Author ORCID Identifier


Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Special Education

First Advisor

Dr. Kevin Sutherland

Second Advisor

Dr. Kristen Granger

Third Advisor

Dr. Bryce McLeod

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Yaoying Xu


This study aimed to bridge the research-to-practice gap related to in-service supports and professional development by identifying factors associated with teacher use of evidence-based classroom management practices and responsiveness to a coaching intervention. Years of teaching experience was identified as a teacher-level intervention determinant with a strong research base in the classroom management literature; however few studies used direct observation of behavior to report difference among teacher behavior. This study used quantitative statistical methods to analyze data from a multi-year parent study investigating the effects of a coaching intervention (BEST in CLASS-Elementary) aimed at increasing the use of evidence-based practices with students who display patterns of challenging behaviors. Using data from an intervention development year plus the first two years of a four-year investigation, 83 teachers were randomized into treatment and control groups to either receive 14 weeks of a coaching intervention or continue in a business-as-usual condition. Data for this investigation was collected using both direct and indirect measures collected before, during, and after the intervention. Results of regression models suggested a non-significant relation between years of teaching experience and practice use pre-intervention, after adjusting for students within teachers. Similarly, results of regression models post-intervention suggest a non-significant relation between years of teaching experience and practice use during coaching, after controlling for baseline scores and adjusting for students within teachers. Experience was significantly and negatively associated with teacher reports of acceptability (B = -.27, p = .046). The predictive ability of experience on understanding was approaching significance (B = -.25, p = .058) but the relation between years of experience and feasibility was not significant (B = .06, p = .668). While years of experience did not predict practice use or responsiveness, findings may position teacher-driven interventions (i.e. coaching) as a mechanism to improve teacher practice regardless of previous teaching experience.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission