Hobson, A. and Long, J. (2014), "Editorial", International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, Vol. 3 No. 3. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJMCE-10-2014-0035
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education, Volume 3, Issue 3
As Editors of the International Journal of Mentoring and Coaching in Education (IJMCE), it gives us great pleasure to introduce Volume 3 Issue 3 – the final issue of 2014. The issue includes five excellent papers, written by authors from the USA, Australia, England and Germany.
In the first paper, Rachel Lofthouse and Ulrike Thomas discuss findings from an interpretative case study of mentoring practices in a secondary level initial teacher training preparation (ITP) programme in England. The study was undertaken at a time of policy transition for teacher preparation in England, with the role of universities in ITP diminishing and schools expected to take more direct responsibility for the selection of prospective teachers, their training and support. The authors note, as others have done before them, that positive experiences of mentoring are not universal. They interrogate how mentoring interacts with the required processes of monitoring and reporting, and show that in some cases the power structures associated with these processes conflict with less performative and more developmental aspects. Interestingly, the research found that when mentors are offered evidence of student teachers’ perceptions and theoretical constructs of mentoring as practice, they can start to recognise that it can be enhanced. The outcomes of the study are pertinent to policy makers, school-based mentors and system leaders for teacher education – whether school or university based.
In our second paper, Rubén Garza, Ellen L. Duchaine and Raymond Reynosa also deal with mentoring in secondary ITP, but in a very different context to that of Lofthouse and Thomas’ study. Here, Garza and colleagues present outcomes from a study which examined pre-service teachers’ perceptions of their experiences in a mentor's classroom during a year-long field-based placement in a high-need urban school in the southwestern USA. They draw on analyses of data generated from focus groups and surveys. The paper provides a different perspective about the mentoring process to that provided by many studies because pre-service teachers learned and taught for a full school year in the classroom of a mentor who did not evaluate their practice. The findings illuminate pre-service teachers’ professional growth fostered by this experience and highlight different aspects of the mentor's contribution to their development.
In the third paper of the issue, Andrea Gallant and Virginnia Gilham discuss findings from a case study of a primary school in Victoria (Australia) in which teachers across different career phases had experienced ongoing coaching, which was designed to build teachers’ capacity to improve student learning, for a period of up to six years. The research focused on teacher coachees’ perceptions of why some coaching goals were more achievable than others, and data were generated from online questionnaires completed by 22 teacher coachees from the participating school. Using Constructivist Grounded Theory (CGT) (Charmaz, 1996), the authors identify six core themes – which they term Pragmatic I, Pragmatic We, Student Driven, Team Driven, Data Driven and Research Driven, respectively – which reflect how coachees positioned themselves or others when determining what made their coaching goals achievable. They conclude that instructional coaches within schools would benefit from being more cognisant of the developmental stages and therefore differentiated needs of the teachers they support, especially where the aim is to promote sustainable pedagogical improvement.
In the fourth paper of this issue, Linda Searby addresses the question: what constitutes a mentoring mindset in a protégé who is poised to receive maximum benefits from a mentoring relationship? Using a phenomenological approach, interviews were conducted with veteran school principals who were trained mentors, assigned and paired with newly appointed principals for a year of mentoring, in a southern state of the USA. It was found that a protégé with a mentoring mindset takes initiative, possesses a learning orientation, has a goal orientation, and is relational and reflective, while a the protégé who does not possess a mentoring mindset lacks initiative, a learning orientation and a goal orientation, and is not relational or reflective. We agree with the author that there is rich potential for further study of this important topic, and findings from this paper and from future research into the mentoring mindset phenomenon might helpfully inform both mentor and protégé training.
Our final paper, by Julia Anne Millard and Konstantin Korotov, presents the results of one of the early investigations into individuals’ willingness to be coached. The research was based on a survey of 54 current or recent Master of Business Administration (MBA) students (from 20 different countries) at a major European business school. The paper examines the extent to which particular antecedents of engagement in therapy, namely mental health stigma and gender, are also relevant for engagement in coaching by MBA students. It was found that stigma does but gender does not influence individuals’ attitudes towards and willingness to engage in coaching. The research has a number of implications for further research, for the positioning of coaching within MBA programmes, and for the preparation of coaches and educators.
We trust that you will enjoy and learn much from all five papers published in this issue.
On behalf of the authors of the five papers, as well as ourselves, we would like to extend our sincere thanks to their 15 anonymous reviewers and to our Associate Editor (Pat Ashby), all of whom undoubtedly helped the authors to improve the quality of their papers. We are also very grateful to Emily Staricoff for making an excellent job of proof-reading the papers published in this issue, and to those colleagues who kindly reviewed other manuscripts submitted for consideration but not accepted for publication by IJMCE.
Readers will be interested to hear that, as IJMCE continues to go from strength to strength, from 2015 we will increase the number of issues to four per year. We also welcome proposals for special issues of the journal. Proposals should include:
a provisional title, aims and rationale, explaining the distinctive contribution the proposed issue would make to the international field of mentoring and coaching in education;
a biographical statement for the proposed Guest Editor(s), and information about other planned or potential authors of individual papers; and
provisional plans for the peer review of manuscripts to be considered for inclusion.
Manuscripts submitted for potential inclusion in an IJMCE Special Issue must be reviewed by at least three separate reviewers (as is the case for all manuscripts submitted to IJMCE), and at least one of the reviewers must be an existing member of IJMCE's Editorial Advisory Board (EAB). Please send proposals for special issues to the Editor-in-Chief, who will then consult the wider EAB on whether or not the proposal should be accepted. Members of our EAB are keen, as we are, that all issues of the journal are truly international, with contributors from more than one country.
Andrew J. Hobson and Janette Long
Charmaz, K. (1996), “The search for meanings – grounded theory”, in Smith, J.A., Harré, R. and Van Langenhove, L. (Eds), Rethinking Methods in Psychology, Sage, London, pp. 27-49