Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Educational Specialist


Given the increasing number of those achieving certification through National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) and the amount of federal money NBPTS has been awarded to design the assessment of identifying teachers, the majority of research has focused on whether National Board Certified teachers impact student achievement and whether NBPTS effectively measures teacher quality. There is very little, if any, published research that addresses other factors that could possibly distinguish teachers that have obtained National Board Certification, however. In the current study, it was presumed that goal orientation might be an important factor that could distinguish those who have achieved National Board certification from those who have not. Therefore, the following research question was addressed: Are the goal orientations of those who are NBPTS certified different from those who have not attempted and those who were unsuccessful in obtaining NBPTS certification. To address this question, the author surveyed 165 teachers using the Patterns of Adaptive Learning Scales (PALS) to obtain a measure of their goal orientations. The teachers were in one of three groups, successful NBPTS applicants, unsuccessful NBPTS applicants, or non-applicant teachers. The results revealed no significant differences among the three different groups of teachers in terms of their goal orientations. Thus, there was no support that those who had earned national certification had differing goal orientations than their non-certified counterparts, evidenced by the data which suggested that all the teachers appeared to exhibit a stronger mastery goal orientation compared to performance-approach or performance-avoidance goal orientations.


Education | Psychology