Date of Award

Spring 2-10-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in School Leadership


Center for Leadership & Learning


College of Education

Committee Chair

Dr. Sarah Gordon

Second Committee Member

Dr. Steve Bounds

Third Committee Member

Dr. Amy Manley

Program Director

Dr. John Freeman

Dean of Graduate College

Dr. Richard Schoephoerster


Teacher self-efficacy is used to describe how a teacher feels about their ability to perform the tasks related to teaching. This qualitative study focused on how teachers’ perceptions of their school climate affect teacher self-efficacy in eight middle school teachers in Arkansas. Participants were Arkansas middle school teachers with three or more years of experience. The typical participant was a 43-year-old female with an undergraduate degree in education, a master’s degree, and 16 years of classroom experience. A request for participants was sent to the superintendent of every district in Arkansas that had at least one middle school with the exception of the current and previous employer of the researcher. Once permission was granted from the superintendent, the researcher sent a request for participants to the middle school principals and ended up with eight volunteer participants. Interviews were conducted using a teleconferencing platform, and artifacts were collected. Data analysis was done using the Constant Comparative Method. The interview transcripts were coded based on emerging patterns in responses, and the emerging patterns became the themes that the key findings were based on. Results indicated that teachers working in self-described positive climates had positive descriptions of their teacher self-efficacy. Other findings include the importance of relationships with coworkers and students to teachers, the impact of the support and trust from leadership on teachers, and the impact of leaders on school climate. In addition to the key findings, the final chapter contains also contains implications for practice and suggestions for future research.