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postgraduate thesis: Network learning : how teachers learn through their professional networks

TitleNetwork learning : how teachers learn through their professional networks
Authors
Issue Date2015
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Lin, W. [林許淑謙]. (2015). Network learning : how teachers learn through their professional networks. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5479363
AbstractThis is a study about teacher learning in a case school. In this context, the study concentrates on teacher learning in groups. In the literature, there is a lot of attention to teacher learning in groups, community, and networks; however, many researchers indicate the necessity of understanding the processes of teacher’s interactions and obtaining concrete evidence of such interactions. This points to the need to secure quantitative data as well as qualitative data. This study is a step-wise exploration of teacher learning in the school. Step 1: The study began by understanding the pattern of teacher’s professional interactions using Social Network Analysis (SNA). Step 2: In order to delineate teacher learning in the school, the study then borrowed the concept of Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) from Karen Seashore Louis (2006). Hence, Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) was used to confirm that the chosen Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) constructs are suitable for this study. Step 3: Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was adopted to link the pattern of teacher’s professional interactions to the confirmed PLCs constructs. Step 4: Interviews were conducted to triangulate with and to interpret the quantitative findings. While Social Network Analysis (SNA) provides a general pattern and relative positions of teacher’s professional interactions, Structural Equation modeling (SEM) helps identifying the types of professional activities and their intensity in the networks. Hence, it provides a 3-D picture of relations among teachers in the case school. This integrated analysis leads to the comprehensively understanding of learning activities that occurred among teachers in this school. In this study, the concept of PLC is seen as a combination of Professional Community (PC) and Organizational Learning (OL). It is found that, in this school, teachers themselves have high capacity for learning through networks. The major way of interactions among teachers is through discussions to exchange resources and ideas. The findings are in two dimensions: The first is about professional community. The framework of professional community comprises reflective dialogue (which is how teachers engage in deep discussions about instructions) and deprivatized practice (which is how teachers exchange their practices through classroom observation and coteaching). Teachers in the school are found to be strong in the former and weak in the latter. Second, because of the lack of practice sharing and because of the lack of a whole-school system to promote collective practice (which can be IT platforms, regulations, policies, mechanisms, and so forth), the school is yet to demonstrate full capacity of organizational learning. In relevance to theory, while there is a vague, ambiguous, and overlapping meaning of professional community and organizational learning in the literature, the study points to the possible distinction between the two. Empirically, it can be concluded that professional community emphasizes on the interactions among teachers, whereas organizational learning emphasizes on collective actions in the whole school. The study leads to the reinterpretation and modification of Louis (2006)’s framework. To become a learning school, three elements are essential: (1) Teachers engage in professional discussions (i.e. reflective dialogue), (2) Teachers exchange and share professional practices (i.e. deprivatized practice), (3) There must be systemic efforts to facilitate collective action (i.e. shared social construction).
DegreeDoctor of Education
SubjectTeachers - In-service training
Group work in education
Dept/ProgramEducation
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/211025

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorLin, Warangkana-
dc.contributor.author林許淑謙-
dc.date.accessioned2015-07-02T23:10:31Z-
dc.date.available2015-07-02T23:10:31Z-
dc.date.issued2015-
dc.identifier.citationLin, W. [林許淑謙]. (2015). Network learning : how teachers learn through their professional networks. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5479363-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/211025-
dc.description.abstractThis is a study about teacher learning in a case school. In this context, the study concentrates on teacher learning in groups. In the literature, there is a lot of attention to teacher learning in groups, community, and networks; however, many researchers indicate the necessity of understanding the processes of teacher’s interactions and obtaining concrete evidence of such interactions. This points to the need to secure quantitative data as well as qualitative data. This study is a step-wise exploration of teacher learning in the school. Step 1: The study began by understanding the pattern of teacher’s professional interactions using Social Network Analysis (SNA). Step 2: In order to delineate teacher learning in the school, the study then borrowed the concept of Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) from Karen Seashore Louis (2006). Hence, Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) was used to confirm that the chosen Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) constructs are suitable for this study. Step 3: Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was adopted to link the pattern of teacher’s professional interactions to the confirmed PLCs constructs. Step 4: Interviews were conducted to triangulate with and to interpret the quantitative findings. While Social Network Analysis (SNA) provides a general pattern and relative positions of teacher’s professional interactions, Structural Equation modeling (SEM) helps identifying the types of professional activities and their intensity in the networks. Hence, it provides a 3-D picture of relations among teachers in the case school. This integrated analysis leads to the comprehensively understanding of learning activities that occurred among teachers in this school. In this study, the concept of PLC is seen as a combination of Professional Community (PC) and Organizational Learning (OL). It is found that, in this school, teachers themselves have high capacity for learning through networks. The major way of interactions among teachers is through discussions to exchange resources and ideas. The findings are in two dimensions: The first is about professional community. The framework of professional community comprises reflective dialogue (which is how teachers engage in deep discussions about instructions) and deprivatized practice (which is how teachers exchange their practices through classroom observation and coteaching). Teachers in the school are found to be strong in the former and weak in the latter. Second, because of the lack of practice sharing and because of the lack of a whole-school system to promote collective practice (which can be IT platforms, regulations, policies, mechanisms, and so forth), the school is yet to demonstrate full capacity of organizational learning. In relevance to theory, while there is a vague, ambiguous, and overlapping meaning of professional community and organizational learning in the literature, the study points to the possible distinction between the two. Empirically, it can be concluded that professional community emphasizes on the interactions among teachers, whereas organizational learning emphasizes on collective actions in the whole school. The study leads to the reinterpretation and modification of Louis (2006)’s framework. To become a learning school, three elements are essential: (1) Teachers engage in professional discussions (i.e. reflective dialogue), (2) Teachers exchange and share professional practices (i.e. deprivatized practice), (3) There must be systemic efforts to facilitate collective action (i.e. shared social construction).-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.subject.lcshTeachers - In-service training-
dc.subject.lcshGroup work in education-
dc.titleNetwork learning : how teachers learn through their professional networks-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5479363-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Education-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineEducation-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-

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