Background. Research on teacher self-efficacy has revealed substantive problems concerning the validity of instruments used to measure teacher self-efficacy beliefs. Although claims about the influence of teachers' self-efficacy beliefs on student achievement, success with curriculum innovation, and so on, may be true statements, one cannot make those claims on the basis of that body of evidence if the instruments are not valid measures of teachers' self-efficacy beliefs. Aims. The purpose of this investigation is to employ the use of modern confirmatory factor-analytic techniques to investigate the validity of the hypothesized dimensions of the Teacher Efficacy Scale (Gibson & Dembo, 1984; Woolfolk & Hoy, 1990). Sample. Participants for this investigation were 387 prospective teachers recruited from a university located in the south-western region of the DA. Participants for Study 2 were 131 prospective elementary teachers recruited from the same university as in Study I. Results. A confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) procedure was used to evaluate the goodness-of-fit for two theoretical models of the TES items. The proposed two- and three-factor models of teacher self-efficacy for prospective teachers were rejected. A re-specified three-factor model of the TES was then derived from theoretical and empirical considerations. The re-specified model hypothesized three dimensions: self-efficacy beliefs, outcome expectations, and external locus-of-causality. In Study 2, the re-specified three-factor measurement model was evaluated in a new sample. Results of the CFA procedure indicated satisfactory fit of the re-specified model to the data; however, the results were not consistent with predictions derived from social learning theory. Conclusions. The results of this study call into question the use of the TES and the interpretation of a large body of literature purporting to study the relationship of teachers' self-efficacy beliefs to important educational outcomes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology