What Matters? : the full-time graduate students' perceptions of teacher effectiveness
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The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the full-time graduate students' perceptions of teacher effectiveness at the graduate school level, to identify how graduate students perceive effective and ineffective teachers, and specifically to discover the main dimensions of teacher effectiveness that graduate students perceive as most significant. This topic was investigated because, although the teacher has been deemed as a crucial component in the teaching process, there is no common agreement on the definition and measure of teacher effectiveness. Graduate students' perceptions of teacher effectiveness have not been given much attention. The research design was based on a ground theory approach. It utilized qualitative data through interviews, field notes, andjournals. The findings ofthis study revealed that teacher effectiveness is markedly influential to graduate students. There is no universally consented definition or measure of teacher effectiveness due to the multidimensionality of teaching and learning. Nevertheless, several major dimensions ofteacher effectiveness were discovered and highlighted in this study. Such dimensions include good command of subject matter, presentation skills, challenging and motivating students, rapport with students, learning environment, course demands, as well as assessment and feedback. It was hoped that the study would move towards developing a theory that contributes to the knowledge base of graduate students' perceptions of teacher effectiveness. It was anticipated that the results would provide first-hand information for the instructor to improve teaching; for the administrator to promote the effective educational experiences and student achievements. It was intended that the findings would lay a theoretical and empirical groundwork for future research.