School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Christopher Clark


African-American Females, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Perceptions, Teacher Readiness


Educational Administration and Supervision | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Other Education | Other Educational Administration and Supervision


The purpose of this phenomenological study was to understand and explain the perceptions of African-American female teachers’ levels of preparedness for the teaching field after attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Preparedness was generally defined as one’s readiness to teach in the classroom. The main theory guiding this study was Dewey’s (1938) theory of experience and education. The central question of this study was: What are the perceptions of preparedness for African-American female teacher education graduates at Historically Black Colleges and Universities? The sub-questions focused on the characteristics of Dewey’s (1938) theory of experience and education, additional helpful resources, and obstacles experienced. I collected data to answer these questions using questionnaires, blogs, and interviews. I utilized pattern, theme, and content analysis and a series of bracketing, coding, and theme identification to analyze the data. In this study, the participants reported high levels of preparedness for the field. There were a variety of social and emotional components that contributed to feelings of preparedness. Continuity and interaction, constructs of Dewey’s (1938) theory of experience and education, were evident in the teacher preparation experiences of the candidates. The participants perceived as helpful the intellectual resources that focused on curriculum and instruction, but could have used some additional assistance in some of the non-teaching areas of the profession. Finally, obstacles that participants faced were departmental, instructional, and individual in nature.