EFL Teachers’ Language Proficiency, Classroom Management, and Self-Efficacy

Document Type: Research Paper


Central Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran


This study explored the relationship among EFL teachers’ self-efficacy, language proficiency, and classroom management. A total of 110 Iranian EFL teachers of different levels of high schools and private language schools in Tehran participated in this research. The data were collected through two questionnaires and one test: the Teacher Self-Efficacy Scale and a sample TOEFL were administered in two different sessions while two sessions of each teacher’s class were observed by two raters who used the Murdoch(2000) checklist to score the effectiveness of each teacher’s teaching. To find out the relationship among the three variables of this study, that is the teachers’ self-efficacy, language proficiency, and classroom management, a Pearson correlation was carried out. The results revealed that teachers’ self-efficacy was correlated with their language proficiency and that language proficiency and effective classroom management were not correlated. The study provides useful insights into the need to help teachers develop their language proficiency that, in turn, has relevance for their self-efficacy.


Aliakbari, M., & Abdollahi, K. (2014). Teachers’ perception of classroom management practice: The case of English language teachers in Iran. English Language Teaching, 1(3), 115-136.

Allen, K. P. (2010). Classroom management, bullying, and teacher practices. Professional Educator, 34(1), 1-15.

Ashton, P. (1984). Teacher efficacy: A motivational paradigm for effective teacher education. Journal of Teacher Education, 35(5), 28-32.

Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory. New York: General Learning Press.

Bandura, A. (1993) Perceived self-efficacy in cognitive development and functioning Educational Psychologist, 28(2),117-148.

Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: W.H. Freeman.

Bandura, A. (2008). Toward an agentic theory of the self. In H. Marsh, R. G. Craven, & D. M. McInerney (Eds.), Advances in self research, Vol. 3: Self-processes, learning, and enabling human potential (pp. 15-49). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing.

Barrera, A., Braley, R. T., & Slate, J. R. (2010). Beginning teacher success: An investigation into the feedback from mentors of formal mentoring programs. Mentoring and Tutoring: Partnership in Learning, 18(1), 61-74.

Brady, B., & Gulikers, G. (2004). Enhancing the MA in TESOL practicum course for nonnative English-speaking student teachers. In L. Kamhi-Stein (Ed.), Learning and teaching from experience (pp. 206-230). Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.

Brinton, D. (2004). Nonnative English-speaking student teachers: Insights from dialogue journals. In L. Kamhi-Stein (Ed.), Learning and teaching from experience (pp. 190-206). Ann Arbor. MI: University of Michigan Press.

Brouwers, A., & Tomic, W. (2000). A longitudinal study of teacher burnout and perceived self-efficacy in classroom management. Teaching and Teacher Education, 16, 239-253.

Butler, Y. G. (2004). What level of English proficiency do elementary school teachers need to attain to teach EFL? Case studies from Korea, Taiwan, and Japan. TESOL Quarterly, 38(2), 245-278.

Canale, M., & Swain, M. (1980). Theoretical bases of communicative approaches to second language teaching and testing. Applied Linguistics, 1(1), 1-47.

Caprara, G. V., Barbaranelli, C., Borgogni, L., & Steca, P. (2003). Efficacy beliefs as determinants of teachers’ job satisfaction. Journal of Educational Psychology, 95, 821–832.

Caprara, G., Barbaranelli, C., Steca, P., & Malone, P. (2006). Teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs as determinants of job satisfaction and students’ academic achievement: a study at the school level. Journal of School Psychology, 44(1), 473-490.

Chacón, C. T. (2005). Teachers’ perceived efficacy among English as a foreign language teachers in middle schools in Venezuela. Teaching and Teacher Education, 21, 257-272.

Cheung, H. (2008). Teacher efficacy: A comparative study of Hong Kong and Shanghai primary in-service teachers. Australian Educational Researcher, 35(1), 103-123.

Chomsky, N. (1965). Aspects of the theory of syntax. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Clark, H. H. (1975). Bridging. In R. C. Schank & B. L. Nash-Webber (Eds.), Theoretical issues in natural language processing (pp. 168-175). New York: Association for Computing Machinery.

Clunies-Ross, P., Little, E., & Keinhuis, M. (2008). Self-reported and actual use of proactive and reactive classroom management strategies and their relationship with teacher stress and student behavior. Educational Psychology, 28(6), 693- 710.

Codding, R., & Smyth, C. (2008). Using performance feedback to decrease classroom transition time and examine collateral effects on academic engagement. Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation,18, 325-345.

Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: LEA.

Cummins, J. (1984). Bilingual education and special education: Issues in assessment and pedagogy. San Diego, CA: College Hill.

Epstein, A., & Willhite, G. L. (2015). Teacher efficacy in an early childhood professional development school. International Electronic Journal of Elementary Education, 7(2), 189-197.

Eslami, Z. R., & Fatahi, A. (2008). Teachers’ sense of self-efficacy, English proficiency, and instructional strategies: A study of nonnative EFL teachers in Iran. TESL-EJ, 11(4).

Freeman, D. (2002). The hidden side of the work: Teacher knowledge and learning to teach. Language Teaching, 35(1), 1-13.

Gencer, A. S., & Cakiroglu, J. (2007). Turkish preservice science teachers‘efficacy beliefs regarding science teaching and their beliefs about classroom management. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23, 664-675.

Ghasemboland, F., & Binti Hashim, F. (2013). Teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs and their English language proficiency: A study of nonnative EFL teachers in selected language centers. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 103, 890-899.

Ghonsooly, B., Khajavy, G. H., & Mohaghegh Mahjoobi, F. (2014). Self-efficacy and metacognition as predictors of Iranian teacher trainees’ academic performance: A path analysis approach. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 96, 590-598.

Giallo, R., & Little, E. (2003). Classroom behavior problems: The relationship between preparedness, classroom experiences, and self-efficacy in graduate and student teachers. Australian Journal of Educational & Developmental Psychology, 3, 21-34.

Goker, S. D. (2006). Impact of peer coaching on self-efficacy and instructional skills in TEFL teacher education. System, 34, 239-254.

Hamidi, H., & Khatib, M. (2016). The interplay among emotional intelligence, classroom management, and language proficiency of Iranian EFL Teachers. Broad Research in Artificial Intelligence and Neuroscience, 7(2), 49-58.

Hoang, T. (2009). The contributions of teachers’ credentialing routes and experience levels on classroom management. International Journal of Instruction, 2(1), 1-14.

Hoy, W. A., & Spero, B. R. (2005). Changes in teacher efficacy during the early years of teaching: A comparison of four measures. Teaching and Teacher Education, 21, 343-356.

Hymes, D. (1972). On communicative competence. In J. B. Pride & J. Holmes (Eds.) Sociolinguistics: Selected readings (pp. 269–293). Harmondsworth: Penguin.

Jalili, S., & Mall-Amiri, B. (2015). The difference between extrovert and introvert EFL teachers’ classroom management. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 5(4), 826-836.

Kamhi-Stein, L., & Mahboob. A. (2006). TESOL virtual seminar: Teachers’ language proficiency in English language teaching. Alexandria, VA: TESOL Inc.

Khabiri, M., & Azaminejad, M. (2009). The relationship between EFL learners’ use of language learning strategies and self-perceived language proficiency. The Journal of Applied Linguistics, 2(2), 130-159.

King, G., Murray, C. J. L., Solomon, J. A., & Tandon, A. (2004). Enhancing the validity and cross-cultural comparability of measurement in survey research. American Political Science Review, 98(1), 191-207.

Klassen, R. M., Bong, M., Usher, E. L., Chong, W. H., Huan, V. S., Wong, I. Y. F., Georgiou, T. (2009). Exploring the validity of a teachers’ self-efficacy scale in five countries. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 34, 67-76.

Lee, W. K. (2004). Suggestions for revising the 7th National Curriculum of primary English: With respect to the organization of the objectives and contents. Primary English Education, 10(2), 25-54.

Madsen, H. S. (1983). Techniques in testing. New York: Oxford University Press.

Magableh, A., & Hawamdeh, B. (2007). Accountability and discipline in classroom management: Case study in Jarash-Jordan. College Student Journal, 41(4), 901-908.

Mahboob, A. (2004). Native or nonnative: What do students enrolled in an Intensive English program think? In L. Kamhi-Stein (Ed.), Learning and teaching from experience (pp. 121-149).Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.

Main, S., & Hammond, L. (2008). Best practice or most practiced? Pre-service teachers’ beliefs about effective behavior management strategies and reported self-efficacy. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 33(4), 28-39.

Marashi, H., & Zaferanchi, Z. (2010). The relationship between EFL teachers’ emotional intelligence and their effectiveness in managing young learners’ classrooms. Journal of English Language Studies 1(4), 85-112.

Marashi, H., & Dakhili, M. (2015). Self-efficacy and anxiety among EFL learners with different kinds of multiple intelligences. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 5(12), 2636-2645.

Martin, N. K., Yin, Z., & Baldwin, B. (1998). Classroom management training, class size and graduate study: Do these variables impact teachers’ beliefs regarding classroom management style?Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, San Diego, CA. retrieved on January 26, 2017 from: http:// files. eric. ed. Gov /fulltext ED418939 .pdf.

Medgyes, P. (1994). The non-native teacher. London: Macmillan.

Murdoch, G. (2000). Introducing a teacher-supportive evaluation system. ELT Journal, 54(1), 54-64.

J. W. (1979). Language tests at school. London: Longman.

Pasternak, M., & Bailey, K. (2004). Preparing nonnative and native English-speaking teachers: Issues of professionalism and proficiency. In L. Kamhi-Stein (Ed.), Learning and teaching from experience (pp. 155-176).Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.

Rahimi, M., & Asadollahi, F. (2012). On the relationship between Iranian EFL teachers’ classroom management orientations and teaching style. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 31, 49-55.

Reves, T., & Medgyes, P. (1994). The non-native English speaking EFL/ESL teacher’s self-image: An international survey. System, 22(3), 353-367.

Ritter, J. T., & Hancock, D. R. (2007). Exploring the relationship between certification sources, experience levels, and classroom management orientations of classroom teachers. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23(6), 145-159.

Rosas, C., & West, M. (2009). Teacher beliefs about classroom management: Pre-service and inservice teachers’ beliefs about classroom management. International Journal of Applied Educational Studies, 5(1), 54-61.

Ross, J. A. (1998). The antecedents and consequences of teacher efficacy. In J. Brophy (Ed.) Advances in research on teaching: Vol. 7 (pp. 49-74). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.

Samimy, K., & Brutt-Griffler, J. (1999). To be a native or nonnative speaker: Perceptions of nonnative speaking students in a graduate TESOL program. In G. Braine (Ed.), Non-native educators in English language teaching (pp. 127-144). Mahwah, NJ: LEA.

Schmitt, N. (2002). An introduction to applied linguistics. New York: Arnold.

Sewell, A., & St. George, A. (2000). Developing efficacy beliefs in the classroom. Journal of Educational Enquiry, 1(2), 58-71.

Shernoff, E., & Kratochwill, T. (2007) Transporting an evidence based classroom management program for preschoolers with disruptive behavior problems to a school: An analysis of implementation, outcomes, and contextual variables. School Psychology Quarterly, 22(3), 449-72.

Siebert, C. J. (2005). Promoting preservice teacher’s success in classroom management by leveraging a local union’s resources: A professional development school initiative. Education, 125, 385-392.

Silvestri, L. (2001). Pre-service teachers’ self-reported knowledge of classroom management. Education, 121(3), 575-580.

Skaalvik, E. M., & Skaalvik, S. (2007). Dimensions of teacher self-efficacy and relations with strain factors, perceived collective teacher efficacy, and teacher burnout. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99, 611-625.

                 Skaalvik, E. M., & Skaalvik, S. (2007). Dimensions of teacher self-efficacy and relations with strain factors, perceived collective teacher efficacy, and teacher burnout. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99, 611–625.

Stoughton, E. H. (2007). “How will I get them to behave?”: Pre service teachers reflect on classroom management. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23(7), 1024-1037.

Tschannen-Moran, M., & Woolfolk Hoy, A. (2001). Teacher efficacy: Capturing an elusive construct. Teaching and Teacher Education, 17, 783-805.

Tschannen-Moran, M., & Woolfolk Hoy, A. (2007). The differential antecedents of self-efficacy beliefs of novice and experienced teachers. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23, 944-956.

Tschannen-Moran, M., Woolfolk Hoy, A., & Hoy, W. K. (1998). Teacher efficacy: Its meaning and measure. Review of Educational Research, 68, 202–248.

Vaezi, S., & Fallah, N. (2011). The relationship between self-efficacy and stress among Iranian EFL teachers. Journal of Language Teaching and Research, 2(5), 1168-1674.

Wolfgang, H. (1995). Solving discipline problems: Strategies for classroom teachers (5th ed.). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.

Wong, H., & Wong, R. (2009). The first days of school: How to be an effective classroom manager. Mountain View, CA: Harry K. Wong Publications.