Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Joanne K. Olson

Second Advisor

Michael P. Clough


Teaching induction and mentoring programs are often promoted as ways to improve teacher effectiveness and reduce attrition by supporting beginning teachers. However, new teachers' establishment and engagement in support relationships may vary depending on alignment of supports to new teachers' pedagogical understanding. The purpose of this three-year longitudinal qualitative study was to follow a cohort of Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) graduates from a research-based secondary science teacher education program (TEP) during their TEP and first two years of teaching to explore how they engaged in relationships intended to support effective research-based science instruction (RBSI) during their TEP and first two years of teaching. Moreover, this study sought to understand the influences which exist, if any, between beginning science teachers' pedagogical considerations, teaching practices, and socialization experiences during their TEP and first two years of teaching. The findings from this study support the contention that beginning science teachers effectively educated to make research-based science teaching decisions and practices will do so if they are supported through collegial relationships with cohort members and advocacy from superordinates. Equally important, this study supports the contention that teachers leaving their TEP with little understanding of RBSI are unlikely to develop such understanding and implement such practices during their first two years of teaching. Contrary to the common conception that experienced teachers and administrators make for effective more-knowledgeable RBSI mentors, the beginning science teachers in this study encountered superordinates who threatened, sabotaged, and imposed sanctions in response to participants' attempts to implement practices congruent with RBSI.


Copyright Owner

Lori Ihrig



File Format


File Size

281 pages

Included in

Education Commons