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The Recipient of the 2002 NRMERA Distinguished Paper Award
Resilience in Adult Women Students: Facilitating Academic Achievement and Persistence
Author: Cynthia Lake Howell, Black Hills State University
Abstract: Resilience theory applied to adult women students returning to college carries implications for the academic achievement and persistence of this growing segment of the college student population. A recent study identified the dispositional qualities that enabled adult women students to develop the resilience to achieve academic success in higher education as well as the participants’ perceptions of the processes necessary to develop those qualities. The implications of the study focused on the facilitation of student responsibility for academic achievement and persistence in relation to institutional retention.
Reference: Howell, C. L. (2004). Resilience in adult women students: Facilitating academic achievement and persistence.  The Researcher, 18, 34-43.


The Principal’s Role in Mentoring: Implications not Always Considered
Authors: L. Joseph Matthews, J. Merrell Hansen, & Ellen J. Williams
Institution: Brigham Young University
Abstract: This study explored the importance of principals’ involvement in the implementation, facilitation, and assessment of mentoring programs for student teachers and beginning teachers. Using five mentoring problems from the literature as a conceptual model, the researchers observed and interviewed ten mentors of student teachers and beginning teachers. The results indicated that the effective mentoring programs for beginning teachers and student teachers had principals who were involved and aware of the inherent problems and faulty practices that subverted good mentoring. Likewise, these problems were more apparent in schools without principal involvement.
Reference: Matthews, L. J., Hansen, J. M., & Williams, E. J. (2004). The Principal’s role in mentoring: Implications not always considered. The Researcher, 18, 6-14.


Revised Guidelines for Conducting Item Analyses of Classroom Tests
Authors: Dale Shaw & Suzanne Young
Institutions: University of Wyoming
Abstract: Twenty-seven multiple-choice, instructor-created classroom tests from a wide variety of college sub­jects were submitted to an iterative form of item analysis. Without exception, the tests contained large numbers of items that contributed little or nothing to the measurement of the test taker’s knowledge. On average, the best one-third of items (those with the highest item-to-total score correlation coeffi­cients) from each test, discriminated among test takers as well as the whole test did. The paper pre­sents revised guidelines for conducting item analyses to improve classroom tests that call for cutting deeper than current published recommendations when identifying items to be replaced or rewritten.
Reference: Shaw, D., & Young, S. (2004). Revised guidelines for conducting item analyses of classroom tests. The Researcher, 18, 15-22.


Science Literacy in the Crucible of Service Learning
Authors: Richard Ponzio & Marian J. McKenna
Institution: University of California, Davis; University of Montana, Missoula
Abstract: This article argues that academic service learning at the undergraduate level provides an accessible and powerful crucible for exploring a career in teaching while also providing needed hands-on science literacy experiences for young children. The mixed method methodology used for assessment purposes is consistent with reflection and inquiry, the key elements that serve as the bridge, so to speak between science literacy and service learning. The course described simultaneously develops science literacy, career awareness and social capital of undergraduates and children.
Reference: Ponzio, R., & McKenna, M. J. (2004). Science literacy in the crucible of service learning. The Researcher, 18, 23-33.


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