Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Shaw, Carla C.

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Teaching and Learning


High school teachers; Hispanic American high school students; Teacher-student relationships; Urban high schools


The purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which teacher efficacy influences Latino high school student efficacy. A mixed-methods approach was used to analyze teachers at an urban high school with a significant Latino presence. Latino sophomore students, with a GPA of 3.0 or above, were asked to identify and rate their sophomore teachers on a survey, based on Haberman's 1995 functions of STAR teachers. Department chairpersons were asked to rate teachers under their supervision, using a rating scale, also based on Haberman's functions. Of the 72 teachers identified, 33 sophomore teachers participated in the study. Teachers completed Gibson & Dembo's 1984 Teacher Efficacy Scale survey to rate two scores: general teacher efficacy and personal teacher efficacy. A linear transformation of these three scales was used to calculate a Teacher Success Score. Teachers who scored in the 50th percentile were identified as successful teachers. Of the 16 successful teachers, eight agreed to be interviewed. The objectives of this study were: (1) investigate the levels of efficacy exhibited by teachers of Latino high school students, (2) identify differences, patterns or relationships that emerged from the efficacy scores or demographics of successful teachers of Latino high school students, and (3) identify relationships between teacher traits and teacher efficacy for successful teachers. Major findings include stronger personal teacher efficacy among the total teacher sample as well as those identified as successful teachers. Teachers believed that they had stronger influence within the classroom than external factors. There were no significant correlation between efficacy scores and demographics of successful teachers. Findings from interviews suggested that successful teachers exhibit various degrees of Haberman’s functions. These included embracing diversity, fostering safe learning, stamina for learning, initiating change, and valuing student effort over ability. Other traits exhibited by successful teachers include respect towards Latinos, the importance of Spanish, and experiences of metanoia when working with Latinos. Findings also suggest mastery experiences of successful teachers may outweigh the vicarious experiences that teachers of color may provide to Latino students.


Includes bibliographical references (pages 106-113)


ix, 124 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type