The effect of integrated, cross-curricular co-teaching on student achievement, engagement, and high school completion at an alternative high school
Tonelli, Matthew Charles, Jr.
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This study examined the effect a cross-curricular, team-taught course had on student achievement and high school completion at an Alternative High School. Additional sub-questions included what was the effect on a student's engagement in coursework, what was the effect on student attendance, and what was the effect on a student's attitude towards school? Engagement, attendance, credit earned, attitude survey and interview data were used to identify this impact. Students from integrated courses were compared to courses that taught the same science content in a traditional classroom. Engagement, attendance, credit earning, and attitude experienced significant increases in the treatment group over the study period when compared to the control group. The study supports offering students course experiences that are integrated, co-taught, and project-based. The study showed this had a positive impact on engagement, student attendance, and attitude leading to improved course completion, outcomes for graduation and future success. This approach has significant implications in the alternative school setting where students are often at a deficit in credit earning in relationship to their age. In this scenario, opportunities for credit recovery and accelerated learning increase the likelihood of students completing high school.