Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Russell O. Mays

Committee Members

Nancy Dishner, Norma MacRae, Russell F. West


The purpose of this study was to ascertain whether students in a kindergarten/first-grade multiage class achieve at a different level than students enrolled in a traditional kindergarten or first-grade class in a selected primary school in East Tennessee. The question of the interaction between gender and type of instruction was also analyzed.

The causal comparative quantitative research method was used to analyze data differentiating between students enrolled in multiage and traditional classes, retrospectively. A t-test was used to determine the level of performance the students demonstrated on the BRIGANCE K Screen at the beginning of the study. The number of mastered first-grade reading skills and mathematics skills, the score on the system-wide first-grade reading test and mathematics test, and gender interaction with type of instruction in each area were analyzed using ANCOVAs.

Statistically significant results (pBRIGANCE 1 Screen(ANCOVA). In 1998, the combined males scored significantly higher than the combined females. In 1999, multiage males had significantly higher means than traditional males. ANCOVA results showed statistically significant difference in the number of mastered reading skills of the multiage students in 1998 as well as with the combination of all three years. The multiage mean was the higher of the two groups all three years. For the number of mastered mathematics skills, ANCOVA results showed a statistically significant difference in 1999 with the multiage scores higher than the traditional group. ANCOVA results showed no significant difference between the groups on the standardized reading and mathematics tests analyzed.

Findings indicate that kindergarten students may benefit from kindergarten classes in a multiage setting, and that first-grade students may benefit from multiage settings in mastering skills in reading and mathematics but that benefit is not necessarily demonstrated by standardized test scores.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.