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Responses of elementary teachers to the Ransom Multi-Media, Multi-Modal Reading Program
The demand for more individualized instruction has aroused interest in a systems approach to the teaching of reading. The attitudes of teachers about the Ransom Program were assessed with emphasis on what classroom teachers found useful in the systems approach and what changes took place as a result. The purposes of this study were to (1) evaluate the usefulness of selected components in facilitating individualized instruction; (2) ascertain the degree to which teachers had implemented the system; and (3) receive reactions from teachers and to use this information about expanding a systems approach to other schools. This study was conducted through the use of a questionnaire distributed to 303 teachers using the Ransom Program as of April 1, 1974. The 260 responses received represented an 85.8-percent return. The data were tabulated, analyzed, and interpreted. The major findings of this study were: 1.The greatest percentage of teachers stated that this systems approach was helpful to them in classroom management and in individualizing learning for students. 2. A majority of teachers who were involved in the decision of starting this program found this management system very helpful. When teachers were not involved (decision made by building principals), teachers found the program less useful. 3. The type of funding to start the program had no influence on the percentage of teachers who found the program helpful. 4. The greatest percentage of teachers regarded the preparation of materials in the resource room helpful. 5. Over three-fourths of the classroom teachers found the station approach helpful. 6. Over three-fourths of the classroom teachers feel that their students like using this systems approach. 7. Almost all of the teachers want to continue the Ransom Program. Some want to incorporate some of the components into other programs. Based on the findings and conclusions of this study, the following recommendations were made: 1. Teachers should be involved in the decisions to start a systems approach. 2. The success of the program does not appear to be related to funding. Schools with limited funds found the program equally helpful as the schools with special funding. 3. Learning stations should be an important part of a systems approach. 4. By means of a student questionnaire, survey the groups to gain insight as to their opinion of this systems approach. 5. Make the best use of aides available. There should be some inservice program to train these people to accept the responsibilities given to them. 6. Consideration should be given to other schools desiring to use this management system. More materials should be developed for the upper grades. 7. This study, with appropriate variations, should be repeated to evaluate the new commercial edition of the Ransom Program.