The self-efficacy of special education directors in the state of Texas
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this study was to examine the self-efficacy of special education directors serving in public schools in the state of Texas. Within the review of literature the following key components were identified: special education administration, self-efficacy - theoretical perspective and self-efficacy and outcomes-based research. A non-experimental design using survey methods was used. The survey was sent to 235 special education directors identified in the Texas Council for Administrators of Special Education 2007-2008 directory. The response rate was 23% of the surveys were completed and returned. Descriptive analysis provided means and standard deviations of the personal, professional and district characteristics of the respondents under study. Inferential analysis was performed to determine which variables significantly co-varied with each of the 8 items on the self-efficacy scale. The Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) included multiple regressions to determine the magnitude of difference and significance for self-efficacy prediction among the variables. Regression analysis was performed to determine which combination of independent variables predicted self-efficacy. Even though this did not indicate significance in predicting self-efficacy among directors of special education it did allow for examination of demographic variables as predictors of self-efficacy among special education directors in the state of Texas. This examination did allow for some topics of discussion. The age, gender, and personal health of the special education directors in the study appeared to predict a high level of self-efficacy on the dependent variable, "I believe I can succeed at most any endeavor to which I set my mind." In addition, the district characteristics of size and NCLB student sub-populations (African American, Hispanic, Economically Disadvantaged, Special Education) did predict a high level of self-efficacy on the dependent variable, "Compared to other people, I can do most tasks very well." In addition, when examining the general self-efficacy of the special education directors in the study it was found that those directors with five to nine years of experience in the field indicated a higher level of self-efficacy than those directors with zero to five years of experience and those with 10 or more years of experience on two of the eight self-efficacy dependent variables. The two dependent variables noted were, "When facing difficult tasks, I am certain that I will accomplish them" and "In general, I think I can obtain outcomes that are important to me." Thus those special education directors with five to nine years of experience perceive themselves as possessing a high level of self-efficacy on dependent variables two and three of the New General Self-Efficacy Scale (Chen, Gully, & Eden, 2001). Implications and recommendations for future research were identified.