Title page for ETD etd-05182006-065659

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Hardwicke, Shannon Bragg
Author's Email Address shbragg@vt.edu
URN etd-05182006-065659
Title An Analysis of Student Assistance Programs
Degree PhD
Department Teaching and Learning
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Redican, Kerry J. Committee Chair
Aspelmeier, Jeffery Committee Member
Lepczyk, Billie F. Committee Member
Little, Jamie O. Committee Member
  • school based intervention programs
  • student assistance programs
  • SAP
Date of Defense 2006-05-05
Availability unrestricted

The purpose of this study was to examine a sample of students who participated in a student assistance program in Southwest Virginia. Using existing data from a school system in Southwest Virginia, this sample was observed to measure changes in student academic performance. The sample was also examined to determine the extent to which they instituted positive behaviors such as school attendance and reduction of disciplinary actions taken. In addition, this study assessed differences in demographic characteristics among student participants. Also studied was the extent to which gender differences related to academic performance and behavior.

Significant changes in students’ academic performance, attendance and disciplinary measures were established in the present study. Negative associations were established for those participating in the student assistance program and grade point average. Positive associations were found for those participating in SAP and attendance and disciplinary measures. No significant differences were yielded in the comparison of gender to academic performance and behavior.

SAP coordinators recorded that the majority of participants did improve since referral to program and most completed or currently remained in the student assistance program. However, a small percentage of students actually entered treatment programs following recommendations made to parents from the student assistance program committee.

This research assessed only the demographic and individual characteristics: gender, gifted or special education status, ethnicity and age. Therefore, other demographics such as socio economic status may offer additional explanation into academic and behavior outcomes of students involved in student assistance programs.

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