School of Education


Doctor of Philosophy in Education (PhD)


Rebecca Lunde


self-efficacy, traditional teacher certification, alternative teacher certification, teacher attrition, professional development, teacher-student relationship


Education | Special Education and Teaching


The purpose of this study was to determine if a significant difference of self-efficacy exists between teachers with traditional or alternative certification pathways. Traditional and alternative pathways differ in curriculum and design toward teacher licensure. The methodology of this study was a quantitative, causal comparative study with 90 sample participants located in a school district in rural central west Georgia. The school district includes 20 schools, which consist of eleven elementary schools, three middle schools, three high schools, one college and career academy, one college and career center, and one alternative learning center. The study was conducted with the 12 question Likert-scale version of the TSES (Teacher Self-Efficacy Scale). The study’s independent variable was the certification pathway that was split into two groups consisting of traditional or alternative teacher certification. The dependent variable of this study was the teacher’s self-efficacy scores. The results of the MANOVA for self-efficacy indicated that no significant difference exists between teachers with traditional or alternative certification pathways. The results of this study answers to the teacher attrition phenomenon occurring across the United States, specifically Georgia. It can be concluded that if educators resign due to lack of teacher preparation, then self-efficacy can be identified as an influence within professional development in addition to its impact on teacher attrition, teacher shortages, and teacher burnout. It is recommended that further research examine the reasons why traditional and alternative certification pathways differ in preparation methods as well as the validity and effectiveness of both pathways.