Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Thomas Pfundstein


In 2012, a southeastern state mandated that all school districts employ the response to intervention (RtI) tiered approach model to meet the needs of struggling students. RtI was implemented at the study site; however, secondary teachers were not confident in their abilities to implement RtI. Researchers have found that a teacher's sense of efficacy can impact student academic outcomes. Professional development on implementing RtI was provided for teachers in the study school. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of explicit RtI professional development on the perceived self-efficacy of secondary teachers and their ability to impact student achievement. The study was framed within the constructs of social cognitive theory (SCT) and the associated concept of teacher efficacy. Pre and postintervention data were collected from 51 core subject area teachers using the Teacher Efficacy Scale Survey (short form). An analysis of the data was conducted using paired sample t tests to measure mean differences in efficacy scores. Results of the data analysis demonstrated significant gains in overall efficacy sum scores, personal teaching efficacy scores, and general teaching efficacy scores among the sample of teachers in this study. The results suggested a positive shift in teacher efficacy following the professional development. Recommendations included additional research with larger samples of teachers and the inclusion of a control group. Implications for positive social change include providing research findings to the local administration on the change in teacher efficacy following the RtI professional development. Recommendations are also provided for continued research on RtI, teacher efficacy, and student achievement.