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Session Overview
PAP-10: Teachers and Self-Concept
Time: Tuesday, 28/Aug/2012: 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Session Chair: Fani Lauermann, University of Michigan
Location: 457


Teachers’ Power Motive Congruence and their Flow Experience and Classroom Management

Anja Schiepe-Tiska

ZIB-Center for International Student Assessment, TU München, Germany

Motivation is directed by two motivational systems: the implicit and explicit motive system (McClleland, Koestner, & Weinberger, 1989). Both systems coexist within a person but are widely independent of each other. The compensatory model (Kehr, 2004) states that the congruence of implicit and explicit motives causes flow experience - the optimal state of motivation. This paper concentrates on the power motive which is a recurrent concern for having an impact on others (Winter, 1973). There are two forms of having impact: (a) dominating others and competing, and (b) helping others (McClelland, 1975). Teaching is regarded as a help-giving profession. Therefore, I assume that teachers high in power motive congruence experience more flow while teaching than teachers low in power motive congruence. Moreover, teachers high in power motive congruence show a better classroom management than teachers low in power motive congruence. 30 teachers from a vocational school participated. Their implicit and explicit power motive were assessed prior to the lesson when flow and classroom management were assessed. Results indicate that the higher the power motive congruence, the more flow teachers experience. For classroom management, only the explicit power motive predicts structuring lessons/inspiring teaching and controlling behavior. The results show that teacher’s personality contributes to their motivation and their classroom management. Moreover, there are first hints that teachers’ flow effects student’s flow (Bakker, 2005). When we can explain, what motivates a teacher while doing his job, we can also enhance students’ motivation which is related to their school performance.

Teacher Responsibility and Teacher Emotions: Is Responsibility a Double-Edged Sword?

Fani Lauermann, Stuart A. Karabenick

University of Michigan, United States of America

We examined whether teachers’ willingness to hold themselves personally responsible for four critical educational outcomes—student motivation, student achievement, for having positive relationships with students, and for the quality of their teaching—moderates the relation between teachers’ perceptions of classroom outcomes (e.g., lack of student motivation or low student achievement) and teaching-related emotions. Different types of emotions were distinguished based on their valence and level of activation, including positive activating (e.g., feeling excited about teaching), positive deactivating (e.g., feeling calm), negative activating (e.g., feeling tense), and negative deactivating emotions (e.g., feeling worn out). Moderating effects were found based on a national survey of 487 K-12 teachers in the U.S. Results indicated that more compared to less responsible teachers maintained higher levels of engagement (energy and excitement about teaching), even when they perceived their classroom outcomes as problematic, whereas less responsible teachers appeared more likely to disengage in the face of negative classroom outcomes. Yet responsibility for students’ academic outcomes (motivation and achievement) was also related to negative affect such as tension. Thus higher levels of responsibility for academic outcomes may come at a personal cost. The findings indicate that research on teachers’ ascriptions of responsibility should focus not only on implications for students, but should also consider implications for teachers, given the potential for increased tension and a decreased level of engagement.

Teacher Self-efficacy: Still an Elusive Construct?

Colleen Kuusinen, Fani Lauermann, Stuart Karabenick

University of Michigan, United States of America

Teacher self-efficacy is theorized to predict student outcomes, yet scant evidence for this relationship exists in the literature. To address methodological and conceptual concerns that may explain this gap in the literature, we examined teacher interpretations of Tschannen-Moran and Woolfolk Hoy’s (2001) Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (TSES), a scale widely used in teacher self-efficacy research and noted to be highly aligned with theory. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 middle (44%) and high school teachers in suburban, urban and rural areas of the United States. A think aloud procedure and cognitive interviewing techniques were used to capture teachers’ spontaneous evaluations of their self-efficacy as they responded to items from the short version of the TSES. Analyses of think-aloud content suggested teacher generally evaluated their efficacy consistent with theory, yet conceptual problems emerged, particularly in the instructional strategies efficacy (ISE) subscale. First, interpretations of certain items ranged across diverse teaching domains, thus potentially limiting the scale’s predictive ability. Second, teachers were inconsistent in their analysis of the teaching task when evaluating their efficacy. Finally, teachers’ numeric responses often failed to reflect their sense of efficacy to influence students through their instructional practices. Results indicated that teachers’ interpretations of TSES items are not always consistent with the intended operationalization of self-efficacy. The finding that teachers do not always consider students in their instructional efficacy judgments presents a possible source of measurement error, but also highlights a conceptual issue not fully addressed in the literature thus far.

Relations between self-concept and self-worth: Differences or similarities for boys and girls?

A. Katrin Arens

German Institute for International Educational Research, Germany

As a high level of students’ self-worth (or self-esteem) has been found to be related to well-being and motivation (Harter, 1999), the sources of self-worth should be investigated. Several models of self-worth determination have conceptualized domain-specific facets of self-concept as determinants of self-worth (e.g., Harter, 1999). James (1892) assumed that the relation between self-concept and self-worth depends on the importance individuals attribute to specific self-concept domains. Boys and girls were found to differ in the importance they assign to self-concept domains (e.g., Wigfield & Eccles, 1994), which would imply gender-specific relations between self-concept facets and self-worth. This study examines gender differences in the relations between a wide range of self-concept facets and self-worth with 1958 German preadolescent students. Students’ multidimensional self-concept and self-worth were measured applying a German version of the Self Description Questionnaire I (Marsh, 1990). The strongest relations to self-worth were demonstrated for physical appearance and peer relations self-concepts for both boys and girls. Boys and girls were not found to differ in their relations between self-worth and domain-specific self-concept facets.

Harter, S. (1999). The construction of the self. A developmental perspective. New York: The

Guilford Press.

James, W. (1892). Psychology: The briefer course. New York: Henry Holt & Co.

Marsh, H. W. (1990). Self Description Questionnaire – I (SDQ I). Manual. Macarthur, N.S.W. Australia: University of Western Sydney.

Wigfield, A., Eccles, J. S. (1994). Children's competence beliefs, achievement values, and general self-esteem: Change across elementary and middle school. Journal of Early Adolescence, 14, 107-138.

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