P20 Visiting Scholar, Roraima Costa Filho, Defends Doctoral Thesis!

Dr. Roraima Costa Filho (lab alum) has successfully defended his doctoral thesis on December 19, 2018, at São Paulo State University in Rio Claro, Brazil. His thesis, entitled “Development of Teacher Self-Efficacy Among Physical Education Student-Teachers Enrolled in an Introduction to Teaching Program,” investigated the way that preservice physical education (PE) teachers who are enrolled in a federal program develop their teaching self-efficacy beliefs.


During the fall of 2016, Dr. Costa Filho visited and conducted research with the P20 Motivation and Learning Lab as part of his doctoral internship. During his time with us, he helped collect data on undergraduate students in technology-enhanced classrooms and assisted in the qualitative data analysis from a large-scale engineering self-efficacy project. He says that the engineering self-efficacy project “was helpful to my thesis research because it used a mixed method approach. I learned to code qualitative data, which was really important to my work.” During this time, he also developed, organized, and elaborated his own research protocol and enhanced his understanding about several theories and principles of educational psychology.

He commends the P20 Motivation and Learning Lab for not only the educational-related experiences, but also the social experiences that he will always cherish. When asked about how participating in the lab was beneficial to him, he wrote:

“Dr. Usher and the members were very aware of how to receive international students. I remember Parth Patel guiding me through UK’s campus, John Eric Lingat picking me up for a departmental picnic, Madelyn Roeder interviewing me about academic life in Brazil, and much more experiences outside of academic life, such as volunteering to tear down dry-wall at a local charity organization.”


He thanks and acknowledges members of the P20 Motivation and Learning Lab in his thesis work:

“Meus olhos se fecham e sinto na barriga um frio de como se estivesse prestes a voar. Prestes a dar um passo à frente e deixar algo para trás. Mas não quero deixar nada para trás. Agradeço à Profa Ellen Usher por me receber no P20 Motivation and Learning Lab e aos membros que sempre se disponibilizaram e ofereceram ajuda. Aos amigos John-Eric, Calah, Abbey, Chris, Renae, Cara e Yin, companheiros de estudos e das Thirsty Thursdays.”

[Translated from Portuguese to English: “I close my eyes and get cold feet, like when we are going to fly. Right before a big move and let something behind. But I want to leave nothing behind. I would like to thank Dr. Usher for being my supervising and receive me at P20 Lab and the lab members for their kindness and effort to help me to feel part of the lab. To my friends John-Eric, Calah, Abbey, Chris, Renae, Cara, and Yin, study partners, and Thirsty Thursdays family!”]


Dr. Filho plans to conduct post-doctoral research related to the professional development of school teachers. He hopes to one day obtain either a tenure-track faculty position or a K-12 teaching position in Brazil or abroad. Perhaps he will find himself in the U.S. again…Congratulations, Roraima!