Motivation, preparation, and practice of new head teachers in Seoul, the Republic of Korea : a qualitative study of secondary school leadershipLee, Yoonjeong January 2017 (has links)
This study is an interpretive study of the perspectives of first-year head teachers in secondary education in Seoul, the Republic of Korea. Education in Korea has been highlighted in education scholarship because of its teaching quality and its high standing in the PISA tables. On the other hand, it has been criticised for low levels of student satisfaction and high levels of stress. Many countries are trying to use the Korean model, so gaining insight into headship is timely and useful for the research community. The research questions concern: the motivation to become a head teacher; preparation for the head teacher’s role; and the practice of being a new head teacher. To address these questions a largely qualitative study was undertaken using interviews (n=33) and shadowing (n=20) of new head teachers. Key findings include: First, both male and female head teachers’ main motivation was described as '‘to make their educational philosophy come true’. This was seen as a realistic aspiration as they saw the role as having a high status and as influential in their school. Second, it was found that head teachers felt well-prepared for their role and, with varying degrees of confidence, believed they could carry out the role of head successfully. This was because they had succeeded in getting through a competitive selection process, had gained relevant experiences in management team roles, and many had experienced working in the Office of Education as an officer and policy maker. They felt confident of understanding the Ministry of Education and the Office of Education policy goals, and felt they could influence education policy.
This research looked at how observers make judgements in the Observation of Teaching and Learning (OTL). Until recently, graded OTL has been the dominant model for assessing teaching quality across all sectors of education in the UK. From Ofsted inspection to routine in-service appraisal, teachers have become familiar, if not comfortable, with being watched and judged. Although the outcomes of these observations have high-stakes consequences for practitioners, and their institutions, the judgement process of the observer has been an under-developed area of research, and questions of which elements of theory, experience and practical knowledge they access in doing so, are areas yet to be fully explored. This research constituted a case study focussed on the process of OTL in a city-wide Adult Education service provider in England, attempting to understand and clarify the opaque process utilising methods including: interviews and questionnaires with 14 experienced classroom observers, analysis of data from 137 observation reports, and accreditation results and attendance rates pertaining to over 230 classes. Data were complemented by a rich background of ethnographic and auto-ethnographic reflection to provide context and to make the experience of OTL relatable for the reader. The findings suggested that the concept of Wisdom of Practice was at the heart of the OTL process and that observers appeared to reach their initial judgements holistically based on a largely intuitive and automatic access to a wealth of theory, experience and practical knowledge. Observers then appeared to make use of a range of elements to refine and justify their judgements: chiefly judgement-criteria arising from a range of sources, but also contextual factors including the observer’s relationship with the observee. The analysis and discussion of these findings has led to the proposal of a theoretical model of the OTL judgement process, which clearly demonstrates the complex strands of OTL decision-making. Ultimately, the findings support a claim for the continued usefulness of OTL with an increased emphasis on Continued Professional Development. There is an appreciation of the authenticity of the measure, once grading has been removed, based upon the Wisdom of Practice of the experienced observer.
The problems of English Language Education at the upper secondary level in Thailand : the perceptions of Thai EFL teachers and students in BangkokPadermprach, Napapach January 2017 (has links)
This study seeks to investigate the problems of English language education in Thailand by exploring Thai EFL teachers’ and students’ perceptions at the upper secondary level. Nowadays, English language education is increasingly important in Thailand in a number of domains including professional advancement, expansion of the tourist industry, and high social status. Moreover, English is expected to be an official language among ASEAN countries. Therefore, the Thai government is trying to improve English language proficiency among Thai people. However, the problem is that, on national and international English language examinations, Thai learners have very low scores despite studying English for twelve years in primary and secondary schools. Through the literature review, the importance of exploring teachers and students’ perceptions was identified as crucial to an investigation of this phenomenon, together with an attempt to identify problems of English language education at various educational levels both in the global and Thai contexts. Most previous research utilised a top-down approach to explore context-specific problems and policymakers normally design top-down educational policies; however, the current research has expressly applied a bottom-up approach to investigate the problems of English language education at the upper secondary level in Thailand. This research took a case study approach, comprising in-depth interviews and focus group interviews. Sixteen Thai EFL teachers had in-depth interviews whereas focus group interviews were used with 10 groups of Thai EFL students. Furthermore, to broaden the data and to gain a more detailed perspective of the issues emerging from the first interview round, second interviews were also conducted with each of the 16 teachers and with 10 individual students, each of whom was randomly selected from each focus group. The data in this study were analysed using thematic analysis. Briefly, the findings suggested that the key problematic issues having influence on many other problems were mostly related to low teacher salaries, the ineffective nature of education curriculum and policy, and the prevalence of the English language examination. However, there were also some mismatches between teachers and students’ perceptions toward the problems of English language education in that teachers primarily focused on macro and micro problems whereas micro problems were mainly mentioned by students. Interestingly, apart from the expected problems which were similar to those from literature review, some problems were reported as emergent problems, which are unique in the Thai context.
Ellis-Martin, Elizabeth Anne
‘Dare to be different, dare to progress’ explores the educational experiences of a group of 14 – 16 year old students referred to a pupil referral unit (PRU) during the period 2009 – 2012 using both quantitative and qualitative data sources. The quantitative data gathered from school files, the Local Authority’s school performance data and police records enabled a statistical exploration of recorded information pertaining to issues of attainment and progress, attendance, exclusions, deprivation factors and contacts with police. The qualitative data enabled rich contextual information and was gathered from fieldwork involving the researcher’s observations, four group interviews involving four teachers and four teaching assistants and thirteen paired interviews with nine volunteer students. Willis (1977) showed how ‘the lads’ used their social class identities to forge social class relations acting out resistant behaviours in the process in preparation for and perpetuating a working-class lifestyle or culture. This study resonated with my work at the PRU and the impetus to take it further developed during a secondment to the local Youth Offending Service where I observed a high proportion of PRU students were also known to the police and other children’s services. Bourdieu’s (1984, 1990, 1992) works on habitus, capital and field were influential in shaping the theoretical and conceptual framework around ‘class’ and ‘culture’. Skeggs’ (1997, 2004) concepts of inscription and identity formation and Quinn’s (2010) concept of imagined social capital contributed to this too. The research is unique to a particular group of young people in a particular setting and combined statistics, field notes, photographs and dialogue thus indicating ethnographic case study methodology (Merriam 1988). The research found that ‘class’ remains the strongest indicator of educational achievement and cultural capital, but the cultural influences of youth and identity, and deprivation alongside low aspirations and expectations exacerbate the situation.
Departmental differences in attitudes to special educational needs and their impact on practice in the secondary schoolEllins, Jean May January 2004 (has links)
With increasing inclusion, mainstream teachers need to be sympathetic towards meeting the needs of those with special educational needs. Little previous research has considered the complex relationships between attitudes and practice and how the subject taught impacts on this. Consequently a case study approach was adopted using a Likert-type attitude scale and open-ended questions to determine the attitudes towards SEN of the teachers in one school. This suggested that teachers of the core subjects, English, maths and particularly science, were more likely to have less positive attitudes than those of other subjects. Of the core subjects, students with SEN made least progress in science at Key Stage 3. More in-depth studies, using interviews, structured and unstructured observation, of five teachers from two departments, science and English, revealed that attitudes to SEN did not necessarily relate directly to practice. Although teachers with less positive attitudes were less willing to use strategies to meet the needs of those with SEN, they did try to meet those needs. Success however, was probably more related to effectiveness as a teacher. The importance of attitudes to practice is probably related more to subtle messages effecting students' self-esteem and beliefs about their suitability for specific subjects.
Experienced teaching assistants' perceptions of their work in the inclusion of pupils with 'special educational needs' in English mainstream secondary schoolsLehane, Teresa Geraldine January 2013 (has links)
This study explores Teaching Assistants’ perceptions of their work in the inclusion of pupils with ‘special educational needs’ (SEN) within secondary schools. In a field where much research focusses on the technicist, exploration of ‘inclusion’ and of power is prioritised. Elements of critical discourse analysis (CDA) are used to examine the words of Teaching Assistants (TAs) talking about their work. A simple CDA framework is produced, based on the work of others and piloted with (public domain) film footage of TAs talking about their work. The framework is then used to analyse interviews with 8 TAs who have extensive experience. The TAs prioritise discretion, even imperceptibility, as they actively stay ‘under the radar’ of teachers. A divide within mainstream schools between ‘the mainstream’ and SEN resourced ‘base’ seems apparent to the TAs, whether the base is geographically separated or not. ‘Inclusion’ is actively sought, for example through advocacy and alternative provision. Insights from Foucault, Derrida and Goffman are deployed in the analysis in order to contribute theoretical imagination to consider why limitations in TA practice may occur. A degree of emotional labour is indicated but Goffman’s work on managing spoiled identity, stigma and ‘cooling’ is of particular interest.
This thesis is concerned with understanding how the implementation of a behaviour policy in a school can be evaluated effectively. A ‘Realistic Evaluation’ approach (Pawson and Tilley, 1997) was used as a framework. Relevant literature has been identified and analysed through the process of a ‘realist synthesis’ in order to identify potential contexts and mechanisms and associated outcomes. These identified ‘context-mechanism-outcome configurations’ were used to construct eight theories regarding how students experiencing SEBD could be supported effectively by their school. The theories were tested in the study through data gathering from students experiencing a range of SEBD, their parents, teaching staff and members of the school senior leadership team. The realist interview techniques of ‘teacher-learner function’, and ‘conceptual refinement process’ (Pawson and Tilley, 1997) were used to identify contexts and mechanisms that supported the implementation of the behaviour policy. The findings from the study indicate programme self-evaluation and development in the complex social organisation of a school is more effective when it actively involves a variety of stakeholders from different levels and positions within the school community, and when it considers contextual factors at the individual, interpersonal, school and the wider social and policy level.
Which 'in-care' and educational risk factors are present in the lives of looked after young people not entered for GCSE examinations or alternative qualificationsKelley, Anna January 2009 (has links)
The educational achievements and wellbeing of Looked After Children (LAC) have been a cause of concern for government health and education departments for the past three decades. This is because of a continually growing body of research detailing the disadvantage and poor outcomes that this population is at risk of experiencing in many areas of their lives. This thesis was produced as part of the written requirements for the new full-time Doctoral training in Educational Psychology. Volume One contains three chapters: Chapters One introduces the research study and literature review, provides contextual information about the relevance of the subject area at local and national levels and reflects on the challenges of brokering the study. Chapter Two evaluates existing research evidence which claims to chart major risk and protective factors encountered by LAC throughout their care and school experience. Chapter Three reports on findings from research carried out with the Year 11, 2006-07 cohort of Looked After Children (LAC) under the care of a West Midlands Local Authority (LA) in the year (2007-08). A mixed method approach was adopted in order to identify educational and within care risk and protective factors for those LAC within this cohort who were not entered for GCSE examinations or alternative qualifications. Statistical analysis of quantitative data was carried out and a sub-sample of young people interviewed to elicit their views on factors which were influential in their educational outcomes.
Mehra, Harish Kumar
In the context of racial discrimination and racism, particularly in Education, this study focuses upon a group of permanently excluded Asian pupils and aims to give an interpretation of their, and their parents’, perception of schooling in the central area of Birmingham. A literature review of current research, LEA’s response to exclusion, various educational legislation and its implications is included. The data were collected using 26 Exclusion Reports [13 Asian and 13 English pupils] from schools. Comparisons are made between the two different groups. Other methods include interviews of five permanently excluded Asian pupils and their parents, four Education Social Workers, Headteachers of secondary schools and a questionnaire to the Headteachers. The main themes that have emerged in this research related to schools are: racial discrimination and racism, shortage of Asian teachers and Asian Governors, a distinct lack of teachers’ understanding of racial and cultural issues, a dearth of policies on anti-racism, antisexism, multiculturalism and equal opportunities, and inadequate provision oi interpreting/translating services for non-English speaking parents in the schools. In conclusion, recommendations for LEA policies and for further research have been put forward.
English language teachers in the Greek secondary school : a study of their classroom practices and their attitudes towards methodological and materials innovationKaravas, Evdokia January 1993 (has links)
The study set out to investigate the degree of implementation of a communicative learner-centred curriculum and textbooks in the Greek secondaiy school English language classroom. The aims of the research were: a) to investigate the Greek English language teachers' actual teaching practices and the degree to which they are in accordance with the philosophy and principles of the curriculum, and b) to examine the extent to which certain factors (i.e. teachers' understanding of, and attitudes towards, the communicative learner centred approach, teachers' non- involvement in the innovation process, teachers' opinions of the textbooks, lack of systematic teacher training) may be associated with the teachers' classroom behaviour. For the first part of the research, classroom observations of 14 Greek English language teachers, working in schools within and around the Athens area, were carried out. An observation scheme was developed focusing on the teachers' implementation of activities. The aim of the scheme is to describe the roles the teachers adopt in the classroom. 'reacher roles were also investigated through an analysis of the teachers' linguistic behaviour. Transcripts of the 14 observed lessons were analysed in terms of teachers' error correcting practices (amount and types of learner errors corrected by teachers and the error treatments used) and their questioning practices (amount and types of questions asked by the teachers). For this latter focus a question typology derived from the data was developed. Teachers' attitudes towards, and understanding of, the communicative learner-centred approach were investigated via a Likert type attitude scale developed for the purposes of this study and a questionnaire. The questionnaire consisted of 28 closed-type items eliciting teachers' opinions of the textbooks and the teachers' guides, and reports of their teaching practices. The questionnaire and attitude scale was completed by an additional 87 teachers working in public secondary schools within and around the Athens area. Finally, as a means of achieving methodological triangulation, interviews with the observed teachers were carried out. The interviews focused on the teachers' knowledge of, and attitudes towards, the approach they have been asked to use. The thesis is divided into 10 chapters. Chapter 1 sets the context of the study, its main objectives and research questions. Chapters 2 and 3 contain reviews of the literature relevant to the communicative approach and the implementation of curriculum innovations. The research questions, model of the study and a detailed account of the development of the research instruments employed in the study are provided in chapter 4. Chapters 5 to 9 deal with the implementation of the research instruments and the results of the data analysis. More specifically, chapter 5 deals with the analysis and findings of the teachers' error correcting practices, and chapter 6 with the findings of teachers' questioning practices . The results of the observation scheme analysis are dealt with in chapter 7. Chapter 8 focuses on the results of the attitude scale and questionnaire completed by the 14 teachers and chapter 9 on the results of the interviews. A summary of the study's main results, a critique of the various research methods employed in the study, as well as implications of the study's findings for practice are presented in chapter 10. The findings of the classroom observations revealed a disparity between the principles of the curnculum and textbooks and their implementation in the classroom. The teachers tended to front the classroom and perform a restricted range of roles, overwhelmingly favouring the roles of transmitter, controller of students' language and evaluator. The analysis of teachers' linguistic behaviour corroborated these findings. The results of the attitude scale, questionnaire and interviews revealed that teachers, due to their lack of training, had a very limited understanding of the main principles of the approach they had been asked to implement. The teachers tended to translate innovatoiy concepts to conform to their existing theories of language and language teaching/learning. The study has aimed to contribute to two areas where language teaching research is largely lacking: a) classroom implementation of a communicative approach in a foreign language teaching context and b) the investigation of language teachers' attitudes and their importance in understanding language teachers' classroom behaviour. Based on the findings of the study, recommendations for would-be curriculum developers working in contexts similar to the Greek one are provided in the concluding chapter of the thesis.
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