Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy




The major purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a principal inservice training model on teacher classroom behaviors and student academic motivation. A pretest-posttest control group design was utilized. The data for this study were gathered from 11 secondary schools in central Iowa during the 1981-82 school year. The experimental (treatment) group consisted of 350 students, 35 teachers and 6 principals and the control group consisted of 267 students, 27 teachers and 5 principals. Both groups were pretested using three instruments developed for this study;The experimental group principals received the student motivation training (PITSAM) at Iowa State University and then conducted a series of inservice sessions with their teachers at the building level. The control group did not receive the treatment. During the seven weeks following the teacher inservice training, teachers, under the supervision of the building principals, were asked to infuse the motivational concepts into the teacher/learning process. Students and teachers in both groups were then administered the posttest. The following statistical tests were used to compare the two groups and analyze the data: t-tests, analysis of covariance, one-way analysis of variance, and chi-square;Findings. (1) The experimental group teachers reported they used motivational concepts more frequently than control group teachers. (2) Students of teachers who received training were significantly more motivated than students of teachers who did not receive training. (3) There was no significant difference between the experimental and control groups on students' perceptions of their teachers' classroom motivational behavior. However, results on the subscales showed the experimental group students perceived that teachers used four motivational concepts more frequently than did teachers in the control group. Those motivational concepts were: feeling tones, success, level of concern, and goal setting. (4) Students' perceptions of teachers' classroom motivational behaviors differed significantly from their teachers. More frequent teachers' use of motivational concepts was reported by students than by teachers in the experimental group;Conclusions. The Principal Inservice Training on Student Academic Motivation (PITSAM), as constituted, was effective. Trained principals were more effective as motivational catalysts than untrained principals. Inservice training held at the building level and delivered by the principal was an effective way of improving both teachers' classroom motivational behaviors and student academic motivation.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

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Retia Scott Walker



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189 pages