Peer coaching: a collegial support for bridging the research to practice gap
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The purposes of this study were to 1) determine if teacher knowledge of the instructional components of opportunity to respond (OTR) including academic prompting, wait time and positive feedback increase as a result of a reciprocal peer coaching (PC) intervention, 2) observe whether teacher delivery of the OTR components increase as a result of the PC intervention, 3) observe whether a change in teacher delivery of OTR components results in a change in at-risk student performance during academic instruction, and 4) examine teacher perceptions of PC as a beneficial process for improving their knowledge and use of effective practices. A single-subject, multiple baseline design was used to examine the impact of the peer coaching intervention on teacher instructional practice and at-risk students' academic and social behaviors. Findings indicated teachers were able to implement with fidelity a proscribed form of reciprocal peer coaching, and they perceived the process as beneficial for improving their knowledge and delivery of OTR components. However, there were not clear and strong functional relationships between the intervention and changes in teacher and student behavior. These results call into question the promotion of peer coaching for improving teacher knowledge and delivery of research based instructional practices.