Collective Agency among Physics Teachers: A Case in China’s Curriculum Reform
International Journal of Secondary Education
Volume 2, Issue 6, December 2014, Pages: 94-101
Received: Dec. 19, 2014; Accepted: Dec. 28, 2014; Published: Jan. 12, 2015
Views 2974      Downloads 170
Authors
Guopeng Fu, Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Samson Nashon, Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Article Tools
Follow on us
Abstract
This study explored how secondary physics teachers exercised their collective agency in the process of adopting and adapting to a nation-wide curriculum reform in China. Through an ethnographic approach and drawing on Social Cognitive Theory, physics teachers’ collective agency was explored and interpreted. The results revealed that collective agency was a mediating bridge through which the discrepancies between reform mandates and teachers’ pedagogies and curriculum interpretations were negotiated. Further, collective agency helped teachers to cope with uncertainties generated by the reform and offered mental supports. Moreover, the reform mandates undermined the traditional power hierarchy within teachers and thus stimulated teachers’ collective agency. The study demonstrates the interdependent relations between collective agency and reform environment and has implications for theory, practice, curriculum, and research.
Keywords
Physics Teacher, Collective Agency, Chinese Curriculum Reform
To cite this article
Guopeng Fu, Samson Nashon, Collective Agency among Physics Teachers: A Case in China’s Curriculum Reform, International Journal of Secondary Education. Vol. 2, No. 6, 2014, pp. 94-101. doi: 10.11648/j.ijsedu.20140206.11
References
[1]
Aoki, T. T. (2005). Toward Curriculum Inquiry in a New Key (1978/1980). In W. F. Pinar & R. L. Irwin (Eds), Curriculum in a new key: The collected works of Ted T. Aoki., Studies in curriculum theory. (pp 89-110). Mahwah, NJ, US: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers.
[2]
Bandura, A. (1998). Personal and collective efficacy in human adaptation and change, in Adair, J. G. (Ed,). Récents développements en psychologie scientifique (pp.51-71). Psychology Press.
[3]
Bandura, A. (2000). Exercise of human agency through collective efficacy. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 9, 75–78.
[4]
Bandura, A. (2006). Toward a Psychology of Human Agency. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 1(2), 164 -180. doi:10.1111/j.1745-6916.2006.00011.x
[5]
Datnow, A., Hubbard, L., & Mehen, H. (2002). Educational reform implementation: A co-constructed process. London: Routledge.
[6]
Davies, B. (2000). A body of writing 1990-1999. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira
[7]
Davis, B. & Simmt, E. (2003). Understanding learning systems: Mathematics education and complexity science. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education 34(2), 137-167.
[8]
Elder Jr., G. H. (1994). Time, Human Agency, and Social Change: Perspectives on the Life Course. Social Psychology Quarterly, 57(1), 4-15.
[9]
Erickson, G., Kang, C., Mitchell, I., & Ryan, J. (2008). Role of teacher research communities and cross-culture collaboration in the context of curriculum reform in China. Samaras, A.P. et al. (Eds.), Learning communities in practice (pp179-191). Netherlands: Springer.
[10]
Friedman, V. J. (1997). Making schools safe for uncertainty: Teams, teaching, and school reform. Teachers College Record, 99, 335-370.
[11]
Frykholm, J. (2004). Teachers’ tolerance for discomfort: Implications for curricular reform in mathematics. Journal of Curriculum and Supervision, 19(2), 125-149.
[12]
Fullan, M. G. (1993). Change forces: Probing the depths of educational reform. London: The Falmer Press.
[13]
Fullan, M. G. (1999). Change forces: The sequel. London: The Falmer Press.
[14]
Fullan, M. G., & Hargreaves, A. (1996). What’s worth fighting for in your school? New York: Teacher College Press.
[15]
Fullan, M. G., & Miles, M.B. (1992) Getting reform right: What works and what doesn’t. Phi Delta Kappan, 73(10), 745-752.
[16]
Giddens, A. (1984). The constitution of society: Outline of the theory of structuration. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.
[17]
Goddard, R. D., & Goddard, Y. L. (2001). A multilevel analysis of the relationship between teacher and collective efficacy in urban schools. Teaching and Teacher Education, 17(7), 807-818.
[18]
Goddard, R. D., Hoy, W. K., & Hoy, A. W. (2000). Collective Teacher Efficacy: Its Meaning, Measure, and Impact on Student Achievement. American Educational Research Journal, 37(2), 479 -507.
[19]
Guan, Q., & Meng, W. (2007). China’s New National Curriculum Reform: Innovation, challenges and strategies. Front. Educ. China, 2(4), 579–604.
[20]
Helsing, D. (2007). Regarding uncertainty in teachers and teaching. Teaching and Teacher Education, 23(8), 1317-1333.
[21]
Kurz, T. B., & Knight, S. L. (2004). An Exploration of the Relationship Among Teacher Efficacy, Collective Teacher Efficacy, and Goal Consensus. Learning Environments Research, 7(2), 111-128.
[22]
Lasky, S. (2005). A sociocultural approach to understanding teacher identity, agency and professional vulnerability in a context of secondary school reform. Teaching and Teacher Education, 2005(21), 899-916.
[23]
Lincoln, Y. S., & Guba, E. G. (1985). Naturalistic inquiry. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
[24]
Mandzuk, D., Hasinoff, S., & Seifert, K. (2003). Inside a student cohort: Teacher education from a social capital perspective. Canadian Journal of Education, 28, 1 & 2, 168-184.
[25]
Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China. (2001). Outline of Curriculum Reform of Basic Education (trial version). (in Chinese)
[26]
Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China. (2003). Full-time High School Physics Curriculum Standard. (in Chinese)
[27]
Palys, T. & Atchison, C. (2008). Research decisions: Quantitative and qualitative perspectives (4th Ed.). Scarborough, ON: Thompson Nelson.
[28]
Pignatelli, F. (1993). What can I do? Foucault on freedom and the question of teacher agency. Educational Theory, 43(4), 411-432.
[29]
Ponticell, J. A. (2003). Enhancers and inhibitors of teacher risk taking: A case study. Peabody Journal of Education, 78(3), 5-24.
[30]
Rosenholtz, S. (1991). Teachers’ workplace: The social organization of schools. New York: Teacher College Press.
[31]
Ross, J., & Gray, P. (2006). Transformational leadership and teacher commitment to organizational values: The mediating effects of collective teacher efficacy. School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 17(2), 179-199.
[32]
Ross, J., Hogaboam-Gray, A., & Gray, P. (2004). Prior Student Achievement, Collaborative School Processes, and Collective Teacher Efficacy. Leadership and Policy in Schools, 3(3), 163-188.
[33]
Skaalvik, E. M., & Skaalvik, S. (2007). Dimensions of teacher self-efficacy and relations with strain factors, perceived collective teacher efficacy, and teacher burnout. Journal of Educational Psychology, 99(3), 611-625.
[34]
Song, S. (Eds.). (2006). Senior High School Physics new curriculum: Ideology and teaching practice. Beijing: The Commercial Press. (In Chinese)
[35]
Stake, R. E. (1995). The art of case study research. SAGE.
[36]
Zhu, M., & Kang, C. (2002). Approaching the new curriculum: Dialogues with curriculum participants. Beijing: Beijing Normal University. (In Chinese)
ADDRESS
Science Publishing Group
1 Rockefeller Plaza,
10th and 11th Floors,
New York, NY 10020
U.S.A.
Tel: (001)347-983-5186