The purpose of this action research project was to analyze my instructional strategies pertaining to culturally responsive teaching, evidence based practices, and health specific pedagogy. Qualitative data including formal written lesson plans, edTPA commentary, and observation notes from my field supervisor, school-based instructional coach, as well as my cooperating teacher were used to examine my growth as a teacher when it comes to supporting English language learners, structuring my lessons to facilitate student-centered learning, and integrating a skills-based approach in my health lessons. At the center of my research was relational capacity; I not only hoped to improve my teaching through differentiation and scaffolding but also identify if relational capacity is at the center of effective teaching.

Through a review of literature I concluded that there is a commonality between culturally responsive teaching, student-centered learning, and skills-based health education: relationships. Analysis of the data listed above showed that while there are areas in which I improved as an educator over the last year and a half, specifically building relationships with my students and making them feel welcome, there is still plenty of room for growth. Although this action research project did not conclusively answer all three of my research questions, it does suggest that through a process of intentional data collection, reflection, and analysis teachers can identify both areas of strength and growth, thus improving the teacher profession and the educational experience of our students.

Exit Requirement

Action Research

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Teaching (initial licensure)

Committee Chair

Kenneth Carano

Committee Member

Cathy Sparks



Type (DCMI Terms)


Subject Categories


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