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Teacher Persistence: A Crucial Disposition, with Implications for Teacher Education



Teacher persistence helps foster effective teaching. Specifically, teacher persistence may promote high expectations for students, the development of teaching skills, teachers' reflectiveness, responsiveness to diversity, teaching efficacy, effective responses to setbacks, and successful use of reformed teaching methods. Common evaluation practices in teacher education may undermine teacher persistence. Teacher educators might support the development of teacher persistence by emphasizing the knowledge that makes persistence a rational response to setbacks, by teaching self-regulation skills that support persistence, and by using evaluation practices that require greater effort and persistence of students. The importance of fostering thoughtful teacher persistence is discussed, along with the ways in which teacher education may foster either mindless or thoughtful persistence. Conditions in which greater teacher persistence may be especially beneficial include teaching young children, or teaching children who learn more slowly, who have challenging behaviors, or who have specific disabilities. It is especially important for teacher educators to foster greater persistence among young new teachers who will teach in urban settings.
Teacher Persistence 1
Teacher Persistence:
A Crucial Disposition, with Implications for Teacher Education
Karl F. Wheatley
Cleveland State University
Teacher persistence helps foster effective teaching. Specifically, teacher persistence may
promote high expectations for students, the development of teaching skills, teachers’
reflectiveness, responsiveness to diversity, teaching efficacy, effective responses to setbacks, and
successful use of reformed teaching methods. Common evaluation practices in teacher education
may undermine teacher persistence. Teacher educators might support the development of teacher
persistence by emphasizing the knowledge that makes persistence a rational response to
setbacks, by teaching self-regulation skills that support persistence, and by using evaluation
practices that require greater effort and persistence of students. The importance of fostering
thoughtful teacher persistence is discussed, along with the ways in which teacher education may
foster either mindless or thoughtful persistence. Conditions in which greater teacher persistence
may be especially beneficial include teaching young children, or teaching children who learn
more slowly, who have challenging behaviors, or who have specific disabilities. It is especially
important for teacher educators to foster greater persistence among young new teachers who will
teach in urban settings.
“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” – Popular saying
The first-year teacher stood confidently in front of her class on the first day of school,
and asked for their attention. Immediately, all eyes were riveted on her. All of her students
complied with her requests immediately and mastered the content of each lesson. Her remarkably
successful first year of teaching continued this way, as she succeeded with each new lesson she
tried in every subject matter area. Having been an “A” student in college, she was gratified to
find that her success in her teacher education coursework had carried over directly to her
The scenario described above is not the real world of teaching, nor the typical transition
from teacher education courses to classroom teaching. Although most teacher education students
achieve reasonable success on their first try with most course assignments, success does not
come so easily in teaching. Indeed, one of the most frequent comments of prospective teachers
who are encountering their first substantial field placement is how difficult it is. Some
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individuals who struggle the most with this transition are those who did extremely well in their
There are many explanations for the difficulty of this transition and for the high rate of
teacher attrition that follows. One common explanation is that teacher education coursework
focuses too much on theoretical content or general principles whose application to specific
teaching situations is unclear (e.g., Green, 1991; Keiffer-Barone, Hendricks-Lee, & Soled,
1999). Other research suggests other explanations and remedies for this difficult transition,
including the benefits of 5-year teacher education programs for reducing teacher attrition (e.g.,
Andrew, 1990), or the importance of providing prospective teachers with more field placements
(e.g., Weiner, 1993). There is merit in each of these perspectives.
In this article I propose an additional factor that may impact the degree to new teachers’
struggle and leave the profession—teacher persistence. I address three questions—what is
persistence, why is teacher persistence important, and how can teacher educators foster greater
teacher persistence?
Persistence, a Simple But Powerful Disposition
The Random House dictionary notes that to persist is “to continue steadfastly or firmly in
some state, purpose, or course of action … especially in spite of opposition,” and “to last or
endure tenaciously” (1987, p. 1445). Persistent individuals have a habit of persisting in many
situations, and thus, persistence is a disposition—a habit of mind and action (see Katz, 1985).
Persistence is most directly addressed in the literatures on achievement motivation and
self-regulation. For example, persistence is one characteristic of individuals who have a mastery
orientation to achievement (Dweck & Leggett, 1988), which is characterized by attributing one’s
success to high ability (and effort), and attributing failure to controllable factors, especially to
insufficient effort. Persistence has also been addressed in research on volition, an area of
motivation research that addresses individuals’ ability to “buckle down” when they need to (see
Corno & Kanfer, 1993). Finally, persistence is an important goal for and outcome of effective
self-regulation (Schunk & Zimmerman, 1994).
Persistence is highly valued in American culture. We emphasize its importance to
children when we teach them about the major setbacks that Abraham Lincoln overcame before
becoming President of the United States, or read them the Aesops’s fable about the tortoise and
the hare, or teach them the importance of a strong work ethic. Adults are reminded of the value
of persistence in countless stories in the media detailing successful individuals’ “rags to riches”
stories, and quotations regarding the importance of persistence are common. As President Calvin
Coolidge noted:
Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more
common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost
a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and
determination alone are omnipotent.
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In support of this common-sense perspective, research indicates a strong relationship
between persistence and success. For example, persistence appears frequently in analyses of
individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to various fields (e.g., see Gardner,
1997). Extraordinarily talented individuals benefit from decades of hard work to master the
discipline, and from role models who emphasize hard work and persistence, and who
demonstrate persistence when encountering setbacks. Persistence is clearly important even in
research itself, reflected in the finding that many highly cited books and journal articles were
initially rejected (e.g., see Campanario, 1993).
Why is persistence so important? It takes persistence to learn, to refine skills, and to give
oneself additional opportunities for success. Also, in comparison with individuals who give up,
people who persist at something have more reason and opportunity for engaging in beneficial
processes such as reflection, collaboration, and help-seeking.
The Importance of Teacher Persistence
In the ERIC database, teacher persistence does not refer to persistence in the teaching act
itself, but rather, refers to teachers remaining in the profession. Virtually all “teacher persistence”
literature is of this type (e.g., Cockburn, 2000; Pigge & Marso, 1997).
However, as defined here, teacher persistence is a disposition manifested in the day-to-
day actions of teaching. Continuing to work hard at teaching is part of what constitutes teacher
persistence, but working hard by itself is not teacher persistence. Rather, as defined here, teacher
persistence means a tendency to persist steadfastly, until successful, in the many specific courses
of action that constitute teaching. For example, it means not just to teach again the next day and
to teach mathematics again the next day, but to persist with those three students until they
understand fractions. Thus, the disposition of teacher persistence may be manifested in many
ways. A persistent teacher may, for example, try many strategies to teach a new concept or skill
and not give up if students do not “get it” right away. Similarly, a persistent teacher might
continue to use a conflict resolution approach to managing challenging situations, with the
knowledge that students need time to learn and internalize these conflict resolution strategies.
Teachers are also persistent when they reflect on something repeatedly to try to figure it out and
to plan how to do better the next time. Persistence, or its absence, also affects teachers’ work
with colleagues, administrators, and parents. I suggest that greater teacher persistence—as a
disposition manifested in teaching—significantly influences teaching success and teachers’
likelihood of remaining in the profession.
Persistence is critical for teaching excellence. Haberman (1995) identified persistence as
the first of fifteen “functions” of “star” teachers of children in poverty. Teacher persistence may
be important because it influences many factors related to effective teaching. These include
teachers’ expectations for students, development of teaching skills, efficacy beliefs, response to
setbacks, reflection, use of reform-oriented teaching practices, and responsiveness to student
First, persistence is necessary for developing or maintaining the high expectations of
students that underlie teaching excellence. High expectations for student learning can quickly
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evaporate, and be replaced by much lower expectations, unless teachers persist. Students usually
do not reach high expectations immediately—only through repeated efforts does student
performance rise to new levels that warrant and reinforce teachers’ lofty expectations for student
For example, Teel, DeBruin-Parecki, and Covington (1998) reported on a two-year study
involving two groups of low-income African-American middle school students who had been
judged to be at-risk academically. The intervention involved instructional changes in one of their
classes, specifically, non-competitive, effort-based grading, multiple performance opportunities,
increased responsibility and choice, and validation of cultural differences. In response to the
intervention, students demonstrated greater positive motivation, earned higher grades, became
more involved in class discussions and more confident of their ability. The majority of students
persevered more on course assignments, became more willing to revise work for a higher grade,
and became more motivated to work harder in their other classes. In interviews “the majority of
students attributed their success partly to the encouragement they received to re-do work
completed below the standards expected by the teacher and to turn in late work with only a
moderate penalty” (p. 489). Thus, these students were given opportunities to persist, succeeded
through persistence, and became more persistent in this class and others. In turn, the improved
performance and behavior students achieved through persistence justified substantially higher
teacher expectations.
While teacher persistence is important with all students, it is especially important with
students about whom others have lower expectations, and who may have low expectations of
themselves (see Goldberg, 2000). Although reminders of the importance of high expectations are
frequently heard in teaching and teacher education (e.g., Arnold, 1997; Vail, 2001), reminders
about the persistence that is usually necessary to develop or sustain such high expectations are a
much rarer refrain. Exhorting prospective and practicing teachers to have higher expectations of
their students could actually be counterproductive, unless teacher educators also foster the
persistence that helps turn those expectations into reality. Moreover, as Delpit (1995) noted, “We
say we believe that all children can learn, but few of us really believe it” (p. 172). Where
teachers hold high expectations only half-heartedly, persistence in teaching is necessary—to
transform those sometimes-feigned high expectations into firm convictions about students’
Second, persistence is necessary for developing teaching skills, which involves
experimentation and practice, reflection, and more practice. For example, McGee (2000) found
that teacher persistence was a crucial factor in supporting teacher learning about infusing
technology into instruction. We know that “learning to teach” does not occur in a day or a
semester; for highly effective teachers, it is something that they continue to do, day after day,
throughout their entire careers. As Haberman (1995) noted, “star” teachers are not only more
persistent, they view ongoing persistence—for example, in the search for more effective ways to
teach—as simply part of the job. In contrast to this view on the necessity of persistence,
Haberman (1995) noted that less effective teachers look for teaching solutions that will resolve
teaching issues once and for all.
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Third, persistence may promote teacher efficacy—teachers’ belief in their ability to teach
skillfully and affect valued student outcomes. This may be significant because teacher efficacy
has been found to be associated with student achievement, with teachers’ use of effective
teaching strategies, and with teachers’ use of and willingness to adopt “reform-oriented”
teaching strategies (see Ross, 1995, and Tschannen-Moran, Woolfolk Hoy, & Hoy, 1998, for
reviews). Teachers who do not persist are less likely to develop their teaching skills and
experience teaching success, both of which are critical for fostering confidence in one’s teaching
efficacy. Moreover, in summarizing two decades of self-efficacy research, Bandura (1995) noted
that it is not achieving success easily, but rather, achieving success by overcoming difficulties,
that fosters a more robust sense of efficacy.
Fourth, persistence is part of an adaptive teacher response to teaching setbacks. Most
obviously, teachers must persist in order to achieve success after initial teaching setbacks.
Related to this, teacher persistence appears within the criteria used for assessing essential
teaching skills, in the Praxis II and Praxis III teacher assessment systems, and the Pathwise
teacher mentoring system, all developed by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). One of the
nineteen criteria in these assessments is “Demonstrating a sense of efficacy.” Although teacher
efficacy research has focused largely on teachers’ beliefs about their teaching efficacy, the
description of this criterion (ETS, 1995) focuses more on the persistence manifested in teachers’
Teachers with a high degree of efficacy regard student difficulties in learning as
challenges to their own creativity and ingenuity. They actively search for better
techniques to help students learn. Thus, a teacher with a high degree of efficacy is not
expected to know all the answers to reaching every student, but he or she will persist
[italics added] in looking for looking for alternatives (p. 46).
Fifth, and related to the issue above, persistence and reflection influence one another
reciprocally in teachers’ response to teaching setbacks. Teachers’ persistent responses to
setbacks must be informed by thoughtful reflection, so that they do not persist blindly in using
ineffective approaches. When teachers persist, they have more opportunity and motivation for
thoughtful reflection. Teachers who “give up” on resolving a teaching problem might give the
issue a second thought, but a second thought is often not enough. Rather, energetic persistence is
often necessary for effective teacher reflection (Eby & Kujawa, 1998), as the problems that
require professionals to reflect are typically complex and uncertain (Schon, 1987).
Sixth, persistence is critical for the success of educational reforms that call for changes in
classroom teaching. When new teaching approaches require students to take greater
responsibility for their learning, teachers may also have to persist to work through the student
resistance that the new approach often engenders. Also, to the extent that many recent
educational reforms embody goals that are often achieved gradually over long periods of time
(e.g., increased student autonomy), persistence and patience are required before the fruits of
one’s teaching labors materialize. Furthermore, successfully reforming education practices
requires enormous time and effort. During a multi-state study on efforts to reform subject matter
teaching (e.g., see Grant, Peterson, & Shojgreen-Downer, 1996), a colleague and I studied a
school in South Carolina that was enjoying reasonable success in implementing authentic
Teacher Persistence 6
assessment and reformed subject-matter teaching. We asked the principal what the school faculty
had to do in order to accomplish this. He simply replied, “We work like dogs.”
Finally, persistence is necessary for developing methods and curricula that are responsive
to and effective with diverse groups of students. Achieving this requires extra work, for example,
in getting to know students, their families, their heritage, and their perspectives—all of which are
critical to effectively teaching “other people’s children” (Delpit, 1995). Indeed, Delpit ended her
classic analysis of cultural conflict in education with a brief description of a first-grade teacher
named Stephanie, who developed a curriculum that was highly responsive to and respectful of
her African-American students. What was necessary for Stephanie to acquire the knowledge she
needed to create this rich curriculum? Stephanie “worked, read, and studied on her own to make
such knowledge a part of her pedagogy” (Delpit, 1995, p.182).
Furthermore, it is only through trial and error, and the reflection and skill building
described earlier, that teachers are able to adapt their teaching to be appropriate for diverse
learners. The persistence this requires is remarkable, for the approach that “works” with one
student or one class may not work with others. In this situation, the responsive teacher then
reinvents his or her teaching once again.
Persistence is a very old-fashioned virtue, but for the many reasons outlined above, it
seems clear that persistence is still critical for effective teaching in the 21st century. Increased
effectiveness may reduce teacher attrition, since having an effect on students has been found to
be central to teachers’ motivation to teach (Lortie, 1975; McLaughlin, 1991; Rosenholtz, 1989;
Sederberg & Clark, 1990), and to be a main source of their satisfaction with teaching (e.g.
Cockburn, 2000; Stanford, 2001). In contrast, Glickman and Tamashiro (1982) found that
teachers who had lesser confidence in their teaching effectiveness were more likely to leave the
profession than were those with greater confidence in their teaching effectiveness.
How Can Teacher Education Foster Teacher Persistence?
Perhaps no teacher education program will ever adopt the mission statement “Dedicated
to Developing Doggedly Persistent (or Cheerfully Persistent) Teachers.” However, given the
foregoing analysis, it seems wise for teacher educators to explicitly aim to develop the
persistence of prospective and practicing teachers. Adopting this as a program goal is a first step,
but how can teacher education programs foster greater teacher persistence?
One approach is to use some measure of persistence as a selection criterion for entry into
teacher education programs. Martin Haberman has included such criteria in his clinical
interviews for teacher education candidates, and believes that this process improves the
program’s ability to identify candidates who are more likely to be persistent and effective
teacher. However, it is not clear how widely such a time-intensive screening process will be
used, especially in large teacher education programs.
In working with those students who are already admitted, teacher educators might
consistently address the knowledge, skills, and disposition described below as part of the core
content of their teacher education programs. First, teacher education programs might
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systematically emphasize the knowledge that makes persistence a rational response to the daily
challenges of teaching. Simply learning about the role of persistence in the stories of highly
effective teachers would be a good beginning. Along these lines, while sending teacher education
students to observe and interview respected teachers is appropriate, such assignments should also
include watching those teachers do the behind-the-scenes work of planning the next day,
evaluating and grading students’ work, and preparing and organizing teaching materials.
Prospective teachers might interview these teachers about the work and persistence needed in
teaching, and about how they have worked, and are working, to address teaching challenges.
Delpit (1995) noted that teacher education programs often emphasize how children of
color, poor children, and children from single-parent homes struggle with school achievement.
This emphasis gives prospective and practicing teachers a reason to believe that persistence does
not yield results with these children. Thus, if they are not already doing so, teacher educators
might heavily infuse their courses and programs with research and stories about the dramatic
effectiveness of individual teachers and educational programs for these children (e.g., see Delpit,
1995; Berreuta-Clement, Schweinhart, Barnett, Epstein, & Weikart, 1984; Teel, et al., 1998). In
essence, the goal is to help prospective or practicing teachers gain knowledge that might
influence their expectations for student achievement, or their efficacy beliefs regarding their own
teaching. Researchers could then study the possible influence of learning such knowledge on
these teachers’ beliefs about students, their beliefs about themselves, and their persistence in
Second, teacher educators might help prospective and practicing teachers develop the
skills that help teachers persist. This would include teaching general self-regulation strategies
(e.g., see Dembo, 2001) such as planning, encoding of information, and motivational control. It
might also include specific strategies for regulating one’s emotions in stressful teaching
situations (see Sutton, 2002). Although there is little research on teachers’ self-regulation
(Sutton, 2002), these are promising areas for fostering teacher persistence. Researchers might
study the utility of general models of self-regulation for fostering persistence in teaching, and
also study the effects on teachers’ persistence of using the self-regulation strategies that highly-
effective teachers report using.
Third, teacher educators might help prospective and practicing teachers develop the
disposition (i.e., habit) of persisting when faced with setbacks. Habits or dispositions develop
through regular use and practice, and teacher education students might practice being persistent
and experiencing success through persistence in several ways. First, teacher educators might
routinely require students to revise and improve lesson plans or other assignments, based on
instructor feedback. Similarly, students might re-teach lessons in methods courses, or persist
until they reach some objectives with the PK-12 students they are teaching in methods courses,
practica and student teaching, or service learning activities. In field placements, students’
persistence in addressing learning or behavioral issues could become a key factor in evaluating
their performance. Requiring revisions and improvements of our students communicates high
expectations for them, and providing them with multiple rounds of feedback models teaching
Teacher Persistence 8
In addition to addressing these outcomes within the core content of teacher education
courses, we need to examine the way in which we evaluate our students. The literature on
grading practices suggests that colleges of education have “a leading position in grade inflation”
(Zirkel, 1999, p. 256), with departments and colleges of education frequently giving the highest
grades of any academic unit, with the vast majority of grades awarded being A’s and B’s. On the
graduate level in education, a substantial majority of grades given in many institutions are A’s,
with very few C’s given. Perhaps positive faculty intentions underlie this prevalence of high
grades. For example, faculty may give consistently high grades as an attempt to mitigate the
problems associated with using grading systems at all (e.g., see Kohn, 1994).
Nevertheless, if teacher educators are giving consistently high grades without requiring
substantial effort, persistence, and high-quality work from students, this practice may undermine
students’ persistence, or at best, do nothing to develop it. Students who earn consistently high
grades on their first try are more likely to attribute their successes to their high ability, and regard
ability as a fixed “entity” (Dweck & Leggett, 1988). Based on motivation theory and research,
when these individuals face the inevitable struggles of early teaching experiences, they may be
more likely to attribute their failures to lack of ability, and believe that their low level of ability
is fixed and cannot be changed (see Cain & Dweck, 1995). Not surprisingly, this pattern of
attributions and beliefs about ability leads individuals to be discouraged and give up easily when
they encounter struggles and failure (Bandura, 1995).
In contrast, students who have consistently achieved success after persisting, and who
receive the message that their progress has been due to hard work are more likely to believe that
their abilities are developed through effort (see Schunk, 1982). This attributional pattern is
associated with increased effort and persistence when encountering struggles (Dweck & Leggett,
1988). As Bandura (1995) noted, “A resilient sense of efficacy requires experience in
overcoming obstacles through perseverant effort. Some difficulties and setbacks in human
pursuits serve a useful purpose in teaching that success usually requires sustained effort” (p.3).
Evaluation practices that require repeated efforts and thoughtful revisions from
students—on written assignments and when teaching in field placements—are not without
challenges. Although some students appreciate being challenged in this way, most do not cheer
this approach, and some students resent it. These changes in evaluation also require teacher
educators to exert additional effort to make their performance expectations clear, and to put more
time and effort into evaluating students’ performance and providing them with feedback.
Discussion and Limitations
It is important to contextualize this discussion—to define when increased teacher
persistence is likely to be most beneficial, and what type of teacher persistence is beneficial.
Most teachers work very hard and often persist in the ways that characterize teacher persistence,
as defined here. Thus, it would be both unfair and misguided to suggest that most problems with
American education result from insufficient teacher effort and persistence. However, there are
certain conditions in which insufficient teacher persistence may be more likely to be problematic.
Teacher Persistence 9
Teaching children with challenging behaviors places a premium on teacher persistence,
as does teaching children who learn more slowly or have disabilities that require complicated
adaptations. Teaching young children can also demand extra teacher persistence, for young
children often require an enormous amount of repetition in their learning.
Another important context regarding teacher persistence is teacher age. For many
individuals, their underlying work ethic, and their self-discipline and persistence are not as
developed in their early- and mid-twenties as they will be in the decades that follow. Although
working hard is not the entirety of teacher persistence, working hard is a necessary ingredient of
teacher persistence. Students who sometimes complain about taking 9:00 classes, or who seem
astonished when professors ask them to work on a task for two hours in a row then quickly step
into a profession that requires much more of them than that. New teachers gradually adjust to the
demands of their new role, and many of them report working much harder than they had to in
their teacher education programs. However, many new teachers struggle while making this
adjustment, and the beginnings of their careers may get off to a rockier start than they would
have if those individuals were more persistent to begin with.
Urban districts employ a disproportionate number of young novice teachers, and in urban
districts, a dismaying number of these teachers leave the district or leave teaching altogether
before their sixth year of teaching. Enormous persistence is also required of teachers in suburban
and rural districts, but the need for teacher persistence is especially strong in many urban
districts. If teacher education programs better prepared future urban teachers for the persistence
that will be required of them, might more new teachers in urban settings (especially younger
ones) last longer in teaching? If so, how might having a more stable teaching corps influence
other issues with which urban districts struggle?
However, with respect to the challenges that urban teaching often poses, some scholars
may argue that a focus on a psychological characteristic like teacher persistence is naive. They
might suggest that teacher educators should instead focus of the cultural context of teaching, and
how that sustains or undermines teachers (and teacher persistence). From that view, it may seem
foolhardy to invest our energy and talents in fostering greater persistence in future teachers—
and then send them into poorly functioning schools and districts, contexts that may erode their
persistence and zeal for teaching. On the other hand, Haberman has described star teachers of
children in poverty as being individuals who persevere in their efforts to reach children despite
the problems around them. This is not a rational kind of persistence that Haberman (1995) has
described—persisting if the conditions are right, or supportive. No, it is clearly a kind of
seemingly irrational persistence that he has described—a commitment to reach students despite
all the conditions that make others see such efforts as foolhardy. Teacher educators need not
choose between fostering teacher persistence versus trying to improve the conditions of teaching;
they can and should work on both simultaneously. However, many teacher educators may be in a
better situation to foster a stronger habit of persistence in the future teachers they teach than they
are to change the global conditions of local schools, especially in large urban districts with
hundreds of schools.
What kind of teacher persistence is worth fostering? Mindless persistence—doing the
same failed strategy again and again—is not the goal. Reflection and persistence should
Teacher Persistence 10
complement each other, and teacher educators should help future teachers to be both persistent
and to be smart about how they persist. For teacher educators, requiring students to indeed make
the necessary revisions on earlier work or in certain aspects of their teaching—and not to simply
do it again—is one way of fostering thoughtful persistence. In contrast, to require students to
revise work, but to not carefully ensure that they made necessary improvements, may simply
promote mindless persistence.
Thomas Edison commented, “The difference between coal and diamonds is that
diamonds stayed on the job longer.” Teacher persistence is not a panacea. However, thoughtful
and determined persistence can make the difference between teachers who struggle and only last
a short time in the profession, and those who continue to grow professionally, and make a
substantial positive impact on their students. Many proposals for improving teacher education
involve complex structural changes in programs, but all teacher educators can foster teacher
persistence, through simple (yet challenging) changes in core content and evaluation. In spite of
the challenges that accompany these changes, fostering greater teacher persistence—thoughtful
teacher persistence—is worth the effort. It can help support high expectations and the
development of teaching skills, as well as teachers’ reflectiveness, responsiveness to diversity,
confidence in their teaching efficacy, effective responses to teaching setbacks, and successful use
of reformed teaching methods.
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... Just as consistent use of active engagement techniques in the classroom helps students develop good habits by seeing the value of practicing them, instructors must do the same. Also, an instructor's persistence is critical for teaching excellence and helps develop and maintain students' expectations of what teaching excellence should be (Wheatley, 2002). According to Wheatley (2002), this is especially true for students for whom others may have low expectations of them or who have low expectations of themselves. ...
... Also, an instructor's persistence is critical for teaching excellence and helps develop and maintain students' expectations of what teaching excellence should be (Wheatley, 2002). According to Wheatley (2002), this is especially true for students for whom others may have low expectations of them or who have low expectations of themselves. ...
... Persistence also is vital in developing effective teaching skills and requires experimenting, practicing, reflecting, and more practicing. It is an old-fashioned but critical virtue in teaching (Wheatley, 2002). Further, teacher enthusiasm is critical and cited as the single most important factor for student motivation (McClurg & Morris, 2014). ...
Companies have a strong financial incentive to implement automation and artificial intelligence (AI), and many companies are already doing this. Companies owing a profit-making duty to their shareholders will undoubtedly choose to implement automation to increase profits. As labor-saving automation and AI are increasingly used by businesses, the federal government’s overreliance on tax revenue from labor income may create the need for new tax revenue sources. In looking for new and different sources of tax revenue besides labor income, the U.S. should be open to implementing a value-added tax (VAT). This lesson and example engage business and accounting students to think about how automation benefits companies financially, and also about the potential changes large-scale automation could bring. Article published at: 2021 TBTEA Journal Vol. 21 No. 1 pages 82-90
... For new teachers, verbal persuasion acts as an important source of self-efficacy, at least until successful mastery experiences occur (Milner and Woolfolk Hoy 2003). Disposition may also be a significant factor (Usher and Pajares 2008;Wheatley 2002b). ...
... Our teachers' accounts illustrated various ways that school contexts might affect the teachers' professional lives and therefore their efficacy beliefs, but they also provided examples where contextual factors appeared to have little influence. For example, for Jenni, a lack of provided resources appeared to stimulate her determination to develop these for herself rather than undermining her confidence, a finding in keeping with her identified positive professional resilience (Wheatley 2002b). ...
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This paper reports on 20 newly qualified secondary science teachers (NQSSTs) participating in a New Zealand study on teachers’ early professional learning. The focus of our study is how these new teachers were nurtured to become competent science teachers, confident of their ability to positively influence student learning. Based on responses to a graduating questionnaire and three interviews across their first 18 months of teaching, we look at the effect of induction and contextual factors on the teachers’ efficacy. While the NQSSTs overall reported relatively constant ratings of self-efficacy, they demonstrated different patterns of declared efficacy across this 18-month period. Findings regarding the influence of induction practices and contextual factors on the efficacy of these teachers are mixed.
... More recently Wheatley (2016) mentioned that persistence may be related to student achievement as it promoted to self-efficacy (a teacher's belief in their ability to teach effectively). Self-efficacy in turn was found to be associated with student achievement (Wheatley, 2002). In a recent study the critical attributes of novice teachers were explored in a crossnational study across four countries and their findings revealed that empathy and communication, organization and planning and resilience and adaptability were the attributes critical for the success of novice teachers (Klassen et al., 2018). ...
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This study explored the deployment of the core qualities of Novice Teachers in facing challenges within the Mauritian context. The main purpose of this study was to gain a deeper understanding of the role of core qualities in how the average novice teacher adapts to the challenges they encounter in their first year as credentialed primary school teachers. Research literature used in this study has indicated that although novice teachers are often unprepared to meet the contextual challenges they encounter, many still adapt and survive. This is contrary to most the literature on novice teachers which tends to portray them in negative terms. Korthagen’s core qualities derived from the field of positive psychology and the onion model proved useful in helping to understand how novice teachers adapt and survive their first year of practice as credentialed teachers. This research study was located within an interpretivist narrative inquiry design. Three novice teacher participants teaching in various schools were purposively selected for the study. All participants have studied for their professional qualification at the Mauritius Institute of Education. Given the exploratory nature of the study because little is known about core qualities, a qualitative research approach was used for the generation of data. This included conversational interviews with the participants which lasted over a period of three years. Data gathering produced narratives for each participant which were presented in first and third person to both capture the voices of the participants and also analyse their teaching practices using the analytics of the study namely the personal biography of the participants; the education experience of the participants in becoming a teacher; their teaching practices that illuminates the core qualities that they deploy in their teaching practices and their reflections on their teaching practices based on their interview processes. Analysis of the stories in the study identified three themes humanistic core qualities, much of which resonate with my theoretical framework that guided this study, professional core qualities that delve into the knowledge and training received in their training programme to become a teacher and contextual core qualities that I introduce as framing their teaching practices. Key findings that emerge from the analysis in the chapter reveal that because there is a disjuncture between being theoretically prepared to teach and the reality of the classroom, novice teachers default to three core qualities namely the humanistic core quality of empathy and compassion, the professional core qualities of knowledge and planning and contextual core qualities of regulatory frameworks that forces them to find alternate and more humane approaches to promote teaching and learning. Furthermore, the findings also reveal that the process followed by novice teachers in coping with their first teaching experience is reflection, going back to their basket of alternatives and adaptation of selected
... For example: a teacher's sense of efficacy was found to have a positive relationship with student achievement ; found that students with significant behaviour problems in their early years were less likely to have problems later on in school if their teachers are sensitive to their needs and provide positive feedback frequently and consistently; Wheatley (2002) identified teacher persistence as a crucial dimension of effective teaching; and Shidler (2009) reported on the differential effects of two types of coaching models on teacher efficacy and student achievement, with the more effective being "coaching for instructional efficacy in specific content and teaching methods, directly facilitated by the coaches" (p. 453). ...
... Researchers are now turning their attention to tracking the development of children's learning dispositions (Carr & Claxton 2002). A focus on dispositions sends the message to future teachers that it is no longer adequate to plan only for children's knowledge and skill learning according to Wheatley (2002). ...
... Researchers are now turning their attention to tracking the development of children's learning dispositions (Carr & Claxton 2002). A focus on dispositions sends the message to future teachers that it is no longer adequate to plan only for children's knowledge and skill learning according to Wheatley (2002). ...
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Special education teacher (SET) persistence and attrition have been investigated for several decades. However, there are several predictors for SETs’ intent to stay or leave that are yet to be investigated. Using Bandura’s social cognitive theory, we developed the Special Education Teacher Persistence in Teaching Survey (SETPTS) and examined multiple factors for SETs’ persistence in their careers despite a range of challenges they face. Ninety-six SETs at various stages in their careers completed the survey to understand the complex dynamics of persistence. Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient and hierarchical logistic regression analysis revealed factors correlated with teacher persistence, and barriers that may cause attrition. In the findings, we address ways to improve SET retention, as well as possible future directions for research, education policy, and practice for teacher preparation and retention.
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The study was conducted to examine the changes in self-efficacy beliefs in prospective teachers during a Master's level pre-service teacher education program, and sampled 96 female and 20 male student teachers from a public university in Pakistan. A 5-point, Likert-type scale incorporating the four factors: locus of control, persistent behavior, classroom anxiety and professional mastery beliefs, was constructed by using factor analysis to assess self-efficacy beliefs in unique cultural and social norms of Pakistan. Results for the above sample of education programs (Masters Elementary Education, Secondary Education, and Science Education) indicated that prospective teachers' self-efficacy beliefs on all four factors significantly decreased from the first semester to the fourth semester. Similar situation was found on the sample of three teacher education programs on the composite scale. Results of the study with possible implications to policy makers and educators are discussed.
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This study explains the development and validation of a questionnaire instrument to measure the self-efficacy beliefs of 180 in-service schoolteachers in Pakistan. Four dimensions of teacher self-efficacy were identified in the Pakistani context: classroom management, persistent behaviour, level of teacher anxiety and professional mastery. Validation of the four scales for the Pakistani teachers was achieved by obtaining unidimensional factors. Cronbach alpha reliabilities varied from 0.85 to 0.71. Subsequent breakdowns of scale scores show significant differences between teachers in government/private schools, their professional qualifications and whether they are in permanent or temporary employment. Intercorrelation of the four factors supports the applicability of Bandura's teacher efficacy model to teachers in Pakistan.
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This article presents new evidence on the crime-reducing impacts of a high-quality, intensive early childhood program with long-term follow-up, evaluated by a randomized controlled trial. Proportionately, more women than men decrease their criminal activity after participating in the program. This gender difference arises because of the worse home environments for girls, with corresponding greater scope for improvement by the program. For both genders, treatment effects are larger for the least-advantaged children, as measured by their mother's education at baseline. The dollar value of the social cost of criminal activity averted is higher for men because they commit more costly violent crimes.
Adolescents' beliefs in their personal control affects their psychological well-being and the direction their lives take. Self-Efficacy in Changing Societies analyzes the diverse ways in which beliefs of personal efficacy operate within a network of sociocultural influences to shape life paths. The chapters, by internationally known experts, cover such concepts as infancy and personal agency, competency through the life span, the role of family, and cross-cultural factors.
Teachers’ beliefs in their effectiveness consistently predict desired student outcomes. This article argues that the achievement impact of Teacher Efficacy (TE) arises from goal-setting and attributional processes. Teachers who anticipate that they will be successful set more challenging goals for themselves and their students, accept responsibility for the outcomes of instruction, and persist through obstacles. These findings suggest that student achievement of cognitive and affective goals can be enhanced by strengthening TE. The hypothesis that school improvement will flow from enhanced TE has been tested in a variety of skill-development projects with mixed results. It is pro -posed that skill-development approaches be augmented by attending to teacher beliefs (particularly about the mutability of intelligence) and to conditions of teacher work.
Learn how "star" teachers are set apart from those who fail to reach children in poverty.
1. Exercise of personal and collective efficacy in changing societies Albert Bandura 2. Life trajectories in changing societies Glen Elder 3. Developmental analysis of control beliefs August Flammer 4. Impact of family processes on self-efficacy Klaus A. Schneewind 5. Cross-cultural perspectives on self-efficacy beliefs Gabriele Oettingen 6. Self-efficacy in educational development Barry Zimmerman 7. Self-efficacy in career choice and development Gail Hackett 8. Self efficacy and health Ralf Schwarzer and Reinhard Fuchs 9. Self-efficacy and alcohol and drug abuse Alan Marlatt, John S. Baer and Lori A. Quigley.