Date of Award

Fall 12-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor/Committee Member

Munyi Shea

Second Advisor/Committee Member

Kris M. Gritter

Third Advisor/Committee Member

John B. Bond


Collective Teacher Efficacy. Instructional School Leadership. International School. Power Distance. Collectivism. Encouragement Character Strength


As evidence for positive effects of collective teacher efficacy on student performance and teacher well-being grow, increasing efforts have been made worldwide to understand how teachers’ beliefs in the team’s capacity form in schools. This study adopts a mixed-methods approach; 90 teachers from seven international schools in China participated in the survey, and eight teachers from these schools joined focus group interviews. This paper seeks to understand the relationship between teachers’ perceptions of instructional school leadership and collective efficacy, and how individual leaders’ character strength of encouragement and structural factors, including school levels and cultural dimensions, affect the relationship. Quantitative results show a significant correlation between instructional school leadership and collective teacher efficacy. Power distance is a significant moderator in the relationship, but school-level and cultural dimension of collectivism are not. Although leaders’ character strength of encouragement is not a significant mediator in the influence of instructional school leadership on collective teacher efficacy, it significantly mediates the influence of collective efficacy on teachers’ perceptions of instructional school leadership. Focus group participants recognized leadership as a critical factor in the formation of collective teacher efficacy at the school level and identified four categories of leadership practices shaping the formation: Developing School Learning Climate, Defining School Mission, Supervising and Evaluating Instruction, and Leading by Example. Findings, study limitations, and implications for future research and practice are further discussed.