• unlimited access with print and download
    $ 37 00
  • read full document, no print or download, expires after 72 hours
    $ 4 99
More info
Unlimited access including download and printing, plus availability for reading and annotating in your in your Udini library.
  • Access to this article in your Udini library for 72 hours from purchase.
  • The article will not be available for download or print.
  • Upgrade to the full version of this document at a reduced price.
  • Your trial access payment is credited when purchasing the full version.
Buy
Continue searching

The Role of Teacher Efficacy in Student Academic Achievement in Mathematics

ProQuest Dissertations and Theses, 2011
Dissertation
Author: Kristopher Maguire
Abstract:
Many students in Grades 9-10 are not meeting state standards on standardized mathematics tests in the Southeastern United States. The focus of this study was to determine if a teacher's confidence level affects student success in mathematics and to discover which type of teacher self-efficacy best predicts student performance. Bandura's social cognitive theory served as the theoretical foundation for the study. The research question involved understanding the relationship between teacher self-efficacy and student achievement in high school mathematics. A quantitative correlational, cross-sectional survey design was employed. Data were collected using the Teachers' Sense of Efficacy Scale (consisting of a number of subscales reflecting different aspects of self-efficacy), student end of course test data, and a teacher questionnaire that assessed sociodemographic information. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine which combination of variables could best predict student achievement. Results indicated that teacher efficacy significantly predicted student achievement, with the best combination of predictor variables being the subcategories of teacher efficacy in student engagement and teacher efficacy in classroom management combined with teacher age and experience. Implications for social change include improved student mathematics achievement and potentially an increase in student graduation rates.

i Table of Contents List of Tables ...................................................................................................................... v Section 1: Introduction to the Study ................................................................................... 1 Problem Statement .......................................................................................................... 3 The Nature of the Study .................................................................................................. 6 Research Questions and Hypotheses .............................................................................. 6 Purpose of the Study ....................................................................................................... 8 Theoretical Framework ................................................................................................. 10 Operational Definitions ................................................................................................. 12 Assumptions .................................................................................................................. 13 Limitations .................................................................................................................... 13 Scope and Delimitations ............................................................................................... 13 Significance of the Study .............................................................................................. 14 Summary ....................................................................................................................... 15 Section 2: Literature Review ............................................................................................ 18 Introduction ................................................................................................................... 18 History of Standards ..................................................................................................... 19 Social Cognitive Theory and Self-Efficacy .................................................................. 23 Teacher-Efficacy and Student Achievement ................................................................ 32 Positive Research Results ......................................................................................... 32 Negative Research Results ........................................................................................ 39 Teacher Efficacy and Student Achievement in Mathematics ....................................... 43

ii Strengthening Teacher Efficacy in Mathematics ...................................................... 48 Research Methodology ................................................................................................. 51 Similar Research Methods ........................................................................................ 54 Differing Research Methods ..................................................................................... 55 Summary ....................................................................................................................... 56 Section 3: Research Method ............................................................................................. 58 Introduction ................................................................................................................... 58 Research Design and Approach .................................................................................... 59 Setting and Sample ....................................................................................................... 61 Instrumentation and Material ........................................................................................ 61 Threats to Validity .................................................................................................... 63 Instrument Reliability and Validity .......................................................................... 64 Data Collection and Analysis ....................................................................................... 65 Research Questions and Hypotheses ........................................................................ 66 Participants’ Rights ....................................................................................................... 69 Role of the Researcher .................................................................................................. 69 Summary ....................................................................................................................... 70 Section 4: Results .............................................................................................................. 72 Introduction ................................................................................................................... 72 Research Questions and Hypotheses ............................................................................ 72 Research Tools .............................................................................................................. 74 Data Analyses ............................................................................................................... 75

iii Sample ....................................................................................................................... 75 Research Question 1: Teacher Efficacy in Student Engagement .............................. 76 Research Question 2: Teacher Efficacy in Instructional Strategies .......................... 77 Research Question 3: Teacher Efficacy in Classroom Management ........................ 77 Research Question 4: Teacher Age ........................................................................... 78 Research Question 5: Teacher Experience................................................................ 79 Research Question 6: Best Predictor Combination ................................................... 80 Comments on Findings ................................................................................................. 81 Summary ....................................................................................................................... 83 Section 5: Discussion, Conclusion, and Recommendations ............................................. 85 Introduction ................................................................................................................... 85 Research Overview ....................................................................................................... 85 Interpretation of Findings ............................................................................................. 86 Implications for Social Change ..................................................................................... 89 Recommendations for Action ....................................................................................... 91 Recommendations for Further Study ............................................................................ 92 Conclusion .................................................................................................................... 93 References ......................................................................................................................... 96 Appendix A: Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale ............................................................ 106 Appendix B: Teacher Questionnaire ............................................................................... 109 Appendix C: Permission to Use Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale .............................. 110 Appendix D: Consent Form ............................................................................................ 111

iv Appendix E: Invitation to Participate ............................................................................. 114 Appendix F: Cover Page Email for Surveys ................................................................... 115

v List of Tables Table 1. Raw Collected Data………………....………………………………………….66 Table 2. Linear Regression Analysis 1…………………………………………………..76 Table 3. Linear Regression Analysis 2…………………………………………………..77 Table 4. Linear Regression Analysis 3…………………………………………………..78 Table 5. Linear Regression Analysis 4…………………………………………………..79 Table 6. Linear Regression Analysis 5…………………………………………………..79 Table 7. Stepwise Multiple Regression Analysis………………………………………..81

1

Section 1: Introduction to the Study Currently, there is a major national emphasis on students meeting performance standards. Student academic achievement is of the utmost importance and schools are measured according to the success of their students. This focus on student achievement has lead to a higher emphasis on setting standards that the students are required to meet. Student achievement drives the educational system to improve year after year (Gaisford, 2006). Gaisford (2006) commented that a key component to understanding how well students are performing is the measure of student success against current state standards. Marzano (2008) further stated that having a guaranteed and viable curriculum in each school system and classroom affects student achievement more than anything else. President George W. Bush established the No Child Left Behind (NCLB, 2002) Act to raise expectations for states, local school districts, and schools so that all students would be able to meet or exceed state standards in reading and mathematics within 12 years. According to the United States Department of Education (2007), each state has developed and implemented measurements for determining whether its schools are making adequate yearly progress (AYP). NCLB supporters claim that since the act’s inception the quality of education has increased by shrinking classroom sizes and by requiring schools to utilize scientifically based research practices in the classroom (Leyva, 2009). Before NCLB (2002), as the economies of the world were becoming more and more intertwined, interdependent, and interconnected, schools were failing to adequately prepare students for the global market (Lyeva, 2009). Duffy, Giordano, Farrell, Paneque,

2

and Crump (2008) commented that NCLB required accountability measures to be put into place for all school districts, whereby the measuring of student success is derived foremost through standardized testing. The NCLB new accountability measures led to further assessment in all areas of the educational system (Duffy et al., 2008). In January of 2002, a Phi Delta Kappa audit concluded that the current curricula used by certain states lacked the depth needed for content mastery, could not be covered in a reasonable amount of time, and would fail to meet the new NCLB goal of helping students to meet or exceed state mathematics and reading standards in 12 years (Phi Delta Kappa International, 2009). This audit helped state school districts further their transition into a standards-based education system where all learners would face the same standards and academic expectations (Duffy et al., 2008). This transition allowed students the opportunity to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in the face of rigorous performance standards (Duffy et al., 2008). However, according to one high school principal in the southeastern United States, students across the south east are not meeting the state content and performance standards in the new standards-based mathematics classes (personal communication, May 5, 2010). Thus, the problem addressed in this study is low student achievement in the new standards-based mathematics courses within three high schools in two southeastern suburban school districts. In her 2008 study discussing improving student achievement, Shidler commented that teachers with a high level of instructional efficacy believe more whole-heartedly in children’s ability to be successful and therefore devote more time and effort to teaching. Shidler defined teacher efficacy as a teacher’s ability to see himself or herself as capable of providing instruction within a content area and through that instruction affect student

3

achievement. Cerit (2010) stated that teacher efficacy beliefs have a positive influence on teachers’ classroom activities. Determining teacher efficacy is a worthwhile endeavor when looking to improve student academic achievement (Saricoban, 2010), especially with the current state and national emphasis on standards (Shidler, 2008). With this in mind, the focus of this study was to determine the strength of the relationship between teacher efficacy and student achievement in mathematics among three high schools, Grades 9-10, in two southeastern suburban school districts. Problem Statement In August of 2007, new standards-based mathematics courses were integrated into all high school curricula across a certain southeastern state (X State Department of Education, 2007). These new performance standards in mathematics were intended to provide clear expectations for assessment, instruction, and student work (X State Department of Education, 2007). The purpose of the new standards was to improve student achievement by isolating and identifying the skills needed to problem-solve, reason, communicate, and make connections with other information in order to help teachers to assess the extent to which their students have learned the material (X State Department of Education, 2007). According to one high school mathematics teacher, the new standards are not effective in their attempt to improve student academic achievement (personal communication, April 23, 2010). This teacher stated that, in her opinion, the standards were doomed from the beginning because too many mathematics teachers were complaining about how hard the new standards were and how the state was “messing up” the math curriculum. She also stated that the new standards are very challenging,

4

requiring all students of varying needs to reach a high level of mathematical competency. She concluded by discussing how the state never released the test scores for the first year of implementation of the new standards-based math classes because the scores were so poor. Therefore, the problem within southeastern high schools in the United States is low student achievement in the new standards-based mathematics courses. In order to prepare for the new standards-based mathematics courses, teacher training was mandated for each school district and occurred on a 2 year cycle, with the first year of training occurring the year before the new course was implemented and the second year of training occurring during the first year of the implementation of the new course, with training beginning for the first new course in 2006 and continuing with training for each subsequent course through 2011 (X State Department of Education, 2007). The training followed a train-the-trainer model, and local school systems chose the recipients of the training and designed a plan for redelivery (X State Department of Education, 2007). This training was intended to better prepare teachers to address the new mathematics standards in order to ensure student academic success (X State Department of Education, 2007). However, according to one local high school principal, despite the state training program and teachers’ knowledge of state standards, student achievement in mathematics continues to be poor (personal communication, May 5, 2010). There are many possible factors contributing to the low student achievement in mathematics in the southeast, among which are the high difficulty level of the new standards (Duffy et al., 2008) and teacher efficacy regarding the new standards (Shidler, 2008). In their recent study, Chong, Huan, Kates, Klassen, and Wong (2010) discussed

5

how efficacy research shows that academic achievement is not influenced by student efficacy alone but that teachers’ efficacy also has the capability to make an equally substantial contribution to students’ motivation, achievement, and sense of efficacy. Furthermore, research suggests that teacher efficacy helps to predict both teaching practices and student learning (Skaalvik & Skaalvik, 2007), making the study of teacher efficacy a critical issue (Fives & Buehl, 2009). Cheung (2008) stated that there is no more important factor to improve education around the world than teacher efficacy. This study will contribute to the body of knowledge needed to address this problem by determining the strength of the relationship between teacher efficacy and student achievement in mathematics. If a strong positive correlation exists between high levels of teacher efficacy and student achievement in the new mathematics courses, this correlation will provide evidence of the need for more training to improve teacher efficacy and will provide justification to hire mathematics teachers with high teacher efficacy in regards to the new mathematics standards. In order to further define the strength of the relationship between teacher efficacy and student academic achievement in mathematics, this study measured teacher efficacy in three areas. Teacher efficacy in student engagement was measured by factors such as how teachers encourage their students to think critically, how teachers motivate uninterested students, and how teachers foster student creativity. Teacher efficacy in instructional strategies was measured by factors such as how teachers respond to difficult questions posed by students, how teachers gauge student comprehension, and how teachers are able to adjust lessons to the appropriate level for individual students. Teacher efficacy in classroom management was measured by factors such as how teachers are

6

able to control disruptive behavior in the classroom, how well teachers can establish routines to foster student compliance, and how well teachers can make expectations clear about student behavior. These areas of teacher efficacy were measured according to the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (Tschannen-Moran & Woolfolk, 2001) survey instrument (see Appendix A). This instrument generated three separate teacher efficacy scores. This instrument and how it was used for this study will be discussed further in section 3. The Nature of the Study Creswell (2009) stated that a survey design provides a quantitative or numeric description of trends of a population by studying a sample of that population. Therefore, this study used a quantitative, correlational, cross-sectional survey design (Creswell, 2009) to investigate the problem. The quantitative data were collected by using the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (Tschannen-Moran & Woolfolk, 2001); the Teacher Questionnaire (see Appendix B), which only asks for teacher age and total years of teaching experience; and the archived student End of Course Test (EOCT ) data (X State Department of Education, 2007) for mathematics courses to measure student achievement. Research Questions and Hypotheses 1. What is the relationship between teacher efficacy in student engagement and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study? Null Hypothesis: There is not a positive relationship between teacher efficacy in student engagement and student academic achievement in mathematics

7

among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study. 2. What is the relationship between teacher efficacy in instructional strategies and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study? Null Hypothesis: There is not a positive relationship between teacher efficacy in instructional strategies and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study. 3. What is the relationship between teacher efficacy in classroom management and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study? Null Hypothesis: There is not a positive relationship between teacher efficacy in classroom management and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study. 4. What is the relationship between teacher age and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study? Null Hypothesis: There is not a positive relationship between total years of teaching experience and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study.

8

5. What is the relationship between total years of teacher experience and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study? Null Hypothesis: There is not a positive relationship between teacher age and student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study. 6. Which of the following, or combination of the following variables, best predicts student academic achievement in mathematics among high school students in Grades 9-10 within the three high schools used for this study: teacher efficacy in student engagement, teacher efficacy in instructional strategies, teacher efficacy in classroom management, total years of teaching experience, and teacher age? Null Hypothesis: There is neither a best predictor variable nor a combination of variables that best predicts student achievement among high school students in Grades 9-10 in mathematics within the three high schools used for this study among teacher efficacy in student engagement, teacher efficacy in instructional strategies, teacher efficacy in classroom management, total years of teaching experience, or teacher age. Purpose of the Study The purpose of this quantitative, correlational, cross-sectional survey study (Creswell, 2009) was to examine the strength of the relationship between teacher efficacy and student academic achievement in mathematics for high school students in Grades 9- 10 among three high schools in two southeastern suburban school districts. One school

9

district will be referred to as School District A, with the high school within this school district being referred to as High School A. The other school district will be referred to as School District B, with the two high schools within the school district being referred to as High School B1 and High School B2. High School A’s student demographics are as follows: 1% Asian, 39% Black, 2% Hispanic, 58% White, and 1% Multiracial (State of X Report Card, 2010). High School B1’s student demographics are as follows: 1% Asian, 55% Black, 1% Hispanic, 42% White, and 1% Multiracial (State of X Report Card, 2010). High School B2’s student demographics are as follows: 0% Asian, 72% Black, 1% Hispanic, 25% White, and 1% Multiracial (State of X Report Card, 2010). Each of the three high schools’ demographics are similar to the state’s demographics, which are as follows: 3% Asian, 38% Black, 10% Hispanic, 46% White, and 3% Multiracial (State of X Report Card, 2010). There are five independent variables in this study: teacher efficacy in student engagement, teacher efficacy in instructional strategies, teacher efficacy in classroom management, teacher age, and total years of teaching experience. The independent variables involving teacher efficacy were defined as a teacher’s ability to see himself or herself as capable of providing instruction within a content area and through that instruction improve student achievement (Shidler, 2008). The independent variables involving teacher efficacy comprised the teacher scores on the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (Tschannen-Moran & Woolfolk, 2001) survey. The other two independent variables, teacher age and total years of teaching experience, were collected on the Teacher Questionnaire.

10

There is one dependent variable, student achievement, which was defined as a student’s level of success on a state-mandated EOCT assessment (Duffy et al., 2008). The dependent variable comprised archived student scores on the EOCT. This study leads to social change by providing possible evidence of the need for more training to improve teacher efficacy and by providing justification to hire mathematics teachers with high teacher efficacy. Theoretical Framework The increasing pressure on teachers resulting from high stakes testing highlights potential concerns about how teacher attitudes and perceptions may influence student behavioral and academic outcomes (Pas, Bradshaw, Hershfeldt, & Leaf, 2010). Pas et al. (2010) stated that teacher efficacy influences teachers’ behavior, affects goal setting, and affects the ability to persist in difficult tasks. Therefore, teachers with high levels of teacher efficacy may be able to reach higher percentages of students, despite diverse learning and behavioral needs (Pas et al., 2010). This study further investigated how teacher efficacy is an important factor in the improvement of student academic achievement in mathematics. Chong, et al. (2010) stated that a line of research has begun to examine the relationship between teacher efficacy and its relationship with student achievement. Numerous studies on teacher efficacy have linked student achievement through how it was fostered by sources of efficacy beliefs—mastery experiences, vicarious reinforcement, verbal persuasion, and physiological states (Chong et al., 2010). According to Bandura (1977), social cognitive theory provides a guide to use for understanding the role of specific contextual influences in shaping teacher efficacy.

11

Social cognitive theory accords a central role to cognitive, vicarious, self- regulatory, and self-reflective processes (Bandura, 2001). Bandura commented that people are “self-organizing, proactive, self-reflecting, and self-regulating, not just reactive organisms shaped and shepherded by environmental events or inner forces” (p. 266). Bandura further stated that nothing in society is more central than a person’s belief in his or her efficacy to exert control over the events that affect his or her life. Unless people believe that they can produce desired effects and forestall undesired ones by their actions, they have little incentive to act (Bandura, 2001). Bandura discussed how efficacy beliefs influence whether people think optimistically or pessimistically, the goals they set for themselves and their commitment to them, the outcomes they expect their efforts to produce, and the accomplishments they realize. When people have higher levels of self- efficacy, they have higher goals, stronger staying power in the face of impediments, a more robust resilience to adversity, and higher performance accomplishments (Bandura, 2001). Barnyak and McNelly (2009) stated that social cognitive theory describes how people create perceptions of their own abilities that shape their goals in life. Furthermore, what people believe about their abilities determines their achievements in certain situations (Barnyak & McNelly, 2009). Barnyak and McNelly also stated that high levels of efficacy for certain objectives determine the degree of success for those objectives. When people realize they do not understand something, they decide whether or not they want to use the learning process to increase their understanding (Barnyak & McNelly, 2009). Barnyak and McNelly stated that if people are motivated they will find a way to increase their understanding.

12

Actions and behaviors are better predicted by beliefs rather than actual accomplishments (Barnyak & McNelly, 2009). Viel-Ruma, Houchins, Jolivette, and Benson (2010) stated that a person’s self-efficacy helps him or her to shape their own actions and decisions. With these theories in mind, this study focused on personal teaching efficacy, which is a teacher’s personal belief in his or her capacity to affect student academic achievement (Barnyak & McNelly, 2009). This study investigated the proposition that teacher efficacy may profoundly influence how teachers foster student academic achievement in mathematics (Barnyak & McNelly, 2009). Operational Definitions Academic achievement: Academic achievement is defined as students’ levels of success on state mandated assessments (Duffy et al., 2008). End of Course Test (EOCT): The EOCT is the state-standardized test that each student must take at the end of a course (X State Department of Education, 2007). No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001: On January 8, 2002, President Bush established the NCLB Act in order to significantly raise expectations for states, local school districts, and schools so that all students will meet or exceed state standards in reading and mathematics within 12 years (NCLB, 2002). Teacher efficacy: Teacher efficacy is defined as a teacher’s ability to see himself or herself as capable of providing instruction within a content area and through that instruction affect student achievement (Shidler, 2008). Teacher efficacy is a type of self- efficacy (Bruce & Ross, 2008). Throughout the various research articles in this study, the terms “teacher efficacy” and “teacher’s self-efficacy” are used interchangeably.

13

State performance standards: The new state curriculum performance standards are defined as standards that provide clear expectations for assessment, instruction, and student work, while also defining the level of work that demonstrates achievement of the standards by students (X State Department of Education, 2007). Assumptions The following are assumptions for the purpose of this study: 1. The survey collected honest responses from the teachers. 2. All student test scores were accurate reflections of student mathematical knowledge. 3. It is assumed that, without intervention, teacher efficacy remained constant throughout the school year. Limitations The following are limitations for the purpose of this study: 1. This study was limited to examining teacher efficacy as it relates to academic achievement. 2. Many factors other than teacher efficacy may have affected student test scores. 3. The Teacher Sense of Efficacy Scale is not domain specific and cannot decipher whether a teacher has high or low efficacy across specific pedagogy (Haverback & Parault, 2008). Scope and Delimitations The following are the scope and delimitations of the study:

14

1. The facts to obtain in this study included 19 mathematics teachers who teach among three different high schools in two southeastern suburban school districts. 2. The study did not include any other schools than those mentioned above. 3. The study did not include the examination of any other factors that could contribute to student academic achievement such as: student socio economic status, class size, or teacher expertise. 4. Because this study only focused on high school mathematics students, it may not be possible to generalize the results to all students in all grades. 5. Because this study focused on mathematics it may not be possible to generalize the results to other subject areas. Significance of the Study The intent of this study was to contribute to the body of literature concerning the academic achievement of students as it relates to teacher efficacy. Fullan (2009) stated that NCLB has put a spotlight on schools that are not making AYP, causing a greater focus on student learning and academic achievement across the nation. Since becoming law, NCLB has helped school systems to develop district-wide reform with several notable successes in raising the bar and closing the achievement gap (Fullan, 2009). After NCLB (2002), school districts transitioned into a standards-based education system where all learners faced the same standards and academic expectations (Duffy et al., 2008). This transition allowed students the opportunity to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in the face of rigorous performance standards (Duffy et

15

al., 2008). The measuring of student academic achievement is now derived first and foremost through standardized testing (Duffy et al., 2008). Swackhammer, Koellner, Basile, and Kimbrough (2009) stated that studies show that teachers with high levels of teacher efficacy have a positive effect on student academic achievement. Martin, McCaughtry, Kulinna, and Cothran (2009) stated that teachers with high levels of teacher efficacy try new, innovative strategies more often than teachers with lower levels of teacher efficacy. Brady and Woolfson (2008) defined teacher efficacy as a teacher’s feelings of his or her own capacity to successfully facilitate learning. Furthermore, teachers with high levels of teacher efficacy are more willing to take responsibility for meeting the academic needs of students in their classrooms (Brady & Woolfson, 2008). Chong et al. (2010) stated that when teachers feel efficacious about their capability to promote learning and instruction, they are more likely to perceive high expectations and press the school leadership, parents, and students for academic success. The significance of this study was that the information generated may assist principals in trying to hire mathematics teachers who will have a greater potential to increase student academic achievement and provide school districts with a reason to deliver efficacy training for its teachers. This study facilitated social change by examining the relationship between teacher efficacy and student academic achievement. Summary Swanson and Huff (2010) commented that teachers who believe in themselves expect more from themselves. Demir (2008) further stated that schools characterized by higher levels of teacher efficacy seem better positioned to communicate a need for effective teaching and learning that produces positive outcomes. Teachers’ perceived

16

efficacy is directly related to their use of effective instructional strategies and their ability to manage the classroom and engage students in learning (Chong et al., 2010). Shidler (2008) furthered these thoughts by adding that determining ways in which to build teacher efficacy through teachers’ careers would prove to be a worthwhile endeavor when looking to accelerate student achievement. It is imperative to build levels of teacher efficacy as school districts move towards best practices in the classroom (Shidler, 2008). Chong et al. (2010) discussed the fact that how teacher efficacy relates to academic climate has not received much interest. The following sections discuss the relevant literature on teacher efficacy, student academic achievement, research methods employed to examine teacher efficacy, the results from those methods and research, and the implications and conclusions from the results. A quantitative, correlational, cross- sectional survey design (Creswell, 2009) was used to provide information concerning teacher efficacy and student academic achievement. In the following sections, I will expand upon the areas that support the research on teacher efficacy and the strength of its relationship with student academic achievement. Section 2 of this study will focus on the review of the literature, which will include: (a) the history of standards and academic achievement, (b) the history of social cognitive theory, and (c) how teacher efficacy relates to student academic achievement. Section 3 will focus on the methodology of this quantitative study, the sampling procedures, the population being studied, the rights of the participants, the research design, and an explanation of the data collection tools used to conduct this study. Section 4 will present the research questions and hypotheses along with the research tools and data analyses. This section will also include tables and figures to provide a visual

Full document contains 128 pages
Abstract: Many students in Grades 9-10 are not meeting state standards on standardized mathematics tests in the Southeastern United States. The focus of this study was to determine if a teacher's confidence level affects student success in mathematics and to discover which type of teacher self-efficacy best predicts student performance. Bandura's social cognitive theory served as the theoretical foundation for the study. The research question involved understanding the relationship between teacher self-efficacy and student achievement in high school mathematics. A quantitative correlational, cross-sectional survey design was employed. Data were collected using the Teachers' Sense of Efficacy Scale (consisting of a number of subscales reflecting different aspects of self-efficacy), student end of course test data, and a teacher questionnaire that assessed sociodemographic information. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine which combination of variables could best predict student achievement. Results indicated that teacher efficacy significantly predicted student achievement, with the best combination of predictor variables being the subcategories of teacher efficacy in student engagement and teacher efficacy in classroom management combined with teacher age and experience. Implications for social change include improved student mathematics achievement and potentially an increase in student graduation rates.