This study of 122 British secondary teachers investigated the relationship between teacher self-efficacy and teachers' causal beliefs towards students with and without specific learning difficulties. Results found that teachers reporting higher levels of teacher self-efficacy provided more positive feedback to all students, regardless of students' ability levels, effort expenditure, or the presence of specific learning difficulties. Additionally, teachers reporting higher levels of teacher self-efficacy felt less frustration, more sympathy, and held lower expectations of future failure towards students who expended low effort. The findings suggest that teachers with higher levels of teacher self-efficacy may undertake a teacher-intrapersonal causal search to explain student underachievement, in comparison to teachers with lower levels of teacher self-efficacy who may undertake an interpersonal causal search.
- attribution theory
- teacher self-efficacy
- specific learning difficulties
- secondary education