Cooperating Music Teachers’ Opinions Regarding the Importance of Selected Traits as Predictors of Successful Student Teaching Experiences
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The purpose of the study was to determine the perceptions of cooperating mentor teachers regarding the importance of certain teacher traits as predictors of a successful student teaching experience. The data collection tool used in this study was an online survey which participants could complete online in approximately 10-15 minutes. The entire survey included 91 total questions; however, participants were presented with 54 questions to answer based on their responses to previous questions. The 54 questions included a consent statement, 40 four-point Likert-type scale responses, three multiple-selection questions, three open-ended responses, and seven demographic questions. The population targeted for this study was cooperating mentor teachers for preservice music education majors throughout the United States. Recruitment methods for this study included a combination of snowball sampling and an email soliciting participation that was sent nation-wide to music educators across the United States through the National Association for Music Education (NAfME). The snowball sampling method resulted in approximately 100 participants and the rest were recruited through the solicitation sent email by NAfME. Surveys from participants who either did not complete the survey fully, or who did not fit the inclusion criteria were discarded, resulting in a total of 519 surveys analyzed for this study. A combination of descriptive and inferential statistics was used to analyze participant data. Descriptive data were utilized to construct ranked lists of teacher traits based on the mean importance ratings of each respondent group. Inferential statistics used in this study included Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) tests and post-hoc protected t-tests. Cooperating teachers assigned highest importance ratings to the following teacher traits: demonstrating appropriate social behavior, stress management, fostering appropriate student behavior, establishing a positive rapport with others, and enthusiasm. Comparisons among band, orchestra, choral and general music teachers yielded the most variability when examining teacher traits as ordered lists based on the mean ratings of cooperating teachers. All participant groups rated personal traits as most important, followed by teaching traits, then musical traits. Content analyses of open-ended questions revealed that no teacher traits had a universal meaning or description among participants in this study.
Table of Contents
The research problem -- Literature review -- Methodology -- Results -- Discussion and implications -- Appendix A. Descriptive Statistics for All Traits by Demographic Factor -- Appendix B. Content Analyses of Teacher Trait Descriptor Responses-- Appendix C. IRB Letter of Exempt Determination -- Appendix D. NAfME Participant Recruitment Letter -- Appendix E. Survey Instrument