Self-Regulated Strategies Development (SRSD) is an evidence-based system used to teach self-regulation tactics to learners and, in the process, impart other content from other subjects. SRSD is useful in helping students with writing difficulties to engender strong self-regulation and writing strategies. SRSD helps students get self-esteem as they improve their attitude towards writing as well as help those who have problems with their concentration, people with hyperactivity disorders, learners with learning disorders and those who generally perform well in class (Creswell, 2007).
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The aims of SRSD are to change the attitudes of students these categories towards writing, help them gain more understanding about writing, improve the quality of the essays or the compositions that they write, and write longer essays (De La Paz, 1999). All the students with the mentioned learning disorders as well as normal students can be included in the system. This inclusion helps learners whose performance is average to improve and perform better whereas the low performing learners are able to improve their writing skills.
SRSD is a system whose usability is possible in various settings. SRSD accommodates face-to-face learning methodology that issues instructions on a one to one basis in addition to deliberations that cover small groups (Guzel-Ozmen 2006).
Teachers also have the option of utilizing the system to attend to all their students at once during the teaching process (De La Paz & Graham, 1997). Although research on the effectiveness of the system were conducted utilizing lower levels of learning (including grades K-12), SRSD was more successful in the middle school levels and upper elementary grades than in the lower levels of learning. Implementation of the system requires teachers to begin by identifying students whom they consider to be unable to understand the traditional writing instructions.
There are six stages involved in the SRSD system. The six stages are development of the background knowledge, discussion of this knowledge, modeling of the knowledge, supporting this knowledge, memorization of the knowledge and independent performance. These stages require the involvement of both the teacher and the students. It is imperative for the educators to know that assessment of students under this program is enjoined in the learning process.
Teachers evaluate the students in areas that include the learning process, cognition, and the end product (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006). This is to enhance the effectiveness of the methodology. Self-evaluation is also part and parcel of the whole SRSD program. Among the learners with special needs, more evaluation is needed for learners with learning disability than for mainstream students. The U.S.department of education reported that in 2005, there were about three million children (4.3%) below 21 years of age with learning disabilities within the federal school institutions (U.S. Department of Education, 2005).
Figures from government institutions indicate that the number of children with learning disabilities has increased. Specifically, the number of students with writing problems has tripled in the last three years institutions (U.S. Department of Education, 2005). Katims (2005) suggests that learning disabilities affect the entire life of a student. The effects begin with a student performing dismally in school. This means that a student who did not obtain adequate knowledge in school ends up without the prerequisite skills for personal assessment and growth. Furthermore, most students with learning disabilities do not advance in education to even get the basic knowledge (Taymans&Sagarika, 2012).
According to the U.S Department of Education (2005), 70% of students with learning disabilities are not able to complete their high school education.Fisher and Frey (2011) observe that the knowledge that learners with disability obtain in the lower levels of education is not sufficient to secure them a decent job in the job market. In addition, this knowledge is not enough to allow the people with disability to be self-reliant. Therefore, it is important for teachers to monitor their graduates to ensure they have adequate abilities after the specific levels of education (Taymans&Sagarika, 2012).
The self-regulated strategy development system of teaching was developed after an extensive and thorough research program to be use in educating writing skills to learners (mostly children and the youth) with learning disabilities (Fisher and Frey, 2011). A recent study by Fisher and Frey (2011) has recommended the application of the SRSD system to children with behavioral and emotional disorders.
Reid and Lienemann (2006) posit that students with attention deficit disorder are also the new beneficiaries of the methodology. Fisher and Frey (2011) hold the view that SRSD has four major functions. First, SRSD improves the cognitive processes of the students that relate to writing. Secondly, SRSD helps learners to cultivate a positive attitude towards writing. The third important aspect of the program is that it is a necessary tool to use in effective monitoring of writing tactics. Finally, SRSD helps the students develop skills which enable them become competent writers.
SRSD students are not comfortable with the traditional learning methods because of their special needs. The old methodologies include brainstorming, plans, drafts, and revision (Creswell, 2007). These methods are supposed to be preserved for normal students with standard abilities (Creswell, 2007).
According to Glaser and Brunstein, (2007), the old methodologies methods are too demanding because they require a student to confer the dynamics and rules of writing while at the same time keep vigil on other factors including purposes, goals, organization, perspectives, form, features, and the needs of the audience (Reid &Lienemann, 2006). The old methodologies also need focusing that assesses communication between the reader and the writer.
The system gives learners specific learning structures that offer tangible lessons that are easy to follow but with an effective mark. Graham and Harris (2003) posit that these structures help students to get knowledge that they can use in adopting the right writing skills. Most importantly, the structure imparts self-regulation abilities among the children considering the fact that these students have special needs that could include autism.
The knowledge gained through this model is essential beyond the ability of becoming an effective writer (Graham and Harris, 2003). TEAL Center Staff explain that the model provides learners with confidence applied to develop, evaluate, monitor, and review their writing skills (De La Paz, 1999). The result is that in the end the student’s self-regulation abilities are enhanced as his or her independent learning skills are reinforced. The writing process is a task that requires the students to have developed skills that are necessary in providing solutions.
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Research on the project was conducted at PK, Elementary, and Middle level grades. This paper however, focuses on the middle level school going children and youth (Fisher & Frey, 2011). The research also covered verbal, nonverbal, and mixed skills addressing adaptive behavior whose skills are applied in the normal daily life.The system also covers the ability to communicate as well as the social and emotional behavior or learners (De La Paz, 2009). This paper handles the writing elements of SRSD.
The scientific method of meta-analysis will be used effectively to investigate the best methodology to be applied in handling students with writing difficulties in middle learning grades (Reid &Lienemann, 2006). According to (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006), the findings of this system of analysis are more acceptable because the system entails compiling information of the outcomes from various scholars on the same issue or topic.
These outcomes are then followed by an objective evaluation of the collected data to assess how effective the outcomesare (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006). The rules followed when developing the best approaches to use in learning institutions are based on the fundamentals. The act stipulates that the mode of learning that will be utilized must be effective and research-validated irrespective of the environment provided a high school setting is used.
The results of the study by Guze-Ozmen who fused the results of the research of more than 260 reports of instructional interventions prove a point. Strategy instruction was found to be the most effective practice to impart writing skills knowledge among students with learning disabilities (Graham & Harris, 2003). Since the focus of the paper is on the students’ writing skills, self-regulated strategy development system was the most recommended (Graham & Harris, 2003).
This instructional method of learning has procedures that give room to the teacher to alter them in order to suit the learning needs of the student. It is clear that the learners have different needs that are dynamic and unique to either the individuals or the group (Creswell, 2007). The rate at which the students improve dictate whether the learners are ready for the general classes. Harris and Graham (2007) propose a six step model to be followed when implementing the SRSD program. The system is easy to learn and apply particularly for students with disabilities (Graham & Harris, 2003). Its structure permits full implementation of all the instructions of the strategy.
The first step in the SRSD process involves the development and activation of background knowledge. This step requires that get to grasp the fundamental skills that they will need to use in their subsequent classes. For instance, beginners need to cover addition and subtraction, and multiplication before the educator can embark on division. Reversing the trend will result in ambiguity (Horner et al, 2005). This methodology will demand that the teacher must define the skills to be taught to the students before beginning the lesson fully and then evaluating the ability and mental preparedness for the student to absorb the new idea to be taught.
To test the effectiveness of SRSD on the writing skills of students with disabilities in middle school, I will use a single-case research design. The research will also seek to identify the effectiveness of the system on self-regulation in sixty middle school students with difficulties in writing. This will ultimately qualify the results of the research and will enable these results to be considered for scientific method of meta-analysis (Reid &Lienemann, 2006). Meta-analysis is also appropriate to be used as it is in touch with individual needs of the participants that are unique(Hornstra, Denessen, Bakker, Bergh, &Voeten, 2010). The methodology can also be used to deal with differences in a group of normal students (Creswell, 2007).
I will assess the instructional intervention of SRSD among middle school learning students with disabilities hence various effects would have to be identified. Therefore, the single-subject line design would be the best method to utilize (Katims, 2005). Assessment in SRSD programs is always used in the process of learning.Therefore, basic evaluation of the learner’s writing skills in this design will be done alongside the usual evaluation. This will happen until a level that the student will said to have improved significantly. Measuresto control students in this case will be applied based on every child’s performance standards.
Each student will be measured individually. The establishment of the baseline means that the process of intervention is ready to start. However, one student starts the intervention whereas the other four remain in the baseline state (Horner et al., 2005). The design process is framed in a way that each student takes part in the intervention individually (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006). This means that the first student has to complete the instruction first before the next student embarks on the intervention.
This research will be conducted in a 12 selected middle schools in Texas, California, Illinois, Hawaii and Washington. School enrollment is high in federal schools.The reports from the Department of education show that 4.3% of the students in federal schools have learning disabilities (Lisetteet al, 2010). Furthermore, it is documented that 70% of the students with disabilities do not graduate from middle school.
This makes the middle school level the appropriate region for the study. Since the research will last until the student becomes proficient, it will be mandatory for the study to adopt a continuous form of assessment. The character of the learner will be measured several times over the whole course of intervention. This will prove that the effects identified are justifiable since the observation has taken enough duration (Harris et al 2007). This is bearing in mind that behavioral trends of the students are studied before, during, and after the intervention.
In order for a student to be included in the research, the teacher in charge of writing skills will assess the student then make his or her recommendations (Katims 2005). The teacher will ensure that the students have identifiable learning disabilities for as long as they are related to writing skills. A mixture of students with writing skills difficulties, self-regulation abilities, and those who have not reached stability levels will all be included in the study. Students with low abilities including those who score below twenty five percentile qualify to be in the research. Those who score averagely do not qualify to be in the research (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006).
Five students from each school will take part in the research. Hughes will be the first and is a seventeen tear old male student in his upper elementary grade. The teacher educator was the one who recommended him from the Woodcock Johnson III Test of Cognitive Ability (Woodcock, McGrew & Mather, 2001). His performance is below average because he scored below twenty five percentile in the last standard evaluation. Sheryl is a female middle school student. She is better than Hughes since the subject teacher recommended that she only needed a few more lessons and she could be declared to have improved. She has had an average score of sixty percent in her three previous assessments.
The next two participants who are Seth and Claudia have an almost equal ability and are both aged fifteen (De La Paz, 1999). Their difference is that Claudia a female is a slower and sometimes fails to control herself. Her self-regulation abilities still need to be developed to match those of the normal learners in class. Seth is an average student whose performance averages forty five percentGeorge, the firth participant is new member in the middle level grade and therefore his abilities are lower than the other four. He is sixteen and a little timid as compared to the rest of the learners mainly because he is in a new level.
SRSD intervention process will follow the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) (Virginia Department of Education, 2011). The act requires that during the SRSD learners must be given the necessary tools and materials to help them in the learning process. Self-regulatory assistance will be given to students as required before the commencement of the lessons. This will include a list of definitions and initials that will be general and common throughout the intervention exercise (Creswell, 2007). Mnemonic visual aids will also be given to help students in memorization exercise.
The approval from the institution of learning as well as the consent of the parents or guardians will be a necessary condition for the students to participate in the research (Guzel-Ozmen, 2006). It is imperative to understand that the participants have special needs and therefore are a sensitive group. Parental consent is therefore necessary. Students will be given the guidelines at the beginning of the study before the first student begins the intervention as the others remain in the baseline condition (Lane, Harris, Graham, Weisenbach, Brindle, &Morphy 2008).
Students will be given compositions testing their writing skills every two days consecutively for two weeks. Following recommendations, the study will be undertaken cautiously to avoid interfering with the learning of other subjects. This means that the SRSD program will run within the normal lessons but individually for the participants.
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