Academic journal article Education & Treatment of Children

The Effects of Two Types of Teacher Questioning on Teacher Behavior and Student Performance: A Case Study

Academic journal article Education & Treatment of Children

The Effects of Two Types of Teacher Questioning on Teacher Behavior and Student Performance: A Case Study

Article excerpt


The authors used an ABCBC design to compare the effects of a single-student response strategy and unison handraising strategy on a teacher and two middle school students (a targeted student and typical achieving student) during a 7th grade health science class. During baseline the teacher had high rates of redirections and low rates of praise statements and opportunities to respond. For the intervention conditions the teacher had slightly fewer redirections and increases in praise statements during unison handraising than during single-student responding. Both the targeted student and the typical achieving student demonstrated slightly higher, levels of on-task behavior, correct responses, and test score percentages during unison handraising compared with single-student responding. Furthermore, a discussion on study limitations, implications, and future research directions is included.

KEYWORDS: opportunities to respond, instructional strategies, students with challenging behavior, student outcomes

Researchers in several studies have documented that student problem behavior is a serious impediment to increasing student academic outcomes (Armendariz, & Umbreit, 1999; Carnine, 1976; Sutherland, Wehby, & Yoder, 2002). Researchers have also posited that behavioral and academic problems exert reciprocal influences on one another, which, over time, can negatively affect the cognitive development of students in their classroom environments (Barriga, Doran, Newell, Morrison, Barbetti, & Robbins, 2002; Gunter, Reffel, Barnett, Lee, & Patrick, 2004; Gunter, Shores, Jack, Denny, & DePaepe, 1994). Additionally, accumulated evidence suggests that challenging student behavior can negatively impact teacher behavior and classroom environments. For example, the overuse of reprimands and redirections as a method to control student behavior creates chaotic, noisy, and disorganized classroom environments (Madsen, Becker, & Thomas, 2001).

Promoting positive teacher behavior is important because research in classroom settings has shown that effective instruction is a key component of successfully managing a dynamic learning environment. Namely, studies have shown that effective instruction reduces negative student behaviors (i.e., calling out, interrupting instruction, off-task) and increases student academic outcomes (i.e., correct responses, active student responses, quiz scores) (Carnine, 1976; Englemann & Carnine, 1991; Lambert, Cartledge, Heward, & Lo, 2006). Particularly, one valuable instructional practice has been using high rates of opportunities to respond (OTR) (Lewis, Hudson, Richter, & Johnson, 2004; Stichter et al., 2009; Sutherland and Wehby, 2001). The underlying theory of OTR involves the learning trial as the basic unit of instruction. A learning trial consists of an antecedent (teacher question), behavior (student response), and consequence (teacher feedback). By definition, an OTR is a questioning or cueing technique where the teacher provides academic requests that require students to actively respond to each question (Miller, 2009).

The positive effects of increased rates of OTR on the academic and behavioral outcomes of students with various disabilities have been documented in the literature. For example, encouraging outcomes have occurred across a range of students (Godfrey, Grisham-Brown, Schuster, & Hemmeter, 2003, Kamps, Dugan, Leonard, & Daoust, 1994; Sutherland & Wehby, 2001). Additional evidence has shown positive effects in various academic subjects, such as reading (Burns, 2007; Skinner & Shapiro, 1989; West and Sloane (1986), math (Skinner, Ford, & Yunker, 1991), and spelling (West & Sloane, 1986), as well as in various settings such as self-contained classrooms (Sutherland, Alder, and Gunter, 2003; Wolery, M., Ault, M. J., Doyle, P. M., Gast, D. L., & Griffin, A. M., 1992), and general education classrooms (Haydon, Mancil, & VanLoan, 2009; McKenzie & Henry, 1979; Szadokierski & Burns, 2008). …

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