Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Pamela Harrison


The problem addressed in the study was the lack of evidence on the efficacy of the single-gender educational model as compared to the coeducational model in increasing reading achievement for middle school boys in the local school district. Leaders in the district implemented the single-gender model to address the problem of an ongoing reading achievement gap among middle school boys and girls. The gap has also been noted nationally and leads to limited reading-dependent opportunities for boys. The purpose of this quantitative study was to compare the two educational models to determine whether the single-gender model offered advantages over the coeducational model as measured by standardized reading test scores. The study was grounded in Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences and Jensen's brain-based learning theory. A causal-comparative design was used to compare the two models. Archival data for 386 boys who were enrolled, but not necessarily continuously, in Grade 6 in 2011-2012, Grade 7 in 2012-2013, and Grade 8 in 2013-2014 were analyzed. The independent variable was school type (either single-gender or coeducational), and the dependent variable was standardized reading test scores. The one-way ANOVA and Kruskal-Wallis H tests indicated no statistically significant differences in reading test scores between school types. Based on the findings, a continuous improvement model was proposed in a white paper as an alternative solution to address reading achievement among middle school boys. This project has the potential to elicit positive social change for middle school students by revitalizing instruction and assessment strategies in both single-gender and coeducational schools to maximize reading achievement and learning outcomes.