Dr. Keith Rohwer

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Title A study of parent-teacher communications
Author Rohwer, Keith Allen
School The University of Nebraska - Lincoln
Degree EdD
Date 1991
Adviser Walter, L. James
Pages 176
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Abstract The purpose of this study was to develop a theoretical model that described teacher thoughts and decision-making processes that occurred while the teacher was planning for the parent-teacher conference as well as conducting conferences. The populations used in this study included elementary teachers in a Class III Nebraska school district and the parents of children who attended the elementary schools in this school district. Raw data were collected from individual project teachers' conference tapes and the parent and teacher questionnaires dealing with the effectiveness of teacher communication during conferences. The researcher then conducted individual interviews with the project teachers, who responded to questions about the identified incidents on each conference tape. The data collected in this research project revealed the twelve characteristics identified to be part of the Parent-Conferencing Communication Model are integral components of a successful parent-teacher conference. The characteristics existed and could be identified in each of the case studies. The data revealed that the specific area of questioning on the part of the teacher regarding decision making was a little-used principle during the parent-teacher conference. The data also revealed that the teachers in the study did not make good use of the follow-up characteristics in the model. The teachers planned the conference, shared and explained observations and ideas, and discussed concerns and areas that needed improvement; however, the teachers somehow fell short of making plans for improvement at the end of the conference. Staff development guidelines were developed directly from the Parent-Conferencing Communication Model in an effort to assist teachers in improving their conferencing skills. This staff development approach closely resembled the approach used when focusing on the improvement of instruction. The technique will be incorporated into inservice sessions prior to and following scheduled parent-teacher conferences.
 
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