Date of Award

Fall 12-14-2020

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Education and Psychology

First Advisor

Daniel Douglas


This study used public-use data from the National Center for Education Statistics’s (NCES) Early Childhood Longitudinal Program, Kindergarten Class of 2011 (ECLS-K: 2011) to examine math and reading learning growth from 4th to 5th grade among student with and without Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). When comparing the non-IEP student sample to the IEP student sample, a disproportionate number of minority students and students of low socioeconomic status were observed in the IEP student group. Among non-IEP students, significantly decreased score growth was predicted in students who were Black, Hispanic, had less highly educated parents, were from a low income household, or attended a school with a high percentage of students eligible for free or reduced price lunches (FRPLs). Among IEP students, the only significant predictors of decreased score growth were being Black and attending a school with a high percentage of students eligible for FRPLs. Potential reasoning for few significant findings among IEP students may be the broadness of the IEP status variable, suggesting future researchers may learn more about student, parent, teacher, and school factors negatively impacting students in special education by more narrowly defining IEP students by type of disabilities, services used, or IEP goals which were unattainable in the public use data file for the ECLS-K.