Date of Award

2011

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

School of Education

Abstract

Many studies have pointed out the academic advantages of teaching students to be more organized. While there is a great deal of information with regard to organizational skills of students, and an immense amount of inquiry into the phenomenon of motivation in nearly every field of study, there have been incredibly few studies that have combined the two issues in an effort to examine the potential relationship between organizational skills and self-motivation and how that relationship might help to increase the importance of making organizational skills an indispensable element of elementary school curricula. This mixed-methods, pretest/posttest case study examined a classroom of 23 fifth-grade students in a suburban Chicago public school in order to gain a deeper understanding of student organization and the effect it might have on student ability to self-motivate. Framed by self-determination theory, the study proposed that student organizational skills may impact students' feelings of competence, relatedness and autonomy which determine their ability to be self-motivated. To explore this, a six week organizational skills intervention was imposed on the class to increase organization so that any changes to motivation might be documented by comparison. Initially, the study found that there was a statistically significant difference in the organizational abilities of highly motivated students and their moderately and poorly motivated counterparts. Over the course of pre-intervention and post-intervention measures it was discovered that roughly 98% of the students had improved their organizational skill as a result of the intervention. The same data sources would reveal that students had also begun to make small improvements with regard competence, relatedness and autonomy, implying that motivation was improving as well.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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