Teacher receptivity to peer tutoring
This year-long study examined teachers' receptivity to Peer Tutoring (PT), an instructional practice designed to promote achievement for students with disabilities in inclusive settings (Mathes, Fuchs, Fuchs, Henley, & Sanders, 1994). The purpose of the inquiry was to assess: (1) teacher receptivity to the practice (from introduction to the idea to its implementation); (2) the relationship between teacher receptivity to PT and support for learning about the practice; and (3) the extent to which teachers' receptivity is affected by features of the practice itself, and by factors extrinsic to the practice.Eighty classroom teachers who taught in grades 3 through 5 in 14 elementary schools participated. Teachers were assigned by school to one of two treatment groups which differed on support for learning about PT. Two classes of data were collected: (1) surveys recording the number of teachers expressing an interest in learning more about PT; acting to learn about PT; and instituting PT in their classrooms, and (2) questionnaires seeking information on variables thought to affect receptivity--teachers' perceptions of the PT practice; their reading goals and beliefs, their instructional context, and themselves.Four findings emerged from analysis of the data. First, receptivity to PT varied depending on the stage at which it was measured: results indicate that 84% (67) of the teachers expressed an interest in learning more about PT after an introductory one-hour overview of the practice. When offered one of two types of implementation assistance, 75% of teachers acted on their initial expression of interest by independent study of the manual or attendance at a one-day training session. Of the original 80 teachers, 40% instituted PT in their classrooms. Second, type of learning support did not affect the number of teachers who acted to learn more about or apply PT. Third, intrinsic factors were more predictive of interest in learning about PT and application of the practice than extrinsic factors. Fourth, a majority of teachers who did not apply PT indicated that factors intrinsic to PT outweighed factors extrinsic to the practice in their decisions not to learn more about or apply the practice.
- Education - Seattle