School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Scott B Watson


correlation, mathematics, reform, teacher efficacy


Education | Science and Mathematics Education


The purpose of this correlation study was to investigate the relationship between teacher background training and teaching efficacy for instructing mathematics in the middle grades during the transition to Common Core State Standards. Participants included 37 mathematics teachers in grades six, seven, and eight in the CORE East TN region. Surveys containing the Mathematics Teaching Efficacy Beliefs Instrument (MTEBI) were electronically administered to determine the dependent variables: self-efficacy (personal teaching efficacy) and outcome expectancy for teaching mathematics. Additional questions measured the independent variable, teacher background training, defined by number of college mathematics course hours taken, number TNCore mathematics training days attended, and years of experience teaching mathematics. Spearman's rho correlations were calculated using SPSS to determine the relationship between the independent and dependent variables. A significant, positive relationship was found for the number of college mathematics course hours taken and self- efficacy, but not for outcome expectancy. A significant, positive relationship was also found for self-efficacy and outcome expectancy. No significant correlations were indicated for TNCore mathematics training days attended or years' experience teaching mathematics on self-efficacy or outcome expectancy. Discussion of results, implications, and recommendations for future research are also included.