ED 504 Grantham University Data Gathering/analysis Template

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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
COLLEGE OF EDUCATION SIGNATURE PROJECT CONTEXT STATEMENT
Overview
The Signature Project is designed to guide candidates through the steps for planning and conducting an indepth school improvement project focused on improving teaching and learning. The project involves an
opportunity for candidates to apply the knowledge, skills, and behaviors they gain from their respective
programs. The Signature Project is structured and implemented in a way to improve identified needs within a
school community. Candidates will document the mastery of a substantial number of program standards with
the planning, implementation, and evaluation of their projects.
Candidates in all advanced programs will receive proper instruction, support, and feedback to guide them
through the completion of the three stages of the Signature Project. Candidates must work collaboratively with
course instructors, P12 practitioners, and other school stakeholders on the Signature Project to develop the skills
required to successfully complete each stage of the Signature Project and to ensure the products for each stage
meet minimum requirements to represent proficiency at the appropriate level on the evaluation continuum.
Candidates will prepare only the Signature Project Stage 1 in ED 504. The Signature Project Stage 1 is a
research proposal for an experimental or quasi-experimental research proposal. Candidates in the Master’s
program will be required in a subsequent course to submit the final iteration of the research proposal as an 8-10
minute presentation explaining the project, including details about the identified problem, background
investigation, proposed action plan, and impact on teaching and learning to an outside evaluation team.
Ultimately, candidates will be expected to earn a minimum of 80% of the possible points by the outside
evaluation for each stage in the Signature Project before they are eligible to receive an advanced degree.
The Signature Project concept was developed by a committee of unit faculty and P12 partners in Summer 2016.
Further development of the project stages’ descriptions and evaluation rubrics was put on hold while the unit
worked to complete a successful NCATE re-visit in Fall 2016. Project development resumed in Fall 2017. The
entire unit faculty had an opportunity to provide feedback with respect to stage drafts created by the committee,
in Fall 2017 and Spring 2018. Adjustments to the original products and the development of an assessment
platform in Blackboard followed in Summer 2018 and Fall 2018. Adjustments were made based on the
recommendations of a committee of university faculty and a P-12 partners. Pilot administration of the Signature
Project stages will begin in Spring 2019 but completed projects will not begin to be evaluated outside of
courses until candidates advance through the project stages. Focus group interviews with candidates and faculty
involved in the pilot will begin after implementation. Afterward, revisions to the project descriptions, rubrics,
and evaluation process will be completed. The unit anticipates implementing the Signature Project with all
advanced programs by Fall 2020, with full candidate accountability becoming compulsory at that time.
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
THE SIGNATURE PROJECT
The Signature Project is designed to guide candidates through the steps for planning and conducting an in-depth
school improvement project focused on improving teaching and learning. The Signature Project has three stages.
Stage 1 is the only stage addressed in ED 504. In Stage 1, candidates will design an experimental or quasiexperimental research proposal. This stage includes the following three major assignments: Research Problem,
Literature Review, and Methodology. The three major assignments will be expanded and become the three
chapters for a research proposal. This research proposal is the culminating product in ED 504 and is called the
Signature Project Stage 1. Signature Project Stages 2 and 3 are embedded in follow-up courses.
Major Assignment 1: Research Problem
Candidates gather existing data from their classroom, school, district or work setting. They will construct a
graphical representation that allows for easy analysis of the compiled data and assess the data to identify a
problem or weakness that can be addressed in an experimental or quasi-experimental study. In a short
narrative essay, candidates identify the problem/weakness, connect the problem or weakness to trends or
patterns represented in the data, and explain how the problem or weakness might have impacted student
achievement. The required scope of the problem/weakness depends on the level of advanced degree being
sought.
• Master level – classroom level or school level problem
• Specialist level – multiple classrooms or school level problem
Major Assignment 2: Literature Review
Candidates discuss the background of the identified problem, conduct a literature review following APA
format (most recently published edition), and become familiar with the scholarly debate surrounding the topic
or problem identified in the existing data. The scope and expectations for the literature review depend on the
level of advanced degree being sought. The problem or weakness must be suitable for an experimental or
quasi-experimental study.
• Master level – Candidates must describe a best practice or a trend/theory and justify its use and
connection with the identified problem; use a minimum of 10 sources (largely representative of
the most recent five years); describe/justify the best practice and/or theory based on each of the
sources; and provide a synthesis of the related literature. (10 sources required, but a minimum of
15 sources are required to receive all points.)

Specialist level – Candidates must describe a best practice or a trend/theory and justify its use and
connection with the identified problem; include a minimum of three best practice options AND a
theory/trend; clear descriptions and justifications; and provide a synthesis of the related literature
from the past 5 years. (15 sources are required, but a minimum of 20 sources are required to receive
all points.)
Major Assignment 3: Methodology
Candidates construct a measurable and executable action plan that includes a description of collaborative
resources, description of the plan, and the scope and expectations required to complete an experimental or
quasi-experimental study. The collaborative resources include evidence of collaboration with appropriate
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
stakeholders (who, what role do they play, what impact do they have on the plan). The description of the plan
includes a descriptive timeline, participants, variables, definitions of key terms in the study, data, resources,
leverage plan, pertinent documents, and justification. The scope and expectations for the action plan depend on
the level of advanced degree being sought.


Master’s level – represents a plan to address a problem identified across multiple classrooms (i.e.
teacher leader looking at data from multiple classrooms on the same grade level).
Specialist level – represents a plan to address a problem identified across an entire school,
multiple schools, or throughout a district (i.e. an instructional leader addressing a problem across
elementary schools in a district)
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
MAJOR ASSIGNMENT 1: Research Problem
(Use this as a template. Copy and download. Do not delete any portions of the template. Respond to each prompt with essay style answers
within the template. Save and submit in Blackboard.)
Candidates will gather existing data collected at the classroom, school, or district level to justify identification of a topic/problem for study.
Review the grading rubric while completing Major Assignment 1.
OBJECTIVE:
Analyzing existing data and identifying an educational problem or weakness currently found in student’s classroom or school
for the purpose of completing UWA’s Signature Project Stage 1assignment.
RESPOND TO THE FOLLOWING PROMPTS:
1. Summarize an introduction to your topic.
2. Identify the problem/weakness to investigate (statement of the research problem).
3. Identify your hypothesis.
4. Describe how you determined that a problem or weakness might exist?
5. Construct a graphical representation that allows for easy interpretation of your compiled data that highlights your problem or weakness.
Identify the source of the data and discuss its credibility.
6. Discuss your analysis of the data to confirm that a problem or weakness can be addressed that is appropriate to the scope of the required
program.
7. Connect the problem or weakness to trends or patterns represented in the data.
8. Explain how the problem or weakness might have impacted student achievement.
9. Identify the research methodology that you are planning to use with an explanation of why.
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
MAJOR ASSIGNMENT 2: REVIEW OF LITERATURE
(Use this as a template. Copy and download. Do not delete any portions of the template. Respond to each prompt with essay style answers
within the template. Save and submit in Blackboard.)
Candidates conduct a literature review, following APA format (most recently published edition), and become familiar with the scholarly debate surrounding
the topic, and what scholars and practitioners say about the best way to address the particular need or problem identified through the data analysis. Review
the grading rubric while completing Major Assignment 2.
OBJECTIVE: Reviewing and writing a Review of Literature on your chosen topic/problem for the purpose of completing UWA’s Signature Project Stage
1 assignment.
RESPOND TO THE FOLLOWING PROMPTS:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Provide a brief overview of the problem and need discussed in Major Assignment 1.
Provide a developed problem statement that demonstrates a sound and focused understanding of the chosen topic/problem.
Identify the hypothesis.
Identify best practice(s) that will be used to address the problem or weakness.
Describe a trend/theory that will be used to justify the use of the identified best practice(s) and clearly highlight the connection with the identified
trend/theory to address problem.
6. Include content from the literature reviewed that supports the identified best practices as viable responses to the problem/weakness identified.
7. Describe how the literature reviewed connects the identified theory/trend with all identified best practices.
8. Include summaries of the sources reviewed.
9. Include only sources in the review of literature that show clear connections with the best practice(s) and/or theory/trend identified as viable responses
to the problem/weakness presented.
10. Include a minimum of 10 sources (largely representative of the most recent five years). All 15 references must be included to receive all possible
points.
11. Conclude the chapter with a synthesis of the literature and how it justifies the need for study.
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
MAJOR ASSIGNMENT 3: METHODOLOGY
(Use this as a template. Copy and download. Do not delete any portions of the template. Respond to each prompt with essay style answers
within the template. Save and submit in Blackboard.)
Candidates write a measurable and executable action plan on their chosen topic/problem for the purpose of completing UWA’s Signature Project Stage 1
assignment. The action plan must be APA formatted (most recently published edition). Collaborative resources must be included. Evidence of collaboration
with appropriate stakeholders is required. Review the grading rubric while completing Major Assignment 3.
OBJECTIVE: Writing a measurable and executable action plan on an identified topic for the purpose of completing UWA’s Signature Project assignment.
RESPOND TO THE FOLLOWING PROMPTS:
1. Provide a brief overview of Major Assignment 1 followed by a brief synthesis of the literature review.
2. Identify the population.
3. Provide a full description of the participant sample and the sampling technique.
4. Justify the sampling technique and the sample chosen.
5. Describe the role of all participants and the plan to prevent harm to them, including the plan for protecting student confidentiality and data.
6. Explain the impact all participants will have on the study.
7. Provide a detailed description of steps and sequence of steps required to complete a successful study.
8. Justify the plan with respect to the identified problem.
9. Justify the connection between the plan with the expected impact on student achievement.
10. Define constitutive and operational definitions of key terms.
11. Identify the variables in the study and define how each will be measured.
12. Describe the data that is needed for the study and how it will be collected.
13. Include a description of the timeline for the data collection.
14. Identify any instrument that will be used in the study and its validity and reliability measures.
15. Describe any threats to internal validity of the study and measures for control.
16. Identify the collaborated resources and explain the value and role of each.
17. Identify the connection between the collaborative resources and the identified problem.
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
18. Identify the plan to leverage resources to complete the action plan.
19. Describe the limitations or outside interferences that might interfere with improved student achievement.
20. A list of all sources cited in Major Assignments 1, 2, and 3 must be compiled. It must be included in your Major Assignment 3 submission.
21. Compile documents for the appendices. These do not have to be included in your Major Assignment 3 submission. But, they are required in the
final submission of the Signature Project Stage 1.
7
Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
THE SIGNATURE PROJECT
The culminating requirement in ED 504 is the final iteration of your Signature Project Stage 1. The Signature Project Stage 1 is your research
proposal. It is designed to guide candidates through the steps for planning an experimental or quasi-experimental study to examine an in-depth school
improvement project focused on improving teaching and learning. The project involves an opportunity for candidates to apply the knowledge, skills,
and behaviors they gain from their respective programs.
To complete the Signature Project Stage 1, candidates extract information from their Major Assignments 1, 2, and 3 to create the Signature Project
Stage 1 which includes Chapters 1, 2, and 3, References, and Appendices. The Signature Project Stage 1 should include the following:
Cover Page
Abstract
Chapter 1: Research Problem
Introduction
Statement of the Research Problem (include hypothesis)
Data Graphic and Discussion
Impact on Student Achievement
Research Methodology
Summary (of chapter 1)
Chapter 2: Literature Review
Introduction
Sub-headings (according to the organization of your study)
Synthesis of Literature Review
Chapter 3: Methodology
Introduction
Population
Sample
Sample Technique (with justification)
Role of Participants and Impact on Participants (with explanation)
Plan for Protection of Human Subjects
Variables
Timeline (with sequence of steps and timeline for data collection)
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
\
Constitutive and Operation Definitions
Description of Data (data needed)
Reliability and Validity of Instrument
Collaborative Resources
Leverage Plan
Limitations
References
Appendix A: Consent Form
Appendix B: Permission to Study
Appendix C: Copy of the instrument or survey if one is used.
General Guidelines











APA format.
Double-space using Times New Roman 12 pt. font size. Follow the example found in the Course Resource section of this course.
Top, bottom and side margins must be 1 inch.
Pages must be numbered, top flushed right.
Organize the literature review according themes important to the study.
Direct quoting of other authors is not permitted. All written text should be in your own words.
Appropriately cite all information sources using APA.
Include a minimum of ten scholarly sources, five of these sources should come from the primary literature. (ED 504 requirement) All
ten sources should primarily be from the past five years.
References should be in APA format and on a separate page in the document.
If you’re scholarly literature sources were obtained from an Internet site (e.g., online journal article), include the URL and the date
downloaded as part of the bibliographic details presented. Check APA on formatting.
Grammar and spelling must be correct.
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Signature Project Stage 1 SP1 OL1
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARD APPROVAL (completion of the IRB approval does not occur in ED 504):





Candidates at both the Master’s and Specialist Levels are required to complete the Responsible Conduct of Research Program offered through
Citi Training. ( The course candidates are expected to complete the Social, Behavioral and Education Sciences
section. The modules that must be completed are Introduction to RCR, Research Involving Human Subjects, Collaborative Research, Conflicts
of Interest, Data Management, Mentoring, Peer Review, Research Misconduct, and Plagiarism. This training is free.
Candidates must complete the Citi Training in ED 504.
Candidates must submit the certificate of completion and the other required documents for IRB approval prior to conducting their
research in one of their future program courses.
Formal IRB submission can occur any time prior to beginning the research. The IRB form will be provided by the instructor or can be
obtained from UWA’s Office of Sponsored Programs, Ms. Carmen Giles (cgiles@uwa.edu).
Failure to complete the IRB process will nullify the proposal requiring the candidate to revise the project before completion of the program.
10
ED 504
Techniques of Educational Research
SP20 OL1
MAJOR ASSIGNMENT 1: DATA GATHERING/ANALYSIS
Candidates will gather data previously collected at the classroom, school, or district level to justify identification of a topic for study.
OBJECTIVE:
Identifying and analyzing an educational problem or weakness currently found in student’s classroom or school for the purpose
of completing UWA’s Signature Project Stage 1 assignment.
RESPOND TO THE FOLLOWING PROMPTS:
1. Summarize an introduction to your topic. Charter Schools have a limited funding to provide support for students with special needs. About
7% of the students within charter schools will receive exceptional student education while 11% and higher will be enrolled in public schools
where resources are readily available.
2. Identify the problem that you wish to research and write a problem statement. (i.e. The problem this study will address is poor student
academic achievement.) There is a significant number of students within BridgePrep that have special needs that are not able to me met.
Many students are transferring from other schools that have documented behavioral/academic challenges
3. Elaborate on how you determined this was a problem and write a purpose statement based on your problem statement. (i.e. The
purpose of this study is to evaluate the impact of socioeconomic status on student academic achievement.) This problem has been
ongoing as more students have identified behavioral and cognitive inabilities. Due to the socioeconomic status for the majority of students
enrolled in this school early intervention have not been implemented to ensure students are properly supported social-emotionally nor
academically
4. Construct a graphical representation that allows for easy analysis of your compiled data that highlights your problem. Identify
the source of the data and discuss its credibility. Examples of existing data might include school district test scores, state level
test scores, district special education referrals, district absenteeism reports, school retention reports, etc.
5. Discuss the data in your graphical representation to confirm that a problem or weakness can be addressed that is appropriate
to the scope of the required program.
6. Connect the problem or weakness to trends or patterns represented in your data.
7. Explain how the problem or weakness might have impacted student achievement.
8. Identify the research methodology that you plan to use. (Quantitative, Qualitative, or Mixed)
Major Assignment 1
Writing Components
CATEGORY
Unacceptable
(0 points)
Revisions Required
(1 point)
Target
(2 points)
Are the focus and purpose clear?
Missing thesis; confusion about or
misunderstanding of topic; no sense
of purpose
Simplistic and unfocused ideas; limited
sense of purpose
Developed thesis; represents sound
understanding of the assigned topic;
focused
Is the writing structured and well
organized?
No paragraph structure; or single,
rambling paragraph; or series of
isolated paragraphs
Clear organizational structure; easily
followed; includes transitions;
structured format
Is correct sentence structure and
proper mechanics utilized?
Contains multiple and serious errors
of sentence structure: i.e. fragments,
run-ons; unable to write simple
sentences; numerous errors in
spelling and capitalization; intrusive
and/or inaccurate punctuation;
communication is hindered
Vocabulary is unsophisticated; or
subject specific vocabulary or
sophisticated vocabulary used
incorrectly
There are significant format errors
present ; multiple (more than 6) of
APA formatting errors; in the
reference list and/or in-text citations;
Organization structure is present, but
is confusing or disjointed; weak paragraph
structure; transitions are missing or
inappropriate
Formulaic sentence patterns or
overuse of simple sentences; errors in
sentence structure; contains several
punctuation, spelling, and/or capitalization
errors (up to 6); errors may or may not
interfere with meaning
Proper, but simple vocabulary used;
subject specific vocabulary used infrequently
Vocabulary is varied, specific and
appropriate; uses subject specific
vocabulary correctly
Fewer than 6 APA format errors are
present in the reference list in-text;
citations; header; headings; page numbers;
etc.
There are virtually no APA format errors
present in either reference list in-text;
citations; header; headings; page numbers;
etc.
Are vocabulary and word usage
varied and appropriate?
Is APA format followed?
Effective and varied sentences; errors
(if present) due to lack of careful
proofreading; virtually free of
punctuation, spelling, capitalization
errors (no more than 3); errors do
not interfere with meaning
Content Components
CATEGORY
Source of data is credible and data
is representative of the scope
requirements for the advanced
degree being sought
(InTASC 6, 9; CAEP A1.1)
Graphical representation of
compiled data allows for easy
analysis
(CAEP A1.1)
Identified problem/weakness is
supported by trends or patterns
seen in the data
(InTASC 6, 9, 10; CAEP A1.1)
Unacceptable
(1 points)
Revisions Required
(5 points)
Target
(10 points)
The source of the data is ambiguous
or lacks credibility; data does not
allow for problem/weakness
identification appropriate for
required project scope
The source of the data is clear and
credible; data does not allow for
problem/weakness identification
appropriate for required project scope
Graphical format does not present the
data in a clear manner; data is only
partially presented
Graphical format(s) is appropriate
and clearly presents all the collected
data
The source of the data is clear and credible;
data allows for identification of an of
a classroom, multi-classroom, school
or district level problem/weakness
appropriate to the required project
scope
Graphical format(s) is appropriate; clearly
presents all the collected data; highlights
visible patterns or trends
Problem/weakness is not clearly
identified or does not align with the
trends and patterns identified in the
data
Problem/weakness is clearly
identified; aligns with the type of data
collected, but connections between the
trends/patterns in the data are not clearly
described in the narrative
Problem/weakness is clearly identified;
aligns with the type of data collected; clear
connections between the
trends/patterns are drawn in the
Narrative

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