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Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1691-5534
ISSN
1691-4147
First Published
04 May 2009
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 8 (2007): Issue 2007 (December 2007)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
1691-5534
ISSN
1691-4147
First Published
04 May 2009
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English

Search

7 Articles
Open Access

Changes in Organisational Culture in Schools and Readiness of Teachers for Those Changes

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 5 - 13

Abstract

Changes in Organisational Culture in Schools and Readiness of Teachers for Those Changes

An investigation into Estonia's educators' representations of organisational culture, based on the typologies of R. Harrison and C. Handy, and into the educators' cognitive orientation on the basis of J. Rotter's internality/externality scale was carried out. The aim was to determine, whether the organisational culture in Estonia's schools supports the sustainable development of teachers. The study revealed that amongst Estonia's teachers the individuality-oriented individualistic culture dominated, and that almost half of the teachers had an external locus of control. The conclusion was drawn that the culture of learning organisation was not characteristic of Estonia's schools, while that type of culture would best support the professional and sustainable development of teachers.

Keywords

  • sustainable development
  • organisational culture
  • learning organisation
  • locus of control
  • Estonia's schools
Open Access

Teachers' Self-Assessment of Their Professional Skills According to the Teachers' Professional Standard

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 14 - 24

Abstract

Teachers' Self-Assessment of Their Professional Skills According to the Teachers' Professional Standard

The expectations of teachers' role image have altered due to the quick changes in Estonian post-socialist society. Class teachers graduate from Tallinn University with a basic knowledge of teaching and readiness for continuous learning and self-development through daily work aimed at developing their professional competence. Teachers' 5th Professional Standard has been accepted to regulate teachers' work in Estonia. Participation in educational life fosters self-development and shapes professional and individual identity. Teachers' professional standard can guide teachers in assessing their own professional skills, including essential competence such as planning and guiding, creating the learning environment, motivating learning, co-operation, communication, and self-analysis. The research problem is: how do the teachers assess their professional skills? The data have been gathered using educational-ethnographic essay and a questionnaire clarifying the correspondence of teachers' professional skills to the standard of professional competence. The research is located within the qualitative paradigm. The highest value was attributed to the skill to consider the individual differences of each child and command of versatile teaching methods. The further development is needed in areas of sharing one's thoughts and experience with colleagues and parents' involvement in co-operation.

Keywords

  • teacher
  • teachers' standard of professional competence
  • professional identity
Open Access

Teachers' Views on Innovative Processes in Schools of Latvia

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 25 - 36

Abstract

Teachers' Views on Innovative Processes in Schools of Latvia

Orienting society toward sustainable development is impossible without the development of a teacher into a creative person with his/her individual style of activity and thinking. This cannot be achieved without a continuous and systematic professional development that promotes innovation. Great hopes are placed on innovations, they are considered to be a reliable driving force for development. The research emphasizes the importance of identifying what teachers think about innovations in education and their own position in relation to innovative activity. Evolutionary Model, Innovative Milieu Model, and Propulsion Model of Creative Contributions can be applied within a context of presented study. Eight teachers (four teachers with a student/learning-centred orientation towards teaching and four teachers with content-centred orientation towards teaching), who worked at different schools, were interviewed in October and November 2006. Ettlie and O'Keefe's scale of attitude to innovations was used as the basis during the interview. The research revealed the most important factors hampering teachers' motivation for innovative activity and pedagogical regularities and criteria for stimulating innovations.

Keywords

  • innovation
  • teacher
  • motivation
  • creative activity
Open Access

Are Teachers Tired of Responsibilities?

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 37 - 47

Abstract

Are Teachers Tired of Responsibilities?

Estonian educational life is at a crossroad. Schools and their educational functions have become the focus of public discussion because of the worrisome tendencies in childhood and adolescent life (dropping out of school, deteriorating mental and physical health, increase in self-destructive behaviour, etc.). Many teachers are overtaken by tiredness and apathy. To the amazement of colleagues, even the best teachers are suffering from burnout and leaving school. What are the reasons for these phenomena? The general context of this article is the problem of sustainability in education and, consequently, the sustainability of society. This paper focuses on how teachers perceive themselves as subjects and how they can promote learners' becoming subjects and is based on 48 narrative essays. The author has interpreted the outcomes relying on the works of A. Maslow, L. Vygotsky, V. Peavy, and M. Fullan. The most significant conclusion is that there is a contradiction between the teachers' strong feeling of mission and responsibility which contrasts with the diminishing possibilities of implementing these priorities in their real work. Teachers assume they are accepted as decisive and responsible professionals. Furthermore, they expect other participants of educational processes to share responsibility.

Keywords

  • teachers
  • being a subject
  • responsibility
  • co-operation
  • attitudes
  • sustainable development
Open Access

Preparing Children for School: The Perspective of Sustainability

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 48 - 58

Abstract

Preparing Children for School: The Perspective of Sustainability

This study analyses different aspects of upbringing and development concerned with preparing pre-school children for school. The focus is on justifying child development within the pre-school educational environment with elements of sustainability in order to better prepare students for school. Education in pre-school environments should be seen as a synergy of the affective and cognitive spheres of children. The authors refer primarily to the significant contribution provided in the sphere of pre-school education by different Russian psychologists and educators. The results of this study indicate that if the pre-school curriculum includes elements of sustainability, the process of preparing children for school is more effective and children may possibly be more successful at school.

Keywords

  • pre-school education
  • readiness for school
  • sustainable development
  • educational environment
Open Access

Social Aspects of Education for Sustainable Development in Primary School in Estonia

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 59 - 67

Abstract

Social Aspects of Education for Sustainable Development in Primary School in Estonia

The purpose of the article is to analyse the circumstances of applying of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in Estonian educational actuality. Empirical part of the study comprehends a comparative content analysis of UNECE strategy of ESD and the chapters of the text of the Estonian National Curriculum valid from 2002. The discussion concentrates on the social aspects of ESD because their significance was pointed out by the experts of ESD. The topic of the article is confined to the issues concerning the primary education, i.e. the grades from 1st to 3rd. Conclusions are made about the opportunities to apply ESD more effectively than at present. Statements of experts on textbooks and curriculum have been taken into account as additional sources besides the documentary analysis.

Keywords

  • ESD
  • primary school
  • social competences
  • curriculum
  • integration
  • participation
Open Access

The Agentive Role of Children's Views in Sustainable Education

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 68 - 79

Abstract

The Agentive Role of Children's Views in Sustainable Education

The environment and peoples' ideas of the environment are intertwined in the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). The environment has an effect on the educational content and people have an effect on the environment. Thus, sustainable education includes producing culture by children and with children. Sustainable learning should include finding ways to consider the effects of actions. The theoretic framework presented in the article was operationalized and studied in four Finnish kindergartens. The results bring children forward as producers of educational content. Children's views have an effect on the educational setting. In agentive learning children learn things that they themselves have been taking part creating. In discussion, the emerging roles of a teacher for ESD are considered. To be balanced, ESD may not only consider the equilibrium between accommodation and assimilation, but also the equilibrium between adaptation and agency.

Keywords

  • education for sustainable development
  • adaptation
  • accommodation
  • assimilation
  • agency
7 Articles
Open Access

Changes in Organisational Culture in Schools and Readiness of Teachers for Those Changes

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 5 - 13

Abstract

Changes in Organisational Culture in Schools and Readiness of Teachers for Those Changes

An investigation into Estonia's educators' representations of organisational culture, based on the typologies of R. Harrison and C. Handy, and into the educators' cognitive orientation on the basis of J. Rotter's internality/externality scale was carried out. The aim was to determine, whether the organisational culture in Estonia's schools supports the sustainable development of teachers. The study revealed that amongst Estonia's teachers the individuality-oriented individualistic culture dominated, and that almost half of the teachers had an external locus of control. The conclusion was drawn that the culture of learning organisation was not characteristic of Estonia's schools, while that type of culture would best support the professional and sustainable development of teachers.

Keywords

  • sustainable development
  • organisational culture
  • learning organisation
  • locus of control
  • Estonia's schools
Open Access

Teachers' Self-Assessment of Their Professional Skills According to the Teachers' Professional Standard

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 14 - 24

Abstract

Teachers' Self-Assessment of Their Professional Skills According to the Teachers' Professional Standard

The expectations of teachers' role image have altered due to the quick changes in Estonian post-socialist society. Class teachers graduate from Tallinn University with a basic knowledge of teaching and readiness for continuous learning and self-development through daily work aimed at developing their professional competence. Teachers' 5th Professional Standard has been accepted to regulate teachers' work in Estonia. Participation in educational life fosters self-development and shapes professional and individual identity. Teachers' professional standard can guide teachers in assessing their own professional skills, including essential competence such as planning and guiding, creating the learning environment, motivating learning, co-operation, communication, and self-analysis. The research problem is: how do the teachers assess their professional skills? The data have been gathered using educational-ethnographic essay and a questionnaire clarifying the correspondence of teachers' professional skills to the standard of professional competence. The research is located within the qualitative paradigm. The highest value was attributed to the skill to consider the individual differences of each child and command of versatile teaching methods. The further development is needed in areas of sharing one's thoughts and experience with colleagues and parents' involvement in co-operation.

Keywords

  • teacher
  • teachers' standard of professional competence
  • professional identity
Open Access

Teachers' Views on Innovative Processes in Schools of Latvia

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 25 - 36

Abstract

Teachers' Views on Innovative Processes in Schools of Latvia

Orienting society toward sustainable development is impossible without the development of a teacher into a creative person with his/her individual style of activity and thinking. This cannot be achieved without a continuous and systematic professional development that promotes innovation. Great hopes are placed on innovations, they are considered to be a reliable driving force for development. The research emphasizes the importance of identifying what teachers think about innovations in education and their own position in relation to innovative activity. Evolutionary Model, Innovative Milieu Model, and Propulsion Model of Creative Contributions can be applied within a context of presented study. Eight teachers (four teachers with a student/learning-centred orientation towards teaching and four teachers with content-centred orientation towards teaching), who worked at different schools, were interviewed in October and November 2006. Ettlie and O'Keefe's scale of attitude to innovations was used as the basis during the interview. The research revealed the most important factors hampering teachers' motivation for innovative activity and pedagogical regularities and criteria for stimulating innovations.

Keywords

  • innovation
  • teacher
  • motivation
  • creative activity
Open Access

Are Teachers Tired of Responsibilities?

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 37 - 47

Abstract

Are Teachers Tired of Responsibilities?

Estonian educational life is at a crossroad. Schools and their educational functions have become the focus of public discussion because of the worrisome tendencies in childhood and adolescent life (dropping out of school, deteriorating mental and physical health, increase in self-destructive behaviour, etc.). Many teachers are overtaken by tiredness and apathy. To the amazement of colleagues, even the best teachers are suffering from burnout and leaving school. What are the reasons for these phenomena? The general context of this article is the problem of sustainability in education and, consequently, the sustainability of society. This paper focuses on how teachers perceive themselves as subjects and how they can promote learners' becoming subjects and is based on 48 narrative essays. The author has interpreted the outcomes relying on the works of A. Maslow, L. Vygotsky, V. Peavy, and M. Fullan. The most significant conclusion is that there is a contradiction between the teachers' strong feeling of mission and responsibility which contrasts with the diminishing possibilities of implementing these priorities in their real work. Teachers assume they are accepted as decisive and responsible professionals. Furthermore, they expect other participants of educational processes to share responsibility.

Keywords

  • teachers
  • being a subject
  • responsibility
  • co-operation
  • attitudes
  • sustainable development
Open Access

Preparing Children for School: The Perspective of Sustainability

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 48 - 58

Abstract

Preparing Children for School: The Perspective of Sustainability

This study analyses different aspects of upbringing and development concerned with preparing pre-school children for school. The focus is on justifying child development within the pre-school educational environment with elements of sustainability in order to better prepare students for school. Education in pre-school environments should be seen as a synergy of the affective and cognitive spheres of children. The authors refer primarily to the significant contribution provided in the sphere of pre-school education by different Russian psychologists and educators. The results of this study indicate that if the pre-school curriculum includes elements of sustainability, the process of preparing children for school is more effective and children may possibly be more successful at school.

Keywords

  • pre-school education
  • readiness for school
  • sustainable development
  • educational environment
Open Access

Social Aspects of Education for Sustainable Development in Primary School in Estonia

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 59 - 67

Abstract

Social Aspects of Education for Sustainable Development in Primary School in Estonia

The purpose of the article is to analyse the circumstances of applying of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in Estonian educational actuality. Empirical part of the study comprehends a comparative content analysis of UNECE strategy of ESD and the chapters of the text of the Estonian National Curriculum valid from 2002. The discussion concentrates on the social aspects of ESD because their significance was pointed out by the experts of ESD. The topic of the article is confined to the issues concerning the primary education, i.e. the grades from 1st to 3rd. Conclusions are made about the opportunities to apply ESD more effectively than at present. Statements of experts on textbooks and curriculum have been taken into account as additional sources besides the documentary analysis.

Keywords

  • ESD
  • primary school
  • social competences
  • curriculum
  • integration
  • participation
Open Access

The Agentive Role of Children's Views in Sustainable Education

Published Online: 04 May 2009
Page range: 68 - 79

Abstract

The Agentive Role of Children's Views in Sustainable Education

The environment and peoples' ideas of the environment are intertwined in the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). The environment has an effect on the educational content and people have an effect on the environment. Thus, sustainable education includes producing culture by children and with children. Sustainable learning should include finding ways to consider the effects of actions. The theoretic framework presented in the article was operationalized and studied in four Finnish kindergartens. The results bring children forward as producers of educational content. Children's views have an effect on the educational setting. In agentive learning children learn things that they themselves have been taking part creating. In discussion, the emerging roles of a teacher for ESD are considered. To be balanced, ESD may not only consider the equilibrium between accommodation and assimilation, but also the equilibrium between adaptation and agency.

Keywords

  • education for sustainable development
  • adaptation
  • accommodation
  • assimilation
  • agency

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