Date of Conferral

1-1-2008

Degree

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

School

Education

Advisor

Pamela Warrick

Abstract

Previous research has indicated that literary skills performance in reading and writing for middle school students has declined. There remains an important gap in the current literature regarding the decline in literary skills, which is a good predictor of the potential for students to drop out of school. The goal of this study was to determine if the use of self-evaluation influences students' writing ability and their attitudes toward writing. Using a quasi-experimental nonequivalent control group design, and over the course of 10 weeks, the researcher administered a writing pre- and posttest, as well as a pre- and posttest Writing Attitude Survey (WAS) to 70 gifted Grade 7 students. Two classes formed the experimental group, and 2 classes formed the control group. Students in the first group participated in focused self-evaluation instruction and practice. A pre- and postwriting test patterned after the Georgia Grade 8 Writing Assessment was assessed with a standardized writing rubric, and the WAS provided the quantitative data. ANCOVA and an independent sample t test compared the average change from pretest score to posttest score between the groups in overall writing score, ideas, style, organization, and conventions. They showed a level of significance. A Cramer's V compared the average change from pretest survey score to posttest survey score between the groups in the areas of gender, ethnicity, and group. It showed a statistically significant difference. Findings from this study may directly influence the increased use of self-evaluation across language arts, as well as other content area subjects.