Title

Drop Out or Persist? The Influence of Differentiated Instruction and Teacher Behavior On College Freshmen and GED Students

Date of Award

2009

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

First Advisor

Ronald A. Styron, Jr.

Advisor Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Abstract

The purpose of this research was to provide information to school administrators about the impact differentiated instruction and teacher behavior have on students' decision to drop out of high school or persist. The ultimate goal of this study is to determine if a significant relationship exists between differentiated instruction, teacher behavior and dropout status. The participants in this study included students enrolled in select colleges or GED programs. The ages of the participants were ages sixteen to twenty-one. The participants completed a questionnaire constructed by the researcher to gather data pertaining to participants' experiences with differentiated instruction and teacher behavior their last year in high school. Eighty-six first year freshmen and fifty GED students completed the questionnaire. A logistic regression analysis was conducted to test for significant relationships between differentiated instruction, teacher behavior, gender, race and dropout status. A significant relationship was found between differentiated instruction, teacher behavior, and dropout status. However, there was no significant relationship between gender and dropout status, nor race and dropout status.