Academic journal article International Journal of Applied Educational Studies

Teachers Beliefs about Classroom Management: Pre-Service and Inservice Teachers' Beliefs about Classroom Management

Academic journal article International Journal of Applied Educational Studies

Teachers Beliefs about Classroom Management: Pre-Service and Inservice Teachers' Beliefs about Classroom Management

Article excerpt

In the current climate of accountability, teachers must provide a classroom environment that supports academic achievement for all students. Legislation such as the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 hold schools accountable for the academic progress of all students. Failure to meet "Adequately Yearly Progress" (AYP), a federal mandate requiring goals for each school and district, results in schools being classified as "in need of improvement". These schools then face serious consequences, ranging from parents being permitted to transfer their children to another school at the district's expense to completely restructuring the school. This type of legislation raises the stakes for teachers to establish learning environments where all children achieve academically. Effective classroom management is critical in the establishment of learning environments that promote academic success.

A review of the literature reveals that teachers historically have ranked classroom management as one of their major concerns (Martin, 2006; Evertson & Weinstein, 2006; Ritter & Hancock, 2007; Meinick & Meister, 2008; Tauber, 2007; Henson, 2001; Sugai & Hormer, 2002; Laut, 1999). Teaching is a complex profession requiring teachers to be effective in implementing and maintaining order while delivering effective instruction. This balance not only is a challenge for novice teachers, but also for the experienced teacher. Poor classroom management often leads to misbehaviors which interfere with teaching and learning, and produces tremendous stress (Friedman, 2006). This stress can lead to teachers exiting the profession. Gonzalez, Brown and Slate (2008) found that one of the primary factors for teachers leaving the profession was "difficulties with student discipline" (p.1). In addition, the National Commission on Teaching America's Future (2005) reported that teachers who transfer schools often site problematic student behavior as one of the main reasons for their transfer request. Classroom management is an understandable concern for teachers, particularly given the fact that schools are expected to provide a safe, orderly environment and that teachers are accountable for students' academic achievement.

The term classroom management generally refers to teachers' "efforts to oversee the activities of the classroom, including learning, social interaction, and student behavior" (Martin, Yin, & Baldwin, 1998, p.6). Classroom management is perceived to be dynamic and essential for academic success, therefore "creating the best learning environment possible is the primary focus of the classroom teacher's responsibility" (Martin, Yin, & Mayall, 2006, p.1). Teacher preparation programs must ensure that graduates not only be highly qualified in the content area they teach by NCLB definition, but also possess the skills necessary to create a safe learning environment that promotes academic achievement.

The purpose of this study was to identify the classroom management beliefs of preservice and inservice teachers. Two research questions guided this study: (1) what are the beliefs of preservice and inservice teachers on classroom management? and (2) Is there a difference between preserive and inservice teachers' beliefs on classroom management?

Method

This study investigated preservice and inservice teachers' beliefs on classroom management in order to determine if there was a difference in beliefs. The study reviewed data compiled from all Ohio's teacher training institutes of higher education (IHE) who participated in a statewide Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) study. TQP "is a comprehensive, longitudinal study of the preparation, in-school support, and effectiveness of Ohio teachers" (TQP, 2008). All of Ohio's 50 colleges and universities that provide teacher preparation programs have formed a consortium to identify how the preparation and development of new teachers affect the success of the students they serve. …

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