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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2016

Peng Liu

The willingness of teachers to be part of and contribute to education reform is crucial for its success and effectiveness. Based on the motivation theory of Bandura…

Abstract

Purpose

The willingness of teachers to be part of and contribute to education reform is crucial for its success and effectiveness. Based on the motivation theory of Bandura (1986), Leithwood et al. (1999) conceptualized teachers’ motivation as part of educational change and described it using four dimensions including personal goals, context beliefs, personal beliefs, and emotional arousal. They also defined teacherscommitment to change as teachers’ identification with or desire to be part of the change process. To date, most studies relating to teacher commitment to change have been conducted quantitatively, with comparatively little qualitative investigation into teachers’ lived experiences during a period of curricular reform. The purpose of this paper is to fill this qualitative gap in the literature and describes the realities of Chinese secondary teachers during a period of curricular reform. It investigated how the four dimensions of teacherscommitment to change interact with one another during the change process, and how internal and external school factors affect teachers’ levels of commitment to change.

Design/methodology/approach

In this research, the purposive sampling strategy was used. Age, gender, years of service, and the type of school at which teachers taught were taken into consideration. In all, 23 Chinese teachers with different numbers of years of work experience participated in this study. According to Hargreaves (2005), teachers can be categorized into three groups based on their years of working experience. Teachers with one to five years’ teaching experience are regarded as early career teachers, teachers with six to ten years of teaching as mid-career teachers, and teachers with more than ten years of working experience as experts. The samples all had upper secondary school teaching experience. They were all certified teachers in China. Their years of working experience ranged from 1 to 5, 6 to 10, and more than 11 years. Their teaching subjects included English, literature, math, geography, physics, biology, and chemistry. Semi-structured, open-ended, in-depth interviews were used to collect data. Open-ended interviews were used to give teachers the opportunity to expand and elaborate upon their perception and experience of their commitment to change and describe in detail their experiences in school contexts where their commitment to change was supported or hindered.

Findings

The research revealed that teachers in different age groups had different perceptions of teacherscommitment to change and also that internal and external organizational factors have different effects on their perceptions. This study seeks to contribute to teachers’ professional development in the Chinese school context and may help school administrators across cultures to adopt more appropriate methods for realizing effective change in their schools.

Originality/value

This study seeks an in-depth understanding of Chinese teachers’ motivation to be part of school reform, in particular the motivation process of Chinese teachers with different amounts of teaching experience. It contributes to the understanding of effective education change in China and other similar contexts.

Details

International Journal of Comparative Education and Development, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2396-7404

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Peng Liu

The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of transformational school leadership on teacherscommitment to change and the effects of organizational and teachers

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2280

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of transformational school leadership on teacherscommitment to change and the effects of organizational and teachers’ factors on teachers’ perception of transformational school leadership in the Chinese urban upper secondary school context.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper mainly uses quantitative methods to explore the relationships between different constructs. The author asks: to what extent can transformational school leadership practices in the urban upper secondary schools of a particular Chinese city explain the variation in teacherscommitment to change during curriculum reform? What are the effects of organizational and teachers’ factors on teachers’ perceptions of transformational school leadership?

Findings

The results of multiple regression analysis showed that the effect of transformational school leadership was moderate when transformational school leadership and teacherscommitment to change were treated as single variables. Four dimensions of transformational leadership practice together explained the moderate effects on four dimensions of teacherscommitment to change, among which the effect of managing the instructional program was the most prominent. The results of multiple regression analysis also revealed that variables like culture, strategy, environment, and teachers’ age had significant relationships with teachers’ perceptions of transformational school leadership. Culture, environment, strategy, structure, and teachers’ factors such as age and grade taught had moderate effects on different dimensions of teachers’ perceptions of transformational school leadership.

Originality/value

This study is one of the first to explore the effects of transformational school leadership on teacherscommitment to change in the Chinese urban upper secondary school context. The findings contribute to educational management in China and similar contexts, and this study advances knowledge and furthers the understandings of the transferability of theories to different contexts.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 53 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 28 April 2020

Peng Liu

Understanding the relationship between distributed leadership and teachers commitment to change in the Chinese urban primary school context was the purpose of this study.

Abstract

Purpose

Understanding the relationship between distributed leadership and teachers commitment to change in the Chinese urban primary school context was the purpose of this study.

Design/methodology/approach

Quantitative research method is used in this study. For ensuring comprehensiveness, this research employed a random sampling method. This study took place in Chinese urban primary schools. A total of 350 questionnaires were circulated, 318 questionnaires were returned, and 291 questionnaires were valid, with a response rate of 90.9 per cent and a validity rate of 91.5 per cent.

Findings

The results of path analysis indicated that various dimensions of distributed leadership, including collaboration and cooperation, responsibility and accountability, and values and beliefs, had significant effects on group competence. Collaboration and cooperation and decision making had significant relationships with task analysis. Collaboration and cooperation, responsibility and accountability, and values and beliefs had significant effects on collective teacher efficacy as a single variable.

Originality/value

These findings contribute to the understanding of educational management in the Chinese context and advance knowledge about distributed leadership theories in an East Asian context.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 34 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2002

Huen Yu, Kenneth Leithwood and Doris Jantzi

The effects of principals’ transformational leadership practices on teacherscommitment to change are examined in this study in Hong Kong primary schools. Mediating…

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6916

Abstract

The effects of principals’ transformational leadership practices on teacherscommitment to change are examined in this study in Hong Kong primary schools. Mediating variables in the study included school culture, strategies for change, school structure, and the school environment. Results suggest strong significant effects of transformational leadership on mediating variables and weak but significant effects on teacherscommitment to change. In comparison with other relevant evidence, it is suggested that the pattern of transformational leadership effects is similar in both North America and Hong Kong, but the magnitude of these effects is far less in Hong Kong.

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Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 40 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2003

Femke Geijsel, Peter Sleegers, Kenneth Leithwood and Doris Jantzi

This article examines the effects of transformational school leadership on the commitment of teachers to school reform, and the effort they are willing to devote to such…

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9280

Abstract

This article examines the effects of transformational school leadership on the commitment of teachers to school reform, and the effort they are willing to devote to such reform. It does so by building on the knowledge from both educational and non‐educational research into such effects. A model of such effects is tested using two approximately comparable sets of data collected from samples of Canadian and Dutch teachers. Structural equation modeling is applied to test the model within each data set. Results of the Canadian and Dutch studies are then compared. The findings show transformational leadership dimensions to affect both teacherscommitment and extra effort. The effects of the dimension's vision building and intellectual stimulation appear to be significant in particular. Overall, the findings clearly indicate the importance of analyzing dimensions of transformational leadership for their separate effects on teacher commitment and extra effort within the context of educational reform.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 41 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2015

Jingping Sun

– The purpose of this paper is to propose a critical path through which school leadership travels to students by highlighting the importance of teacher commitment.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a critical path through which school leadership travels to students by highlighting the importance of teacher commitment.

Design/methodology/approach

Using both meta-analytic and narrative review methods, this paper systematically reviews the evidence in the past 20 years about the conceptualizations and measurements of teacher commitment and its relationships with principal leadership and student learning.

Findings

This paper presents: first, the four dimensions of teacher commitment and the ten constituents involved in the conceptualization of teacher commitment; and second, the five measures used in empirical studies for measuring teacher commitment. It concludes that: teacher commitment is significantly related to student learning; the extent to which school leadership influences teacher commitment is large and is aligned with the value systems of both leaders and teachers; and teacher commitment mediates leadership impacts on student learning in three ways: at the personal level, at the dyad level and at the collective level.

Research limitations/implications

This study conceptualizes a critical path through which school leadership improves student learning, mediated by teacher commitment. A framework of such critical paths will provide educational leaders and policy makers at both local and state levels with much needed guidance for improving student learning.

Originality/value

This study adds to the understanding of the indirect influence of school leadership on student learning by illustrating how and to what extent principal leadership influences teacher commitment, which in turn influences student learning.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 53 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 14 August 2009

Ferudun Sezgin

The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationships between teachers' organizational commitment perceptions and both their psychological hardiness and some…

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2576

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationships between teachers' organizational commitment perceptions and both their psychological hardiness and some demographic variables in a sample of Turkish primary schools.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 405 randomly selected teachers working at primary schools in Ankara participated in the study. Personal Views Survey III‐R and the Organizational Commitment Scale were used to gather data.

Findings

This paper supports the argument that psychological hardiness is a meaningful construct predicting the perceptions of primary school teachers on organizational commitment. Results reveal that psychological hardiness is positively and significantly related to both identification and internalization components of teacher commitment, whereas it is negatively and significantly correlated to the commitment predicated on compliance. Teacher compliance commitment is negatively associated with both identification and internalization. Although gender and years of experience are significant predictors of identification and internalization, the variables of subject specialization and age did not significantly predict all three subscales of teacher commitment.

Originality/value

This paper represents a different approach to organizational commitment by examining teacher commitment under three components – compliance, identification, and internalization. This paper also explores the relationships between organizational commitment and teacher psychological hardiness which is a personality style reducing the negative effects of stress. Results from this study are discussed in relation to practical implications in school settings.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 47 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Izhak Berkovich and Ori Eyal

Empirical evidence links transformational school leadership to teachers’ autonomous motivation and affective organizational commitment. Little empirical research, however…

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1657

Abstract

Purpose

Empirical evidence links transformational school leadership to teachers’ autonomous motivation and affective organizational commitment. Little empirical research, however, has focused on the emotional mechanisms behind these relations. Following the argument in the literature that transformational leadership can transform followers’ emotions, the purpose of this paper is to examine whether teacher’s experience of emotional reframing by principal mediates the relationships between transformational school leadership and these work-related outcomes (i.e. teachers’ motivation and commitment).

Design/methodology/approach

Questionnaires were used to collect information from 639 primary school teachers nested in 69 randomly sampled schools. The data were analyzed using multilevel path analysis software.

Findings

The results indicated that the effect of transformational school leadership behaviors on teachers’ autonomous motivation was fully mediated by emotional reframing, and that the effect of transformational school leadership on affective organizational commitment was partially mediated by it. The authors further found an indirect relationship of transformational school leadership with affective organizational commitment through emotional reframing and autonomous motivation.

Originality/value

The present study makes a unique contribution to the literature by confirming that teachers’ sense of emotional reframing is a key affective mechanism by which school leaders influence teachers’ motivation and commitment.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 55 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2019

Rima Karami-Akkary, Julia Mahfouz and Samaya Mansour

Emotions of school leaders influence school culture and structure. Understanding emotions is under-researched and under-theorized in non-western contexts, especially…

Abstract

Purpose

Emotions of school leaders influence school culture and structure. Understanding emotions is under-researched and under-theorized in non-western contexts, especially during educational change. The purpose of this paper is to understand the nature of the leadership team’s (LT’s) emotional responses to change, their coping strategies and conditions that maintain their commitment to change.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used intrinsic case study research, drawing on data from interviews and a focus group that illuminated perceptions of the LT in a school. The data set was analyzed following the general inductive approach.

Findings

The LT’s experienced three critical incidents (CI) of educational change that provoked a range of intense negative and positive emotions, a national curriculum reform. Despite the team’s attempt to cope with the national curriculum reform (i.e. CI1), negative emotions and unsupportive conditions challenged their commitment to change. In CI2, supportive conditions and effective personal coping strategies helped elicit positive emotions, which led to sustained commitment to change. Emotions experienced during the capacity-building program (i.e. CI3) were predominantly positive due to support from the school principal and coaches, resulting in sustained commitment to change.

Research limitations/implications

Findings from this small-scale case study in Lebanon are not generalizable to other contexts. The time lag could have affected the recollection of experiences. All participants were female, and their experiences might not reflect those of other school members affected by the changes.

Practical implications

Examining emotions during change uncovers insight into school leaders’ subjective experience, facilitates a more nuanced understanding of change, and supports change implementation. Considering emotions during change informs the development of tailored interventions that provide effective support.

Originality/value

This study examines how emotions affect the success of educational change. Contrary to common understanding, change does not always generate negative emotions that impede implementation. School-based improvement creates structural and cultural conditions for effective change as it considers practitioners’ socio-emotional needs, eliciting positive emotions.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 57 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

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Article
Publication date: 2 March 2021

Lei Mee Thien, Donnie Adams and Hai Ming Koh

This study aims to investigate the relationships between distributed leadership, teacher academic optimism and teacher organisational commitment with the contextual…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the relationships between distributed leadership, teacher academic optimism and teacher organisational commitment with the contextual influence of gender and teaching experience.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed partial least squares structural equation modelling for data analysis. This study has selected 421 teachers from 18 secondary schools in Penang.

Findings

Distributed leadership has a positive direct effect on teacher academic optimism and organisational commitment. The relationship between distributed leadership and teacher academic optimism was stronger for male teachers and senior teachers who have more than ten years of teaching experience. However, gender and teaching experience have no significant moderating effects on the relationship between distributed leadership and teacher organisational commitment.

Research limitations/implications

The reason for the non-existent relationship between distributed leadership and teacher organisational commitment across gender and teaching experience remains unknown. In-depth investigation using interview method is required for further exploration.

Practical implications

This study complements and extends prior research on the relationships between distributed leadership, teacher organisational commitment and teacher academic optimism by providing evidence from Malaysia on how they contribute to the organisational conditions of their school.

Originality/value

This study has its originality in investigating the relationships between distributed leadership, teacher organisational commitment and academic optimism with the contextual influence of gender and teaching experience in the non-western society.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 35 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

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