Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Human Resource Education and Workforce Development

Document Type



The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine if there is a difference in the development of spatial abilities of ninth grade Technology Discovery students in Mississippi as measured by the Purdue Visualization of Rotations Test. Students experienced one of three differing instructional methods utilizing Pro/Desktop® 3-D CADD solid modeling software. Participants were students in Mississippi schools operating on a 4 x 4 block schedule during either fall or spring semesters during the 2005-2006 school year, and a control group of students whose schools did not offer CADD. Instructional material designed by the researcher was used for two instructional treatment methods, with existing instructional materials available for the software were used in the third instructional method. Demographic information was collected for students from 14 schools in the study. The primary research question asked if differences existed by instructional treatment method when spatial ability pretest scores, gender, ethnicity, co-registration in art, and co-registration in geometry were controlled. Analysis of Covariance was conducted to analyze the data for this research question, using the pretest as the covariate and instructional method as the fixed factor. The dependent variable was the posttest score. The other independent variables of gender, ethnicity, and co-enrollment in art and/or geometry were included in analysis. No affects concerning these additional variables was found. A statistically significant difference existed concerning the method used to instruct students on the use of 3-D CADD modeling software. The instructional consisting of method of teacher-lead instruction using the software in a design lesson, followed by student-directed modular instruction, was found to be effective. These lessons included 3-D physical models manipulated by the teacher and students. The group of students taught using this method had higher mean posttest scores than students instructed with other methods. The other instructional methods did not significantly affect student achievement on the test of spatial ability.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Joe W. Kotrlik