Measuring the self-efficacy of mentor teachers.Abstract
This study tested the validity and reliability of the Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument (MSEI). The instrument was developed to measure mentor teachers' self-efficacy with the roles and responsibilities of mentoring. The results indicate that the MSEI is only effective in measuring one aspect of mentor teachers' self-efficacy: feedback. These findings also suggest that mentor teachers may not have a clear definition of their role asa mentor and highlights the need to create a common understanding of what it means to be a mentor teacher.
Self-efficacy is defined asa person's context-specific assessment of competence (Bandura ban`dur´a
n. 1. A traditional Ukrainian stringed musical instrument shaped like a lute, having many strings. , 1977). As such, a person's self-efficacy can impact the effort a person puts forth in a given situation, how long the person persists on a given task, and how they feel about the task (Goddard, Hoy Hoy, island, 13 mi (21 km) long and 6 mi (9.7 km) wide, off N Scotland, second largest of the Orkney Islands. It is located at the southwestern side of the Scapa Flow anchorage. , & Woolfolk-Hoy, 2004). To date there are multiple teacher self-efficacy scales (Ashton, Buhr, & Crocker, 1984; Brouwers & Tomic, 2001; Friedman & Kass, 2002; Gibson & Dembo, 1984; Riggs & Enochs, 1990). With these self-efficacy scales, researchers have then been able to examine the impact of teacher self-efficacy on variables such as: student achievement and motivation (Moore & Esselman, 1992; Tschannen-Moran & Woolfolk-Hoy, 2001), school effectiveness (Hoy & Woolfolk, 1993), and success of program implementation (Guskey, 1988). The research on teacher self-efficacy suggests that efficacy may have a powerful impact on many of the aspects of teaching and/or children's school performance.
With this in mind, one must also consider the impact of self-efficacy on teachers' other responsibilities that extend beyond teaching children. For example, classroom teachers often serve as mentors to novice teachers during their university field experiences and/or during their first years of teaching. As Hawkey (1998) has argued, "Mentors need to feel self-confident in their own agency as teacher educators" (p. 668). Because of the significant influence of field experiences in teacher development and university teacher education programs' heavy reliance on classroom teachers, it is important to identify the essential characteristics for mentoring success--including teachers' mentoring self-efficacy. Better understanding of teachers' self-efficacy as mentors of other teachers holds promise for shedding light on improving teacher preparation through strengthening the quality and effectiveness of mentoring. We should note that while Riggs (1997) describes the use of a mentoring self-efficacy scale that she created, validation of that instrument has not occurred.
Like other teacher self-efficacy instruments, we created the Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument (MSEI) based on our understanding of the "breadth of the 'mentors' role" (Friedman & Kass, 2002, p. 675--italics added). The conceptualizations of a mentor's roles and responsibilities may be debated. Indeed, in some respects, mentoring, like teaching, appears to be idiosyncratic id·i·o·syn·cra·sy
n. pl. id·i·o·syn·cra·sies
1. A structural or behavioral characteristic peculiar to an individual or group.
2. A physiological or temperamental peculiarity.
3. , reflecting personal strengths, interests, and beliefs about how teachers develop (Martin, 1997). A mentor's interpersonal skills "Interpersonal skills" refers to mental and communicative algorithms applied during social communications and interactions in order to reach certain effects or results. The term "interpersonal skills" is used often in business contexts to refer to the measure of a person's ability are often thought to be the most critical element of effective mentoring (Brooks, 1996). While extremely important, relationship building is not the exclusive activity of mentors. Other critical activities come into play: providing support and critical feedback, maintaining high performance standards, and advocating for novice teachers with administration are arguably ar·gu·a·ble
1. Open to argument: an arguable question, still unresolved.
2. That can be argued plausibly; defensible in argument: three arguable points of law. part of what an effective mentor does (Fairbanks, Freedman freed·man
A man who has been freed from slavery.
pl -men History a man freed from slavery
Noun 1. , & Kahn, 2000). Furthermore, while teachers who are asked to mentor novice teachers tend to transfer what they know about teaching into their mentoring (Orland-Barak, 2005) they must take on new and varied roles and responsibilities in addition to those in which they engage as teachers. Items on the MSEI addressed the following aspects of mentoring: general mentoring relationships, classroom teaching practices, quality feedback, mediation mediation, in law, type of intervention in which the disputing parties accept the offer of a third party to recommend a solution for their controversy. Mediation has long been a part of international law, frequently involving the use of an international commission, , impact, and school organization. The purpose of the current study was to develop the MSEI by establishing internal validity Internal validity is a form of experimental validity . An experiment is said to possess internal validity if it properly demonstrates a causal relation between two variables  . and reliability.
The Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument was developed to measure mentors' self efficacy regarding six aspects of mentoring; general mentoring relationship, classroom teaching practices, quality feedback, mediation, impact on mentee men·tee
One who is mentored.
[ment(or) + -ee1.] , and school organization. Each component was viewed to be distinct and critical to quality mentoring. After developing the individual items, feedback was solicited from mentors who did not participate in the study. This feedback was used to ensure that the items were appropriate, clear, and captured the major aspects of mentoring. After receiving the initial feedback we made changes to several items, dropped items and then asked another and different set of mentors to provide feedback on the revised instrument before sending it out for the study. The Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument was sent to 674 teachers who had served as mentors affiliated with a teacher education program in the Western United States Noun 1. western United States - the region of the United States lying to the west of the Mississippi River
Santa Fe Trail - a trail that extends from Missouri to New Mexico; an important route for settlers moving west in the 19th century . Mentors were recruited through local school districts and the University's Office of Field Services. The following criteria were used to identify mentors:</p> <pre> Mentors are classroom-based teachers who are working with preservice teachers during heir culminating teacher education field experience (either semester-long student teaching or year-long internship internship /in·tern·ship/ (in´tern-ship) the position or term of service of an intern in a hospital.
n the course work or practicum conducted in a professional dental clinic. ). Mentors who work with preservice teachers during practica experience prior to student teaching or internship are not eligible. Mentors based at the university (i.e., university supervisors) are not eligible to answer the survey. Prior experience as a mentor is not required. </pre> <p>Two-hundred and sixty-four mentors (39%) returned the survey. All of the mentors work with preservice teachers from one of three programs; early childhood education (41 mentors), elementary education elementary education
or primary education
Traditionally, the first stage of formal education, beginning at age 5–7 and ending at age 11–13. (111 mentors), and secondary education (112 mentors). The mentors also had a range of teaching and mentoring experience.
An exploratory factor analysis was conducted to examine the dimensionality and subscale structure of the 35 items. Principal components analysis was used as the method of extraction and Kaiser's eigenvalue-greater-than-1.0 criterion was used as the stopping rule In probability theory, in particular in the study of stochastic processes, a stopping time is a specific type of "random time".
The theory of stopping rules and stopping times can be analysed in probability and statistics, notably in the optional stopping theorem. to determine the number of factors extracted. The Promax procedure was used as the method of rotation. The SPSS A statistical package from SPSS, Inc., Chicago (www.spss.com) that runs on PCs, most mainframes and minis and is used extensively in marketing research. It provides over 50 statistical processes, including regression analysis, correlation and analysis of variance. reliability procedure was then used to compute To perform mathematical operations or general computer processing. For an explanation of "The 3 C's," or how the computer processes data, see computer. item-to-adjusted-total correlation coefficients Correlation Coefficient
A measure that determines the degree to which two variable's movements are associated.
The correlation coefficient is calculated as: and to compute Cronbach's alpha Cronbach's (alpha) has an important use as a measure of the reliability of a psychometric instrument. It was first named as alpha by Cronbach (1951), as he had intended to continue with further instruments. coefficient coefficient /co·ef·fi·cient/ (ko?ah-fish´int)
1. an expression of the change or effect produced by variation in certain factors, or of the ratio between two different quantities.
2. as an estimate of internal consistency In statistics and research, internal consistency is a measure based on the correlations between different items on the same test (or the same subscale on a larger test). It measures whether several items that propose to measure the same general construct produce similar scores. reliability.
Although the Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument was designed to have six factors (general mentoring relationship, classroom teaching practices, quality feedback, mediation, impact, and school organization), the results of the exploratory factor analysis revealed the presence of one dominant factor that accounted for 38% of the total variance and included only six of the 35 items. Five other factors were extracted. Each of them accounted for only three to five percent of the variance. None of the six items that loaded on Factor 1 had a high loading on any other factor. The items that loaded on the feedback factor included the following:
* I struggle to have open lines of communication "Lines of Communication" is an episode from the fourth season of the science-fiction television series Babylon 5. Synopsis
Franklin and Marcus attempt to persuade the Mars resistance to assist Sheridan in opposing President Clark. with the novice teachers that I mentor. (.683)
* I find it difficult to provide appropriate feedback when conferencing See teleconferencing. with novice teachers. (.561)
* I believe I am not very effective in pointing out a novice teacher's weaknesses (.549)
* I believe I am not a very good advocate for novice teachers when dealing with administrators, other teachers, and/or university personnel (.515)
* When a novice teacher has difficulty implementing a management plan, I will usually be at a loss as to how to help them implement a plan. (.409)
* The professional inadequacies of a novice teacher cannot be overcome by the mentoring I provide. (.403)
Each of these six items had a factor loading exceeding .40 and from a content perspective each represented a component of feedback. Item 4 is the only item that may not be, at first glance, closely related to feedback, although this notion of advocacy may be seen as a means of conveying the novice teachers' strengths and weaknesses to others. These six items were then submitted to a follow-up factor analysis to check for unidimensionality. Principal components analysis was again used as the method of extraction, and the eigenvalue-greater-than-1.0 criterion was again used as the stopping rule. The results showed that there was only one factor with an eigenvalue eigenvalue
In mathematical analysis, one of a set of discrete values of a parameter, k, in an equation of the form Lx = kx. Such characteristic equations are particularly useful in solving differential equations, integral equations, and systems of greater than 1.0 and that this single factor accounted for 39% of the variance among the six items.
The reliability procedure in SPSS was then used to examine the internal consistency of the six items that loaded on Factor 1. The resulting estimate of Cronbach's alpha coefficient was .79. Five other factors were identified in the original factor analysis, although the total variance accounted for by each was only between 3%-5%. Furthermore, these five factors did not represent clear content domains and had several items that also loaded onto other factors. Because these factors accounted for so little of the variance, did not represent clear content domains, and had several double loadings, we determined that these factors were too ambiguous and could not be considered factors of the Mentoring Self-Efficacy Instrument.
The results of the factor analysis for the MSEI suggest that the current instrument does not measure mentor teachers' feelings of self-efficacy related to a variety of mentoring responsibilities (i.e., classroom practice, mediation, impact, etc.). Rather, it is a measure of a mentor's self-efficacy related to only one of these aspects of mentoring: feedback. While these findings are somewhat surprising, they do emphasize a more fundamental and far-reaching problem related to mentoring self-efficacy: There appears to be no clear, shared understanding of the responsibilities held by mentor teachers or the activities involved in the act of mentoring prospective and early career teachers. How, then, can one maintain self-efficacy for a role that does not have a universally understood definition?
A closer look at the current MSEI highlights these ambiguities. For example, one of the items on the instrument ("I believe I have the ability to counsel a novice teacher out of the profession.") was particularly troublesome to a large number of the teacher mentors. This notion of advising preservice teachers to think about the appropriateness of teaching for them as a profession is at the heart of the kind of critical feedback necessary to mentoring prospective teachers. Indeed, one could argue that critical feedback is, perhaps, one of the most essential aspects of meaningful mentoring. However, this item did not load with the feedback factor and multiple respondents In the context of marketing research, a representative sample drawn from a larger population of people from whom information is collected and used to develop or confirm marketing strategy. made side comments about not understanding this item (i.e., I'm not sure what you are asking, Don't understand the question, What does this mean?, Unclear, What profession? Why would I want to?). As a result, one may conclude, as argued by Young and her colleagues (2005), that mentor teachers conceptualize con·cep·tu·al·ize
v. con·cep·tu·al·ized, con·cep·tu·al·iz·ing, con·cep·tu·al·iz·es
To form a concept or concepts of, and especially to interpret in a conceptual way: their role strictly as a supportive one, rather than a critical or evaluative one (see also Cameron-Jones & O'Hara, 1997). Mentor teachers, then, see themselves providing feedback only in response to the expressed needs of the preservice teacher, not evaluating or judging professional competency COMPETENCY, evidence. The legal fitness or ability of a witness to be heard on the trial of a cause. This term is also applied to written or other evidence which may be legally given on such trial, as, depositions, letters, account-books, and the like.
2. . This is particularly disconcerting dis·con·cert
tr.v. dis·con·cert·ed, dis·con·cert·ing, dis·con·certs
1. To upset the self-possession of; ruffle. See Synonyms at embarrass.
2. considering the responsibility university-based teacher education programs place on mentor teachers to critically evaluate mentees and offer a judgment that is used to recommend licensure licensure
(lī´snsh . Based on this expectation, it is likely that many teacher education programs assume that in addition to providing support when requested by the novice teacher, mentor teachers would also help intending and early career teachers critically examine their teaching practices and challenge their existing beliefs about teaching and learning.
In addition to the absence of a shared definition of mentoring (or, perhaps, largely because of it) the MSEI also needs to be refined and adjusted to address three limitations. First and foremost, only six of the 35 items loaded on a clear factor. This suggests that the instrument, as a whole, is not very effective in measuring the efficacy of mentor teachers. Perhaps the reason why there was only one factor with so few items is directly related to the ambiguities highlighted above. Second, all of the six items that are part of this factor were reverse coded items, suggesting that these items were operating differently than those items written positively. In addition to substantiating sub·stan·ti·ate
tr.v. sub·stan·ti·at·ed, sub·stan·ti·at·ing, sub·stan·ti·ates
1. To support with proof or evidence; verify: substantiate an accusation. See Synonyms at confirm. the argument that negatively coded items function in a very different way from positively coded items, we cannot assume that the negatively coded items on the MSEI would all load on the same factor if they were written as positive statements. This suggests that even the single dominant factor described in the results of this study should be interpreted with caution. Finally, the scale used for each item in the MSEI ranged from 1-4 (strongly disagree to strongly agree) and frequency distributions indicated that the respondents tended to only use the higher end Coordinates:
For other places with the same name, see Billinge.
Higher End or Billinge Higher End is a district of the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, in Greater Manchester, England. of the scale (3-4). This may suggest that the scale needed to be expanded, although many current self-efficacy scales often only range from 1-5 (Enochs, Smith, & Huinker, 2000; Riggs, 1988; Riggs & Enochs, 1990).
Universities in partnership with the public schools have the responsibility and charge to prepare novice teachers. Indeed, this partnership acknowledges the significant role mentor teachers play as they work with novice teachers and provide opportunities for growth and practice in classroom settings (Fairbanks, Freedman, & Kahn, 2000). Furthermore, just as many educators use teacher self-efficacy instruments to understand teacher preparation and development, impact on student achievement, and overall teacher effectiveness, a mentoring self-efficacy instrument will be invaluable in the selection and preparation of mentor teachers, understanding the development of mentor teachers, and gauging the overall impact of mentors on the preparation of novice teachers. However, the critical role and responsibilities of mentor teachers are perhaps still misunderstood mis·un·der·stood
Past tense and past participle of misunderstand.
1. Incorrectly understood or interpreted.
2. , or understood in multiple ways and sometimes conflicting (Hawkey, 1997). These mis- or multiple understandings hinder hin·der 1
v. hin·dered, hin·der·ing, hin·ders
1. To be or get in the way of.
2. To obstruct or delay the progress of.
v.intr. the development of a mentoring self-efficacy instrument. Therefore, before a useful instrument can be created, university-based educators and teacher mentors must come to a common understanding of what it means to be a mentor teacher (e.g., whether the mentoring relationship is primarily that of support or that of inquiry [sec Young, et al, 2005]). This common understanding will allow educators to consider the conditions necessary to create and sustain mentoring relationships and will aid in the preparation and development of teacher mentors--activities that can be facilitated by the use of a mentoring self-efficacy instrument.
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For any whole number, the product of all the counting numbers up to and including itself. It is indicated with an exclamation point: 4! (read “four factorial”) is 1 × 2 × 3 × 4 = 24. validity of scores on the teacher interpersonal self-efficacy scale. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 6(3), 433-445.
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v. con·cep·tu·al·ized, con·cep·tu·al·iz·ing, con·cep·tu·al·iz·es
To form a concept or concepts of, and especially to interpret in a conceptual way: . Teaching and Teacher Education, 18, 675-686.
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A lengthy, formal treatise, especially one written by a candidate for the doctoral degree at a university; a thesis.
1. , Kansas State University Kansas State University, main campus at Manhattan; coeducational; land-grant and state supported; chartered and opened 1863. There is an additional campus at Salina. Among the university's research facilities are the J. R. , 1988.
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A region of the northwest United States between the Cascade Range and the Rocky Mountains, comprising eastern Washington, eastern Oregon, northern Idaho, and western Montana. Farming, lumbering, and mining are important to the area. Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment mentors as indicated through measurement of mentor efficacy. Technical Report submitted to Riverside County Office of education.
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Young, J.R., Bullough, R.V, Jr., Draper drap·er
n. Chiefly British
A dealer in cloth or clothing and dry goods.
[Middle English, weaver or seller of cloth, from Old French drapier, from drap, cloth; see , R.J., Smith, L.K., & Erickson, L.B. (2005). Novice teacher growth and personal models of mentoring: Choosing compassion over inquiry. Mentoring and Tutoring, 13(2), 169-188.
Kendra M. Hall, Brigham Young University Brigham Young University, at Provo, Utah; Latter-Day Saints; coeducational; opened as an academy in 1875 and became a university in 1903. It is noted for its law and business schools.
Leigh K. Smith, Brigham Young University
Roni Jo Draper, Brigham Young University
Robert V. Bullough. Jr., Brigham Young University
Richard Sudweeks, Brigham Young University
Hall PhD, Assistant Professor of Early Childhood Education; Smith, PhD, Assistant Professor of Science Education; Draper, PhD, Associate Professor of Literacy (Department of Teacher Education); Bullough, PhD, Professor, Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling(CITES); Sudweeks, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Instructional Technology There are two types of instructional technology: those with a systems approach, and those focusing on sensory technologies.
The definition of instructional technology prepared by the Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) Definitions and Terminology and Psychology