Date of Award

Fall 12-21-2018

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Psychology and Special Education

First Advisor

Miles Anthony Irving

Second Advisor

Jennifer Esposito Norris

Third Advisor

Ann Cale Kruger

Fourth Advisor

Joyce E. King


Research has shown that despite the growing population of diverse and ELL students in American schools, pre-service teachers are not adequately prepared to effectively deal with the current reality of a diverse classroom. The reason for this is twofold. First, the student population is becoming increasingly diverse when compared to the majority of teachers who are White, middle-class, monolingual English speaking females. Second, teacher preparation is lacking as it pertains to cultural competence.

The following mixed method study investigates two liberal arts based teacher education programs with a focus on culturally responsive teacher preparation. Through program analysis, faculty interviews, and the administration of qualitative questionnaires and quantitative surveys, this study employs a one-way MANOVA to investigate the extent to which culturally responsive pedagogy (CRP) is infused throughout the curriculum in teacher education programs. In addition, this study measures teacher self-efficacy in delivering responsive lessons, measure outcome expectations in employing CRP, as well as whether teachers are employing certain responsive practices in the process of delivering instruction. Scores on the Culturally Responsive Teacher Preparation Scale (CRTPS), the Culturally Responsive Teacher Self-Efficacy Scale (CRTSE), and the Culturally Responsive Teaching Outcome Expectancy Scale (CRTOE) allows for the investigation of the degree to which pre-service teachers feel they are being prepared to acknowledge and employ culture in the learning process. As an extension of this, scores also reflect the extent to which they feel confident in their ability to employ culture and contextual teaching, as well as whether they believe employing culture will have positive outcomes. This study has implications for the future preparation of educators who are efficacious in their ability to employ culture as a vehicle to reach every child in their care.