ERG SES H 14, Teachers' Professional Development
The ever- increasing demands in teaching and learning has come to a point when teachers are required to constantly develop their competences and deepen the knowledge. Teachers’ professional development is the most efficient tool to reach a better educational system and to promote effective learning (Diagnostic report, 2014). Teachers in Kazakhstan, both novice and already experienced develop their skills by attending different courses as in their schools so outside of it as well. One of those professional development courses that a school can offer is regarded as ‘mentoring’ when a recently employed teacher works in cooperation with a more competent teacher. In this study, the question under discussion is the relationship that can occur between a mentor and a mentee. In other words, the purpose of this study is to analyze the impact of mentoring relationships components on the efficacy of the mentoring process.
The available evidence seems to suggest that the first mentor was an older person, a more competent one that took an active part in the development of an immature individual and his/her life (Green-Powell, as cited in Gholam, 2018). In other words, mentoring takes place when “a senior person (the mentor in terms of age and experience) provides information, advice and emotional support to a junior person (i.e., the mentee) in a relationship lasting over an extended period of time” (Barrera, Braley, and Slate, 2010, p.62). Hence, it can be concluded that a mentor is relatively more skilful, experienced and knowledgeable individual than a mentee.
Mentoring in its turn has accepted several definitions throughout a certain period of time (Cinkara & Arslan, 2017). However, as the classical explanation states, mentoring is “professional guidance relationship in which an experienced, intellectually and socially valued mentor acts as adviser for a less experienced employee and helps this ‘mentee’ develop his/her work” (Heikkinen et al., as cited in Kupila et al., 2017, p.4). One the one hand there is no limitation of the process if it is voluntary based (Konca & Taşdemir, 2018). On the other hand, extra work and responsibility, stress and lack of appropriate mentor skills might be limitations of mentoring (Walkington, as cited in Ambrosetti, 2014).
On these grounds, it can be argued that a mentoring relationship becomes a key of occurred communication (Ambrosetti, 2014). According to Trube and Wan (as cited in Brandau et al., 2017) the significance of a mentoring relationship is that it highlights the importance of engagement, shared respect in trust, and “provision of appropriate resources to support the mentees learning” (p. 3). Eller, Lev, & Feurer (as cited in Hessenauer and Law, 2017) identify eight components of an effective mentoring relationship. Among them included “(1) open communication and accessibility; (2) goals and challenges; (3) passion and inspiration; (4) caring personal relationship; (5) mutual respect and trust; (6) exchange of knowledge; (7) independence and collaboration; and (8) role modelling” (p. 4). Nevertheless, there is insufficient research into characteristics of mentoring relationship to draw any firm conclusions about the relation of any of above-mentioned components on the positive outcome of the process (Crisp et al., as cited in Hessenauer and Law, 2017).
Purpose of the study
Thepurpose of this study is to examine the teachers` attitudes towards the mentoring relationship in one school in Taldykorgan.
Main research question
What is the impact of the relationship between a mentor and a mentee on the mentoring outcome?
What are the attitudes of a mentor and a mentee towards different aspects of the mentoring process?
What is the relation between a certain component of the mentoring relationship and a mentoring efficacy?
Research design The study will be based on the non- experimental design of the quantitative research method and a survey design will be used during the research, in order to identify teachers` attitudes towards the mentoring process that they have undergone and which component of a mentoring relationship has the most positive effect on the mentoring process. According to Creswell (2014) during this design, a researcher gathers quantitative, counted evidence by means of surveys or interviews and analyze the statistics to define the answers to the given questions and to test the research questions. Sampling To select the participants for the study the method of convenience sampling will be applied. There will be approximately chosen 25 participants out of 148 members of the whole school staff. In addition, they will be selected according to their sex, educational experience and age to promote different views on the question under the research. The advantage of this type of sampling is the “cost” and “convenience” as though your participants are people from your work area (Muijs, 2011, p. 36). However, as stated by Muijs, the drawback of the method is that it can be biased, as the participants not always represent the whole population. Data collection tools The questionnaire will be taken ‘at one point in time’ in accordance with a cross-sectional design that will help to “examine current attitudes, beliefs, opinions, or practices” (Creswell, 2014, p. 403). A questionnaire will be posted online as it is considered to be one of the most well-known patterns of the data collection, though the limitation is that you cannot talk directly to your respondents, so your questions should be designed carefully (p. 433). The participants will have to answers a set of close-ended questions during the questionnaire process. Creswell (2014) considers that such questions seem to be efficient as each stakeholder can answer them by choosing a given option. Moreover, the researcher can easily make comparisons of the responses (Creswell, 2014). Data collection procedures Prior to the questionnaire itself, a procedure of pilot test will be organized to get a feedback from a limited number of participants (Creswell, 2014) to see if all the questions are clear and do not need any changes. Nevertheless, basing on the results of this test some questions might be changes as well.
There is a lack of research-based documentation concerning mentoring courses that are implemented in different schools of the country, how far they are efficient and what is the role of the process in teachers` professional growth (OECD, 2014). Hence, there is a need to study Kazakhstani teachers` attitudes and experience towards mentoring and if it plays a role in professional development. Even though most of the schools in Kazakhstan started practising mentoring as a part of inside professional development programs, there is little known about the process of implementation, what issues might arise throughout the process and how can a relationship between two teachers affect mentoring. The findings of the given research may be beneficial for the school administration that wants to develop teachers` professional skills that will have a positive effect on learners` performance using the school`s inner resources. Regional and local education departments may develop new in-service trainings based on the results of the study. Importantly, school teachers can develop best practices by having a positive relationship between a mentor and a mentee.
References Ambrosetti, A. (2014). Are you ready to be a mentor? preparing teachers for mentoring pre- service teachers. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 39/6, 29-42. Retrieved from: http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1020545.pdf Brandau, J., Studencnik, P. & Kopp-Sixt, S. (2017). Dimensions and levels of mentoring: Empirical findings. Global Education Review, 4(4). 5-19. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=Empirical+Findings+of+the+First+German+Inventory+ and+Implications+for+Future+Practice&pr=on&ft=on&id=EJ1168967 Cinkara, A., & Arslan, F.Y. (2017). Analysis of a Facebook group as a form of mentoring for EFL teachers. English Language Teaching, 10/3, 1-14. DOI: 10.5539/elt.v10n3p40 Creswell, J.W. (2014). Survey designs. Educational Research: Planning, Conducting and Evaluating Quantitative and Qualitative Research (4th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.401-447. Gholam, A. (2018). A mentoring experience: From the perspective of a novice teacher. International Journal of Progressive Education, 14/2, 1-12. DOI: 10.29329/ijpe.2018.139.1 Graduate School of Education at Nazarbayev University. (2014). Development of Strategic Directions for education Reforms in Kazakhstan for 2015-2020. Diagnostic report, Astana: Indigo print. Retrieved from: t.zan.kz/eng/docs/Z010000149 Hessenauer, S.L., & Law, K. (2017). Mentoring: A natural role for learning community faculty. Learning Communities Research and Practice, 5/2, 1-7.Retrieved from: http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1163142.pdf Kadyrova, S. (2017). The role of the mentor in the first year of teaching. NUGSE Research in Education, 2(1), 27-35. Retrieved from nugserie.nu.edu.kz Konca, A.S., & Taşdemir, A. (2018). Faculty technology mentoring program facilities- a case study. Malasyan Online Journal of Educational Technology, 6/3, 38-51. Retrieved from: http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1184201.pdf Kupila, P., Ukkonen-Mikkola, T., & Rantala, K. (2017). Interpretations of mentoring during early childhood education mentor training. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 42/10, 35-49. Retrieved from: http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1157089.pdf Muijs, D. (2011). Doing non-experimental studies. Doing Quantitative Research in Education with SPSS (2nd edition). 30-55. OECD (2014), “Good policies for better teachers and school leadership in Kazakhstan”, in Reviews of National Policies for Education: Secondary Education in Kazakhstan, OECD Publishing, Paris. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264205208-7-en Pogrund, R. L., & Cowan, C. (2013). Perceptions of a statewide mentor program for new itinerant vision professionals. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, 107(5), 351-362. Wilson, E., Turner, F., Sharimova, A., & Brownhill, S. (n.d.). Reform at Scale: Teacher Developmentin Kazakhstan. Retrieved from: https://www.educ.cam.ac.uk/people/staff/wilson/TeacherEducationReform-in- Kazakhstan29082013.pdf
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