Examining cultural responsiveness and invariance in the National Survey of Student Engagement for first-generation college students

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Ciji Heiser (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Advisor
John Willse

Abstract: In higher education, there is a gap in our collective understanding of how outcomes data collected with standardized instruments and used to respond to accountability demands, is accurate and trustworthy for first-generation college students. Research in culturally responsive evaluation and measurement on equivalence across groups highlights that quantitative measures, standardized on dominant populations, lack cultural responsiveness and equivalence. Failing to critically examine if a measure is culturally responsive and invariant upholds normative assumptions that all student experiences and knowledge are captured accurately. A prolific measure of outcomes in higher education, the National Survey of Student Engagement, has gone unexamined for cultural responsiveness and invariance for first-generation college students. The purpose of this research was to identify and employ strategies to determine to what extent the National Survey of Student Engagement is culturally responsive and invariant for first-generation college students. I used a parallel convergent study design to investigate this problem. First, I conducted a critical examination of the empirical literature in culturally responsive evaluation and measurement to identify core considerations for determining if a measure is culturally responsive and invariant. Second, I conducted a multi-group confirmatory factor analysis to establish configural, metric, and scalar invariance. From study one, two core considerations emerged including attention to voice and establishing cultural relevance and invariance. Study two showed that the National Survey of Student Engagement is invariant at the configural, metric, and scalar levels. Taking the results of the two studies together, one can determine that the National Survey of Student Engagement is culturally responsive and invariant for first-generation college students when compared to continuing-generation college students in this study.

Additional Information

Publication
Dissertation
Language: English
Date: 2020
Keywords
Culturally responsive, Evaluation, Invariance testing, National Survey of Student Engagement, Structural equation modeling
Subjects
National Survey of Student Engagement (U.S.)
First-generation college students $z United States
Education, Higher $x Social aspects $z United States
Culturally relevant pedagogy $z United States

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