Tracing the development and patterns of sloyd teachers’ efficacy beliefs over the course of their careers
This study explores the development of sloyd teachers’ efficacy beliefs over the course of their careers. It also investigates the patterns of teachers’ efficacy beliefs at different stages of their careers. In order to answer the research question, a questionnaire were constructed and distributed to 280 teachers in Finland and Sweden.
An exploratory factor analysis gave us the following five factors: instructional skills, classroom management, motivating pupils, assessment competence and establishing routines. We used these to compare means between novice teachers, mid-career and late-career teachers. The group of novice teachers estimated all five factors to be lower than did the mid-career and late-career teachers.
Patterns of teachers’ efficacy beliefs at different stages showed that novice, mid-career and late-career teachers all estimated their classroom management ability the highest and their ability to assess pupils’ competence in sloyd as second highest. The findings indicated that novice teachers, in particular, lacked opportunities to discuss questions such as how to instruct, how to manage the classroom, how to motivate pupils, how to assess pupils’ knowledge and how to establish routines in a classroom. The findings also indicated that teachers’ self-rated assessment with respect to instructional skills increases up until the middle stages of their career, before flattening out. Finally we found that sloyd teachers in the latter stages of their career had different beliefs about their ability to perform important teaching activities that help pupils to learn sloyd. Consequently, it appears that sloyd teachers with extensive experience are better prepared for day-to-day teaching practice.
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