ERIC Number: ED478233
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2003-May
Improving Student Academic Success through the Promotion of Listening Skills.
Owca, Sally; Pawlak, Emmie; Pronobis, Melanie
This action research project implemented and evaluated a program for improving listening skills in order to improve academic achievement. The targeted population consisted of sixth- and eighth-grade students of three upper/middle class communities located near a large Midwestern city. The problem of poor listening skills was observed when students did not follow written or oral directions, especially in the case of homework assignments, cooperative learning activities, and during science and life skills labs. Analysis of probable causes revealed that when students were supposed to be listening, they were often daydreaming about other topics, distracted by other activities, impatient with the speaker, faking that they were listening, or were close-minded about what they were hearing. All of these situations caused the listener to be ineffective. A review of solution strategies resulted in the selection of an intervention that consisted of direct teaching of listening skills that were practiced before directions were given, such as: wait for quiet, no fidgeting, and focus by using eye contact. After 10 weeks, results of the program were assessed by means of a student survey of listening skills and teacher data collection of the number of times directions needed to be repeated for students. The listening skills survey results did not reflect students' perceptions of improved listening skills. However, teacher data collection did show a decrease in the number of times a teacher had to repeat directions. While students did not see an improvement within themselves, the data showed otherwise. The results seem to indicate that when students are quiet, not fidgeting, and focused, they receive directions more effectively, causing a reduction in the number of times those directions need to be repeated by teachers. (The listening skills survey and data collection sheet are appended. Contains 45 references.) (Author/HTH)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Masters Theses; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Master of Arts Action Research Project, Saint Xavier University and Pearson Skylight Field-Based Master's Program.