The purpose of this descriptive and comparative study was to investigate the self-assessed efficacy levels of alternatively-certified teachers in Arizona. More specifically, this study examined the teachers' perceived ability to influence student learning and the extent to which, if at all, their self-reported efficacy levels differed based on the following professional development experiences: attendance in an intensive preparation program prior to teaching, participation in a district-sponsored induction program, and assignment of a mentor. This quantitative non-experimental and cross-sectional study collected original data from single groups of interns who hold a 2009-2010 Arizona Teaching Intern Certificate. A total of 164 teaching interns participated in the two-part survey, referred to as the Arizona Teaching Intern Survey. Part one documented the levels of Arizona intern credentialed teachers' efficacy to influence student learning using an acknowledged and reputable survey titled the Teachers' Sense of Efficacy Scale. Part two of the survey instrument collected data pertaining to the teaching interns' professional development experiences. The findings of this study led to the conclusion that new teacher efficacy is not necessarily tied to a specific certification pathway; in fact, the life experiences of new teachers' are more influential on their classroom management than their route to certification. Furthermore, it was determined that professional development is of particular importance for teaching interns in an alternative certification program as they tend not to have the pedagogical preparation of their traditionally prepared peers. Lastly, it was concluded that year-one teaching interns and year-two teaching interns have distinct needs and concerns; each year requiring specific avenues of support, collaboration, and development. Because there is limited time with which to influence teachers' efficacy levels, and in turn their effectiveness and performance, a targeted two-phase professional development plan is recommended that would require: mentors for all year-one teaching interns; addressing their need for individual support and attention, and participation in a district- sponsored induction program for all year-two teaching interns; addressing their need to feel part of a connected, supportive community of peers.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Teachers -- Certification; Dissertations (EdD) -- Leadership, administration and policy
Date of Award
Graduate School of Education and Psychology
Ludlow, Carlyn, "A study of efficacy and professional development among alternatively-certified teachers in Arizona" (2010). Theses and Dissertations. 60.