Date of Award

Summer 2021

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies

First Advisor

Todd Lilly


The goal of this qualitative study was to determine the influence of teacher perception of ownership and empowerment on teacher self-efficacy and motivation. Tools of ethnography were used to create a descriptive narrative of teacher perceptions. Data was collected through focus group and individual interviews.

Results show that teacher perception of ownership and empowerment can influence teacher self-efficacy and motivation. Even though most teachers are intrinsically motivated, teachers still wanted to feel valued. Other factors that influence teacher perceptions of ownership and empowerment included relationships with colleagues and opportunities for shared leadership

This study concludes that teacher perception of ownership and empowerment are influential factors as they relate to school climate, teacher self-efficacy, and motivation. Major sources of empowerment were students, colleagues, family, and spiritual beliefs more than their administrators. Collegiality and belonging played a major role in teacher sense of empowerment and had considerable impact on school culture. To increase motivation and sense of self-efficacy, teachers need to feel valued by their administrators. Meeting teacher needs of autonomy, relatedness, and competence promote a sense of ownership and empowerment. Perceptions of ownership and empowerment are influential in job satisfaction and are motivating factors for teacher retention. Limitations of the study included the sample size, lack of a quantitative measure, and timing.