Browsing by Subject "teachers"

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  • Paju, Birgit; Kajamaa, Anu; Pirttimaa, Raija; Kontu, Elina (2021)
    Collaboration between educators is considered to be the key issue when implementing inclusive practices within schools. An open-ended questionnaire and semi-structured interviews were used to extend the current understanding of collaboration between teaching staff. The questionnaire was administrated to 167 classroom teachers, subject teachers, special education teachers and teaching assistants in primary, secondary and special education public schools in Finland. Also, semi-structured interviews with 20 participants were used to deepen the understanding of the elements included in the teaching activity in diverse classrooms. The results indicate coordination, cooperation, and reflective communication as modes of collaborative action in the participants' teaching. By combining the perspectives of the activity theory framework and modes of collaboration, the results illuminate how educators often wished to have collaboration but usually played their traditional positions in the multilayered teaching activity. The implications for preparing educators to enhance reflective collaboration for more effective inclusive practices are discussed.
  • Tikkanen, Lotta; Haverinen, Kaisa; Pyhältö, Kirsi; Pietarinen, Janne; Soini, Tiina (2022)
    Differences in teacher burnout between schools are likely to occur due to differences in the quantity and quality of interaction within the schools. Multilevel latent growth curve analyses of burnout symptoms were performed on three-wave longitudinal data collected from 2,619 teachers in 75 schools in Finland. The results showed that differences in teacher burnout between schools were pronounced in cynicism, followed by emotional exhaustion. Organizational factors were not strong predictors of differences in teacher burnout. Proactive co-regulation strategies were related to lower levels of teachers' cynicism about the professional community, implying that they might be useful in preventing the teachers' cynicism at the school level.
  • Obeng-Odoom, Franklin (2019)
  • Myyry, Liisa; Karaharju-Suvanto, Terhi; Vesalainen, Marjo; Virtala, Anna-Maija; Raekallio, Marja; Salminen, Outi; Vuorensola, Katariina; Nevgi, Anne (2020)
    The aim of this study was to examine the emotions higher education teachers associate with assessment and the factors in their teaching environment that triggered these emotions. As a starting point, Frenzel's model of teacher emotions and Pekrun's control-value theory of achievement emotions were used. The sample consisted of 16 experienced and pedagogically advanced teachers who participated in semi-structured interviews. After abductive content analyses, both positive and negative emotions were detected corresponding to Frenzel's and Pekrun's models. The main sources of emotions were validity of assessment, assessment methods, pedagogical development and assessment culture. This preliminary study indicates that assessment evokes both positive and negative emotions, and that validity of assessment is a prominent issue in evoking these emotions. Pedagogical training should deal with emotions and their regulation in assessment to help teachers in higher education to cope with negative emotions.
  • Laine, Sonja; Hotulainen, Risto; Tirri, Kirsi (2019)
    This study examined Finnish elementary school teachers' (N = 212) attitudes toward the gifted and their education. On a general level, teachers' attitudes toward gifted education were slightly positive. Teachers saw that gifted students have social value and that they need special services. The results of teachers' attitudes toward specific gifted education options were in line with earlier Finnish research, because teachers supported differentiated teaching but were more negative toward acceleration or separating the gifted into their own groups. However, despite the strong support for differentiated teaching for the gifted, teachers' positions toward practice were more skeptical.
  • Tapani, Annukka (2007)
    The polytechnics have been a part of the Finnish education for about 10 years. During these years they have tried to find an own profile as educational institutions. The community of teachers has also changed. It has become more pluralistic. The purpose of this research is to bring up the theme of collective identity: how the personnel in one polytechnic have succeeded in finding a feeling of belonging together. The research data is collected by a qualitative e-mail interview sent to a sample of 60 members of the personnel, a sample chosen by using the critical incident strategy. They represent all of the personnel. The data was analysed by argumentative and rhetoric analyses. After that the answers were combined to narrative stories. Then eight other persons were asked to member-check the stories by using the terms of rhetoric analysis. There are different ways to have a collective identity. Units play a big role. There are situations when one must or one wants to be the representative of the whole polytechnic. The use of the word ‘us’ is dependent on the situation. It is also dependent on the person with whom one is speaking. For most of the personnel to become `us` is something worth struggling for. The matters preventing one of becoming us are felt to be far from oneself and one cannot do anything to change them. In spite of the will of the polytechnic leaders to empower them, the personnel feel that they have no power and they have become alienated. There seems to be a need for a deeper discussion about the concepts “empowerment” and “alienation”. The possibilities and reasons for these two things are also worth careful consideration. The main sorurces used: Blumer, H. (1969) Symbolic Interactionism. Pespective and Method. Berkeley: University of California Press. Berkley and Los Angeles, California. Kalliola, S. (2001). Herbert Blumer. Symbolinen interaktionismi. Teoksessa V. Hänninen, J. Partanen & O-H. Ylijoki (toim.) Sosiaalipsykologian suunnannäyttäjiä. Tampere: Osuuskunta Vastapaino. Kaunismaa, P. (1997) Keitä me olemme? Kollektiivisen identiteetin käsitteellisistä lähtökohdista. Sosiologia 34, (3), 220-229. Kakkuri-Knuutila, M-L. ja Halonen, I. (2002). Argumentaatioanalyysi ja hyvän argumentin ehdot. Teoksessa M-L. Kakkuri-Knuutila (toim.) Argumentti ja kritiikki. Helsinki: Gaudeamus Kuusela P. (2001) George Herbert Mead. Pragmatismi ja sosiaalipsykologia. Teoksessa V. Hänninen, J. Partanen & O-H. Ylijoki (toim.) Sosiaalipsykologian suunnannäyttäjiä. Tampere: Osuuskunta Vastapaino. Mead, G. H. (1962) Mind, Self, & Society. From the Standpoint of a Social Behaviorist. Edited and with an Introduction by C. W. Morris. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. Varto, J. (1996) Laadullisen tutkimuksen metodologia. Helsinki: Kirjayhtymä.
  • Tuominen, Heta (Helsingfors universitet, 2002)
    The aim of this study was to investigate the connection between teachers' burn-out and professional development. In addition, the study aimed at clarifying teachers' conceptions of the significance of in-service training on work-related well-being. The theoretical starting points of the study were based on a model of burn-out (Kalimo & Toppinen1997) and a model of teachers' professional development (Niemi 1989). Present study can be seen as an independent follow-up study for a working ability project called "Uudistumisen eväät" that was followed through in Kuopio. The study was carried out in two phases. First, the connection between teachers' burn-out and professional development was charted with the help of a quantitative survey study. 131 teachers participated in the survey. Some of them were from schools that participated in the working ability project and the remainder were from other schools in Kuopio. The questionnaire consisted of self-constructed instruments of burn-out and professional development. According to the results, burn-out and professional development were strongly correlated with each other. Burn-out was summed up in three factors: emotional exhaustion, feelings of depersonalization and low feelings of personal accomplishment. Professional development was summed up in four factors: personality and pedagogical skills, learning-orientation, social skills and confronting change. Personality and pedagogical skills and skills of confronting change were correlated strongest with burn-out and its symptoms. A teacher, who has not found his/her own personal way of acting as a teacher and who considers change as something negative, is more likely to become exhausted than a teacher, who has developed his/her own pedagogical identity and who regards change more positively. In the second phase of this study, teachers' conceptions of the significance of in-service training on well-being was investigated with the help of group interviews (n=12). According to the results, the importance of in-service training was significant on the well-being of teachers. It appeared that in-service training promotes well-being by providing teachers with motivation, professional development and the possibility of taking a break from teaching and cooperating with other teachers. It has to be based on teachers' own needs. It has to be offered to teachers frequently and early enough. If teachers are already exhausted, they will neither have enough resources to participate in training, nor will they have the strength to make good use of it in practice. Both professional development and well-being are becoming more and more essential now that society is changing rapidly and the demands set on teachers are growing. Professional development can promote well-being, but are teachers too exhausted to develop themselves? Professional development demands resources and teachers may regard it as a threat and an additional strain. When the demands are so high that teachers cannot cope with them, they are likely to suffer stress and see reduction of commitment to their work and its development as a means to survive. If teachers stop caring about their work and their own development, how can we expect them to promote pupils' learning and development? It should be considered in the planning and implementation of in-service training and in arranging teachers' working conditions, that teachers have enough time and resources to develop themselves.
  • Sneck, Antti (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    Objectives. Attachment theory is a theory of social development and personality, known around the world. According to the theory, children have an innate tendency to develop a biologically based and central nervous system-regulated attachment bond to their primary caregivers in order to ensure safety, care, and survival. Early attachment experiences contribute to the way one sees oneself and others and lead to secure, insecure, or disorganized attachment styles, which affect rest of one’s life. Previous research has confirmed the universal nature of attachment, different attachment categories and styles, and early attachment’s links with future relationships and various internal and external problems. Attachment research has traditionally concentrated on early childhood and early childhood environments, whereas middle childhood, adolescence, and school context have been studied less. The objectives of the present study were to find out what kinds of links there are between attachment and the lives of school-aged children and youngsters, what kinds of attachment-related challenges teachers encounter at school, and how teachers could support their students with those attachment-related challenges. The aim is to explore attachment in the lives of school-aged children and youngsters, including at school, to gain a better understanding and to create a valuable foundation for future research. Methodology. The present study was conducted as a systematic literature review, which allowed the gathering of diverse and comprehensive, yet relevant research material, while also supporting objectivity and reproducibility aspects of the study. The material, available through electronic databases, was comprised of research articles from around the world, published in peer-reviewed international research journals. The material was analyzed thematically by research questions and topics, which were then used as a framework in the Results section. Results and conclusions. Early attachment and attachment styles were directly and indirectly linked to the lives of school-aged children and youngsters, including teacher-student relationships, peer relationships, family relationships, and academic achievement, as well as internal and external problems. Various attachment-related challenges and problems were visible at school, but teachers had many ways to buffer them. Current attachment research has not affected or changed school environments enough. Much more attention should be given to attachment within schools, teacher education, and in-service training programs in order to give students better support for their attachment-related problems and challenges.
  • Nordström, Sebastian Carl Rafael (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Positive psychology in education is an ideological umbrella term for an educational approach that has an emphasis on the well-being and happiness of the individual. There are many schools that had elements from positive psychology before its creation but the first school to adopt a school wide Positive psychology in education approach in 2007 was Geelong Grammar School in Victoria, Australia. This study is a holistic approach with the attempt to understand how the teachers at Geelong Grammar School look at education and the students from a positive psychology perspective. A qualitative phenomenological hermeneutic research design was applied so that the focus could be put on the ten teachers lived experience in the school environment. Semi-structured interviews were used as a method to gather the needed data, which was thematically analysed. The results demonstrate how the teachers are impacted by the environment; the way in which the teachers deal with and view a very diverse group of students reflect the positive psychological perspectives. The teachers report clear benefits both in their class environment and also offers distinct tools in how they approach the students. Most of the teachers reported an individual benefit from a self-growth perspective. Geelong Grammar school does not demand a certain level of positive psychology, that choice is up to the teachers. This choice is reflected in the research results and shows how it impacts them personally in a positive way, and how they think it impacts the students. The results show both common universal challenges, typical for a school, but there are also challenges unique to the positive psychology environment they live in. This study facilitates the understanding of adopting positive psychology in education seen from the teachers perspective. This study also highlights some of the broader challenges in our culture and life dictated by the consequential demands of economics.
  • Marjokorpi, Jenni (Helsingfors universitet, 2014)
    According to the recent draft of the renewed Finnish national core curriculum, the basic concepts of grammar are to be learned already in the primary school when they are taught by a classroom teacher. As the basis of metalinguistic awareness, the grammatical concepts are complex and abstract, and a body of research evidence has raised public worry about the teachers' insufficient pedagogical content knowledge in this area; some authorities have even suggested replacing the classroom teachers, who receive very little grammar instruction during their training, with subject teachers of Finnish as the mother tongue in the fifth and sixth grades of basic education. This study aims at understanding student teachers' grammatical thinking from the point of view of the sentence elements subject and object, both usually taught during the fifth grade. I research the students' capability of identifying and defining the sentence elements and the minitheories they used in this cognitive process. I also study the relation between each minitheory and success in the grammar test. The study is part of a project that evaluates the student teachers' grammatical content knowledge, for which the data was collected in 2011. The students (N = 128) took a grammar test in which they identified the sentence elements, explained the strategies they used in the task, and also marked a fifth-grader's grammar test. I studied the minitheories using content analysis of the open-ended questions and examined their effectiveness with quantitative methods. I also considered the students' earlier performance in the national matriculation exam in relation to the level of grammatical content knowledge pictured by the test. The students were familiar with the concepts of subject and object as well as their semantic definitions but only 9.4 % of the participants managed to identify all the five subjects, and 21 % of them all the four objects. The separate and content-based analysis of the minitheories of subject and object showed that the students searched for both of them by using the same minitheories that I call semantic, syntactic, interrogative, and morphological. The morphological minitheory appeared effective in both cases, the syntactic minitheory in the subject tasks, and a combination of many minitheories in the object tasks. Therefore, the teacher education needs to put emphasis on the students' content knowledge in order to ensure that they have the profound grammatical understanding required by the curriculum.
  • Sandholm, Ditte; Simonsen, Julia; Ström, Kristina; Fagerlund, Åse (2023)
    Positive education is the teaching of both traditional school skills and skills for enhancingwell-being. This study examines teachers' (N = 72) experiences with training in positive education.Qualitative content analysis was used to provide an in-depth understanding of theexperiences, and quantitative measures investigated teachers' well-being. Results show thatteachers experienced both personal and professional growth. They also saw positive changesin their students. Teachers used methods of positive education e.g. when communicating withstudents and co-workers, and when supporting the students' socioemotional development.Challenges with implementing positive education practices mostly consisted of lack of timeor support from colleagues. The authors argue that positive education is an effective tool forenhanced well-being both for participating teachers and their students and could therefore be utilised on alarger scale. Future studies could focus on whether teachers continue systematicimplementing of positive education methods long-term, and the reasons behind continued ordiscontinued.
  • Savolainen, Dominic (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    This study attempts to discover the best predictors of mathematics and language learning outcomes across Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, and Tanzania by analysing World Bank SDI data and using machine learning methods for variable selection purposes. Firstly, I use the SDI data to show the current fragilities in the quality of education service delivery, while also highlighting deficiencies in student learning outcomes. Then, I use CV Lasso, Adaptive Lasso, and Elastic Net regularisation methods to help discover the best predictors of learning outcomes. While the results from the regularisation methods show that private schools, teacher subject knowledge, and teacher pedagogical skills are good predictors of learning outcomes in a sample combining observations from Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, Uganda, and Tanzania, the results fail to infer causality by not distinguishing if unobservable factors are driving the results. To quantify the relationship of key predictors, and for statistical significance testing purposes, I then conduct subsequent OLS analysis. Despite not expecting the true partial derivative effects to be identical to the OLS coefficients presented in this study, this study highlights deficiencies in education service delivery and applies methods which help select key predictors of learning outcomes across the sampled schools in the SDI data.
  • Salmela-Aro, Katariina; Hietajärvi, Lauri; Lonka, Kirsti (2019)
    The focus of the current study was to examine teachers’ well-being in terms of work engagement and burnout by using a person-oriented approach. The participants (n = 149, 70.5% female) were subject-matter teachers from 22 schools from metropolitan Helsinki area in Finland. The first aim was to examine the kinds of profiles we can identify based on work burnout and engagement among teachers. The second aim was to study how the identified profiles differed in job-related demands and resources and personal resources in terms of resilience. Based on the demands-resources model, we expected to find profiles that differ in terms of key resources and demands. The sample was acquired as a convenience sample and the data was collected using online self-report questionnaires. The measures were work engagement, work burnout, work demands/resources (workload and control) and resilience as the personal resource. In addition, changes and effects of the economic circumstances were accounted for with two binary variables assessing the effect on class sizes and material resources. We identified two profiles among teachers: engaged (30%) and engaged-burnout (70%) profiles. We found that those in the engaged profile group had more job and personal resources, such as control and resilience, whereas those in the engaged-burnout profile group experienced more work demands, such as workload.