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|Title: ||Embedding research as core practice for teachers: a model for whole school teacher learning|
|Authors: ||Merritt, Llian|
|Keywords: ||teacher research;professional development;school change;school and teacher;culture|
|Issue Date: ||2003|
|Publisher: ||University of Sydney. Policy and Practice|
|Abstract: ||This is a study of teacher professional development at the school level using teacher research as a strategy for both teacher professional learning and school change. A qualitative study was conducted to determine the conditions that would develop and sustain teachers researching their own practice in a culture of inquiry. Participant observation in one school over a two year period was used to investigate the issue of how to embed teacher research as a central feature of teachers' work. As a result of working with teachers as they researched their practice I have developed a model to explain and understand the complexities of schools and their cultures. Teachers researching their practice provided the driving force in the interplay of the elements of the model and had the potential to change school culture. Relationships, structures and processes are central to this model. Social and professional relationships between the teachers and the university partner developed and were supported by structures and processes. As the research continued these relationships changed and evolved. These relationships help develop a culture of inquiry in schools. The school/university partnership in this study evolved from an initial symbiotic-cooperative partnership (in which I shared my expertise and supported the work of teachers) into a later organic-collaborative partnership (one based on mutual and shared goals and benefits). The existing team of four teachers and the allocation of time for them to meet provided the essential structures for the teachers to research their practice. The collective leadership style instigated by the school Principal provided important human and financial support for the development of inquiry cultures. Collaboration and collegiality as forms of association enabled teachers to conduct research which challenged their individual and collective beliefs and assumptions about students' learning and their classroom practice. The content and form of teacher culture mediated the effects of teachers researching their practice. There are critical and transformational effects when teachers research their practice as part of their core work. Introducing these teachers to research was not without its difficulties. There were events and factors in the school relating to relationships, structures and processes which hindered the development of teacher research in a culture of inquiry. Because of the time frame of this study there is no evidence that school culture change is permanent. This could be the subject of future research.|
|Rights and Permissions: ||Copyright Merritt, Llian;http://www.library.usyd.edu.au/copyright.html|
|Appears in Collections:||Sydney Digital Theses (Open Access)|
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