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The organizational climate of Omani schools in relation to teachers’ sense of efficacy : a multilevel examination of the mediating effects of teachers’ perceived collective efficacy Aldhafri, Said Suliman

Abstract

In the current study, which examines the relationship between schools’ organizational climates and teachers’ sense of efficacy, I developed a conceptual framework in which teachers’ perceived collective efficacy (TPCE) was proposed to mediate the relationships between four dimensions of school climate and teachers’ sense of efficacy. These dimensions included: collegial leadership, teacher professionalism, academic press, and community engagement. The sample consisted of 2,381 surveys (obtained from 98 schools) of Arabic elementary teachers from the Sultanate of Oman. These teachers volunteered to complete three measures assessing their individual efficacy beliefs (the Teacher Sense of Efficacy Scale), their perceived collective efficacy (the Teachers’ Perceived Collective Efficacy Scale), and their perceptions of school climate (the School Climate Index). These measures were adapted through a comprehensive test adaptation (following the International Test Commission’s guidelines) that involved two pilot studies. A hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) technique was applied to examine the nine hypotheses proposed to answer the two main questions guiding the present study: What dimensions of school climate directly predict teachers’ sense of efficacy? And what is the role, if any, of TPCE in the relationship between these school climate dimensions and teachers’ sense of efficacy? As proposed, TPCE mediated the effects of two school climate dimensions on teachers’ sense of efficacy. Supporting previous research, teacher professionalism and community engagement dimensions influenced teachers’ sense of efficacy directly and indirectly through TPCE. The effects of these two dimensions were greater on TPCE than on teachers’ sense of efficacy. Based on the construct validity evidence obtained for the three measures, the findings indicate that when teachers respect, support, and collaborate with each other and when the community is positively engaged in school activity, TPCE is enhanced, along with teachers’ sense of efficacy. Contrary to what was proposed, however, neither collegial leadership nor academic press was a statistically significant predictor of either teachers’ sense of efficacy or TPCE. While these two variables showed high bivariate correlations with both efficacy belief constructs, their effects disappeared in the presence of other dimensions of school climate. The study concludes with a discussion of its implications, limitations, and future research recommendations.

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