Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • apa.csl
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Collegial Planning and Preparation as Subject-didactical School Improvement
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Political, Historical, Religious and Cultural Studies (from 2013). (CSD)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1168-8608
Göteborgs universitet, Sverige.
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Educational Studies (from 2013). (SOL)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9276-6577
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Department of Mathematics and Computer Science (from 2013). Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education Research. (SMEER)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7956-8795
Show others and affiliations
2023 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This paper reports on a project aiming to develop empirical and theoretical knowledge about teachers' planning and preparations (PaP) of lessons as a didactical collegial practice and how this shapes and is shaped by the local school organization. One goal is to explore and theoretically describe PaP as a collegial practice by contrasting different subjects over time. Another is to analytically explore how these settings affect and enable teachers' ability to make strategic decisions for students' learning. Finally, the aim is to examine local school improvement efforts. The project is based on longitudinal case studies wherein teachers of different school subjects had time to plan and prepare lessons. The collegial setting was organized to facilitate teachers' focus on student learning, primarily subject-oriented and sometimes cross-curricular, but always oriented to a learning object. This design allowed us to study teachers' transformational competence over time and between subjects by following their decisions about content, learning goals and objects, sequencing, and adjusting to students' needs and interests. This design opened up for comparative analyses to better understand similarities and differences between and across subjects. Further, the schools have different management cultures, one more individual and one more collegial. How PaP is implemented and refigured in regard to the local school organization is also examined in the project. We will be asking three research questions: 

  • RQ1: How do teachers' PaP appear as a transformational competence when scheduled as collegial collaboration? 
  • RQ2: How does the collegial teaching setting affect teachers' ability to make strategic decisions in relation to students' learning? 
  • RQ3: How is school leading prefigured in the implementation process of scheduled collegial PaP at participating schools, and what are the implications for the local school organizations? 

What motivates this focus on PaP? In short, we know little about how collegial planning affects teachers' transformational competence and how this may be context-bound to different subjects, nor about its infrastructural function in the local school organization (Hirsh, & Lindberg, 2015; Yuan, & Zhang, 2016). Such evidence-informed knowledge is needed as PaP involves complex strategic decisions that have been shown to benefit from adequate collegial cooperation (Nordgren et al., 2019; 2022). As teachers can make a difference in student learning beyond socio-economic restraints (Hattie, 2008), school authorities and research communities alike have invested in enhancing teachers' professionalism both through collegial and individual strategies (Chetty et al., 2014; Lefstein et al., 2020). Consequently, it is a paradox that planning is largely overlooked as a fundamental activity for generating qualitative teaching. Boeskens and Nusche (2021) note that student learning does not correlate with lesson time as such, but with 'the time students spend engaged with tasks that are of adequate difficulty' (p. 12). To improve teaching quality, teachers have to canalize their knowledge through their PaP. If PaP is compromised due to organizational or ability restrictions, teaching quality will also be compromised. Yet, the role of teachers' planning is seldom distinguished in political reforms nor as a salient practice in school improvement research. In subject-didactical research, the planning–teaching–reflecting cycle is acknowledged as core to teachers' professionalism (Carlson & Daehler, 2019), yet it is seldom targeted for study (Boeskens & Nusche, 2021). Evidence indicates that whether the school improvement efforts target collegial cooperation or teacher leadership, a necessary condition for enduring improvements is teachers' ability to think strategically and autonomously about students’ learning processes (Kennedy, 2016). 

Methodology

Selection: The project was carried out in cooperation with one upper secondary school and one lower secondary school in Sweden. Voluntary schools were selected based on interest and size. In addition, the school leaders had to participate actively, and the teachers had to be allotted joint weekly planning time. The upper secondary school is in a mid-sized city. There are six planning teams organized based on teaching content: history, mathematics (three on three levels), technology, and physics. Each team consists of two to four participants. The whole management team (two directors and six principals) is participating in the project. The lower secondary school is in a municipality. The teachers are divided into six planning teams in one subject, Swedish, each with two teachers. One principal represents the lower secondary school. In total, the project monitors around 25 teachers, nine school leaders, and 600 students. Implementation: Planning teams (PTs) were set up to meet weekly at a scheduled time. Each PT plans and prepares teaching sequences. Each PT had one contact in the research group with subject-didactical expertise. A specific focus was on to what extent the collegial setting supports teachers' formative strategies. School leaders were actively involved in implementing the project. The school leaders met regularly to discuss the project's implications with experts in school development research.

Data: Audio-recorded PT group meetings, audio-recorded interviews with school leaders, and additional planning documents. Analysis procedure: Audio recordings from the PTs has been analyzed thematically. We have developed a framework for categorizing the data. Categories developed a priori (previous research and theory) were combined with categories a posteriori (deductive and inductive steps in the analytical procedure) (e.g. Österholm et al., 2016). The framework makes it possible to navigate the extensive data and analyze singular themes (e.g. teachers' choice of activity), correlation (choice of activity and formative teaching), or the whole iterative process of how teachers transform content plays out over time and in different subjects. Legitimation Code Theory (LCT) and particularly the dimension of Specialization is used to analyze teachers’ transformational competence as they take strategic decisions on students' learning (Maton, 2014). The NVivo coding enables us to search the extensive data to make comparative analyses overtime on what themes different PTs decide to focus. The coded PT meetings are also influential in searching for and unpacking the collegial setting and the complexity of strategic decisions. 

Conclusion

As already mentioned, we have comprehensive data. Our analytical results are preliminary and most of the material has not yet been analyzed. The initial findings can briefly be summarised: Collegial PaP as practice: After a negotiating period, a collegial PaP practice was developed. The teams started targeting specific areas that they wanted to explore. After a while, teachers began to implement research-based models to develop their teaching. PaP as transformation: Teachers do have formative ambitions but struggle to find effective and functional methods. A comparative perspective: Planning teams approach the PaP process differently, which seems to be related to subject-specific causes. For example, the planning team in History spent 36% on specifying objectives and knowledge whereas the planning team in Mathematics spent 5% on that theme. In a closer analysis of the teachers’ interactions, different beliefs about knowledge and knowers appeared where a hierarchical knowledge structure and a horizontal knower structure were identified in Mathematics and a horizontal knowledge structure and a hierarchical knower structure were identified in History (Jakobsson et al., 2022). PaP Implementation: It seems to take a rather limited amount of time for teachers to take PaP ownership. The local management culture seems to be of importance but in a complex way. The results show how methods that support dialogue, intersubjectivity, and unforced consensus enable the progress of an equivalent collaboration (Forssten Seiser, & Portfelt, 2022). In addition, the results reveal how a lack of shared agreements regarding the purpose of collaboration constraints, or even prevents, co-ownership. Hence, PaP is a complex and strategic decision; schools need to consider how to organize this activity adequately. We suggest that this calls for a balance between teachers' time for individual planning and marking and time with colleagues as a supportive setting for joint planning and strategic decisions. 

References

Boeskens, L., & Nusche, D. (2021). "Not enough hours in the day: Policies that shape teachers' use of time". OECD Education Working Papers, No. 245, OECD Publishing.

Carlson, J., & Daehler, K. R. (2019). The refined consensus model of pedagogical content knowledge in science education. In: Hume A., Cooper R., Borowski A. (Eds.), Repositioning pedagogical content knowledge in teachers' knowledge for teaching science (pp. 77-92). Springer.

Chetty, R., Friedman, J. N., & Rockoff, J. E. (2014). Measuring the impacts of teachers I: Evaluating bias in teacher value-added estimates. American Economic Review, 104(9), 2593-2632.

Forssten Seiser, A., & Portfelt, I. (2022). Critical aspects to consider when establishing collaboration between school leaders and researchers: two cases from Sweden. Educational action research, 1-16.

Hattie, J. (2008). Visible learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement: Routledge.

Hirsh, Å., & Lindberg, V. (2015). Formativ bedömning på 2000-talet–en översikt av svensk och internationell forskning. Vetenskapsrådet

Jakobsson, M., Randahl, A. C., & Nordgren, K. (2022). Planification et préparation collégiale des cours en Suède. Revue internationale d’éducation de Sèvres, (90), 127-137.

Kennedy, M. (2016), "How does professional development improve teaching?", Review of Educational Research, Vol. 86/4, pp. 945-980

Lefstein, A., Vedder-Weiss, D., & Segal, A. (2020). Relocating research on teacher learning: Toward pedagogically productive talk. Educational researcher, 49, 0013189X2092299.

Maton, K. (2014). Building powerful knowledge: The significance of semantic waves. In: B. Barrett & E. Rata (Eds.), Knowledge and the future of the curriculum (pp 181-197). Palgrave studies in excellence and equity in global education. Palgrave Macmillan

Merritt, E. G. (2016). Time for teacher learning, planning critical for school reform. Phi delta kappan, 98(4), 31-36.

Nordgren, K., Bergh, D., Duek, S., Liljekvist, Y., & Jakobsson, M. (2022). Rektorers uppfattningar om undervisningens villkor och en skola på vetenskaplig grund: En uppföljande enkätstudie till undersökningen Lärares planering och efterarbete av lektioner: Infrastrukturer för kollegialt samarbete och forskningssamverkan. Karlstads universitet.

Nordgren, K., Kristiansson, M., Liljekvist, Y., & Bergh, D. (2019). Lärares planering och efterarbete av lektioner: Infrastrukturer för kollegialt samarbete och forskningssamverkan. KUP

Nordgren, K. (2019). Boundaries of historical consciousness: a Western cultural achievement or an anthropological universal? Journal of Curriculum Studies, 51(6), 779-797. Y

uan, R., & Zhang, J. (2016). Promoting teacher collaboration through joint lesson planning: Challenges and coping strategies. The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher, 25(5), 817–

Österholm, M., Bergqvist, T., Liljekvist, Y., & van Bommel, J. (2016). Utvärdering av Matematiklyftets resultat: slutrapport.Umeå Universitet. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2023.
Keywords [en]
Teacher professional development, Planning and preparation, Collegial collaboration, School Improvement, comparative didactics
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education; Educational Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-94188OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-94188DiVA, id: diva2:1748894
Conference
European Conference on Educational Research (ECER). 22 - 25 August 2023, Glasgow, UK
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2021-04766Available from: 2023-04-04 Created: 2023-04-04 Last updated: 2023-08-31Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text in DiVA

Authority records

Nordgren, KennethPortfelt, IngelaLiljekvist, YvonneKristiansson, MartinForssten Seiser, Anette

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Nordgren, KennethPortfelt, IngelaLiljekvist, YvonneKristiansson, MartinForssten Seiser, Anette
By organisation
Department of Political, Historical, Religious and Cultural Studies (from 2013)Department of Educational Studies (from 2013)Department of Mathematics and Computer Science (from 2013)Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education ResearchCentre for the Studies of Social Sciences Didactics (from 2013)
Educational Sciences

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar

urn-nbn

Altmetric score

urn-nbn
Total: 172 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • apa.csl
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf