Some elementary and middle school testing teachers are finding it difficult to remain motivated, dedicated, and committed in their careers, especially when faced with the accountability of high-stakes standardized tests. This study gives insight into the struggles of stress, anxiety, and lack of motivation among subject-area testing teachers in Grades 3 through 8 due to federal- and state-mandated goals for SLOs on high-stakes tests. The researcher explored a gap in educational discourse related to the challenges faced by elementary and middle school teachers who face doubt in their commitment to the profession because of the evaluative nature of high-stakes standardized tests for subject-area testing in Grades 3 through 8. The question driving this study was: How do stressors related to high-stakes standardized tests in Grades 3 through 8 contribute to subject-area testing teachers’ decisions to stay or leave the profession in urban public schools in Pennsylvania? The researcher, using grounded theory methodology informed by ethnographic approaches, utilized extensive data collected from written and audio recorded semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and questionnaires of subject-area testing teachers in testing Grades 3 through 8. Ethnographic areas of inquiry included stressors associated with high-stakes standardized tests and a teacher’s commitment to the profession. Strategies for addressing the demands of high-stakes standardized tests also underwent exploration.
Keywords: accountability, commitment to the profession, grounded theory, high-stakes testing, intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, resilience, stress, stressors
|Advisor:||Szpara, Michelle Y.|
|Commitee:||Gratch Hoyle, Amy, Coldwell, Karen, Sheety, Alia|
|School Location:||United States -- Pennsylvania|
|Source:||DAI-A 81/12(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Educational tests & measurements, Education Policy, Elementary education, Educational evaluation, Educational psychology|
|Keywords:||Accountability, Education, High-stakes testing, Self Efficacy, Stress, Teacher|
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