Win-Win Peer Mentoring and Tutoring Research Proposal

Excerpt from Research Proposal :

The literature review discussed risk factors for drop out extensively and presented studies that investigated risk factors for drop out. However, the research design did not clearly tie this research to the study examined by Dennison.

Students considered at-risk were chosen by the school and proper parental consent was obtained. It is not known how at risk students were chosen. Therefore, it cannot be determined it sample bias existed in the sample population. This lack of information regarding the study population makes it difficult to determine if any delimitations existed as well. Selection of Big Buddies was different from that of Little Buddies. Eligible students were required to be junior or seniors and members of the National Honor Society. This significantly limited the sample pool from which to obtain Big Buddies. However, it was felt that a certain level of maturity was needed to work with at risk children. Once again, more research needs to be presented to support this position.

It is not known if the maturity level of the mentor affected the quality of the program. Studies in the literature review indicated a positive benefit for the mentor as well as the Little Buddy, but no literature was reviewed that supported the importance of "maturity" in the mentor and the effectiveness of the tutoring. It is apparent that this criteria was intended to assure that the mentors chosen were of high enough academic standards to understand their role and the material that needed to be presented. However, a quantitative approach to determining academic ability and "maturity" would have added to the reliability of the research study. It is assumed that members of the National Honor Society have these qualities, but it is not known for the purpose of this research study. This factor may have significantly affected the external validity of the study.

A pretest/posttest format was chosen for the study. The tests used scales to assess self-esteem, school attitude, and classroom behavior. The scales used were developed by other researchers and had known reliability values that were within acceptable limits for use in the research study. The scales chosen have established appropriateness for the age group in the study.

Data analysis and evaluation of the results used a combination of descriptive statistics and paired analysis. SPSS software was used for data analysis. The research reported consistency across all variables in a positive direction. However, it was also noted that the results were not statistically significant. Based on the results it may be suggested that the study be repeated with a larger sample population and more careful control in the selection of the sample population. The study relies on qualitative, rather than quantitative results in the evaluation of the research study.

The conclusion of the research study indicated that the Big Buddies program is an effective approach to mentoring. It highlights the need for further research in a more controlled study setting. The article makes several recommendations based on the author's own personal experiences and observations throughout the research process. The article's key value lies in the experience gained by the researcher.

This analysis pointed out many weaknesses in the empirical study design. However, Dennison used the study more as a case study to show the various attributes of the Big Buddies program. Although the study itself lacked the reliability and empirical support to make its contribution in a quantitative sense, it provided many valuable insights to the Big Buddies program. The study will serve as a stepping-stone for further research studies in this topic area.

References

Dennison, S. (2000). A win-win peer mentoring and tutoring program; a collaborative model.…

Sources Used in Document:

References

Dennison, S. (2000). A win-win peer mentoring and tutoring program; a collaborative model. The Journal of Primary Prevention. 20 (3): 161-174.

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