Exploring the development of teacher efficacy through professional learning experiences

Larry Beauchamp, Robert Klassen, Jim Parsons, Tracy Durksen, Leah Taylor

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


Our research sought to better understand the relationship between teacher professional learning and teacher efficacy. The research was carried out from 2011 to 2013 in districts and schools where professional learning had reportedly made a difference in professional practice, teachers’ beliefs about teaching, and student learning. Our research employed a mixed-methods design: over two years, four surveys collected data from 800 teachers in five school districts; and, 400 teachers were interviewed from two schools (one elementary and one secondary) in each district. This research asked what professional learning works well, how it influences teacher efficacy and professional practice, and what effective professional learning supports look like. Among our findings: teachers reported (80%) their best professional learning as “collaboration with colleagues.” Secondary teachers reported higher self-efficacy than collective efficacy; elementary teachers reported both high self-efficacy and high collective efficacy. Teachers reported a need (89.3%) to focus professional learning on becoming better teachers (develop classroom resources, support for their subjects, classroom management, technology skills, and instructional strategies to better meet the needs of diverse students) and less focus on students’ needs/student learning (21.4%). Our findings contribute to greater insight into how to engage teacher education at the school, district, and organizational level.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherAlberta Ministry of Education
Commissioning bodyAlberta Ministry of Education
Number of pages80
ISBN (Print)978-1-927074-23-7
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014

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