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A comparative research on the menta

时间:2005-07-07 17:17来源:本站原创 作者:zp0218 阅读:

A comparative research on the mental character of novice, proficient and expert teachers

Lian Rong

(College of Education Science, Fujian Normal University, Fuzhou 350007, China )

Abstract
Aiming at understanding well about the teachers’ teaching development, we had used some scales to carry out two studies which involved with 433 and 469 subjects respectively on the teaching strategies, achievement goal orientation, personality characteristic, professional commitment and job burnout of novice, proficient, expert teachers. The results showed that: For the issue of teaching strategies, achievement goal orientation and personality characteristic, the expert teachers are better than proficient ones, and the proficient teachers are better than novice ones; When it’s turn to the question of professional commitment as well as job burnout, the expert teachers achieve better than proficient teachers and novice teachers while there’s no difference among the proficient teachers and novice teachers. The main features of novice teachers are attaching importance on pre-class preparation and performance goal are their important working motivation; the proficient teachers have the main characteristics of high performance in in-class teaching strategies, the emergence of task goal as the influential motivation for work and they have the personality of easy-going, concerning about others, gregarious, tolerant. And the expert teachers proclaim the features of taking the pre-class planning of teaching strategies, after-class evaluation and reflectivity as the central part, having the personality of being stable in emotion, be rational, practical, confident and good in criticism, and the high-profile emotional commitment in the profession of teaching as well as the strong sense of professional achievement also contribute to their main features. These three types of teachers have no differences in after-class compensation strategy, performance goal, intro- and extroversion, continuance commitment, emotional exhaustion, in other words, these are teachers’ common points.

Key words novice, proficient and expert teachers, teaching strategies, achievement goal orientation, personality characteristic, profession commitment, job burnout.

1.Introduction

Presently, lots of scholars at home and abroad have used the paradigm of expert-novice to probe into expert and novice teachers ’ knowledge structure〔1-3〕, problem solving〔4-5〕, teaching behavior〔6-7〕, teaching efficacy and teaching regulated ability. We deem it needs a long time for novice teachers to become expert ones, so is teachers’ teaching development. Many studies have verified that there is a proficient stage during the period.

Berliner〔9〕 and Burden〔10〕deemed novice teachers would take approximately five years to become proficient ones. Katz〔11〕 considered novice teachers could reach a proficient stage after 3 to 5 years of teaching. Huberman〔12〕held that novice teachers entered a stable stage after 4 to 6 years of teaching. Yuan K.D〔13〕 found that teachers’ strategy knowledge changed significantly after approximately 5 years’ teaching.

Synthesizing all the studies mentioned above, we suggest that an important stage exist in the process of novice-expert transformation —the proficient stage. Teachers in this stage can handle the routine teaching problem proficiently but lack of teaching creativity. Proficient teaches are undoubtedly novice ones yesterday, but they aren’t sure to be expert teachers tomorrow. Actually, lots of teachers’ teaching development has come to a standstill when they reach the proficient stage. They will never become expert teachers even if retirement, which is an important reason contributes to the limited professional level. Consequently, the important stage in the period of teachers’ teaching development—proficient teachers, should be involved, besides research on novice-expert teachers.

By comparing the differences among novice-proficient-expert teachers, we therefore can go more deeply into the research of teachers’ teaching development and train more expert teachers.

In order to find out the characteristics among the three types of teachers in an all-around way, we have done two studies:

(1) A comparative study on teaching strategy, achievement goal orientation and personality characteristic. Teachers need to possess good teaching strategies to judge and solve the teaching problems that belong to the ill-structured domain. High-level teaching strategy is the core part to solve the teaching problems efficiently and acts as a mark of the teaching level among the three different types of teachers. Calderhead〔14〕, Kagan and Tippins 〔15〕found that expert teachers described a successful teaching more from the aspect of class structure and teaching strategy. Etalapeltor〔16〕 confirmed the types of the strategy knowledge influenced the acquisition and level of teaching development. Wang G.Y and Wo J.Z〔17〕showed that the teaching strategy of excellent teachers is much better than that of general teachers. The study on achievement goal orientation verified that different goal orientation aroused different motive pattern, thus influenced individual achievement behavior. Zhang Y.M and her colleagues〔18〕 verified that individuals who had different achievement orientation differed in cognition and behavior. Through the research of goal orientation among different types of teachers, we can find out the relationship between achievement orientation and achievement behavior in the process of teachers’ growth.

Sound personality is an important characteristic of excellent teachers. Ryans (1960), Rushton (1960), Wan Y.Y (1981), Han J.Z (1989) etc, studied the teachers’ personality characteristics from different aspects and the results showed that teachers’ personality characteristics were: confidence, indomitable will, calmness, careful consideration, wide interest, pleasantness, intelligence, resourcefulness, resoluteness, justness, democracy, warmhearted, approachable etc. Rollett (1992) investigated 102 excellent teachers in Europe and America and found out these teachers were all confident, optimistic and warm-hearted. Kelchterman (1994) used the term of Professional Self to show that personality characteristic had great influence upon teaching behavior. We can say that teaching behavior includes many personality factors; we can even say that teachers’ personality is a kind of technique. Marcalience, a Russian educationist suggested that teachers’ prestige, resourcefulness, judgment and enthusiasm towards work, love for children, observing ability, will power etc were the determined factors to acquire educational techniques. Hence we need further understanding of the core difference of personality among teachers. We consider there is a close relationship between teachers’ teaching strategy and its motive pattern, personality characteristic. People of different achievement orientation have essential distinction in cognition, affection and behavior, these distinction inevitably influences teachers’ choice to teaching strategy; personality characteristic can strongly influence and restrict the psyche activities and thus have great influence for teachers to choose strategy.

(2) A comparative research on professional commitment and job burnout. Studies of teaching development performed by scholars at home and abroad begin to pay attention to the influences of job psychology, especially professional commitment and job burnout. Hackett and Lapierre〔19〕 considered that a high professional commitment individual should engage in the capacity training courses more willingly and took their profession as a career development. In order to achieve success in their work they would work much harder, and they were more willingly to continue the original work. Tai Wan scholar Quo H.L〔20〕 defined teaching profession commitment as the following: “Teachers accept and believe in the aims and values of the teaching work they pursuit, being ready to put in a lot of efforts to their job and willing to stay in the same teaching work.” Job burnout is the result that teachers are lacking of answering strategies to some pressure. Chemiss〔21〕found job burnout had adverse effects on individual work performance, creative capacity and self-efficacy. NEA(National Educational Association) took job burnout as the centric topic in the annual conference in 1979.

To find out the differences in professional affection and deal with professional pressure, it’s necessary to study on professional commitment and job burnout. We consider teachers’ job burnout could influence their professional commitment in some extent.

2.Methods

2.1 Subjects

433 and 419 teachers were chosen respectively as subjects in the two studies. They consisted of students from National Key Teachers’ Training Course, middle school teachers admitted to a postgraduate educational program, teachers whose length of service ranging from 0 to 5 years and graduates from Teachers’ Normal University who had done practice teaching. All the subjects were covered with the curricula of Chinese, mathematics, English, politics, history, geography, chemistry, physics and biology etc. The different types of teachers were chosen according to the length of service and the title of teaching post. Because the title of teaching post normally reflects a teacher’s teaching ability, and it has a close relationship with the length of service. Generally, the longer the length of service is, the higher the title is. Since teaching needs lots of practices, we chose subjects from the National Key Teachers Training Course and educational postgraduates (who had teaching experience) purposely, thus the research was more objective and accurate compared with some other researches choosing subjects only based on students’ performance and headmasters’ evaluation. Expert teachers were divided into three types: the teachers of special classification, senior teachers and teachers of more than 15 years’ standing. Novice teachers also included three groups: teachers holding a 3-grade title, graduates from Teachers’ Normal University and those whose length of service ranging from 0 to 5 years. The definition of proficient teachers was between the two types of teachers mentioned above.

(责任编辑:泉水)
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