Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Specialist in Education (Ed.S.)



First Advisor

Dr. Lisa Kelly-Vance


Nongraded schools have recently regained popularity. A variety of researchers have compared student achievement levels between nongraded and traditional graded programs to determine efficacy, however results have been inconsistent. The current researcher further examined achievement differences between nongraded and graded classrooms through replication and extension of a previous study performed by Kelly-Vance, and Ruane (2000), in order to contribute additional research in an area lacking in consistent support. Students were recruited from two schools (i.e., Schools A and B) containing comparable percentages of students receiving free or reduced-cost lunch. Students from School A served as a graded control group, while students from School B were recruited from graded and nongraded classrooms. Dependent measures consisted of student performance on Curriculum-Based Measurement (CBM) probes in the areas of reading, math, and written language. Overall, nongraded students performed as well as, but not better than, graded students on CBM probes. While significant results indicated that nongraded students outperformed graded students at School B in reading at the fifth-sixth grade level and in math at the third-fourth grade level, graded students at School A performed similarly, suggesting that the performance on the nongraded students could not generalize to other nearby schools. Implications of the current study are discussed.


An Ed.S. Field Project Presented to the Department of Psychology and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Specialist in Education (Ed.S.) University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright Amanda M. Arkfeld November, 2002