Annotated Bibliography of Resources for Educational Reform, Coherent Teaching Practice, and Improved Student Learning

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  • Fullan, M. G. (1991c). The teacher. In M. G. Fullan, The new meaning of educational change (pp. 117-143). New York: Teachers College Press.

Educational change depends on what teachers do and think. If educational change is to happen, teachers must understand themselves and be understood by others. In this book chapter, Fullan describes the current situation for most teachers, a situation dominated by routine and overload that limits reform. He summarizes several studies about the daily classroom lives of teachers. Given this, innovation can either aggravate the teachers' problems or provide a glimmer of hope. Fullan then discusses what happens when a change is introduced. Many have suggested that teachers are most often governed by the "practicality ethic" when it comes to implementing an innovation. Teachers have concerns about the impact of the innovation on themselves and on their students. If these concerns are not addressed, the change has little likelihood of success. Fullan examines what makes change work for teachers, with a focus on the workplace conditions necessary for success. These include an emphasis on teacher learning, collaboration, and shared goals. He suggests that teachers can better cope with the process of change by analyzing the proposed change, examining the supports for the change, and assessing the roles and responsibilities implied in the change. He concludes with an examination of professionalism in teaching.

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