CHAPTER IV

DATA ANALYSIS AND RESULTS

The first part of this chapter presents descriptive data of the sample in text, table, and graphic forms. The descriptive data includes, as appropriate, the frequencies, means, medians, modes, standard deviations, minimum values, maximum values, and percentages. The second part of this chapter will present the results of the statistical analysis of the data for each of the three hypotheses. The third part of this chapter explores possible relationships between the tutors’ abilities to select the “most appropriate” actions and their abilities to create the “most appropriate” actions.

The levels of treatment groups for training for this study were created using the International Tutor Certification Program guidelines for Level One. A minimum of 10 hours of training is required for certification. The tutors were assigned to treatment groups for training based on the training offered at the tutors’ colleges as reported by the program directors. Treatment groups for experience were assigned based on the reported number of hours of tutoring experience acquired during the study. Other factors suspected of affecting the tutors’ post-test scores were investigated. The hypotheses for this study included:

H0.1: There are no significant differences in the total mean score on the TSORA among three groups of tutors, those with 1) no training, 2) 0-9.9 hours of training, and 3) 10 or more hours of training, based on the amount of training offered during the study.

H0.2: There are no significant differences in any one of the six sub-test mean scores on the TSORA among three groups of tutors, those with

1) no training, 2) 0-.9 hours of training, and 3) 1 or more hours of training, based on the amount of training offered during the study in each of the following six sub-test topics:

a) Definition of tutoring and tutoring responsibilities

b) Active listening and paraphrasing

c) Setting goals/planning

d) Modeling problem-solving

e) Referral skills

f) Study skills

Treatment groups for experience were assigned based on the reported number of hours of tutoring experience the tutor acquired during the study. An analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) was performed on the third and fourth hypotheses to assess differences on the post-test scores among the groups as a result of recent experience acquired while adjusting for initial differences in the groups as measured by the pre-test scores. Additional tests were performed as appropriate. The third hypothesis investigated differences in the total TSORA mean scores, and the fourth hypothesis investigated differences in each of the six sub-test scores on the TSORA:

H0.3: There are no significant differences in the total mean score on the TSORA among three groups of tutors, those who, during the study, acquired 1) 0-99.9 hours of tutoring experience, 2) 100-199.9 hours of tutoring experience, and 3) 200 or more hours of tutoring experience.

H0.4: There are no significant differences in any one of the six sub-test mean scores on the TSORA among three groups of tutors, those who, during the study, acquired 1) 0-99.9 hours of tutoring experience,

2) 100-199.9 hours of tutoring experience, and 3) 200 or more hours of tutoring experience, for the following six sub-test topics:

a) Definition of tutoring and tutoring responsibilities

b) Active listening and paraphrasing

c) Setting goals/planning

d) Modeling problem-solving

e) Referral skills

f) Study skills

A multiple regression analysis was used to test for significance at the .05 level on the other factors being investigated as independent variables in the fifth hypothesis. The multiple regression was performed to investigate significant relationships between other variables and the tutors’ total post-test scores.

H0.5: None of the following factors contribute to a higher total mean score on the TSORA:

a) Age

b) Highest degree earned

c) Reasons for becoming a tutor

d) Perceived rewards of being a tutor

e) Grade point average

f) Prior coursework completed in subject area tutored

g) Prior work experience related to subject area tutored

Research question four, as decribed previously, was not translated into a hypothesis. Relationships between the tutors’ abilities to select an appropriate course of action from presented choices and the tutors’ abilities to construct an appropriate course of action were explored and will be dicussed in the last part of this chapter.

Descriptive Data

Out of approximately 200 tutors district-wide, 70 participated in this study (101 tutors did take the pre-test, and 70 of those also completed the post-test). Eight of the ten colleges within one community college district were represented in the sample. The following profiles of descriptive data are described in the text and are supported by the tables and figures provided.

Number and Percentage of Tutors by College Value (see Table 8)

A number was assigned to each participating community college, and the participating colleges are named only by the assigned number. Two tutors identifed two campuses as the college where they worked; they were placed in a separate group called “Mixed colleges.” Numbers of participants per campus ranged from a low of 1 (at two campuses) to a high of 19. In fact, half the tutors (N=35) represent only two of the eight colleges in the study. Almost two-thirds (N=45) of the tutors are represented by three of the eight colleges.

Gender of Tutors (see Table 9)

The gender of the sample was almost evenly split. Females comprised 51.4% (N=36) of the sample, leaving males at 48.6% (N=34).

Grade Point Average of Tutors (see Table 10)

A common hiring criterion for tutors is their success as students. Often they are required to have received a grade of “A” or “B” in the subjects they tutor and may be required to have a 2.5 or 3.0 overall grade point average (GPA). It is no surprise that almost two-thirds (N=40) of the tutors responding (9 did not respond) reported a GPA of 3.5 or above. Fewer than 7% of tutors reported a GPA less than 3.0. The Mean is 3.54, the Median is 3.50, and a Bimodal distribution was observed (at GPAs of 3.5 and 4.0). The column graph (in Figure 3) of the frequencies of the GPAs provides a more accurate view of the distribution than the descriptive statistics of the mean, median, and mode as reported in Table 10.

T08_nmbr_n_coll

Image01

Figure 1. Percentage of tutors by college.

 T09_gender

Image02

Figure 2. Percentage of tutors by gender.

 T10_GPA

Image03

Figure 3. Frequency of tutors by GPA.

Tutor’s Highest Degree Earned (see Table 11)

When the data was gathered, 21 tutors had left this answer unanswered. Because the hiring criterion for tutors is that of at least a high school graduate or equivalent, the researcher assigned the lowest value to those missing.

Sixteen different types of degrees were listed. For the purpose of creating succinct groups for statistical analysis, all degrees and levels were collapsed into four levels of degrees:

1) High School (N=29) & Certificate (N=1),

2) Associate (N=13),

3) Bachelor (N=14), and

4) Master (N=11) & Doctor (N=2).

Year Highest Degree Earned (see Table 12)

Of the 70 tutors participating in this study, 23 left this blank. Although the degree could be set at the lowest level of acceptance, the year could not be estimated. Thus, almost a third of the data is missing (32.9%). The years were divided into five-year increments to present the data graphically. Of the 47 who responded, almost half earned their highest degree within the last five years and another 23% within the previous five years.

Age of Tutors (see Table 13)

Among ages of participants, there was a range of 66 years, from 18 to 84 years old. The Mean was 36.27, the Median was 33, and the Mode was 23; these ages are similar to the ages of the students at the community colleges participating in the study. The ages were also split into five-year increments to display the information graphically.

 T11_ed

Image04

Figure 4. Percentages of highest degree earned by tutors.

 T12_yr_ed

Image05

Figure 5. Percentage of highest degree earned by tutors in 5-year increments.

 T13_ttr_ages

Image06

Figure 6. Frequency of tutors by age group.

Comparison of Central Tendencies of Reasons and Rewards of Tutoring (see Table 14)

On the pre-test, tutors were asked to allocate 100 points among the following seven reasons they chose to become a tutor:

1) Like helping people

2) Need the money

3) Want to keep up on subjects/skills learned

4) Going into education–wanted the experience

5) I received help and wanted to give something back

6) Flexible hours

7) Other:____________________________

On the post-test, tutors were asked to allocate 100 points among the following seven similar choices to reflect their feelings on the level of reward each choice represents (the order was changed to reduce ranking based on the sequence presented):

1) Going into education–the experience

2) Giving something back

3) The flexible hours

4) Helping people

5) The money

6) Keeping up on subjects/skills learned

7) Other: ___________________________________

This weighted rank-ordering method of scoring was valuable in identifying which factor or factors an individual tutor felt was important as a reason for becoming a tutor and as a reward for being a tutor. However, this method of scoring eliminated the independence of these variables and increased the range of each answer as compared to a 5-point scale. The range on some of the reasons or rewards reached 90 or 100. The scores for some cases varied greatly, and thus, the means were not reflective of the distribution.

For analyzing these data, the median was more descriptive of the central tendencies and was compared between the two groups. The mean, median, mode, SD (standard deviation), range, minimum, and maximum are listed in Table 14. To represent changes in central tendencies between the two instruments, the median is graphically displayed for each of the seven categories in Figure 7. Frequencies of responses for each of the reasons for becoming a tutor are listed in Appendix K. Frequencies of responses for each of the rewards for being a tutor are listed in Appendix L.

In Figure 7, there are changes in the medians from “Reasons for becoming a tutor” to “Perceived rewards for being a tutor.” “Making Money” and “Updating Skills” dropped slightly while “Helping Others” and “Flexible Work Hours” increased slightly. There was a dramatic increase in the values for “Career in Education” and “Giving Back of Self.” Note that there was no change in “Other”(or Reason Not in List). There were a few responses in the “Other” category. However, consistent responses were noted; therefore, the choices offered seemed to be appropriate for this group of tutors. The highest ranked category on both the pre-test and the post-test was “Helping Others.” It was ranked more than twice the value of any other category and at least three times the value of most of the category ratings on the post-test. Ranked next highest was “Making Money;” which was followed by a three-way tie among “Update Skills,” “Give Back of Self,” and “Flexible Work Hours” on the post-test. Even though there was a dramatic increase on the post-test in the category of “Career Goal in Education,” it still ranked next to last (Other).

 T14_ttr_rwds

Image07

Figure 7. Medians of reasons and rewards of tutoring.

Summary of Descriptive Data

The seventy tutors participating in this study represented eight of ten community colleges in one district. The demographics of the sample were presented in text, table, and graphic forms.

Tutors were not evenly distributed among the colleges. Two of the eight colleges represented 51.4% of the sample (N=36). The numbers of tutors per college ranged from 1 (1.4%) at two colleges to a high point of 19 (27.1%) at one college.

The gender of the tutors was nearly equal (51.4% were female compared to 48.6% males). The tutors represented a diverse age range of 66 years, with a median of 33. The greatest number of tutors fell in the five-year increment of 23-27 years old (N=16). The youngest tutors were 18 (N=3), and the two oldest tutors were 70 and 84.

As expected from the literature, tutors were above average students. A bimodal distribution was noted at GPAs of 3.5 and 4.0. Of the 61 tutors self-reporting, 65.6% had a GPA of 3.5 or above (N=40). Less than 7% (N=5) had less than a 3.0 grade point average.

Almost one-third of the data was missing in response to the “Year Highest Degree Earned.” Of the 47 tutors responding, 53% (N=25) received their highest degree after 1987. The “Highest Degree Earned” category was collapsed into four sub-categories by the level of the degree: High School/Certificate (42.9%), Associate (18.6%), Bachelor (20%), and Master/Doctor (18.6%).

The values in the categories of stated “Reasons for Becoming a Tutor” (pre-test) and “Perceived Rewards of Being a Tutor” (post-test) varied greatly from 0 to 100. The highest ranked reason and reward was to “Help others” (the median was 31.1 as a reason and 33.4 as a reward), followed by “Making Money” (a median of 15.0 as a reason and of 16.6 as a reward). Changes were noted between reasons and rewards in the categories of wanting to “Give Back of Self” (a median of 0 as a reason and of 10.0 as a reward) and “Career in Education” (median 0 as reason and 7.5 as a reward).

Page last updated on February 14th, 2014