All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

James Ernest

Advisory Committee Members

Jennifer Lachenaye

Grace Jepkemboi

Jennifer Summerlin

Jennifer Pyles

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Education


The purpose of this convergent parallel, mixed methods study was to examine and explore the relationship between subjective teacher beliefs, classroom quality, and pre-kindergartener’s self-regulatory abilities within a publicly funded pre-kindergarten program. Teacher subjective beliefs (beliefs of classroom management, classroom practice, and beliefs of children) were studied operantly using Q-Methodology, in addition to, audio-recorded focus groups to explore the lived experience of teachers within the sample (n = 20). Classroom quality was measured using the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) and pre-kindergartener’s self-regulatory abilities were studied using pre/post proxy items from the Devereux Early Childhood Assessment for Preschoolers, Second Edition (DECA-P2). A criterion sort was created to determine correlation between trainer, coach, and model teacher beliefs sorts and teacher belief sorts. Data were separately collected and analyzed prior to intercepting for interpretation with priority assigned to the quantitative data. Non-parametric testing was employed with ranked beliefs, CLASS, and DECA-P2 distribution-free data. The following corroborated QUANqual results emerged: a) studying subjective beliefs operantly using Q-methodology provides researchers the ability to determine different and similar pure associations with constructs, b) in classroom coaching and training influence teacher beliefs about classroom management, practice, and children, teachers believe developing student’s social emotional competence, specifically, c) self-regulation is fundamental for pre-kindergarteners, teacher beliefs impact children’s self-regulatory growth, d) classroom quality is influenced by teacher beliefs regarding classroom management, specifically regard of student perspective, reviewing teacher beliefs operantly, e) studying beliefs operantly provides additional insights for coaches or trainers to specifically target constructs. This study recommends that future studies include a larger nationally based sample to explore and examine the relationship between teacher beliefs, classroom quality, and children’s ability to self-regulate. This study found that teachers beliefs, correlated with exemplars, effect the average change in self-regulatory abilities for prekindergaterners. The researcher recommends that future studies implement parametric testing with larger studies to determine the generalization of the effects.

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