ERIC Number: ED436572
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Electronic Decision-Making: A Potential New Methodology for Educational Research.
McLean, James E.; McAlister, M. Khris; Rivera, Julio C.; Snyder, Scott W.
An electronic decision making process was studied as an approach to an educational problem. Data suggested that students beginning kindergarten in large southern urban areas were not prepared cognitively or socially for a successful school experience. Twenty experts in early childhood education were invited to attend one of two sessions in a university business school team decision productivity laboratory. During each session the participants were asked to identify the key characteristics of an ideal prekindergarten education program, rate the characteristics of the entire group, and identify programs they felt best embodied these characteristics. Both groups arrived at similar key characteristics of effective key programs and produced numerous examples of these programs. The power of the decision laboratory was seen in the collaborative work process. Using networked computers, participants contributed ideas and opinions on the prompts, simultaneously and anonymously, during electronic brainstorming. The technology also enabled participants to rate or rank all responses, accelerating group consensus while eliminating group intimidation. Appendixes describe the group systems software used and outline the Birmingham, Alabama, goals for school readiness for all children. (Contains 11 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A