Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Barbara Driver


Administrative support plays a vital role in the self-efficacy of special education teachers (Otto & Arnold, 2005). In order to meet the education needs of special education students and comply with Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA, 2004) and the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB, 2002), education leaders and policy makers need to be aware of the correlation between stronger administrative support and special education teacher self-efficacy (Thornton, Peltier, & Medina, 2007). Research shows that one of the most important administrative tasks is to demonstrate an understanding of the special education teachers’ role (Otto & Arnold). Given the consistent positive impact of teacher self-efficacy, it is imperative to identify constructs that increase perceived self-efficacy or that act in concert with self-efficacy to obtain positive results (Nir & Kranot, 2006). This paper examines the construct of administrative support as a factor in the self-efficacy of special education teachers by focusing on the relation between special education teachers and building-level administrators of special education. This type research is needed in order to provide building-level administrators in this central Virginia school system with definitive leadership strategies to use in their efforts to support special education teachers. Recommendations for future research are offered.


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