University of Vermont

College of Education and Social Sciences

Doctoral Programs in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

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Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Doctoral Defenses

Nicholas E. Negrete: Examining Undergraduate Faculty’s Competence and Confidence in Addressing Distressed and Disruptive College Students (2016-02-19)

Mental health issues serve as a leading barrier to academic success for college students. As mental health issues among college students continue to escalate, there is an increased likelihood in the manifestation of demonstrable distress and disruption among college students within the classroom. However, there is dearth of ...

Kelly Mancini Becker: The Nile Project: Creating Harmony Through Music in the Nile Basin Region (2016-02-09)

The use of the arts as a tool for conflict transformation, or what has been called arts based peacebuilding, is a new and emerging field. Yet, there is little empirical evidence on its outcomes. The Nile Project, a musical collaborative from East Africa that brings together musicians from all of the countries that border the Nile ...

Paul Dragon: The Social Construction of Mental Illness Among State Administrators and Consumer Advocates (2015-12-09)

From 19th century insane asylums to state sponsored eugenic programs in the 20th century the state has been an incongruous leader and provider of mental health policy and practice. Current practices that include such treatments as confinement, restraints, forced medication and electro-convulsive therapy continue to raise issues of ...

Robert A. Skiff, Jr: Challenges to Building an Open Learning Organization in Higher Education: A Scholarly Personal Narrative (2015-12-11)

Higher education is undergoing rapid changes brought about by the ongoing financial crisis, globalization, and the rapid advancement of information technology. This scholarly personal narrative will apply assemblage theory and system dynamics to analyze the financial, cultural, and political constraints hampering change processes ...

Patience E. Whitworth: Powerful Peers: Resident Advisors’ Experience with Restorative Practices in College Residence Hall Settings (2015-10-28)

This study explores the implementation of Restorative Practices (Costello, Wachtel, & Wachtel, 2009) in a residential life program at a small public university. Narrative inquiry is used to explore the perspectives of eleven resident advisors (RAs) who have been trained in Restorative Practices (RP) and are using them in their ...

Tristan McNamara:Services For Youth With Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Study Of Educational Practices In Vermont (2015-11-03)

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) continues to receive increasing degrees of national attention in parallel with increasing rates of occurrence (Baio, 2012; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2014; Rice, 2009). The disorder’s growing prevalence has been accompanied by controversies regarding the source of the disorder ...

Ryan Becker: A Science Instrument for the Digital Age: #SciStuChat Participants’ Perceptions of Twitter as a Tool for Learning and Communicating Science (2015-06-01)

The integration of digital technologies in K-12 education is ubiquitous. Web 2.0 technologies enable students who were once passive consumers to become active participants in, and even creators of, dynamic digital experiences. Social media, in particular, can connect disparate populations, minimizing traditional barriers such as ...

Windy Paz-Amor: Damned if you Do - Damned if you Don't: A Queer Woman of Color's Journey of Trauma, Agency, and Leadership (2015-03-27)

Navigating systems of leadership in Predominantly White Institutions (PWI’s) in higher education as a Queer Woman of Color can be a challenging and complex process--one that integrates identity, experience, expertise, knowledge, patience, and most importantly the ability to risk while remaining authentic and professional. It is ...

Melissa Hammerle: Conceptualizing Contemplative Practice as Pedagogy: Approaches to Mindful Inquiry in Higher Education (2015-03-25)

Palmer and Zajonc (2010) have argued that institutions of higher education focus disproportionately on transmitting basic skills to their students at the expense of supporting issues of central importance to the development of emerging adults, including clarifying values and identity and defining individual purpose and meaning. As ...

Nancy R. Disenhaus: Boys, Writing, and the Literacy Gender Gap: What We Know, What We Think We Know (2015-03-27)

The existence of a persistent gender gap in literacy achievement, and particularly in writing, is not in dispute: boys trail girls in every assessment at state, national, and international levels.  Yet although this basic fact is not in dispute, nearly everything else concerning the gender gap in literacy achievement—its ...

Tomás Sanchez: Tejanos in College: How Texas Born Mexican-American Students Navigate Ethnoracial Identity (2015-03-26)

For Latinás in the United States, navigating the spectrum of racial and ethnic identities can be complicated.  This same complication has the potential to affect one of the largest groups of Latinás in the nation: Mexican-Americans living in Texas or Tejanos.  Through qualitative analyses of interviews and surveys and the use ...

Amber L. Rich: Helping Students Find Meaning While Finding my Own: A Scholarly Personal Narrative Navigating Single-Motherhood and a Career in Admissions (2015-03-27)

In this dissertation, I explore my role as an administrator in higher education admissions at a major university and as a working mother who faces many real world challenges. The grueling travel demands, lofty enrollment goals, campus and inter-office politics, as well as the weekend and late night hours required, made it ...

Kelly Ann DePaolo: The Passion Within: Challenging The Feminine Mystique By Educating Midlife Women To Fulfill Their Career Dreams (2015-03-18)

This study is a very personal reflection.  The purpose of the study is to illuminate how following the calling of my heart led to a deeper passion in my own work whereupon I realized my natural and limitless creative potential.  It is a blending of my narrative with research conducted over a ten year time period on midlife ...

Meredith J.C. Swallow: Exploring Catholic Education in the Twenty-First Century: Teaching Practices, Technology Integration, and Educational Goals (2015-03-09)

Although Catholic schools are the largest sector of the national private and faith-based educational market, the overall student enrollment in Catholic K-12 schools has steadily declined.  In order for Catholic schools to remain sustainable and competitive among the many different educational options in the twenty-first century, ...

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