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IES Grant

Title: Developing and Evaluating Processes for the Dissemination of Effective Universal and Targeted Classroom Management Practices
Center: NCER Year: 2021
Principal Investigator: Owens, Julie Awardee: Ohio University
Program: Social and Behavioral Context for Academic Learning      [Program Details]
Award Period: 4 years (07/01/2021 – 06/30/2025) Award Amount: $1,797,791
Type: Development and Innovation Award Number: R305A210224

Co-Principal Investigators: Exner-Cortens, Deinera; Cappella, Elise

Purpose: Universal and targeted classroom management strategies that reduce disruptive student behavior and improve academic achievement are available; yet, teachers' adoption, implementation, and sustainment of these strategies are often limited due to multiple barriers. The goal of this project is to develop and evaluate an innovative implementation support package that combines technologyand strategic resources within the school social network (i.e., influential peers) to reduce barriers to implementation of evidence-based classroom management practices and increase positive student outcomes. Because both technology and the social network may be necessary but insufficient supports in isolation, the researchers will examine whether the combination of technology andnetwork-informed implementation support (NIS, pronounced "nice") coaches is a feasible, acceptable, and effective way to increase adoption, implementation, and sustainment of effective practices and improve student outcomes.

Project Activities: The research team will use a cyclic development process to improve the feasibility and potential impact of the implementation support package (i.e., technology and NIS coach support). During the final pilot test, the researchers will randomly assign four schools to the technology only condition and four schools to the technology + NIS coach condition. They will evaluate whether the combined package produces 1) better adoption and implementation rates among teachers and 2) better student outcomes than technology only. The interventions will be revised through multiple phases of implementation, data collection, data analysis, and protocol enhancement.

Products: In collaboration with multiple stakeholders, the researchers will develop three products: 1) an interactive website that supports teachers' use of culturally-responsive universal and targeted classroom management practices (Classroom Management.Online [CM.O] system); 2) procedures for identifying influential peer coaches; and 3) manual and training procedures to prepare coaches to facilitate teacher adoptions and implementation of culturally-responsive classroom management practices.

Structured Abstract

Setting: This study will take place in urban, rural, and suburban elementary schools across three school districts in Ohio.

Sample: Participants include teachers, related personnel (e.g., school psychologists),  and students (including one target student per classroom) in participating elementary schools (two schools in Year 1; four schools in Year 2; eight schools in Years 3 and 4).

Intervention: The Classroom Management.Online (CM.O) system is a professional development tool that includes materials and brief video tutorials on culturally-responsive universal and targeted classroom management strategies, interactive wizards for targeted intervention development, graphs, and algorithms to support intervention decision-making and implementation. The researchers will develop feasible procedures for mapping the social network in a school to identify network-informed implementation support (NIS) coaches who are positioned to influence teachers' use of classroom management strategies. They will also produce a NIS coach manual detailing activities, resources, and procedures that facilitate adoption, implementation, sustainment/spread of CM.O strategies. Thus, the innovative intervention package includes access to CM.O and 'in house' NIS coaches (CM.O+NIS coach support).

Research Design and Methods: The researchers will use an iterative process to develop the intervention package and a mixed methods design. Qualitative data (via focus groups and interviews) will be collected from teachers and NIS coaches, and feedback from consultants and the community development team will be obtained for project refinement. In addition, multi-method, multi- informant quantitative data will be collected on change in teacher practices and student outcomes. The pilot trial represents a randomized controlled trial comparing schools with access to technology only (i.e., CM.O) to schools with technology + influential peers (CM.O+NIS coach support).

Control Condition: In the Year 3 randomized pilot trial, schools randomized to the control condition will gain access to the interactive CM.O system and be encouraged to implement the strategies promoted by the CM.O. No NIS coaches will be identified in these schools.

Key Measures: Measures include indicators of teacher adoption and implementation of CM.O strategies (observed and self-reported), and student outcomes (observed, teacher-rated, and intervention products). In Year 4, sustainment (continued use by teachers who used the CM.O system in Year 3) and spread (adoption by new teachers) will be assessed to determine the potential impacts beyond the first year of intervention.

Data Analytic Strategy: The research team will use a mixed-method analytic approach, including multi-level modeling, to determine the relative effects of each condition on teacher practices and student outcomes. In addition, they will obtain qualitative data via focus groups and key informant interviews.

Cost Analysis: The researchers will use an ingredients-based approach for their cost analysis.