PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)
Early Childhood Education
Date of Award
Committee Chair or Co-Chairs
Amy Malkus, Pamela Evanshen, Alissa Lange
The purpose of this study was to explore the resiliency of Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study explored the role social support (as an external factor of resilience) and self-efficacy (as an internal factor of resilience) played in the resilience of Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study employed a sequential explanatory mixed methods design involving two phases: a quantitative and a qualitative phase. Participants in this study were 99 teachers in rural eastern Tennessee and some rural parts of Virginia, North Carolina, and New Mexico, who were Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Three survey instruments were used to collect quantitative data. The Teacher Self-Efficacy Scale was used to measure self-efficacy, the Comprehensive Evaluation of Social Support (CESS) was used to measure the level of social support, and the Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC) was used to measure resilience. The survey was followed by qualitative interviews with 6 participants randomly selected from 23 participants in phase 1 of the study who agreed to participate in the interview. The results showed that social support (p = .036) and self-efficacy (p ≤ .001) impacted resilience in Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, self-efficacy was a better predictor of resilience in Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic than social support. There was no interaction effect of social support and self-efficacy on the resilience of Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic (p = .078). Also, none of the six dimensions of social support used in this study (supervisor emotional, supervisor instrumental, coworker emotional, coworker instrumental, organizational emotional, and organizational instrumental) significantly predicted resilience in Head Start teachers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The themes that emerged from the teacher interview were acquisition of skills, families of children, increase in children’s challenging behavior, within-school support, outside-school support, and increase in confidence as a teacher. The limitations of the study and recommendations for practice and future research are included.
Dissertation - embargo
Edokhamhen, Ehichoya, "Building Resilience: A Mixed Methods Exploration of Head Start Teachers Coping During the COVID-19 Pandemic" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 4203. https://dc.etsu.edu/etd/4203
Copyright by the authors.
Available for download on Saturday, June 15, 2024