Publication Date



Open access

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)


Kinesiology and Sport Sciences (Education)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Nicholas Myers

Second Committee Member

Randall Penfield

Third Committee Member

Soyeon Ahn

Fourth Committee Member

Okhee Lee


The purpose of this research was to compare results from two approaches to measuring change over time. The multilevel model (MLM) and latent growth model (LGM) were imposed and the parameter estimates were compared, along with model fit. The study came out of education and used data collected from 191 teachers as part of a professional development intervention in science, which took place over four years. There were missing data as a result of teacher attrition. Teachers reported use of reform-oriented practices (ROP) was used as the outcome, and teacher-level variables were examined for their impact on initial ROP and change in ROP from baseline to one year after the intervention. Change in ROP was examined using a piecewise change model where two linear slopes were modeled. The first slope estimated the change from baseline to T1, or the initial change after the intervention while the second slope estimated the change from T1 to T3, or the secondary change. Parameter estimates obtained from MLM and LGM for a model using the error covariance structure commonly assumed in MLM (i.e., random slopes, homogeneous level-1 variance) were nearly identical. Models with various alternative covariance structures (commonly associated with the LGM framework) were examined, and results were nearly identical. Most of the model fit information was in agreement regarding the best fitting model being the model that assumed the typical MLM error covariance structure with the exception of the standardized root mean square residual (SRMR) fit index. The results from the models demonstrated that ROP increased after participating in the first year of the intervention and this level was sustained, though did not increase significantly in subsequent years. There was more variation in ROP at baseline. This information tells us that the intervention was successful in that after participating in the intervention the teachers' used ROP more frequently. The success of the intervention did not depend on any of the predictors that we assessed, and, as a group, the teachers became more similar in their use of reform-oriented practices over time.


Quantitative Analysis; Hierarchical Linear Model; Structural Equation Model; Latent Growth Model; Multilevel Model; Fit Indices; Pieceiwise Model; Change Over Time; Growth