This study examined the following research question: Are there any significant relationships between mentoring new teachers and their development as self-determined professional educators? While the explicit goals related to mentoring new teachers are to improve practice, address equity issues, and increase student achievement, the implicit emotional benefits and psychological goals may be more powerful indicators of professional success, well-being, and career satisfaction. This premise guided the research: the realization that success in the classroom is much more than knowledge, skills, and technique—it could also be attributed to psychological factors such as autonomy, competence, and relatedness, the three legs of Deci and Ryan’s self-determination theory. Existing data (N = 45) from a survey of first-year teachers were analyzed to test hypotheses related to mentor support, satisfaction with the mentoring process, level of understanding of professional teaching standards, and the perception of improved practice. Statistically significant correlations were found between the dependent variable level of understanding of professional teaching standards and the independent variables: mentor support, r = .802, p < .01 and satisfaction with the process, r = .636, p < .01. Likewise, the dependent variable perception of improved practice was also significantly correlated with mentor support, r = .638, p < .01 and satisfaction with the process, r = .384, p < .01. The findings provide evidence that mentoring support and satisfaction with the process are associated with an increased level of understanding of professional teaching standards and increased perception of improved practice—two indicators of self-determination. This study may be used to inform new teacher preparation programs, induction models, mentoring practice, school reform, as well as future research.
|School:||George Fox University|
|School Location:||United States -- Oregon|
|Source:||DAI-A 73/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational leadership, School administration, Teacher education|
|Keywords:||Beginning teachers, Mentoring, Motivation, Professional development, Self-determination theory, Teacher induction, Teaching standards|
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