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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.

Successful headship leadership in primary schools in Cyprus

Angelidou, Kakia January 2010 (has links)
This research explored the nature and conduct of successful leadership in the context of Cyprus; how policy and school contexts and heads' experience influence headship leadership. The empirical findings of this study draw upon ethnographic methods rooted within the naturalistic paradigm in order to illuminate the complex and dynamic nature of headship leadership in a specific country context. A group often successful heads in urban primary schools of Cyprus was selected. Data was collected through observations, a review of a number of schools' documents and semi-structured interviews carried out with each of the successful heads and with people that had everyday conduct with them. The overall findings provided empirical evidence of the complexity of successful head teachers day-to-day practices and pointed to the positive and negative in themes of 'policy contexts', 'the values of society' and 'school and experience contexts'. These results support earlier evidence on successful leadership but also extend this. The evidence from this research has important implications for head teachers' learning and development and the role of the government in raising standards of schooling in Cyprus.

Constructing a reflective portfolio tool : an action research on the student teachers' perceptions of their experiences

Zeki, Canan Perkan January 2010 (has links)
My interest into reflection and portfolio construction was developed during the 2005 Contexts for Teacher Education Module on the EdD course at the Nottingham University. Experiencing and observing some significant problems with the current portfolio stimulated me to undertake a study on portfolio construction by integrating reflection into it. The aim of this study was to examine student teachers’ perceptions of their experiences of constructing a portfolio in order to develop a more reflective portfolio construction tool. The research was conducted in the Department of Educational Sciences at Eastern Mediterranean University in North Cyprus, focusing on the EDUC 420 Practice Teaching course which is a fourth-year course in B.A in English Language Teaching. Methodologically, the researcher has adopted action research since the phases of the study best suits to the nature of action research. The study consisted of three phases, the first phase of which focused on the student teachers’ perceptions of their experiences with the currently used portfolio tool and attempted to diagnose the problematic areas of it as well as its strengths. In the second phase, the researcher attempted to develop a more reflective portfolio construction tool based on the findings of the first phase and on the related theoretical/empirical knowledge. The third phase was concerned with the implementation of the newly developed portfolio tool and reported on the effectiveness of it. Four broad research questions guided both phases of the study. Interviews and end-of-the-semester reflection essays were used as sources of data and content analysis was done to analyse the data in both the first and the third phases of the study. The impact of portfolio in increasing self-awareness, improving certain thinking skills and the importance of communication student teachers had with the supervisor/cooperating teacher during portfolio construction process were underlined. Lack of sufficient feedback and guidance, of continuous supervision and monitoring, and of depth, diversity and perspective in the guidelines of the reports have been reported as significant weaknesses of the currently used portfolio tool. Specific and focused questions to be integrated into the journals, peer collaboration to be incorporated into the processes and close follow up of all the components and processes were given as suggestions for modification in the first phase of the study. In the third phase of the study, student teachers reported that the components of the newly developed portfolio tool increased their self-awareness as prospective teachers making them more conscious of what potentials they have or lack and enabling them to understand or relate theories with practice. Student teachers indicated that they were able to produce solutions since the components of the portfolio guided them to define their weaknesses by examining the underlying reasons. This was achieved through the step-by-step approach and the guiding questions given in the journals/reports which enabled them to think from multiple perspectives and to behave differently in different situations which contributed to their critical thinking skills. They also claimed that they did not find the observation tasks useful and underlined the importance of the communication and interaction rather than observation in getting acquainted with the students. Student teachers reported that the communication and the dialogue held during the feedback sessions provided multiplicity of voices and helped them develop their critical and reflective thinking skills through the questions posed and the reasoning and comments made during guidance. Student teachers reported that peer collaboration helped them improve their critical thinking skills by helping them develop a ‘critical eye’ which enabled them to observe objectively and consciously. However, they also reported about the weaknesses of the peer collaboration suggesting for a necessity of continuous peer observation and of the suitability of partners in improving the weaknesses. The guiding questions, continuous guidance and peer collaboration tasks acted as the instructional scaffolds promoting reflective and self-assessment skills of the student teachers.

Maltese primary school teachers' developing understanding of effective use of ICT in classrooms through an enquiry group process

Gialanze, Michelle January 2011 (has links)
The context of this research was the European Union (EU) funded Specialised Animated Interactive Learning (S.A.I.L.) project that set out to incorporate group work as well as to integrate information computer technology (ICT) within primary school classrooms in three European countries. As part of this project, online resource material on the Romany culture was developed and introduced to a group of primary school teachers in Malta. A self-selected group of five of these teachers formed a collaborative enquiry group. The focus of the research was the teachers’ developing classroom practice and pedagogic understanding as evidenced by their developing use of pedagogic language and observations of classroom practice. The research methodology evolved during the project to describe and understand the ways the enquiry group sessions were influencing pedagogic understanding and practice. The teachers’ classes were videotaped and used during the sessions to demonstrate, discuss and problematise classroom practice. The teachers led the sessions and the researcher acted as a facilitator. Data collection instruments included videos of classroom practice and the enquiry group sessions; an initial free writing exercise and questionnaire; teachers’ classroom logs; and a final interview. Data analysis was an on-going process as it was important to develop an understanding of the dynamics of the enquiry group process and how this translated into classroom practice during the five weeks in which this occurred. Concordancing of the transcripts was used to identify key lexical items and their frequency and this was followed by an analysis of how specific lexical items were used in each session. Critical incidents were also identified; providing an understanding of the ways the enquiry group process supported classroom change. The research provides evidence of the ways the enquiry group process adopted influenced classroom practice and the teachers’ pedagogic understanding which has implications for teacher professional development models and programmes. All five teachers’ classroom practice changed over the five-week period, as did each teacher’s use of language about their practice. This was evidenced by lexical item use within the enquiry groups and three categories emerged: (a) new lexical items adopted by individuals; (b) the change in use and meaning of specific lexical items; and (c) the way they used lexical items to convey a pedagogical issue that they were integrating within their classrooms.

Participants' perceptions of the implementation of the MASTEC project, a school improvement project in the Limpopo province of South Africa

Phewa, Molly Cynthia Nombulelo January 2010 (has links)
The research reported in this thesis was an exploration of the perceptions and lived experiences of participants in the Mathematics, Science and Technology Education College (MASTEC) project, a school improvement project in the Limpopo province of South Africa. The MASTEC project was introduced with the aim of improving provision of both experienced teachers’ in-service training (INSET) and potential teachers’ pre-service training (PRESET). This study sought to examine teacher educators’ and school teachers’ perceptions of issues relating to the implementation of MASTEC in the different contexts of its participant schools. A phenomenological methodological framework was employed and the research design comprised of multiple qualitative methods of data generation, namely focus group discussions, participant observation and document examination. Amongst the key findings emerging from the study a number of benefits of MASTEC were identified for the participating schools and for individual participants. These related to the upgrading of some schools’ infrastructure and teachers’ development of more innovative teaching and planning skills. However, the programme was reported to have worked better for some schools than others, and this may well speak to the different contexts in which it was implemented. This assertion is corroborated by what the participants reported as some of the main limitations of this project, namely: • the manner in which the project was implemented led to its failure in some secondary schools as opposed to others; • the programme was reported as being more successful in primary schools than in secondary schools. This research has identified several implications for policy-making, further research and practice. For example, it is recommended that national guidelines for the development, implementation and evaluation of school improvement programmes, adaptable for specific contexts, be developed at policy level in an attempt to ensure that such programmes address the transformational needs of the South African education system.

To what extent can a guided imagery intervention designed to enhance self-esteem help to reduce social exclusion in key stage 2?

Woodward, Sophie January 2010 (has links)
The topics of self-esteem and social inclusion have been subject to much research in educational psychology, with positive correlation often being found to exist between the two. However, very little research has been conducted into the efficacy of guided imagery - a person-centred cognitive therapeutic technique – on enhancing either self-esteem or social inclusion, particularly in school-age populations. Identifying the gap in existing literature, this study therefore assessed the extent to which a five-session guided imagery intervention was associated with increases in both self-esteem (as measured by the Lawrence Self-Esteem Questionnaire; Lawrence, 1982) and social inclusion (as measured by the Social Inclusion Survey; Frederickson & Graham, 1999, and the Peer Problems and Prosocial Behaviour subscales of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire; Goodman, 1997). This quantitative data was supplemented by a limited collection of qualitative questionnaire data, which was analysed using content analysis. Both forms of data were collected from 46 Year 4 and 5 pupils from three mainstream primary schools, who had been randomly allocated either to experimental groups or waiting list control groups. Qualitative data was also collected from the four members of school staff who had been trained in facilitating the intervention. Data analysis indicated that the guided imagery intervention had few salient effects on self-esteem or social inclusion as measured by the instruments used, but there was some qualitative evidence of increased self-esteem and social inclusion of participants in the experimental condition. The results of this study are discussed in the context of existing literature, and implications for future research and practice are explored.

A study exploring the influences of training on teaching assistants' learning, behaviour and self efficacy

Higgins, Helen J. January 2009 (has links)
There is a growing number of teaching assistants (TAs) in mainstream schools (DCFS, 2009) and research is inconclusive about their efficacy at improving outcomes for children, including those at risk of exclusion (Groom and Rose, 2005; Tennant, 2001). It has been proposed that TAs do not have enough training for their roles (Russell et al, 2005). However, there is debate about the most appropriate adult training methods (Merriam et al, 2007). Nevertheless, several writers suggest that training can influence self efficacy and this can improve performance (Giallo and Little, 2003). A mixed methods design was implemented. Firstly, two fixed designs evaluated TA self efficacy following training and pupil behaviour following a TA delivered anger management intervention. However, due to design and implementation issues the data produced was very limited and conclusions could not be made. Secondly, a flexible design explored factors that influenced TAs’ learning, behaviour and self efficacy. Data was collected from 14 mainstream secondary school TAs using evaluation forms and focus groups. A thematic analysis was carried out on this data. Themes regarding learning, confidence, training and self efficacy emerged from the data. The learning implied by some of the TAs referred to the acquisition and maintenance of terminology, developing different knowledge bases and the autonomy to adapt materials. Similarly, some of the TAs referred to having confidence mainly when they had some control over the situation. Training subthemes that seemed to influence TAs’ learning and confidence were confirmation/ reassurance from others, parameters of training, iterative process of training and involvement in the process. Finally, TA self efficacy seems to have been influenced by Bandura’s (1977) sources of information, outcome expectations and whole school support and norms. In conclusion, it is important to challenge unhelpful outcome expectations, develop whole school norms and the equality of TAs in schools. Furthermore, training of TAs should involve appropriate psychological paradigms from adult learning theories.

A multi-stakeholder partnership for education : a case study

Wrennall, Katie L. January 2013 (has links)
This thesis presents the journey from concept to operation of an innovative multi-stakeholder partnership for education (MSPE), focusing specifically upon: the processes involved in forging, formalising, governing and operating a multi-stakeholder partnership for education, to develop viability and create sustainability in the not-for-profit sector in the twenty-first century. The MPSE under investigation involved a dual-sector educational establishment whose goal was to attain degree-awarding powers and ultimately the title of ‘university,’ and a national third sector organisation whose goal was to ensure its own continued existence. Philosophically, this research enquiry follows an inductivist approach – the mode of engagement of neo-empiricism, comprising objectivist perspectives in relation to the ontological status of human behaviour and epistemology. In terms of theory, it employs an intrinsic case study undertaken over a six-month period and utilising a mixture of documentary analysis, face-to-face semi-structured interviews and focus groups, whilst employing the unobtrusive measure of content analysis. This case study tells the story of how the organisations re-positioned themselves and created a partnership for the training of practitioners – a unique multi-stakeholder partnership for education, or serial collaborative arrangement – and established and operated an institute for the development and provision of courses in respect of, and researching into, couple and family relationships and relationship support services, in the initial phases, from the perspectives of those involved during data collection from October 2007 through to March 2008. The innovative and unique governing and operating practices are challenged and illuminated in terms of their strengths and weaknesses as they co-operated to establish and operate a new Institute. Finally, contributions to the creation and interpretation of new knowledge are documented, paying attention to the dimensions of: the professionalisation of relationship counselling services and the uniqueness of the multi-stakeholder partnership involving a public body and a third sector organisation.

Investigating the role of learning mentors in primary schools

Butterfield, Jean January 2012 (has links)
This thesis is the result of an investigation into the use of the learning mentor support mechanism in primary schools in England. Learning mentoring is designed to reduce barriers to learning in individual children. This research was devised to enhance current knowledge of the learning mentor process and practices, and the impact of mentoring programmes on pupils. The research approach was qualitative, involving six case studies of children being mentored in three schools. The research design included part-structured interviews with: the child; his/her mentor; class teacher and parent. Interviews were undertaken before and after the execution of learning mentor programmes. Additional data were generated by direct observation of the interaction of learning mentors and mentees, and documentary evidence was examined. Each case study was analysed and cross-case and cross-setting analyses undertaken. Improvement for the participant mentees related to social, emotional and behavioural factors. The learning mentor role was not always clearly defined but reflected the culture of each school, the personal characteristics of each mentor and the relationships within each mentor/mentee pair. Mentoring programmes were unique to each mentee’s needs. Impact was slow in all six cases and was facilitated or hindered by: relationships; time; the mentor undertaking multiple roles; and the expectations of the wider school staff. The significance of my analysis stresses the importance of the triangle of influence of the child/school/parent in aiding a child in school. Aspects of mentoring which could be more closely attended to by schools in order to provide best learning mentoring practice were: mentors identifying strategies; the mixing of curriculum with social/emotional/behavioural targets; liaison with families; communication with the wider school staff; and the involvement of mentees in their own mentoring goals. Mentoring styles centred on the mentor, curriculum or the mentee and related to the leadership styles identified in the schools.

The afterglows of whole school development in Ghana : a case study of semi-rural municipality

Ghartey, Seth Baisie January 2011 (has links)
It is nearly ten years ago when Whole School Development (WSD) in Ghana was officially ended. Yet, most of its structures, systems and practices continue to function in the country. This thesis is based on data collected from a case study of a semi-rural municipality of the country regarding the reasons for its official ending and why despite its official ending, most of the structures, systems and practices continue to function. The thesis also indicates which of the structures, systems and practices are functioning and how well they are functioning. The study adopted a qualitative research strategy and a case study design and drew on in-depth interviews with policy makers from the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Ghana Ministry of Education (GES) as well as with policy implementers from the case study site. The interviews were complemented with observation, documentary analysis and fieldnotes. Key issues that emerged from the study include the desire of those in authority to maintain the status quo in favour of their personal interests which resulted in the official ending of WSD, the development of strong organisational capacity, a sense of responsibility, purpose, commitment, professionalism, a change of mind-set and schools' and communities' realisation of the benefits of WSD, which have contributed immensely to the survival of the structures, systems and practices. Fundamental issues about the rural areas also emerged. These include the parents' low educational background and poverty, which limit their ability to honour their children's educational needs, despite the institutionalisation of the structures, systems and practices of WSD which were intended to improve the quality of, and access to, and participation in, education. Besides, the data revealed the existence of weak internal structural features, which undermine the children's learning environment and result in an excessive drop-out rate and poor learning outcomes with only a few of the children reaching the post-basic education level. The findings suggest that there are political, social, physical and economic factors that are inimical to improvement in educational quality in Ghana and which need addressing with a change of mindset that is consistent with improvement to enable education to move towards the direction of the expected standard and quality.

Learning to lead : an investigation into the preparation, induction, roles and practices of beginning principals : a Canadian study

Northfield, Shawn K. January 2011 (has links)
The growing complexity regarding a principal's role and associated leadership tasks, combined with changing societal realms and educational reform pose serious challenges to even the most experienced educational leaders. For new school leaders, taking on the principalship within a given organizational context is predicated on the notion that learning the role is a continual process of "being and becoming." This research inquires into the nature of early-phase leadership and strives to understand the phenomenon of the beginning principalship by examining roles, agency and practices of new leaders as influenced by their preparation and induction support. Given that school leaders impact the performance of organizational members and that new principals are required to perform the same job as their experienced counterparts, in order to identify ways to meet the needs of individuals transitioning into the position, it is important to understand new principals' experiences. This qualitative phenomenological study used semi-structured interviews to investigate perceptions and experiences of sixteen newly appointed and one-year experienced principals from two separate school boards in the following areas: preparation and induction experiences, developing relationships and building trust with colleagues, as well as how newcomers enacted their roles, utilized their agency and exercised their emerging leadership practice. Evidence substantiates that beginning principals experienced role-identity transition in adjusting to the nature and demands of new leadership, including administrative overload, and challenges associated with organizational dynamics and external influences. New leaders developed compensatory strategies and immediately acted to acquire organizational information and improve conditions for teaching and learning. The investigation found that beginning principals employed engagement processes and attended to "three dimensional" trust criteria to develop relationships and build trust. In addition, although new principals valued the use of cohorts, real-time training and mentoring, they missed receiving formal support during the transition time frame referred to as the "crossover gap."

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