Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Dorsch, Nina G.

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Teaching and Learning


Elementary school teachers--Self-rating of; Elementary school teachers--Training of


The purpose of this phenomenological case study was to examine the factors which teachers perceive as affecting personal learning within a professional development model which is based upon best practice research. The case consists of K–6 teachers in a suburban school district, and a purposive sample of 18 teachers in an eligible population of 35 teachers. The phenomenon studied is experience in a three-year professional development initiative for Balanced Literacy. Three research questions address how teachers gauge their level of learning in professional development, what factors teachers identify as promoting or inhibiting learning, and what impact on learning was indicated for self-efficacy. In this qualitative study, data were collected through in-depth interviews. Data gathered through interviews were analyzed to identify common themes using the Creswell Spiral. Themes focused on the aspects of learning in professional development identified by teachers as effective in the process of change in practice. Teachers gauge professional learning in terms of application to classroom practice. Teachers expect professional development to provide differentiation of instruction within an experiential framework with vicarious learning opportunities. Teachers seek a clear purpose for learning and change in practice. Teachers look for ongoing focus and support from the district for new learning initiatives. Teachers need the support of a focused, knowledgeable, and perceptive principal. In every aspect of their professional lives, teachers wish for trust and respect. Teachers indicated a strong self-efficacy for learning and change. Group efficacy indicators had a strong impact on learning and implementation.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [253]-263).


xiii, 286 pages




Northern Illinois University

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