The Measure

I'm almost to my comprehensive exams. The "class" starts on Monday, and as everyone has told me I need to put dissertation talk out of sight/out of mind until I finish those. But, before I do, I wanted to make one last comment on my thoughts around my latest dissertation idea.

I think learning strategy awareness will be a good topic. I feel confident that I can get it approved. My concern is deciding what my measurable variable will be. Initially, I did want to focus on the Washington Assessment of Student Learning. But, in conversations with school district employees, I have learned that the WASL is in the process of being revamped, to the point that it might not be a valuable measure for me. They are already instituting interventions to help students with the math section, and the date that a passing score would be required has been pushed back. I'm also concerned about my assumption with this study -- that learning strategies are somehow related to standardized testing. I'll need to do some research to see if this assumption is correct, or if it has even been studied.

So, if I decide to discard the WASL as my measurable variable, I think I'm left with only one other option -- well, only one other easy option, I should say: GPA. And, it is my belief that I would have an easier time requesting GPAs than requesting WASL scores.

My last thought is which schools I will pursue with this study. Keeping with my interest in second language learning, it could be interesting to study learning strategy awareness with bilingual or international schools. There is one such school in Bellevue, WA, but it is considered the one of the top schools in the nation. Who would really care if a successful school was even more successful?

Well, I will continue to ponder this until I am engrossed in my exams. I probably won't post again, though, until after I pass.
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