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Exploring the relationship between Greek teachers’ beliefs regarding nature and nurture, and their self-efficacy: a mixed methods investigation.

Barrable, A (2017) Exploring the relationship between Greek teachers’ beliefs regarding nature and nurture, and their self-efficacy: a mixed methods investigation. MA by research thesis, University of York.

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Abstract

Abstract: In the last twenty years we have seen growing evidence from behavioural genetics that most, if not all, educational outcomes have a significant genetic component. Moreover, the question of how teachers perceive the nature-nurture question has been looked at in a variety of populations, but not within a Greek context. The present mixed methods investigation attempts to make a contribution to our understanding of Greek teachers’ and trainee teachers’ beliefs regarding genetic influences on educationally-relevant behaviour. Moreover, it looks at the relationship between such beliefs and teacher self-efficacy (TSE), a metric that has consistently been positively linked with student attainment. Finally we look at teachers Openness to Genetics Research in Education (OGRE), as well as the link between teaching experience and the aforementioned characteristics. 223 teachers and trainee teachers at a Greek University provided data on their perceptions of the extent to which genes explain variance in six domains of behaviour. For the six domains that were examined the proportion of teachers who reported that genetics were as, or more important than environment were: for personality 39.6%, for intelligence 72.7%, for behaviour 25.3%, for learning difficulties 87.1%, for mental health 44.2% and finally for happiness 17.1%. No significant relationship was found between teachers’ nature-nurture beliefs and their self-efficacy. A significant difference (p=.006) was found between the mean TSE of the two groups studied, namely trainee teachers (M=6.41, SD=.87) and in-service teachers (M=6.8, SD=.78). The effect size (Cohen’s d=.46) was moderate. This is in line with the literature on TSE. Moreover, a significant correlation (r=.31, p=.000) was found between self-efficacy beliefs and OGRE. These results are discussed and implications for future research as well as potential changes in teacher education are made.

Item Type: Thesis (MA by research)
Academic Units: The University of York > Department of Education (York)
Depositing User: Mrs A Barrable
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2018 14:23
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2019 01:18
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/19326

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