Uncertainty has been a major issue in educational theory and research for some time, not least since Luhmann and Schorr (1982) discussed the lack of a causal connection between pedagogical interventions and their results as a lack of technology. Even recent studies relate more general discussions on the importance of a lack of knowledge for decision-making on pedagogical interventions (Helsper et al. 2003; Paseka et al. 2018). Following these considerations, it can be argued that to determine the quality of education the focus should not be on the outcomes only; instesad, the pedagogical process as such should be considered. In this regard, empirical research has focused on the quality of pedagogical interactions, either in early childhood care (Nentwig-Gesemann/Nicolai 2015) or in school education (Martens/Asbrand 2017). However, research has not yet extensively combined the notion of quality of interaction with to two key concepts in education: recognition and trust. Against this backdrop, the paper aims to explore the concepts of recognition and trust as possible elements describing the qualities of pedagogical interactions in greater detail and, thereby, to investigate the relationship between recognition and trust.
Recent research in education approved that both, recognition and trust are, among others, crucial for mutual understanding and education achievements. If trying to differentiate between the two concepts, one could argue that recognition (Honneth 1995; Taylor 1992) can be considered an aspect of how educationalists perceive their clients and subsequently approve of them or their actions, whereby both is related to social expectations concerning how to be or to behave to earn such achievement. Recognition therefore does not refer to the interaction itself in the first place. Instead, the relation is between the educationalists perspectives, according actions (towards their clients) and given concepts of appropriate or desirable behavior. These relations can be rooted in discoursive “subject positions” (Hall 1996: 6) as well as in institutional or organizational requirements (Wiezorek 2005).
Trust, on the other hand, is considered as a result of mutually aligned expectations that evolve through communication and which result in the willingness to be vulnerable (Colquitt et al. 2007; Misztal 2011). According to Goffman, the evolvement of trust, at the same time, is closely related to tacit expectations concerning the ‘normality’ of interactions (Misztal 2001). As regards trust in education institutions, scholars express on the one hand, that educationalists’ need to be benevolent, reliable, honest, open, and competent (Hoy & Tschannen-Moran 1999) in order to be perceived trustworthy. Concerning trust towards institutions, research underlines, on the other hand, the meaning of the recognition of and appliance with accepted and legitimate norms that are supposed to prevent from arbitrariness and ascertain an institution’s expected performance (Lepsius 1997). According to the trustor’s acquaintance with an interaction, these perceptions differ across situations (Bormann & Niedlich 2017).
Whereas in each case the approaches are well-established in education research and theory, it is amazing that to date a) it remains unclear whether recognition and trust are interdependent or whether they are standalone features of qualities of interactions in education institutions and b) in what way these approaches can be understood as specific qualities of interactions in education institutions.
In terms of the theoretical point of view, we will briefly explore the respective approaches of recognition and trust. Therefore, we will employ the theory of recognition according to Honneth (1995) and Taylor (1992) and the differential theory of trust according to Bormann and Thies (under review). Exemplarily, we will then go into data stemming from group discussions with teachers that were conducted in order to explore milieu-specific perceptions of their pupils. Based on the same data, we will independently analyze both: for one thing, if and in what ways professionals recognize their clients and, for another thing, in what way trust relationships are addressed by the professionals. The respective analyses will be realized specifically: recognition will be explored by means of the Documentary Method of Interpretation (Bohnsack et al. 2010), primarily focusing the reconstruction of the professionals’ implicit knowledge structures; trust will be analyzed by means of structured qualitative content analyses (Kuckartz 2014).
The paper addresses the aforementioned questions from a theoretical as well as from an empirical point of view. The aim is to deliver a profound base for a theory on the relationship of recognition and trust and on the quality of pedagogical interaction that puts current concepts on interaction qualities to a broader scope. To this aim, the respective ways of data evaluation will be discussed in two different ways: methodologically and with regard to the empirical findings. With regard to methodology, we will briefly go into the issue of consistency of the underlying philosophies of science. Subsequently we will focus on the findings assuming the feasibility of triangulating different perspectives (Denzin 1970). We suppose the findings to be a firm basis for a theory-driven discussion of the question whether and in what way recognition and trust are interwoven or standalone elements of interaction qualities in education. Furthermore, we will discuss the quality of interaction in educational institutions as identified against the backdrop of recent research on pedagogical interactions and will, therefore, briefly refer to the debates on the effectiveness of pedagogical institutions (cf. Scheerens 2015) and demanded, prescribed and enacted professionalism in education (Evans 2008).
Bohnsack, R./ Pfaff, N./ Weller, W. (Eds.) (2010): Qualitative Analysis and Documentary Method in International Education Research. Opladen/ Farmington Hills. Bormann, I. & Thies, B. (revise & resubmit): Trust and Trusting Practices during Transition to Higher Education: Introducing a Framework of Habitual Trust. Denzin, N. (1970): The research act. Chicago: Aldine. Evans, L. (2008): Professionalism, professionality and the development of education professionals. British Journal of Education Studies, 56, 1, 20-38. Hall, S. (1996): Who needs identity? In: S. Hall & P. Du Gay (Eds.): Questions of cultural identity (pp. 1-17). London: Sage. Helsper, W., Hörster, R. & Kade, J. (Eds.): Ungewißheit: Pädagogische Felder im Modernisierungsprozess. Weilerswist: Velbrück. Honneth, A. (1995): The Struggle for Recognition: The Moral Grammar of Social Conflicts. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Hoy, W., Tschannen-Moran, M. (1999): Five Faces of Trust. An Empirical Confirmation in Urban Elementary Schools. Journal of School Leadership, 9, 184-208. Kuckartz, U. (2014): Qualitative Text Analysis. London: Sage. Lepsius, M.R. (1997): Vertrauen zu Institutionen. In: S. Hradil & Deutsche Gesellschaft für Soziologie (DGS) (Eds.): Differenz und Integration: die Zukunft moderner Gesellschaften. (pp. 283-293). Frankfurt am Main: Campus. Luhmann, N. & Schorr, E. (1982): Das Technologiedefizit der Erziehung und die Pädagogik. In N. Luhmann & E. Schorr (Eds.): Zwischen Technologie und Selbstreferenz : Fragen an die Pädagogik (11-41). Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp. Martens, M./Asbrand, B. (2017): Passungsverhältnisse: Methodologische und theoretische Reflexionen zur Interaktionsorganisation des Unterrichts. Zeitschrift für Pädagogik, 63 (1), 72–90. Misztal, B. (2001): Normality and Trust in Goffman’s Theory of Interaction Order. Sociological Theory, 19, 3. Nentwig-Gesemann, I./Nicolai, K. (2015): Dokumentarische Videointerpretation typischer Modi der Interaktionsorganisation im Krippenalltag. In U. Stenger, D. Edelmann & A. König (Eds.): Erziehungswissenschaftliche Perspektiven in frühpädagogischer Theoriebildung und Forschung (pp. 172-202). Weinheim und Basel: Beltz, Juventa. Niedlich, S. & Bormann, I. (2018): Elternvertrauen in Schulen. Journal für Schulentwicklung 2/2018. Paseka, A., Keller-Schneider, M. & Combe, A. (Eds.) (2018): Ungewissheit als Herausforderung für pädagogisches Handeln. Wiesbaden: VS. Scheerens, Jaap (2015): School Effectiveness Research. International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences, Volume 21. 80-85. Taylor, C. (1992): The Politics of Recognition. In A. Gutmann (ed.), Multiculturalism: Examining the Politics of Recognition (pp. 25-73). Princeton: Princeton University Press. Wiezorek, C. (2005): Schule, Biografie und Anerkennung: eine fallbezogene Diskussion der Schule als Sozialisationsinstanz. Wiesbaden: VS.
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