A proposed grounded theory about the sources and effects of teaching anxiety among two-year college faculty

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Date

2006

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Montana State University - Bozeman, College of Education, Health & Human Development

Abstract

Everyone occasionally experiences anxiety. In fact, an appropriate level of anxiety allows for the optimal performance of any task. There are times, however, when anxiety becomes problematic, undermining one's confidence and ultimately his or her performance. For teachers, there is a specific anxiety, teaching anxiety, which can lead to long term struggles in the classroom. Teaching anxiety appears to be a predicament for a significant number of post-secondary educators; yet little data were found on the subject. The purpose of this study was to systematically examine perceptions regarding the sources and effects of teaching anxiety among two-year college faculty. The aim was to assemble details about those college faculty members' insights through an assessment of their perspectives on the sources and effects of teaching anxiety. The study was directed by the following central research question: What do two- year college faculty members perceive as the sources and effects of teaching anxiety? The following subquestions further clarified the direction of the study: (1) How do the participants describe their own or their colleagues' experiences with teaching anxiety? (2) What do the participants understand about both the immediate and long-term effects of teaching anxiety? (3) How do those participants cope with teaching anxiety if they experience(d) it? To propose a grounded theory, this study utilized partially structured one-on-one interviews with two-year college faculty to illuminate the intrinsic properties of their perceptions about teaching anxiety. A conceptual model of inter-related perceptions concerning the sources and effects of teaching anxiety emerged from the data.

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