Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Hamil, Burnette Wolf

Committee Member

Hopper, Peggy F.

Committee Member

Davis, James E.

Committee Member

Verhoek-Miller, Nancy

Committee Member

Person, William A.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Secondary Education

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction


The primary purpose of this study was to determine the magnitude of the teacher shortage in the Mississippi Delta region, and to investigate the factors which seem to influence the attrition and retention of teachers. This study employed a nonexperimental quantitative investigation designed to analyze survey data. The sample for this study included selected K-12 teachers employed in school districts in the Mississippi Delta region, and two non-Delta school districts. 436 teachers participated in the study. The study was designed to answer questions on the commitment level of currently employed teachers in the Mississippi Delta region. Data were collected using a 4 - point Likert response scale. All data were entered and analyzed using a SAS Multiple Regression (stepwise) program. In addition, analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to compare the means in each section and to report observed variance in the different parts. A t-test was performed to analyze the differences in the responses of the Delta and non-Delta schools in terms of commitment levels. With the level of significance for inclusion established at p<0.05, the researcher was able to determine that age, years of teaching experience, and salary were insignificant. Results also revealed number of years teaching in the district and race were found to be statistically significant. The researcher did not find any differences in commitment levels or any other variables in the responses of the Delta and non-Delta teacher participants.