Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)

Program

Educational Leadership

Date of Award

December 1997

Abstract

This study examines teacher practices and student learning as perceived by teachers within public high schools that have implemented block scheduling. Comparisons are made between the possibilities advanced by block scheduling advocates and the actual results as interpreted from the data gathered. Comparisons are made between teaching and learning with the traditional schedule and the manner in which it takes place with block scheduling. Open-ended questionnaires were developed for use with voluntary participants who had worked with traditional scheduling and now taught with some form of block scheduling. Participants recorded observations based solely upon personal perceptions of experiences with students while teaching in both scheduling designs. Special demographic data were provided by each participant, numerically recorded, and analyzed for statistical differences. This study reports on the generalized trends of the data reported to this researcher. Data revealed that teachers have not adopted new teaching strategies, perceive that they are teaching less, and only the higher achievers benefit from the scheduling innovation. Students do not learn more with a longer class period. Block scheduling produced some unanticipated consequences such as teachers competing for students, reduced club participation, and principals gaining the ability to assign teachers a greater percentage of their preparations away from their major area of study. The importance of this study lies with the revealed effects of block scheduling not found in any other literature. The research effort gives voice to those persons who actually implemented the scheduling innovation. By using these first person accounts, this study discusses questions surrounding the block scheduling controversy that are not presented in current literature and sheds new light on those that are.

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access