Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies


College of Education

First Advisor

Susan Schramm-Pate


Exploring an Organization Skills Intervention for Improving Executive Functioning Skills within a Gifted Population: An Action Research Study examines the impact of providing gifted and talented (GT) middle level students at Ford Middle Academy (FMA), with an instructional program called Homework, Organization, and Planning Skills (HOPS) that was designed as an intervention to teach organizational, planning, and time management skills. The identified problem of practice at this school involved the lack of an instructional program to enhance organizational and study skills at the middle school level. The participant-researcher wondered if the HOPS program would be an effective program to use at FMA because the program was developed specifically for middle level students and was designed to be implemented in the school setting during the school day. Therefore, the research question “What is the impact of the Homework, Organization, and Planning Skills intervention program on participating middle level gifted and talented students’ organizational and study skills?” guided the purpose of the Action Research Study. Quantitative data was considered the main data source to answer the research question. Paired-sample t-tests were conducted to compare the organizational points by materials and agenda recordings earned by student participants before participating in the HOPS intervention program and after participating in the HOPS intervention program. There was an increase in the scores for all organizational materials but no increase in the number of assignments recorded in student agendas after the implementation of the HOPS program. In order to provide a more in-depth and balanced understanding of the quantitative data, observations, teacher questionnaires, and interviews were collected, analyzed, and coded through the development categorization system (Mertler, 2014). Three themes emerged because of the categorization of data: Lack of Transference of Skills, Resistance to Change, and Time Management Struggles. An Action Plan based on these findings was written to improve the next implementation phase of the HOPS program. The Action Plan included: professional development to provide middle school teachers with classroom strategies designed to assist students with organizational skills, adding a bell ring to the current middle level bell schedule during the study hall period to cue teachers to have students engage in organizational tasks and the recruitment of an on-site co-facilitator for the next implementation phase of the HOPS program.


© 2017, Lynn Gee