ERIC Number: ED462735
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Apr-14
Reference Count: N/A
Competing Explanations of Class Size Reduction Effects: The California Case.
Mitchell, Douglas E.; Mitchell, Ross E.
Competing explanations of class size reduction effects on student academic achievement were tested using student, teacher, and school data collected from nearly 700 classrooms in over 70 schools during the first 3 years of implementation of California's (K-3) Class Size Reduction Program. Five major hypotheses were tested: (1) overall impact of class-size reduction is greater when exposure is longer; (2) academic socialization of students is greater when reduced-size class experiences begin in the earliest grades (K-1); (3) reduced classroom management overhead in smaller classes leads to higher performance; (4) school instructional resource utilization is more effective at raising achievement in smaller classes; and (5) changes in instructional practice result in changing the pattern of student achievement outcomes in small classes such that class performance is more uniform as well as higher overall. The California experience suggests that longer and earlier class-size reduction provides modest achievement benefits, but there are no differentially greater benefits for at-risk/disadvantaged students. School resource utilization does not appear to be more effective. Classroom teachers' practices appear to be moving the bulk of the middle of the class toward the higher performing students in the achievement distribution, but only slightly. Appendices describe variables and models used in the study. (Contains 61 references.) (Author/RT)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California