Mentoring relationships for collaborative professional development practices in maldivian primary schools
Shareef, K. (2008). Mentoring relationships for collaborative professional development practices in maldivian primary schools (Thesis, Master of Educational Leadership (MEdLeadership)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10289/2424
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/2424
This thesis explores how mentoring was perceived and experienced as a professional development strategy for two teachers in a Maldivian primary school. It reports on how the mentoring relationship between the two teachers and the researcher evolved over the period of the data collection process. The research also explores the two teachers perceptions of the existing professional development activities. Further, report on the existing barriers which restricted establishing continuous professional developmental opportunities in the primary schools of Maldives.Data collection was through action research using concept maps for formative assessment purposes. The concept map was planned as an intervention at mentoring sessions to incorporate new pedagogy to create student-centred learning opportunities. The intervention was evaluated intensively through observation and feedback in the mentoring process.The researcher had dual roles in this action research. One role was that of researcher: collecting data on the progression of the mentoring relationship and the pedagogical changes by the participants. The second was that of mentor: coaching and assisting the two teachers to reflect on the planning and executing of the intervention in their respective classrooms.Through the action research process, data was collected on changes that the two teachers brought to their teaching. Data was also gathered on the mentoring relationship that evolved in the data collection process. In addition, semi-structured interviews were conducted to investigate the two teachers‟ willingness to engage in their own learning. The semi-structured interviews also explored the two teachers‟ perception on mentoring to establish a culture of learning in the school. The study indicated that one-off professional development sessions and a system of in-school clinical supervision to be the main professional development activities for the schools. Further the findings indicated that these activities did not meet the teachers‟ learning needs.iiFindings also indicated that the participants favoured the learning opportunities mentoring process created. The study further established both participants as keen learners, and willing participants in planning and re-planning the intervention in the mentoring process for the action research. The findings also report that the collaborative work atmosphere in the mentoring relationship assisted the two teachers to eliminate the fears associated with introducing new pedagogy.In conclusion, the study reports on barriers that may restrict creating effective mentoring relationships in primary schools of Maldives. The barriers identified were associated time for mentoring, mismatch of mentoring partners, poor collaborative relationships and mentor knowledge and experience. In addition recommends exploring how the supervisors‟ current role of evaluator can be changed to mentor role and the possibilities of group mentoring. Further study is recommended to explore how long term mentoring relationships can be developed considering the time constraints in Maldivian two session primary schools.
The University of Waikato
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