Singaporean teachers' voices on teacher and teaching quality

PhD Thesis

Mohamed, Kamariah Binte. 2015. Singaporean teachers' voices on teacher and teaching quality. PhD Thesis Doctor of Philosophy. University of Southern Queensland.

Singaporean teachers' voices on teacher and teaching quality

TypePhD Thesis
AuthorMohamed, Kamariah Binte
SupervisorTrimmer, Karen Joy
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameDoctor of Philosophy
Number of Pages271

This thesis is the outcome of a doctoral research project that involved the interpretation of the perception of Singaporean primary school teachers, on quality teachers and quality teaching.

The aim of the study is to draw on personal experience as well as the lived experiences of others on what they perceive quality teachers and teaching are, the influences for their beliefs and their experiences or factors that have influenced the quality of their teaching.Through the use of a qualitative research approach and employment of hermeneutic phenomenology in particular, the study lies within a view that knowledge is socially constructed and that learning is a socio-cognitive process where new knowledge is co-created through exploring understandings with others in a continual cycle of practice and reflection. Within this approach, the work of Van Manen has been drawn upon to reduce the multiple voices within the data down to the essence of the phenomenon in question, thus answering the over-arching research question: How do Singaporean teachers describe a quality teacher and quality teaching?

The data from nine ex-teachers who have taught in Singapore primary schools for at least 10 years was analysed for the lived experiences that each participant had with quality teachers and teaching. The nine participants involved are varied in the sense that five of them had retired after more than 30 years in the teaching service and four of them have resigned from the service after teaching for at least 10 years. All participants and schools involved are identified by pseudonyms to protect their identities. Data were collected through in-depth one-on-one semi-structured interviews with the Singaporean ex-teachers. Participants were selected using a combination of purposeful and convenience sampling techniques.

The findings of this research are substantial as they point the way to the authentic voices of the participants on what quality teachers and teaching really meant to them and not what is impressed upon them by the school or the Ministry of Education. The implications of the findings are discussed in terms of how teachers can be supported by administrators and policy-makers to become quality teachers and practise quality teaching.

Keywordsteaching, teacher, interpretation, perception, quality, experiences, Van Manen,
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020390402. Education assessment and evaluation
Byline AffiliationsFaculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts
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