Dissertation Research Questions for Melissa W. Rhodes

This survey is for the purpose of exploring how 11th and 12th-grade teachers perceive a solution and how the practices may affect students during their freshman year of college.

***Please note the following definitions as you answer the following questions***

Grade inflation is defined as the practice of pushing a student’s GPA past their actual demonstrated academic ability by offering overly simplified testing, such as the overuse of multiple-choice assessments or offering things such as extra assignments and extra credit (Tarun & Krueger, 2016).

Social promotion is defined as the practice of promoting a student regardless of their demonstrated ability to perform under their current academic standards (Lynch, 2013, 2014, 2017).

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* 1. Thank you for your consideration of participation in my study How 11th and 12th-grade Teachers Perceive Possible Solutions to Grade Inflation and Social Promotion.  This study will benefit both K12 educators, students, and colleges/universities.  The hopeful outcome for this study are that K12 educators would experience a safer work environment as well as feel better equipped to serve students without having to resort to grade inflation and social promotion, students would feel better prepared for the postsecondary realm, and colleges/universities would see a notable increase in retention rates.

Informed Consent for the SurveyMonkey® Digital Survey:  I agree to participate in the dissertation research study of How 11th and 12th-grade Teachers Perceive Possible Solutions to Grade Inflation and Social Promotion being conducted by Melissa Rhodes (mrhodes.dissertation@gmail.com), under the guidance of her Doctoral Chair Dr. Jillian Skelton (jillianskelton@gmail.com) by answering the following questions exploring the existence/practice of grade inflation and social promotion in the K12 realm presented on this SurveyMonkey® form.  I understand that my participation is completely voluntary and that if at any time I feel uncomfortable regarding a question I may type "opt-out" as my response to that question on the survey.  I understand that I may withdraw my consent in writing at any time before the finalization of the data collection and inclusion in the dissertation and that refusal to participate will not lead to any loss of benefits for me.  I also understand that the researcher will assign me a number and not refer to me by name to protect my anonymity so I may freely and candidly answer the questions without fear of repercussions.  I acknowledge that no other person or institution will be present during the collection of my answers nor given a copy of my answers from the SurveyMonkey®.  Finally, I understand that this research has been reviewed and approved by the International Review Board (IRB@CUChicago.edu) because this dissertation study, done by Melissa Rhodes in pursuit of her Doctorate from Concordia University Chicago, involves human participation.  I understand that the questionnaire will take me approximately 15 to 30 minutes and if I choose to participate in the interview, that the interview will last approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour.  The answers on the questionnaire will be essay-style questions and the interview will involve open-ended questions which may ask me to provide more detail to my answers.  I understand that this process may cause me some fatigue and mild anxiety and apprehension due to the nature of the questions being based on my classroom experience and possible use of grade inflation and social promotion.  I also understand that Melissa Rhodes will not share any information about me nor my image with anyone outside of her study which includes my colleagues and administrators.  I have read and understand this informed consent agreement and by typing my full name in the below response section of this question I hereby give Melissa Rhodes my full consent to include my answers in her research.

CUC IRB Study Number:  [1792828-1]

CUC IRB Approval:  Approved 09/07/2021

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* 2. What, from your perspective as an 11th or 12th-grade teacher, are your thoughts on grade inflation as a practice?

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* 3. What, from your perspective as an 11th or 12th-grade teacher are your thoughts on Social Promotion as a practice?

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* 4. What are some instances where a teacher might feel pressured or overridden on a decision to socially promote a student?  What groups specifically exert that pressure?

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* 5. How might accountability to State Standards place pressure on teachers and influence how they grade students?

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* 6. How do you perceive grade inflation affects a student’s understanding of their own cognitive ability? (Please be as specific as possible with your answer.)

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* 7. How do you perceive social promotion affects a student’s understanding of their own cognitive ability? (Please be as specific as possible with your answer.)

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* 8. How might social promotion affect a student’s understanding of what constitutes successful progression versus that of a college’s definition of what constitutes a successful promotion? (Please be as specific as possible with your answer.)

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* 9. What are some possible solutions to grade inflation might you foresee?

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* 10. What are some possible solutions to Social promotion might you foresee?

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