Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Testing an Intervention to Foster Academic Optimism in Teachers
by Goree, Janeen Marie, Ed.D., California State University, Fresno, 2019, 158; 22616152
Abstract (Summary)

Stress is an ongoing issue in education. Because of stressors, teachers’ sense of perceived abilities are being affected having an impact on how optimistic they are concerning their students abilities. More recent research has connected mindfulness practices to the alleviation of the feelings of stress by teaching educators to be present and in the moment with their students. This dissertation examined the impact of mindfulness interventions to foster greater academic optimism and mindfulness in teachers. The participation sample included 107 educational professionals (teachers, principals, social workers, and school counselors) from two different school districts in a western state. All participants received a mindfulness intervention in attempts to foster three constructs of academic optimism: teacher self-efficacy, teacher trust in parents and students, and academic emphasis along with mindfulness. Prior to the intervention, participants partook in a pretest. Immediately after the intervention all participants took a posttest, then 8 weeks after the intervention another posttest was given. During the 8 weeks after the initial intervention, half of all participants were randomly selected to participate in a weekly check-in. The quantitative analysis suggests that the only constructs with a statistically significant impact were self-efficacy and academic emphasis. The qualitative data suggest that the mindfulness intervention did have a positive impact on teacher wellbeing, classroom climate, and relationship building between teachers and students. This study suggests that even brief interventions can have a measurable impact on teacher self-efficacy and academic emphasis, while other constructs such as trust and mindfulness seem more difficult to impact.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Wandeler, Christian
Commitee: Wise, Donald, Wahleithner, Juliet
School: California State University, Fresno
Department: Educational Leadership
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 81/2(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational psychology, Teacher education, Occupational psychology
Keywords: Academic optimism, Growth mindset, Intervention, MIndfulness, Self-efficacy, Stress
Publication Number: 22616152
ISBN: 9781085616355
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