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A historical analysis of the content of three professional journals that contain middle -level education articles between 1982--1995 and their relationship to the "ten essential elements of a 'true' middle school"
The “Ten Essential Elements of a ‘True’ Middle School,” as stated in This We Believe (N.M.S.A., 1982, 1992), became a standard for defining middle schools between 1982 and 1995. Content analysis procedures determined which “Essential Elements” were present or absent, at significant levels, in professional journal articles that advocated for middle school reforms during this time. A literature review ascertained that with content analysis procedures, Koos established the early functions of junior high schools in 1920. ^ A panel of middle level educational leaders selected the Journal of Early Adolescence, the Middle School Journal, and the N.A.S.S.P. Bulletin for analysis. Calculated at the 95% confidence level ±5%, the sample size (n = 345 articles) was stratified between two seven-year periods, 1982–1988 and 1989–1995. Only articles containing the phrase “middle school,” or its synonyms, were analyzed (n = 136). A one-tailed Difference of Proportions statistic identified significant word phrases (alpha = 0.05) for each “Essential Element.” With the use of this statistic, 124 articles (alpha = 0.05) were identified as significant. A validity committee agreed that 106 (85.48%) of 124 articles represented the element intended. ^ Element #1 [“Educators knowledgeable about and committed to transescents”] was the most represented element (14.15% of 106 articles). The least represented, 2.83% of 106 articles, was Element #10 [“Positive school climate”]. A two-tailed Difference of Proportions statistic determined that Element #10 was significant because of its under representation (z = −2.13, alpha = 0.0332). ^ A trend analysis using the Spearman correlation statistic (r = +0.394) revealed there were no statistically significant differences between the ranking of the elements in 1982–1988 and 1989–1995. Element #3 [“A range of organizational arrangements”] had the greatest difference—a decline of 54.76% articles—between the two seven-year time periods. ^
Education, History of|Education, Teacher Training|Education, Secondary
Braun y Harycki, David M, "A historical analysis of the content of three professional journals that contain middle -level education articles between 1982--1995 and their relationship to the "ten essential elements of a 'true' middle school"" (2001). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3022620.