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The Relationship Between Cultural Competence and Teacher Efficacy

JohnBull, Ranjini Mahinda
Format
Thesis/Dissertation; Online
Author
JohnBull, Ranjini Mahinda
Advisor
Berry, Robert
Esposito, James
Williams, Joanna
Tucker, Pamela
Abstract
This study sought to determine the nature of the relationship between cultural competence and teacher efficacy. According to 30 years of NAEP data, stagnant achievement among minority students persists; among factors related to student achievement, teacher efficacy represents the school-related variable that is most closely correlated and predictive of student outcomes. Contextual factors influence teacher efficacy, and beliefs about student characteristics are particularly salient. Multicultural education research suggests that teachers' beliefs about individuals' characteristics, also known as teachers' cultural competence, impact student outcomes. Since teacher efficacy is related to beliefs about student characteristics, and those beliefs are encompassed in one's cultural competence, understanding the relationship between cultural competence and teacher efficacy may elucidate the hypothesized relationship between cultural competence and student outcomes through teacher efficacy constructs, which serve as mediating variables. Prior to this study, no empirical findings have substantiated this hypothesized relationship. Survey research methods were employed in order to answer the research questions. The participants were comprised of a random sample of Virginia teachers who had publicly-listed email addresses. The total sample included 600 volunteer participants who completed an online survey that included three parts: a demographics section, a modified Teacher Efficacy Survey (Gibson & Dembo, 1984), and a modified SelfIdentity Inventory (Sevig, Highlen, & Adams, 2000). Dependent variables included the two teaching efficacy constructs (General Teaching Efficacy and Personal Teaching Efficacy), and the independent variables included cultural competence total scores and the five cultural competence construct scores (Individuation, Dissonance, Immersion, Internalization, and Integration). Control variables included gender, grade level, teaching experience, class size, classroom diversity, and diversity professional development. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses were conducted in this descriptive and correlational study to determine the extent to which cultural competence and cultural competence constructs accounted for variance in teaching efficacy constructs over and above control variables. The results indicated that cultural competence total scores accounted for 2.40f the variance in general teaching efficacy over the control variables. Cultural competence constructs accounted for 4.50f the variance in general teaching efficacy. Individuation, the lowest cultural competence stage, accounted for 3.50f the variance in general teaching efficacy. Findings also revealed that cultural competence total scores accounted for 2.10f the variance in personal teaching efficacy above the control variables. Cultural competence constructs accounted for 7.60f the variance in personal teaching efficacy above the control variables. Internalization, stage 4, explained 2.10f the variance in personal teaching efficacy. Integration, stage 5, explained 4.70f the variance in personal teaching efficacy. Findings suggest that cultural competence may contribute to student outcomes through the mediating variables of personal and general teaching efficacy. Recommendations for further research and practice are included which detail this important line of inquiry representing a nexus between multicultural education, cultural competence, teacher efficacy, and student outcomes. Note: Abstract extracted from PDF text
Language
English
Published
University of Virginia, Curry School of Education, PHD (Doctor of Philosophy), 2012
Published Date
2012-05-01
Degree
PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
Collection
Libra ETD Repository
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