Stress and self-efficacy of special education and general education student teachers during and after the student teaching internship
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this study was to determine if special education and general education student teachers differed significantly in stress and selfefficacy during and following the student teaching semester. The institutional population was special education and general education student teachers at the top ten teacher producing universities in Texas and the sample was drawn from the four institutions which agreed to participate. Student teachers in these institutions were emailed a link to the survey site. The pretest resulted in a response rate of 16.5%, with 59 analyzable responses from participants. The posttest resulted in a response rate of 10%, with 36 analyzable responses from participants. Data from 23 student teachers completed the stress pretest and posttest survey, and 22 student teachers completed the self-efficacy pretest and posttest survey. Data were analyzed using Friedman’s ANOVA and Wilcoxon Signed Ranks Test. The survey contained two instruments, the Teacher Stress Inventory, and the Teacher Self-Efficacy Scale; and a researcher-developed demographic information sheet. Student teachers were asked to respond to questions pertaining to stress, as well as to how much influence student teachers have with certain aspects of the learning environment. Data analysis utilized descriptive and nonparametric inferential statistics to draw conclusions. Among the major research findings were: 1. General and special education student teachers were significantly more stressed and demonstrated higher levels of self-efficacy from pretest to posttest. 2. Stress was most often caused by poorly motivated students and by students not trying to the best of their abilities. 3. Self-efficacy was highest for the Disciplinary Self-Efficacy Subscale. 4. Special education student teachers did not differ significantly in either stress or self-efficacy from pretest to posttest. 5. General education student teachers differed significantly in both stress and self-efficacy from pretest to posttest. The results of this study may provide a catalyst for further research examining the interplay between stress and self-efficacy, specifically for special education student teachers, and ultimately produce additional findings that may inform student teacher curricula. Additionally, the results may help inform teacher preparation programs about methods to help mediate stress in the early stages of stress onset.
Dickerson, Kimberly Lynn (2008). Stress and self-efficacy of special education and general education student teachers during and after the student teaching internship. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from