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ERIC Number: ED566973
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Reference Count: 11
Measuring Data Use Beliefs and Practices in Early Education Settings
Stein, Amanda; Connors, Maia C.
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness
Educare is a network of enhanced Early Head Start (EHS)/Head Start (HS) (birth to age 5) programs that implement innovative Research-Program Partnerships (RPPs) to engage researchers, program leaders, staff, and at times, other stakeholders in a collaborative approach to supporting data use practices for decision-making and continuous quality improvement at the school and network levels. Thus it offers an ideal context in which to examine the measurement of data use. Specifically, this study aims to (1) identify distinct constructs of data use practices and beliefs from a self-report measure of early care and education staff; (2) understand how these data use constructs operate at the individual and site levels; and (3) examine associations between data use constructs and key early educator individual characteristics and experiences of their work environment. The data for this study were collected as part of the Educare Implementation Study and includes 503 teachers, specifically lead teachers (n = 198), assistant teachers (n = 172), teacher aids (n = 103), and other teaching staff (n = 28) across 16 Educare sites in 13 states during the 2014-2015 academic year. Educator surveys were sent to teachers, master teachers, and family support staff in all 16 Educare schools via email. The staff survey include questions about more general characteristics such as gender, age, race/ethnicity, primary language spoken, education level and type, current enrollment in training, and professional experience in the field and specifically at Educare. Also included were existing measures of teacher beliefs including a shortened version of the Child Care Worker Job Stress Inventory (CCW-JSI), a self-report measure designed to capture three dimensions of job stressors experienced by child care providers: job control, job resources, and job demands (Curbow et al., 2000). Finally, staff responded to the Modernity Scale, a 30-item measure of educators' Traditional, authoritarian beliefs and Progressive, democratic beliefs about how young children learn (Schaefer & Edgerton, 1985). Exploratory factor analysis was conducted using Geomin oblique rotation to account for predicted correlation among data use factors (Browne, 2001) and maximum likelihood estimation to account for missing data. Two latent data use constructs were identified from the analysis of teachers' self-report measures of data use: Informed About Data and Data Use Practices. These data use constructs are positively correlated with one another, suggesting that feeling informed about data and using data do not often occur independently. In addition, preliminary analyses suggest that each construct is related to key individual educator characteristics in ways that we might expect, providing initial evidence of the concurrent validity of these new constructs. Finally, preliminary analyses suggest that 52% of the variance in each construct lies between sites rather than between individuals within sites; additional analyses will explore this notable finding further in an effort to define data use constructs at the site-level as well as the individual-level. Two tables are appended.
Descriptors: Beliefs, Information Utilization, Early Childhood Education, Use Studies, Preschool Teachers, Teacher Attitudes, Individual Characteristics, Institutional Characteristics, Intervention, Data, Decision Making, Teacher Surveys, Educational Practices, Factor Analysis
Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness. 2040 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208. Tel: 202-495-0920; Fax: 202-640-4401; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.sree.org
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Authoring Institution: Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (SREE)