was not on English teachers employed in high schools and universities. As the educational system and procedures at schools are very different from language schools in terms of objectives and procedures, mentioned beforehand in chapter one, some of the teachers among the research participants taught at high schools or universities as well, which was out of the researcher’s control. In Iran, Private language schools play a more important role in the field of ELT in Iran. Courses offered in these language schools usually focus on all four skills (Yarmohammadi, 1995), unlike upper-secondary schools and universities, which focus more on redaing. These schools usually have different programs for various age groups. Course books employed are more up-to-date and they usually follow more contemporary teaching methodologies.Besides, because of certain selection processes prior to employment, the population might not represent EFL teachers in Iran as a whole, but English teachers employed in private language schools.
The only age group of this study was adults between 20 to 35 as the majority of teachers in Safir were of that age range.
As mentioned earlier, the term novice refers to teachers who have entered the teaching profession for the first time or who have had little teaching experience (Tsui, 2003), in other words a teacher who has passed Teacher Training Course (TTC) and has less than 2100 hours of teaching is considered as a novice teacher, and more than 2100 hours are considered as experienced ones.
Chapter II
2.1 Introduction
This study aims to explore the relationship between reflective teaching and teacher self-efficacy, and identify the role of teachers’ experience in each of these constructs and on their relationships. Teacher self-efficacy is associated with numerous student and teacher positive outcomes, such as teaching effectiveness, achievement, and motivation (Knoblauch & Hoy, 2008; Eun & Heining-Boynton, 2007; Barkley, 2006; Milner, 2002; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998). However, researches conducted on this construct have mostly focused on its outcomes and little attention has been paid to make teachers more self-efficacious. If this study establishes the proposed relationship, a practical way towards self-efficacy reinforcement is suggested.
On the other hand, a large body of research has been devoted to investigating teachers’ experience, and its relationship to effective teaching. In addition, many researchers have scrutinized different aspects of reflective teaching, theoretically and practically. Furthermore, teachers’ self-efficacy is the core subject of many research papers and dissertations. Nevertheless, there is little published research in the professional literature investigating the relationship between teacher experience and teachers’ success as reflective practitioners (Akbari, Behzadpoor, & Dadvand, 2010; Akbari, 2007). In this section, accordingly, the most related researches conducted in the aforementioned disciplines have been reviewed. In so doing, two main areas emerged. First, teachers’ self-efficacy and the endeavors in developing reliable scales to measure it were scrutinized. secondly, the area of reflective teaching and its relationship to teaching quality was reviewed and selected literature regarding teachers’ self-efficacy and reflective teaching was discussed. The results of these reviews are presented in the current chapter.
2.2 Teachers’ Self-efficacy
Defined as “the extent to which the teacher believes he or she has the capacity to affect student performance” (Bergman, McLaughlin, Bass, Pauly, & Zellman, 1977, p. 137, cited in Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), teachers’ self-efficacy is recognized as a variable that reflects teaching effectiveness by mediating relationships between knowledge and behaviors (Dellinger, Bobbett, Olivier, & Ellett, 2008; Cruz & Arias, 2007). A review of researches conducted to find out the relationships between teachers’ self-efficacy and other constructs reveals that teachers’ self-efficacy is closely related to student, school and teacher outcomes.
On the one hand, teachers’ self-efficacy is related to students’ achievement (Barkley, 2006; Milner, 2002; Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), students’ motivation (Milner, 2002; Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Brouwers & Tomic, 2000; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), students’ own self- efficacy (Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), students’ persistence (Milner, 2002), and students’ self-esteem (Brouwers & Tomic, 2000).
On the other hand, in addition to affecting school effectiveness (Brouwers & Tomic, 2000), teachers’ self-efficacy affects teachers’ commitment to teaching (Chan, Lau, Nie, Lim, & Hogan, 2008; Ware & Kitsantas, 2007; Milner, 2002; Brouwers & Tomic, 2000; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), teachers’ persistence (Knoblauch & Hoy, 2008; Milner, 2002; Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), teachers’ confidence (Egel, 2009), teachers’ innovation (Saracalo & Dincer, 2009; Evers, Brouwers, & Tomic, 2002; Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Brouwers & Tomic, 2000), teachers’ classroom management strategies (Brouwers & Tomic, 2000; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998; Gibson & Dembo, 1984), teachers’ stress levels (Brouwers & Tomic, 2000), teachers’ being less critical (Henson, Kogan, & Vacha-Hasse, 2001; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy, & Hoy, 1998), teachers’ self-esteem (Huang, Liu, & Shiomi, 2007), teachers’ burnout (Evers, Brouwers, & Tomic, 2002; Milner, 2002), teachers’ affective commitment (Kent & Sullivan, 2003), and teachers’ professional development (Eun & Heining-Boynton, 2007).