates improving by as much as 50%. The size of this study and the diversity of the student population involved suggests that results are likely widely applicable to other institutions across the country. In particular, the interventions tested were chosen specifically because they can reasonably be implemented even across relatively large and diffuse departments with limited resources.

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Hachey, A.C., & Medina, Y. (2014). Critically examining gender roles: Deconstructing the myth of “Boys will be boys, Girls will be girls”. In K. Kushner and J. Dowdy (Eds.), From the Margins toward the Mainstream: Activities to Enhance Social Justice Awareness in the Social Studies Classroom. Lanham, MD: Rowman Littlefield Publishers.

 

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Medina, Y., & Hachey, A.C. (2014). When I grow up, I’ll work in the factory just like my Daddy: Examining teaching practices that perpetuate the social class status quo. In K. Kushner and J. Dowdy (Eds.), From the Margins toward the Mainstream: Activities to Enhance Social Justice Awareness in the Social Studies Classroom. Lanham, MD: Rowman Littlefield Publishers.

Abstract: This activity is designed to help practicing and pre-service teachers develop an understanding of how teachers' assumptions of children based on their SES (socioeconomic status) can perpetuate social class inequities that will affect children for the rest of their lives. It aims to create awareness in teachers of the kinds of educational sensitivities needed to empower all children and to create social change.

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Conway, K.M. (2014). Critical Quantitative Study of Immigrant Students. In F.K. Stage & R. Wells, (Eds.), New Scholarship Using Critical Quantitative Research, Part 1: Studying Institutions and People in Context. New Directions for Institutional Research, 158. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Abstract: The author discusses the importance of critical quantitative research for studies of immigrant students, a large and growing group, whose higher education experience is crucial to the future of the United States. The author outlines some of the distinctions to be made among immigrant students and recommends areas of future inquiry.

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Dawes, D. (2014). Improve student engagement by taking attendance with Webassign. Retrieved from http://www.webassign.net/community/wa-case-study-taking-attendance.pdf

Abstract: This article outlines some concrete ways in which student classroom engagement can be improved by using online homework systems to track student class attendance.

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Hong, D., & Lee, J. (2014). Synthesizing Algebraic and Graphical Representations of Maximum and Minimum Problems. International Journal of Technology in Mathematics Education, 20(4), 157-167 .

Abstract: This article demonstrates how to synthesise both algebraic and graphical representations of maximum and minimum problems with a dynamical software GeoGebra. Students can affirm their knowledge of algebraic and graphical representations of functions, derivative and local maximum and minimum problems throughout the investigation. This approach could be an alternate way to show the relationship between a function and its derivative without using the concept of limit.

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Offenholley, K. (2014). Online Tutoring Research Study for Remedial Algebra. The Community College Journal for Research and Practice, 38(9), 842-849.

Abstract: In 2012, the City University of New York undertook to examine whether online tutoring would be helpful to remedial algebra students. The research study was done in the spring 2012 semester at the Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC). The research question was two-fold: (a) Does online tutoring help improve pass rates among remedial algebra students? and (b) Do remedial algebra students find that online tutoring is helpful? A random sample of eight sections of Elementary Algebra was chosen from the 112 sections of that course offered in the spring semester. This amounted to a total of 195 students in the research sections, with 2,521 remaining students in the control (nontreatment) sections. All students in the eight treatment sections were given access to the Brainfuse online tutoring system. Midterm scores, final exam scores, and opinion surveys were collected. An overwhelming proportion of those who used the service found it helpful (94.7%) and would recommend it to a friend (100.0%). However, the pass rates in the study were nearly the same for the treatment and control groups, and a logistic regression analysis, comparing two statistically matched cohorts, showed no significant differences. One issue was that the sample of those who chose to use the service was small. Also, many of those who needed the most help were not the ones who used the service. It may be that in terms of improving pass rates, outreach and counseling for students could be more efficacious than simply offering a tutoring service.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A.C., & Conway, K.M. (2013). Are online students in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) courses at greater risk of non-success? American Journal of Educational Studies, 6(1), 65-84.

Abstract: Both online and STEM courses have been shown to have lower student retention; however, there is little research indicating what effect the online environment may have on retention in STEM courses specifically. This study compares retention rates for online and face-to-face STEM and non-STEM courses to determine if the online environment affects STEM courses differently than non-STEM courses. In addition, different subcategories of STEM courses are compared to see if the effects of the online environment are different for different course subtypes. Each online course is matched with the same course taught face-to-face by the same instructor in the same semester to control for possible confounding effects. This study found that retention rates in STEM courses were more strongly decreased by the online environment than in non-STEM courses. In particular, the course types which had significantly lower retention online were lower level STEM courses taken as electives or distributional requirements.

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Hachey, A.C., Wladis, C., & Conway, K.M. (2013). Balancing retention and access in online courses: restricting enrollment… Is it worth the cost? Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice, 15(1), 9-36.

Abstract: Open access is central to the Community College mission. For this reason, any restriction in online enrollments should not be undertaken lightly. This study uses institutional data gathered from a large, urban community college to examine a policy aimed at increasing student retention in online courses by restricting those eligible to enroll based on G.P.A. The data, counter to expectations, show that the policy did not significantly impact attrition rates. Further analysis reveals that a high G.P.A. cut-off (3.0) is needed to significantly affect attrition rates; however, this would severely restrict those eligible to enroll. The data indicate that students in the middle G.P.A. range (2.0-3.5) have the highest proportional difference in attrition between online and face-to-face courses. The results suggest that rather than focusing on G.P.A. restrictions, community colleges may be better served by addressing research and interventions targeted toward other factors to increase student retention in online learning

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Hachey, A.C., Conway, K.M., & Wladis, C. (2013). Community colleges and underappreciated assets: Using institutional data to promote success in online learning. Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, 16(1), 1-18, Spring.

Abstract: Adapting to the 21st century, community colleges are not adding brick and mortar to meet enrollment demands. Instead, they are expanding services through online learning, with at least 61% of all community college students taking online courses today (Pearson, 2011). As online learning is affording alternate pathways to education for students, it is facing difficulty in meeting outcome standards; attrition rates for the past decade have been found to be significantly higher for online courses than face-to-face courses (Carr, 2000; Hachey, Wladis & Conway, 2012a/b; Morris & Finnegan, 2008; Tyler-Smith, 2006). Yet, there is a lack of empirical investigation on community college online attrition, despite the fact that course and institutional management systems today are automatically collecting a wealth of data which are not being utilized but are readily available for study. This article presents a meta-review of one community college’s realization of their underappreciated asset… the use of institutional data to address the dearth of evidence on factors effecting attrition in online learning.

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Hachey, A.C. (2013). Teachers’ beliefs count: A study of teacher beliefs and practices in early childhood mathematics education (ECME). NHSA Dialog: A Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Childhood Field, 16(3), 77-85.

Abstract: Teachers are the key to success in Early Childhood Mathematics Education (ECME) and as such, there is a great need to focus on the teacher’s mind…what teachers think about learning, their curriculum and the mathematics in it (Ginsburg, Lee and Boyd,2008; Cross, Woods and Schweingruber, 2009). Early childhood teachers were surveyed on their beliefs and practices related to ECME. The findings suggest that early childhood teachers may not hold as negative a view of mathematics and ECME as previously has been supposed. Moreover, more instruction time seems to be devoted to ECME than previously reported. However, the findings also strengthen the contention that literacy-based activities dominate academic instructional time in the early childhood classroom. In line with the literature, the teachers expressed a narrow view of EMCE, with numeracy and arithmetic skill development as the most important focus of ECME; this narrow view is counter to recent recommendations by leading researchers and professional organizations.

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Hachey, A.C. (2013). The early childhood mathematics education revolution. Early Education and Development, 24(4), 419-430.

Abstract: Research Findings: We are in the midst of a revolution. Prior to the onset of the 21st century, mathematics education in the United States was deemphasized (Geary, 1996), and mathematics as an instructional subject has traditionally been considered above the preschool and kindergarten levels. However, the old regime—the knowledge and philosophies that governed mathematics and early childhood education theory in the last century—has been overthrown. Today, developmental psychologists have begun to map out the specific pathways of mathematical knowledge development from birth to age 8. We now know that prior to elementary school, young children engage in surprisingly complex intuitive mathematical thinking in the areas of number, geometry, measurement, algebraic thinking, and data analysis (for reviews, see T. C. Cross, T.A. Woods, & H. Schweingruber, 2009). With increased recognition of the importance of early mathematics for later academic success, early childhood mathematics education is now a national priority. Practice or Policy: This article discusses the history, research, and political impetus for the shift in paradigm; the current status of the early childhood mathematics education movement; and the implications for young children and teachers in the United States.

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Hachey, A.C. (2013). ECME: The critical issue is change. Early Education and Development, 24(4), 443-445.

 

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Hachey, A.C., & Butler, D.L. (2013). Science education through gardening and nature-based play. In Shillady, A. (Ed.), Spotlight on Young Children: Exploring Science, 64(6), 42-48.

 

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Stage, F.K., John. G., Lundy-Wagner, V., & Conway, K.M. (2013). The Production of STEM Associate Degrees at Minority Serving Community Colleges. In R.T. Palmer & J.L. Wood (Eds.), Examining the Role of Community Colleges in STEM Production: A Focus on Underrepresented Racial and Ethnic Minorities. NY: Routledge.

 

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Lee, J., Licwinko, S., & Taylor-Buckner, N. (2013). Exploring mathematical reasoning of the Order of Operations: Rearranging the procedural component PEMDAS. Journal of Mathematics Education at Teachers College (JMETC), 4(2), 73- 78.

Abstract: TPEMDAS is a mnemonic device to memorize the order in which to calculate an expression that contains more than one operation. However, students frequently make calculation errors with expressions, which have either multiplication and division or addition and subtraction next to each other. This article explores the mathematical reasoning of the Order of Operations and the effectiveness of a new approach.

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Hong, D., Kennis, J., & Lee, J. (2013). Exploring Calculus Problems with GeoGebra. MathAMATYC Educator, 4(2).

Abstract: GeoGebra is a free software package that is interactive and is similar to the software the Geometers Sketchpad. This software allows students to explore numerous mathematical topics such as geometry, algebra, and transformation and also provides an excellent opportunity to demonstrate graphical representations of various calculus concepts. GeoGebra can be downloaded for free from its website (www.geogebra.org) and installed on your computer. You can either download it onto your desktop or use the Web applet version that works within your Internet browser. In textbooks, numerous calculus topics, such as the limit of a function, the derivative of a function, and integrals are often represented algebraically, numerically, and graphically. Although multiple representations are emphasized in the teaching and learning of calculus, it often appears that students still have a limited view of the graphical representation of a derivative because they are accustomed to algebraic representations. Because of these difficulties and such a limited view, graphing calculators and other computer algebra systems (CAS) are often used to demonstrate graphical representations of a derivative and other calculus concepts. This article explores and demonstrates graphical representations of some elementary calculus topics using GeoGebra—specifically differentiability, the mean value theorem, and Riemann sums.

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Wladis, C. & Morgulis, A. (2012) Increasing student success in intermediate algebra through collaborative learning at a diverse urban community college. In S. Brown, S. Larsen, K. Marrongelle, and M. Oehrtman (Eds.), Proceedings of the 15th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 2, 310-319. Portland, Oregon.

Abstract: There is evidence that cooperative learning can improve student outcomes, but much of the research has been focused on pre-college mathematics or college calculus-level mathematics and above. This project tests the hypothesis that a change from a lecture-based class to one incorporating scripted collaborative discovery-based projects would increase successful course completion and exam results in Intermediate Algebra and Trigonometry at a diverse urban community college. Twelve pairs of experimental and control sections were chosen so that each pair had the same instructor and assignments. Surveys, pre/post-tests, and success rates were used to assess intervention effectiveness. Statistical analysis suggests that the intervention had a significant effect on student success that was contingent upon a suitable period of instructor training and revision of course assignments. Increases in student exam scores of approximately two-thirds of a letter grade and a thirteen percentage point gain in successful course completion were obtained in experimental sections.

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Wladis, C., Hachey, A. C., & Conway, K. (2012). An analysis of the effect of the online environment on STEM student success. In S. Brown, S. Larsen, K. Marrongelle, and M. Oehrtman (Eds.), Proceedings of the 15th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 2, 291-300. Portland, Oregon.

Abstract: Both online and STEM courses have been shown to have lower student retention; however, there is little research indicating what effect the online environment may have on retention in STEM courses specifically. This study compares retention rates for online and face-to-face STEM and non-STEM courses to determine if the online environment affects STEM courses differently than non-STEM courses. In addition, different subcategories of STEM courses are compared to see if the effects of the online environment are different for different course subtypes. Each online course is matched with the same course taught face-to-face by the same instructor in the same semester to control for possible confounding effects. This study found that retention rates in STEM courses were more negatively impacted by the online environment than in non-STEM courses. In particular, the course types which had significantly lower retention online were lower level STEM courses taken as electives or distributional requirements.

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Wladis, C., Offenholley, K., & George, M. (2012). Identifying developmental students who are at-risk: An intervention using computer-assisted instruction at a large urban community college. In S. Brown, S. Larsen, K. Marrongelle, and M. Oehrtman (Eds.), Proceedings of the 15th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education, 2, 301-309. Portland, Oregon.

Abstract: Nationally, developmental mathematics courses can have completion rates as low as 25%, which can be a major barrier to degree completion. This article argues that specific institutional interventions can do much to ameliorate this situation by describing a particular intervention implemented in remedial courses at an urban community college over three semesters. Changes to the developmental mathematics course structure included using a mandatory departmental midterm to identify at-risk students and implementing a series of required intervention assignments using an online homework system in conjunction with regular class time for those students identified as at-risk. Significant gains in retention rates were obtained, with retention in some semesters as high as 50% greater than in the semester prior to the intervention. In addition, in this study, at-risk students who spent at least twenty hours on intervention assignments obtained retention rates that were approximately twenty-two percentage points higher than the average remedial student.

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Hachey, A. C., Wladis, C., & Conway, K. (2012). Is the second time the charm? Investigating trends in online re-enrollment, retention and success. The Journal of Educators Online, 9(1), 1-25.

Abstract: Online education is becoming an increasingly important component of higher education. The Sloan Foundation 2010 Survey of Online Learning reports that more than 30% of all students take at least one online course during their college career. Because of this, attention is now turning to the quality of student outcomes that this instructional method provides. However, there is a huge gap in empirical investigations devoted to the link between technology and performance indicators such as grade performance, re-enrollment and course completion (Nora & Plazas Snyder, 2008). This study found that prior online course experience is strongly correlated with future online course success. In fact, knowing a student’s prior online course success explains 13.2% of the variation in retention and 24.8% of the variation in online success in our sample, a large effect size. Students who have not successfully completed any previous online courses have very low success and retention rates, and students who have successfully completed all prior online courses have fairly high success and retention rates. Therefore, this study suggests that additional support services need to be provided to previously unsuccessful online learners, while students who succeed online should be encouraged to enroll in additional online courses in order to increase retention and success rates in online learning.

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Hachey, A.C., & Butler, D.L. (2012). Creatures in your gardening curriculum. Teaching Young Children/Preschool, 5(5), 8-11.

 

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Hachey, A.C. (2012). Study Guide for Creatures your gardening curriculum. NEXT for TYC: NAEYC Professional Development Resource (online), 5(5), 3-4.

 

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Hachey, A.C. (2012). Care from a cognitive perspective. Knowledge Quest: Journal of the Association of School Librarians, 40(4), 39-44.

Abstract: School librarians help train students to be effective acquirers, evaluators, and users of ideas and information--a necessary skill for survival in the information-rich society. From this stance, school librarians are definitely caregivers. But the author argues that this does not get to the heart of the matter: Librarianship usually translates into a focus on concrete aspects of the profession, such as collection development, use of new media, and the design of programs to promote readership, rather than the affective nature of the vocation. In this article, the author contends that there should be a greater emphasis in school librarianship on care-based practices. She describes specific educational practices that are likely to promote caring librarian-student relationships and help students' minds function better.

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Hachey, A.C., & Butler, D.L. (2012). Creatures in the classroom: Including small animals in your gardening curriculum. Young Children, 67(2) 38-43.

Abstract: When doing spring planting activities, what does a teacher do while waiting for the plants to grow? This waiting time is a golden opportunity to explore another side of gardening--the creatures that make it all possible. Insects are an integral part of everyday world, having existed for over 300 million years; they are the most common animal on the planet, and there are more types of them than every other animal combined. Insects and other critters are crucial to gardening--aerating the soil, depositing nutrients, eating other animals that harm plants--but because of their often creepy reputation, they tend to be overlooked in the classroom in favor of gardening activities that focus on shiny green leaves and pretty flowers. Because insects often go through distinct stages, bringing them and other small creatures into the classroom provides an excellent opportunity for observing the stages of development in their life cycle. There is nothing more amazing than watching a caterpillar spinning a cocoon and emerging later as a butterfly! Such experiences allow children to take on the role of biologist at their level of cognitive development.

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Conway, K.M. (2012). Remediation at Downtown Community College. In Stage, F. & Hubbard, S. (Eds.), Linking Theory to Practice: Case Studies for Working with College Students, 3. New York: Routledge.

 

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Conway, K.M. (2012). Transfer problems at Southeastern Community College. In Stage, F. & Hubbard, S. (Eds.), Linking Theory to Practice: Case Studies for Working with College Students, 3. New York: Routledge.

 

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Han, A., George, M., Milman, Y., & Dawes, D. (2012). Improving College Mathematics Through Lesson Study. Proceedings of 12th International Congress on Mathematical Education (ICME 12) Conference, 7369-7373. Seoul, Korea.

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Lee, J., & Hong, D. (2012). Using the standard form to explore parallel and perpendicular lines. New York State Mathematics Teachers Journal, 62(3).

 

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Lee, J., Choi, K., & McAninch, M.(2012). An Exce-L-ent Algorithm for Factors and Multiples. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 18(4), 236-243.

Abstract: Research has proved that American students, as well as some adults, struggle with understanding fraction concepts and operations (Behr et al. 1992; NCES 2011). Having a solid understanding of this topic is important because fraction concepts are a foundation for many areas in secondary school mathematics, such as rate of change, rational expressions, functions, and equations (Son 2011). Researchers have turned to studying instructional approaches of higher-performing countries, comparing written curricula cross-nationally, with the goal of explaining differences in achievement among countries (Son and Senk 2010; Son 2011; Watanabe 2003). They have also analyzed teacher knowledge for instruction (Son and Crespo 2009). The purpose of this article is to propose a new instructional technique that blends ideas from different sources. The L-shaped 2-5-3-7 algorithm combines the efficiency of an L-shaped representation found in Singaporean and Korean mathematics textbooks with a simplified procedure that uses divisibility rules of primes 2, 3, 5, and 7 from U.S. textbooks. From the elementary school to the remedial collegiate level, this representation can help students as they develop procedural skills and understanding of the factorization of numbers and operations of fractions.

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Kim, J., & Lee, J. (2012). What’s happening in the mathematics classroom? Discussion about RBI based on New national standard in Korea. East Asian Mathematical Journal, 28(2), 233-249.

Abstract: We discuss practices which take place in in the classroom from the viewpoints of traditional and reform-based instruction. This discussion is necessary because there is no evidence to show that reform-based instruction is implemented on the whole among teachers, even through it has continued to be stressed since the seventh national curriculum was released. Some suggestions are made for consideration and further discussion based on the practices presented here.

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Offenholley, K. (2012). Gaming your Mathematics Course: The Theory and Practice of Games for Learning. The Journal of Humanistic Mathematics, 2(2), 1083-1096.

Abstract: Learning through play is fundamental to humans and to many other animals. Game Based Learning is an interactive pedagogy that has as its foundation the tenet that games, by their very nature, increase learning through positive emotional experience. This article introduces readers to what games in mathematics classes have the potential to do, including to decrease anxiety, increase motivation, and deepen learning through immersive gaming. The article then connects this theory to practice, providing examples of both computer and non-computer games in introductory middle school, high school, and college mathematics. The article analyzes how these games work, and makes the distinction between intrinsic games, in which the concept being taught is an integral part of the game, and extrinsic games, which can be used for a variety of topics and tend to be more about review than about learning new concepts.

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Offenholley, K. (2012). A Discourse Analysis of the Online Mathematics Classroom. American Journal of Distance Education, 26(4), 236-248.

Abstract: Thirteen online mathematics classes were analyzed using a discourse coding system created by Bellack et al. (1966). Findings suggest that the ratio of teacher-to-student discourse is far lower in online than in face-to-face classes and varies widely from instructor to instructor. A strong positive correlation was shown between instructor posts and posts per student. Results point to the value of a particular kind of instructor presence in an online class and refute the idea that more collaboration occurs in the absence of an instructor. Instructor posts that were evaluative (by rating, clarifying, and expanding what was said) had a positive correlation with posts per student, and when the instructor's evaluations contained more mathematics, so did the student's. Direct answers from the instructor, on the other hand, correlated negatively with posts per student. The ideal style to encourage student posts, collaboration, and engagement with the material seems to be a gentle Socratic questioning.

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Samuels, J. (2012). The Effectiveness of Local Linearity as a Cognitive Root for the Derivative in a Redesigned First-Semester Calculus Course. In S. Brown, S. Larsen, K. Marrongelle, and M. Oehrtman (Eds.), Proceedings of the 15th Annual Conference on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (CRUME), Portland, OR: The Special Interest Group of the Mathematical Association of America on Research in Undergraduate Mathematics Education (SIGMAA-RUME), 155-161.

Abstract: In this report we investigate an innovative, reorganized curriculum for first-semester calculus which emphasizes local linearity and uses it as the fundamental principle on which the rest of the curriculum is based. Technology and visualization are used as tools for guided discovery of local linearity and other aspects of calculus. How students used local linearity as a cognitive root for the derivative will be discussed. Student learning outcomes will also be presented, with some examples of student work demonstrating the results of the approach.

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Samuels, J. (2011). The relationship between learner characteristics and learning outcomes in a revised first-semester calculus course. In Wiest, L., & Lamberg, T. (Eds.), Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Meeting of the North American Chapter of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education, 666-674. Reno, NV: University of Nevada, Reno.

Abstract: There is a long record of student difficulty in calculus. Previous research has suggested that calculus students may benefit from instruction that emphasizes technology, the graphical representation, and the notion of local linearity. For this study, the researcher revised the curriculum of first-semester calculus to incorporate these three elements. For 28 students taking the course, the relationship between several learner characteristics (representation translation proficiency, prior knowledge of rate, prior knowledge of function, spatial ability, and representational preference) and calculus proficiency was assessed. Results showed that the vast majority of students achieved high calculus proficiency, and that the first four characteristics had a relationship with calculus learning outcomes, but representational preference did not. Further, some students revised incorrect prior knowledge.

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Conway, K.M., John, G., & Stage, F.K. (2011). Urban community college athletics. Academic Exchange Quarterly, 15(2), 51-57.

Abstract: This study examined athletic programs at the 15 largest community colleges in the U.S., measured by full-time enrollment, to determine whether students at urban community colleges were afforded opportunities for social integration via athletics on par with their peers in rural and suburban community colleges. The findings revealed that large urban colleges offered fewer sports teams, spent less on their athletic programs as a proportion of overall student service expenditures, but were more likely to offer athletic aid, although offered it in smaller amounts than similarly sized suburban and rural colleges.

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Conway, K., Wladis, C., & Hachey, A. C. (2011). Minority student access in the online environment. Hispanic Educational Technologies Services (HETs) Journal, 2(1), 52-78.

Abstract: Using registration and transcript data, the authors explored differences in online course enrollment across different student groups. This study revealed that minority students do not enroll in online courses to the same extent as their White student peers. An even greater issue is that Black and Hispanic students, regardless of the course delivery medium, continue to have lower G.P.A. s than their White and Asian/Pacific Islander (PI) student peers. This finding reinforces prior research that suggests Black and Hispanic student groups need additional support in order to be successful in college, and that greater recruitment efforts for online courses are needed for all minority groups. Prior research has also shown that students who enroll in online courses at the college have higher G.P.A.'s than students who enroll in face-to-face courses; however, this study reveals a notable exception to this pattern. In contrast to other ethnic groups, there is no significant difference between Asian/PI students who select face to face versus online courses, suggesting that there are differences in the factors that determine online enrollment in this group compared to others.

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Conway, K., Hachey, A. C., & Wladis, C. (2011). Growth of online education in a community college. Academic Exchange Quarterly, 15(3), 96-101.

Abstract: This case study examines the evolution of online education at a large urban community college. It outlines issues related to course development, administration, student and faculty support. Online course enrollment, student and faculty perceptions and organizational issues were evaluated a decade after online education was introduced at the college. At both the inception of online education and in order to expand successfully, external funding was crucial for program success.

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Plaisir, Y-E., Hachey, A.C., & Theilheimer, R. (2011). Their portfolios, our role: Examining a community college teacher education digital portfolio program from the students’ perspective. Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, 32(2), 159-175.

Abstract: In the of Fall 2006, our large, urban community college implemented digital portfolio development for all of the preservice early childhood educators registered in the infant-toddler and preschool–early elementary programs. Three years after implementation of the program, we conducted survey research to assess our students' perceptions of their preservice digital portfolio and their experience constructing it. The data suggest several contradictions. Students express that their digital portfolios are valuable in the present and after graduation, yet they do not spend extra time on them. They find their digital portfolios useful as academic reflection tools, but do not seem to take ownership of them. Crucial for program improvement, students wish they had more faculty support and more class time to work on their digital portfolios. These findings and related implications suggest that, although digital portfolios are worth pursuing from the student perspective, the need for faculty involvement may be even more crucial than previously believed in scaffolding beginning digital portfolio development.

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Lee, J., & Cho. H. (2011). A New Approach to Solving Quadratic Equation "ax2 + bx+ c = 0". The New Jersey Mathematics Teacher, 69(2).

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Offenholley, K. (2011). Toward an analysis of video games. Journal of Mathematics Education at Teachers College (JMETC), 2(2).

Abstract: Video games have tremendous potential in mathematics education, yet there is a push to simply add mathematics to a video game without regard to whether the game structure suits the mathematics, and without regard to the level of mathematical thought being learned in the game. Are students practicing facts, or are they problem-solving? This paper examines several schema for assessing how the structure of a video game interacts with the mathematical content. The schema include whether the mathematics is intrinsic to the structure of the game, and whether the game is epistemic, that is, whether players take on the identity of a mathematician or problem-solver while playing. Implications for future video games are discussed.

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Hachey, A.C., & Butler, D.L. (2010). Seeds in the window, soil in the sensory table: Science education through gardening and nature-based play with Study Guide. In Koralek, D. (Ed.), Spotlight on Teaching Preschoolers 2: Supporting Children, Families and Yourself, 43-49.

Abstract: A growing body of evidence indicates that contact with nature is as important to children as good nutrition and adequate sleep, and therefore, educators need to address children’s access to nature. This is particularly important in urban areas, where children have few opportunities to interact with nature. Gardening and nature-based curriculum support children’s development and learning in academic, social, and health-related domains (Ozer 2007). The National Research Council states, “Because plants are especially easy to grow and care for, students at every grade level should be involved with gardening projects, using outside space, window boxes, or potted plants”.

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Conway, K.M. (2010). Educational aspirations of students in an urban community college: differences between native and immigrant students. Community College Review, 37(3) 209-242.

Abstract: This study explored the educational aspirations of immigrant and native students in an urban community college. Using Burton Clark’s cooling-out theory as a framework, the study looked at choices students make when applying to college and the extent to which students later change their aspirations. Immigrant students who were educated in United States high schools were more likely than other student groups to aspire to a 4-year degree and seek admission to a senior college rather than a community college. Logistic regression analysis revealed that most students did not change their majors over six semesters, although among those who did, students were more likely to be cooled out (i.e., they lowered their aspirations as indicated by a change from a transfer to a terminal program) than to shift from a terminal program to a transfer program.

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Conway, K.M. (2009). Exploring persistence of immigrant and native students in an urban community college. The Review of Higher Education, 32(3), 321-352.

Abstract: This study explored persistence for four groups of traditional-age (18–24) first-year students in an urban community college: native students, native students with immigrant parents, U.S. high-schooled immigrant students, and foreign high-schooled immigrant students. Earning a high school diploma and pre-college preparation (either high school grade point average or basic skills proficiency) contributed positively to persistence for all four student groups. Foreign high-schooled immigrant students needed the most remediation but persisted more strongly and attained higher grades, suggesting the value of support for access to higher education for immigrants.

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Hachey, A.C. (2009). I hate math: What we want young children NOT to learn. Texas Child Care Quarterly, 2-7.

Abstract: Many early childhood teachers don’t like mathematics and feel they’re not good at it. These negative feelings often stem from their memories of how they experienced math instruction in school (Jackson and Leffingwell 1999). Think back to your own school days, perhaps filled with timed tests or high pressured assignments designed to ensure you had the math basics. I remember that first thing every morning in third grade, we had to write the complete multiplication tables up to 12 in under two minutes. We could not move to the next table until we had mastered the previous one. While most of my friends had moved to the sixes and above, I was still working on the threes. It’s almost 30 years later, and yet I can still remember how mortifying it was that I was “bad at math.” For years after, I struggled with feelings of self-doubt. Math was my most dreaded subject in school—as a student and a teacher. Research shows that I am not alone. Many teachers recall being taught mathematics in an environment filled with tension and frustrations. Long into adulthood, feelings of math anxiety and failure persist (Tobias 1993). These negative feelings can affect later teaching practice. The feelings can cover a wide range: from a general lack of confidence in the ability to use mathematics correctly, to beliefs about mathematics teaching and learning that are contrary to appropriate practice, to a lack of interest in the teaching of mathematics at all (Harper and Daane 1998).

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Krauss, D., Hirsch, J., Samuels, J., Sanchez-Bravo, G., & Nguyen, P. (2009). A thermoregulatory estimate for the threshold body size of the evolution of feathers in dinosaurs. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 29(3), 129.

Abstract: It is generally agreed that feathers evolved in dinosaurs as a thermoregulatory mechanism. As dinosaurs exploited ecological niches of smaller animals it would have been necessary to maintain their internal body heat with some form of integumentary insulation in order to avoid hypothermia. We have used birds as an approximation for dinosaur bodies and used modern bird carcasses to calculate the cooling constant for body tissue approximating that of dinosaurs. The cooling constant derived from our experiment is .3 degrees centigrade per minute. Using literature values for dinosaur body mass and estimates of dinosaur temperature we were able to calculate both cooling curves for dinosaur bodies and hypothetical metabolic heat production curves for dinosaurs. The point at which the curves intersect represents the point at which metabolic heat production is lower than the rate of cooling for an animal and at which hypothermia would be a significant risk. At this point feathers would be necessary as insulation to prevent hypothermia. This point varies depending on the environmental temperature and dinosaur body temperature, but based on a 20 degree Celsius difference we estimate that the threshold body mass at which feathers would have evolved is approximately 20kg. As environmental temperatures rise and body temperatures drop the threshold body size at which feathers would be necessary for insulation drops. The threshold body temperature also varies with estimates of metabolic rate. A bird-like metabolism produces a lower threshold body size than a reptile-like metabolic rate

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