Year of Publication

2011

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Dissertation

College

Education

Department

Educational and Counseling Psych

First Advisor

Dr. H. Thompson Prout

Abstract

Within an experimental vignette design, 224 certified teachers participated in this online study by completing a researcher created rating scale that assessed expectations for a child described in a randomly assigned vignette; a child without mental illness, a child identified with an emotional behavioral disorder, and a child identified as returning from acute psychiatric care. Results from the current study revealed reliable scales; learning, cooperation, self-control, and teacher self-efficacy. Findings indicated teachers reported significantly different expectations for children identified with mental illness in comparison to typical children in the areas of self-control and cooperation; specifically, teachers reported lower expectations for students to use self-control and cooperate if they have a history of the label Emotional Behavioral Disability (EBD). Further, teacher certification in the area of special education was a predictor for ratings of teacher self-efficacy to work with children labeled with EBD or a psychiatric hospitalization. In the whole sample, special education certification was a predictor variable for ratings of expectations for teacher self-efficacy. Years experience also predicted teacher self-efficacy. The results of the current study help support the argument for teachers to receive more training to assist children with mental illness and psychological problems, as participant responses clearly indicated a need for additional training and assistance when presented with challenging cases in the real world.

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