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Do teacher beliefs mediate leadership and teacher behaviors? Testing teacher self-efficacy's mediation role between leadership for learning and teacher outcomes

Joonkil Ahn (Department of Educational Policy Studies and Practice, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA)
Alex J. Bowers (Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, New York, USA)

Journal of Educational Administration

ISSN: 0957-8234

Article publication date: 29 December 2023

Issue publication date: 5 March 2024

360

Abstract

Purpose

Leadership for learning emerged as an integrated leadership framework; however, attempts to establish an empirical measurement model have been limited. Critically, not much is known about how much teachers' beliefs (e.g. self-efficacy) can mediate leadership for learning impact on teacher behaviors. This study establishes a leadership for learning measurement model and examines whether teacher self-efficacy mediates the effect of leadership for learning tasks on teacher collaboration, instructional quality, intention to leave current schools and their confidence in equitable teaching practice.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on the most recent 2018 Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS), the study employed a structural equation modeling mediation approach.

Findings

Results suggested that teacher self-efficacy statistically significantly mediated 16 out of 20 of the relationships between leadership for learning task domains and teacher outcomes. Especially, in explaining the variance in instructional quality and teacher confidence in implementing equitable teaching practices, considerable proportions of the predictive power of leadership for learning tasks were accounted for (i.e. mediated) by teacher self-efficacy.

Research limitations/implications

School-wide efforts to craft the school vision for learning must be coupled with enhancing teacher self-efficacy. Critically, leadership efforts may fall short of implementing equitable teaching practice and quality instruction without addressing teacher confidence in their ability in instruction, classroom management and student engagement.

Originality/value

This study is the first of its kind to evidence teacher self-efficacy mediates leadership for learning practice impact on teacher behaviors.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Citation

Ahn, J. and Bowers, A.J. (2024), "Do teacher beliefs mediate leadership and teacher behaviors? Testing teacher self-efficacy's mediation role between leadership for learning and teacher outcomes", Journal of Educational Administration, Vol. 62 No. 2, pp. 197-222. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEA-12-2022-0227

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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