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  • About
  • The Global ETD Search service is a free service for researchers to find electronic theses and dissertations. This service is provided by the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations.
    Our metadata is collected from universities around the world. If you manage a university/consortium/country archive and want to be added, details can be found on the NDLTD website.

Teacher appraisal : the impact of observation on teachers’ classroom behaviour

Howard, Amanda Jane January 2010 (has links)
This thesis is based on three English language teacher case studies located in the Middle East where classroom discourse has been analysed in order to establish the impact that an appraisal observer has on teachers‘ behaviour. The literature suggests that the presence of an observer alters events in the classroom, but to date there has not been any research into the nature of these changes which draws on transcripts of observed lessons. Each teacher recorded a model (observed) and a pedagogic (non–observed) lesson with similar parameters so that they could be compared, and commonalities and differences identified. The teachers were then interviewed in order to establish their understanding of the salient features of appraisal observations, as were three supervisors responsible for observing teachers in similar contexts. Transcripts of the lessons were analysed using SETT (Walsh, 2006), and the interview data was also transcribed and evaluated. The results indicate that there are significant differences between model and pedagogic lessons in terms of the external factors (planning, sequencing, interaction, amount of administration, student use of L1). However, the internal factors (the features of ongoing verbal interaction between teacher and students in the classroom) remain fundamentally the same whether or not an observer is present, although the teacher demonstrates greater control in a model lesson. By analysing transcripts of classroom interaction, this research indicates what happens in the classroom when teachers are being observed, providing data to confirm existing claims about observer effects, and suggesting that the learner role is greater than originally thought. The importance of observer training is identified, as well as the need for a fundamental review of observation, encompassing all parties involved, if it is to be a true reflection of the classroom behaviour of the teacher being observed.

How teacher questioning behaviours assist and affect language teaching and learning in EFL classrooms in Taiwan

Chang, Fang-yu January 2009 (has links)
This study examined classroom questioning with a socio-cultural theoretical framework to gain a better understanding of how teacher questioning operates as a pedagogical and learning tool in English classroom settings in Taiwan. Four teachers and twelve students in four different classes in three secondary schools participated in this study in the second term of the academic year 2006. Three kinds of interviews (pre-observation, post-observation, and stimulated recall interviews) were conducted for all subject teachers in order to obtain in-depth information for further analyses. 12 focal students were selected to respond to the questionnaire and participated in the semi-structured interview with the researcher. 24 class periods were videotaped and twenty of them were transcribed verbatim. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches were employed to analyze the collected data. Teacher questions served as important devices to self-clarify, to push learners’ language production, to encourage comprehensible output, to impart knowledge and to mediate learners’ language learning and cognitive development. Both Mandarin and English languages used in teacher questioning had pedagogical functions. Also, the research findings indicate that there is a strong relationship between teachers’ teaching and learning goals and their decisive use of questions to scaffold classroom participation and learning. L1 use as private speech in learner responses was found to have affective, social, and cognitive functions. Most of the time, the four classes which were observed were quiet and passive. After analyzing the questionnaire and interview data, the researcher found that some socially-constructed affective factors, the learner-teacher or learner-learner interpersonal relationships, and some specific Taiwanese socio-cultural reasons might cause learners to hold back from classroom interaction. The instructional goals of the subject teachers differed in the opportunities they created for learning. The research findings also suggested that no matter which languages the teachers used, how to make efforts to negotiate forms and meanings with students is the most effective way to improve learners’ learning. Socio-cultural theory is indeed a viable theoretical framework for analyzing teachers’ solicitations but further research can be improved by conducting a complementary socio-cognitive model that emphasizes that social and cognitive concepts are even more closely connected. It addition, it seems important for further research to carry out prolonged and extensive fieldwork to obtain in-depth data and investigating long-term, not short-term, effects of teacher questioning.

Teachers' beliefs about the teaching of reading in early years settings

Kostopoulou, Angeliki January 2005 (has links)
Although the necessity for the young child to become a confident reader in the early years of schooling is indisputable, we are less in agreement about the ways in which teachers might best achieve that. Approaching reading as part of subject matter knowledge, and providing a hierarchy of the concepts, understandings and skills that children need to acquire in order to read successfully, may be one way of facilitating practitioners’ ‘reflection in action’. (Schön, 1987). With this in mind, the project reported here studied the beliefs held by various types of early years teachers/workers about the teaching of reading and the relationships between these beliefs and their teaching practices. Through the use of one hundred and sixty questionnaires, nine interviews and nine observations, this thesis discusses the following questions: Do early years teachers use a theoretical framework in their instructional approach to teaching reading? If so, is there a relationship between their theoretical orientations toward reading development and their pedagogical practices? This study suggests that offering subject-matter related training to early years practitioners, that for the scope of this study includes an understanding of the reading process, could lead them to make informed decisions about curriculum content. This in turn could enable them to offer a clear rationale behind what they consider as developmentally appropriate practice and what they actually do in the classroom.

Communicative language teaching and the ELT Journal : a corpus-based approach to the history of a discourse

Hunter, Duncan January 2009 (has links)
Despite recent challenges, CLT remains influential and continues to be implemented in a number of contemporary ELT contexts. This project represents an attempt to investigate the history of CLT as a means of gaining a clearer understanding of its main principles and ideas. The investigation aims to identify some key concepts in the discourse of the ELT Journal over the period when the communicative approach is believed to have emerged. Two consecutive periods are studied; an earlier (1973 to 1981) phase when the journal was edited by W.R. Lee, and a later (1981 to 1986) period under Richard Rossner. The project makes use of two separate keyword “traditions” to examine words that play an important role in the discourse of the journal. Firstly, a machine-based, corpus procedure was carried out, using the collections of articles as a kind of corpus. Later, a more thorough, detailed keyword analysis was undertaken, borrowing from the techniques pioneered by Raymond Williams, in which the histories of individual words are traced chronologically across texts. Chapter One, the literature review, presents a rationale for the project and the use of history to illuminate our understanding of CLT. It carries out a review of the existing body of literature covering the emergence of the approach and suggests a more systematic and thorough-going historical approach based on primary sources is now needed. Chapter Two describes the process by which I assembled the methods and tools necessary to carry out the analysis. Chapter Three describes the project procedure itself, explaining the decisions made, and processes arrived at, to carry out the investigation. Chapter Four presents the first phase of the project’s findings. Quantitative keyword lists are presented and briefly discussed in relation to existing accounts. Chapters Five, Six, Seven, Eight, and Nine are “word histories” for the keywords COMMUNICATIVE, LEARNER, ACTIVITY, TASK and SYLLABUS, respectively. Using the findings from Chapter Four as a starting point, each chapter traces the history of an important keyword across the chronological period of the corpus, recontextualising data isolated by the quantitative keyword procedure. Chapter Ten is the project’s discussion and conclusion.

Policy to practice in reception class mathematics

Durmaz, Döndü January 2010 (has links)
This study examines implementation of early years mathematics policy in reception classes (RCs) in England. It addresses the core question: what is the relationship between policy and practice in the Foundation Stage (FS) mathematics curriculum for three- to five-year-olds, in particular, implementation in RCs? Policies and their implementation are analysed by means of the policy trajectory model outlined by Bowe et al. (1992) which separates the creation and implementation of policy into three distinct but interactive cycles: context of influence, context of policy text production, and context of practice. It both guided and framed this study. In the context of influence, scrutiny of international policy revealed a recognition of the importance of high-quality early years education, as a means to raising school achievement. This posed a challenge to RC teachers charged with both accessing and extending children’s rich mathematical knowledge through appropriate, yet accepted FS practices. The context of policy text production uncovereded a tension between the drive to raise standards through whole-class interactive methods and the need for an appropriately play-based and informal FS pedagogy. Elite interviews revealed an awareness of and concern about this but showed little optimism for future development of practice, In the context of practice, RC teachers revealed a positive attitude towards FS curriculum and pedagogy. Observed practice, however, was seen to vary considerably. Tensions in FS mathematics policy were thus enacted in RCs through practice that ranged from didactic teacher-led numeracy tasks poorly matched to children’s capabilities to colourful practical mathematics activities that did not necessarily extend children’s learning. The policy trajectory model revealed strong top-down pressures that took little account of the impact on those charged with implementation, with RC teachers caught in a nexus of forces, reflecting requirements to deliver accepted FS practice and increase formality of numeracy lessons.

Wanting to be somebody : post-16 students' and teachers' constructions of full-time GNVQ in a college of further education

Bathmaker, Ann-Marie January 2002 (has links)
This thesis explores how policy for initial post-16 education and training has changed repeatedly since the 1970s, leading to numerous different arrangements and to new forms of transition for young people. It evaluates critically how GNVQs fit into this picture, and relates their role to wider debates around the purpose of initial post-16 education and training. Using a case study, which focuses on the experience of lecturers and full-time students in one college of further education in the Midlands in the 1990s, the study finds that the social conditions of learning were very significant for students’ and lecturers’ perceptions of GNVQ. Despite the emphasis on qualifications-led reform, and the highly-specified nature of GNVQ, which attempted to impose new approaches to learning, students and teachers made sense of their experience and constructed their own meanings for GNVQ by reconciling the specifications with students’ orientations to learning and imagined futures. They engaged in ‘making the best of it’, by collaborating or colluding to make GNVQ work for them. However, the actions of students and lecturers in making the best of the constraints of GNVQs needs to be set within the context of wider structures and patterns of opportunity, where GNVQs form part of a system which continues to be dominated by A-levels and the academic route. This results in unequal opportunities within diverse qualifications pathways. The study concludes that any proposals for change to initial post-16 education and training need to combine understandings of the structural context in which young people’s transitions are taking place, with more detailed insight into the experience of teachers and students, who make and shape the meaning of different routes and qualifications in practice.

Academics' perceptions of their teaching role following the introduction of Teaching Quality Assessment

Leigh, Christine January 2004 (has links)
The aim of this phenomenologically-based study was to establish, from the perspective of academics, what impact the introduction of Teaching Quality Assessment had had on teaching in higher education. Teaching Quality Assessment (TQA) was introduced by the university funding councils, in response to their obligations under the Further and Higher Education (FHE) Act (1992) and was the methodology used to assess the quality of teaching in higher education in the UK during the period February 1993 to June 1995. A semi-structured interview approach was chosen to generate the data. Forty-six academics from two departments (Computer Science and Business Studies) in four institutions (two pre-1992 and two post-1992 universities) were interviewed. Questions focused on academics’ personal views, opinions and aspirations with respect to teaching. These were examined together with their perceptions of the institutional context particularly with respect to support for teaching, and incorporating their experiences of TQA. Respondents expressed a high commitment to teaching, and a stronger professional than institutional loyalty. Teaching was very pressurised due to increasing student numbers, high student:staff ratios, demanding students and the requirements of external monitoring. Academics were also under pressure to excel at research, since status was based on research, rather than teaching excellence. These pressures had been exacerbated by the Government’s funding, expansion, and customer-service policies, to which institutions had responded with increasingly bureaucratic and less collegial systems. The academics felt that TQA did not benefit teaching and learning directly, but indirect benefits included promoting the improvement of administrative systems, and helping them to maintain standards. Participants also regarded the TQA methodology as inappropriate, and suggested that quality assurance systems should be audit-based and improvement-focused, with minimal external controls to assure the integrity of institutional self-regulatory mechanisms.

Teacher identities and agency : a study of the use of a persuasive life history approach in educational research

Roach, Patrick January 2005 (has links)
The use of life history approaches in educational research has become increasingly fashionable. However, interest in exploring teachers' stories has met with resistance, largely, though not exclusively, on the grounds that some educational life history studies have prevented informed third party interrogation and validation. The life historian's interest in democratising the Academy has been thrown back onto the life historian with the charge that the life historian's practice has been undemocratic and unrepresentative. At the same time, the quest for `giving voice' in educational research has provoked a desire to critique the power of researchers in the production of educational knowledge and to interrogate the practices within the knowledge factory. This thesis provides a study of re-presentations in educational life history research. It examines critically previous scholarship and identifies a series of principles for the conduct of persuasive educational life history study. In exploring the use of a persuasive educational life history approach, this study applies a conceptualisation of persuasiveness which recognises the personal and political nature of educational research practice. The research takes as its starting point a particular interest in the lives of black men teachers. In advocating the pursuit of a persuasive life history approach, this thesis is presented in two volumes: volume 1 contains the main substantive thesis; volume 2 contains key materials to complement and underpin the arguments set out in volume 1. The form of representation applied here seeks to enable the reader to evaluate this research story and to participate in an extended dialogue about the reading of the teacher's life story presented here. The thesis lends credence to the contention that the teacher's professionality orientation, identity and agency are historically and biographically contingent whilst also reflective of formal and informal processes of professionalisation and institutionalisation. The study suggests that the process of understanding the teacher's professional identity and agency is contingent upon the contexts in which story telling occurs. The study argues that teaching and research practice should provide space for self re-presentation.

The English Primary National Strategy in four schools : a policy trajectory and case study

Curtis, Robert E. January 2010 (has links)
This thesis investigates the multi-faceted approach to primary school improvement, the English Primary National Strategy, in two distinct stages; the first focussed on policy texts and discourses. I tell my story, from being a headteacher, through to becoming a researcher, positioning this research within the context of policy sociology. I examine the historical development of primary education, identifying themes leading to a critical analysis of the introductory Strategy document Excellence and Enjoyment (DfES 2003) and subsequent policy initiatives. The second stage involved developing four ethnographic case studies, three in schools in isolated pockets of deprivation and one in a more affluent area of the English East Midlands. The notion of ‘tripping points’ is developed, identifying incidents and policies which impacted negatively and created tensions in two schools struggling to cope with a multiplicity of on-going strategy developments, alongside inherent difficulties. I highlight unusual circumstances in the third school and explain how creativity and innovation flourished there, with ‘tripping points’ being avoided, whilst in the fourth school few such difficulties were identified and staff were encouraged to develop as learners. A critical analysis of standardised initiatives imposed upon three schools to meet performance targets identified further issues. The impact of these programmes, along with funding difficulties and concerns about the number and quality of staff needed to further raise achievement appeared problematic. I argue that, to bring about sustainable change for these schools, far more than pressure, ‘workforce reform’ and efficiencies associated with the Primary Strategy are needed. This research suggests that until these schools have enough staff of high quality, and sufficient resources, the identified ‘tripping points’ will remain. I propose that the centrally controlled system and structure of primary education needs to be changed and the money saved directed towards these and similar schools and communities.

Emotion understanding during computer-supported collaboration

Xolocotzin Eligio, Ulises January 2010 (has links)
Affect has been neglected in computer-supported collaborative learning, which is unfortunate because emotions play important roles in collaborative learning and human-computer interaction. This thesis investigated affect in co-located and remote remote-synchronous collaboration, answering the question: How does the task environment and interaction with a partner influence people’s emotions during computer-supported collaboration? In Study 1, the collaborative tasks and affective features of a game provoked more goal-oriented emotions (e.g., challenge) than an open task in a concept-mapping tool. In both environments individuals assumed emotional similarity with a partner, which not necessarily was true. Some partners that reported similar emotions also interacted positively (e.g., with responsiveness and coordination). Study 2 investigated the dynamics of challenge around a collaborative game. Challenge was likely to change when the task environment included features like complexity or required coordination. Challenge increased if partners struggled, and decreased if they performed fluently. Moreover, partners influenced each other’s actions in these situations. Probably this explained the similarity between partners’ reported challenge and their tendency to assume such similarity when reasoning about the emotions of each other. In any case, partners rarely discussed emotions during their collaborative interaction. Thus, Study 3 assessed the benefits of supporting affective awareness between partners during remote and co-located collaborations. Affective awareness facilitated enjoyable and productive interactions only during co-located collaborations, suggesting the remoteness highlighted the importance of an accurate understanding of a partner’s emotions, precipitating a more effective response to the demands of the task environment. The research shows that partners’ emotions are under the influence of one another’s actions, especially when the task environment requires them to solve collaborative tasks playing complementary roles. Moreover, collaborators assume emotional similarity with the partners. Thus, the process and outcome of collaboration might improve if the environment helps partners to have a better understanding of one another’s emotions.

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