Differentiated Instruction: How simSchool was used in a Two Graduate Courses
Monday, March 6 2:05-2:25 PM Location: Capitol B
Presider: Danielle Herro, Clemson University, United States
Abstract: In the high stakes testing environments of Pre-K-12 environments, the opportunities for pre-service as well as in-service teachers to participate in field experiences to hone professional skills like differentiation of instruction are narrowing. The simSchool component was implemented in a Graduate Education course and data was collected over two terms. Using a mixed methods framework, this study examined the perceptions of study participants with respect to use of simSchool and differentiated instruction, as well as the use of personality inventories to establish learning preferences in support of differentiation. A paired t-test was used to determine the relationship between student responses on pre- and post-surveys. The p value was 0.0345, thus showing significance at an alpha of 0.05. This study addresses the efficacy of simSchool, a virtual learning environment, in preparing teachers for success in teaching diverse learners using differentiated instruction.