Schmitz_whole_thesis.pdf (1.64 MB)
The facilitation of self-directed learning in teachers through person-centred coaching
thesisposted on 2023-05-28, 08:56 authored by Schmitz, JA
Research on the efficacy of non-directive person-centred approaches as professional development in the education sector is scarce in comparison to other contexts, such as corporate settings. Even within corporate contexts where coaching has been studied and lauded, some conclusions have been derived purely from self-reported data that lack an empirical and theoretical foundation. This dissertation reports on a multiplecase study which explored the use of non-directive coaching to facilitate self-directed learning in teachers employed in an international through-train school. An interpretivist paradigm was used to interpret the situation, events, and perspectives of the teachers in the study. The study was deliberately bound by identifying the time and place, the specific coaching framework (GROW ‚Äö- Goal, Reality, Options, and Will) and approach (person-centred coaching), and context of the study to keep it achievable in terms of scope. A multiple-case study involving semi-structured interviews and online surveys provided rich descriptions of, and drew analytic generalisations from, the coaching interactions in the context of the non-directive coaching pathway in the primary school. The findings revealed that client-centered theory provides a theoretical foundation for non-directive coaching that encompasses the attitudes of authenticity, non-judgmental respect, and empathic accuracy. The expression of these person-centred attitudes by coaches, as experienced by the learners in this study, was connected with the formation of trustful relationships, learner agency, focused and meaningful goal setting, effective action, and useful feedback through non-directive reflection. The findings from this study suggest that non-directive coaching is an effective intervention for facilitating self-directed learning in teachers and provides further opportunities for research, such as exploring the use of coaching to facilitate self-directed learning in students. As this study used internally trained coaches that had pre-existing relationships with the learners, another possible inquiry is an investigation into the effect of established relationships on the formation of trustful coaching partnerships.
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