Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Studies

First Advisor

Dr. Rosemary Lambie


Educators are examining many aspects of schools as they find ways to help students improve their performance on standardized tests in order to meet both federal and state standards. This study examined the relationship between organizational climate and student achievement on the Virginia Standards of Learning tests. A total of 1,061 teachers in 47 schools across the Commonwealth of Virginia responded to the climate survey. The survey instrument was the Organizational Health Inventory for Elementary Schools (OHI-E). This brief survey instrument examined five aspects of school climate. They were Teacher Affiliation, Collegial Leadership, Resource Influence, Institutional Integrity, and Academic Emphasis. Third and fifth grade Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) tests were the measure of student achievement in English. mathematics, science, and social studies. This study also examined the effects of socioeconomic status as measured by the percentage of students receiving free and reduced price lunches.There was a significant positive relationship between overall school climate and third grade performance on the mathematics SOL test and fifth grade performance on the social studies SOL test. Socioeconomic status was significantly negatively correlated with SOL scores in third grade math, science, and social studies and all fifth grade tests except mathematics.Further regression analyses of the aspects of climate measured by the OHI-E (Institutional Integrity, Collegial Leadership, Resource Influence, Teacher Affiliation, and Academic Emphasis) indicated that Academic Emphasis had a significant independent effect on third grade English and mathematics SOL scores as well as fifth grade English, science, and social studies SOL scores. There was a negative correlation between Institutional Integrity and English SOL scores in both the third and fifth grade. This negative correlation shows that when teachers perceive that the school is vulnerable to outside interference, English scores tend to be higher.


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Date of Submission

June 2008

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