The objective of this study survey was to assess whether there is a correlation between the role of school leaders and the motivation of instructors in a specific private secondary school. This section presents an outline of the methods used in the survey, which include:
- research context
- population and sample,
- research design and approach,
- description of the research
instruments and materials,
data analysis, and
Research Context and Purposes of Research
The aim of this research was to explore the relationship between teacher motivation and school leadership in private secondary schools. It has been observed extensively that teachers in private educational institutions often experien...
ce significant demotivation, despite these schools being considered on par with state secondary schools.
One possible reason for the difference may be attributed to the varying types of leadership in these schools. The impact of leadership on instructors' motivation is believed to be a factor worth investigating. As a result, research has been conducted to either support or dismiss this hypothesis.
Population refers to all the elements that a researcher wants to make inferences about (Cooper & Schindler, 1998).
The survey was conducted with the entire population of decision makers (directors, curates, deputy curates) and instructors in private secondary schools in Mauritius.
Sampling is a procedure that involves using a portion of the entire population to make decisions about the whole population. A sample is a subset o
a population. The purpose of sampling is to allow the researcher to estimate unknown characteristics of the population. Through sampling, the researcher can gather information quickly, reduce costs, and decrease the amount of labor required for research (Zikmund, 2003).
Samples are selected from the population to represent the characteristics of the target population. In this study, convenience sampling was chosen as the appropriate sampling method for the researcher, despite it potentially not reflecting the entire target population. Therefore, school X was chosen by the researcher. The participants used in the study were those who were easily accessible to the researcher, in terms of their workplace and residence. Additionally, another reason for choosing this specific school was because the researcher discovered that teachers frequently express feeling demotivated. Further investigation revealed that school X recently experienced a change in its management.
The new disposal has replaced an 85-year-old direction, providing insight into the motivating factor of school leadership for instructors. As the sample consisted of only one private secondary school, it can be assumed that all instructors were selected as participants. The survey focused on the role of school leaders, specifically the director, the minister, and the deputy minister, as representatives of school leadership.
The survey conducted at school X, a private secondary school located in the suburb of Port Louis, revealed that in 2012, there were around 700 students and a staff of 50 teachers.
Approximately 60% of students come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, with another 40% coming from single-parent households. Notably, around 10% of students live with grandparents or close relatives instead of their parents. Additionally, about 15% of students have parents who
are or have been incarcerated.
The Research Design and Approach
Various research methodologies are utilized, each serving different purposes and producing varied results.
To collect data, research workers must have a clear understanding of the desired information. Babbie (1990) recognized different research methods, including analyzing existing data, conducting case studies, performing controlled experiments, and engaging in participant observation. Qualitative research entails gathering information by documenting real events, recording people's statements, observing behaviors, or studying written documents (Neuman, 2000). Conversely, quantitative researchers analyze numerical information to convey significance and interpret data.
This is accomplished through the use of statistical methods that aid in generalizing findings. Quantitative researchers maintain an unbiased position towards participants and their surroundings, utilizing sample research to apply their findings to a larger population.
In order to gather sufficient data for accurate research conclusions, this study employs a mixed-methods approach, incorporating both quantitative and qualitative research methods. According to Ivankova, Creswell, and Stick (2006, p.3), "When used in conjunction, quantitative and qualitative methods complement each other and allow for a more comprehensive analysis, leveraging the strengths of each." By using a mixed-methods approach, researchers are able to capture both trends and specific details of a situation (Creswell; Plano Clark, 2007), while also adding depth and context to quantitative results. This study collected data from multiple dimensions through this mixed-methods approach, enabling more precise and feasible answers to the research questions in this new paradigm. Specifically in this study, the quantitative data provided a broad perspective on urban school teachers' attitudes and beliefs regarding teacher motivation while case studies offered a more detailed representation of teacher motivation attributions.
This study followed an embedded
mixed-methods design ( Creswell ; Plano-Clark, 2007 ), which involved combining qualitative and quantitative information. The quantitative data obtained in the first phase played a supporting role for the data collected in the subsequent phases of the study. The initial quantitative data included a survey with a sample size of 50, which was used to determine topics for further interviews. In the second phase, only six candidates were selected for interviews based on specific criteria.
Phase 3 also included a qualitative phase that involved questioning the school leader, specifically the curate, deputy curate, and director.
Phase 1: Quantitative Phase: Teachers' Survey
This project started with a request letter to the school director, seeking permission to conduct the "Teacher Survey" with the teaching staff at the start of the second term in the academic year 2012. A meeting was held with the teaching staff to explain the research purpose.
Following the receipt of a petition letter, instructors were given questionnaires tailored for this purpose. These questionnaires act as a quantitative approach to gather information from participants, which can be difficult to obtain solely through observation (Thyer, 2001). Interviews can also be carried out in different forms such as face-to-face (individually or in groups), over the phone, or self-administered. Surveys are employed to collect data on attitudes, knowledge, beliefs, and values.
The researcher opted for a quantitative approach in conducting this survey, which involved posing questions to gather numerical data on a population. This methodology was deemed most suitable for several reasons:
1. Questionnaires are impartial and preferred when quantitatively evaluating organizational outcomes (Wysong, 2000).
2. Findings from questionnaires can be applied to a broader population beyond the individuals sampled (Hartford, 2000).
allow for the identification of characteristics of a larger population based on a smaller group (Fowler, 2001).
4. By providing numerical data, questionnaires enable correlation between two databases.
5. Questionnaires facilitate quick completion time, thereby aiding timely data collection by the researcher.
6. The choice of quantitative methods aligns with the objective of scientific research seeking logical reasoning and gaining comprehensive understanding of human behavior (Babbie, 1990).
Initially, the questionnaire consisted of three sections: A) personal information; B) inquiries about factors influencing motivation and school leadership using a Likert Scale featuring four variables - Strongly Agree [SA], Agree [A], Disagree [D], and Strongly Disagree [SD]; and C) open-ended questions. However, after conducting a pilot study involving five participants, it was observed that they did not respond well to the open-ended questions. As a result, the final survey employed Likert Scaling as outlined in Appendix A.
In the quantitative stage of the survey, the sample size of the staff consisted of 28 males (56% ) and 22 females (44% ), all of whom were full clip instructors. A smaller number (19) came from leadership positions (Heads of Departments or subdivision leaders) held within the school (38% ). The majority of respondents (31, 62%) had more than 5 years teaching experience and had been in their current school for more than 6 years. 36 staff (72%) reported teaching under their current director for more than 2 years. Surveys were completed by the subject pool and collected by the researcher at the agreed time.
Confidentiality was ensured by providing plain envelopes for each study transcript. Upon receiving the completed study, the topics became part of a group called "the initial subject pool."
Phase II ;
III- Qualitative stage
In their book, McMillan and Schumacher (2001, p. 443) state that interviews can be the main method for gathering information on how individuals perceive their world.
The research worker believed that conducting interviews would be the best way to gather in-depth information for a better understanding of Teachers' motivation and the role of school leaders. Interviews involve a conversation between two people, with the interviewer seeking relevant information for the research objectives. The interviewer focuses on the content related to the research aims. Interviews help explore the respondent's state of mind. In this study, the researcher used interviews to collect data for the second and third phases, as the required information needed to be based on feelings, emotions, and experiences for a deeper understanding.
According to Bell (2004), interviews provide an opportunity for comprehensive analysis. Through questioning, researchers can gather information that extends beyond mere verbal communication, including voice tones and facial expressions. Yet, there is a possibility of subjectivity and bias from the interviewer (Cohen et al., 2001). Additionally, Bell (2004) acknowledged that data collection can be influenced by the researcher's gender and age. Moreover, if respondents are excessively eager to please the researcher, it may hinder the acquisition of truthful and reliable data (Bell, 2004).
So, to counter these possible effects, the research worker utilized purposive sampling for the final two phases. Two types of interviews were conducted: Focus group interviews with instructors and single interviews with the school leaders.
Interviewing Teachers: Focus Group Interviews
A focus group interview entails selecting a group that is gathered together for the purpose of conducting research on a specific research problem (Barbour, 1999). The respondents engage in interaction with
each other, rather than solely with the interviewer.
This results in information emerging from group interaction (Cohen et al., 2001). These interviews can elicit spontaneity from participants, thus providing information that is not easily obtained through conventional questioning techniques (Winslow, Honein, and Ezubeir, 2002). The staff members selected for the interviews were chosen purposefully based on predetermined criteria, which included excluding staff members who had been at their school for less than 12 months. Interviews were conducted with six individuals who met the four criteria. The first criterion was the length of service.
The purpose of this survey was to explore the correlation between school leadership and teacher motivation. In order to qualify for the second phase of the survey, participants were required to show a dedication to continuous education. The hypothesis was that teachers with a minimum of five years' experience would have encountered various situations that could offer insightful perspectives on teacher motivation. Only individuals who had completed at least five years as educators, with no maximum limit on years served, were eligible for consideration in the second phase. The grade level in which they taught also influenced subject selection.
The end of this survey was to utilize one source from each sub-set of secondary instruction. The criterion for selecting these sources was their ability to provide useful and reliable information for the research. The answers to the preliminary open-ended questions were used as an indication of how well a potential participant could communicate their ideas, attitudes, and feelings regarding motivation. Data was considered useful if it was clear, relevant to the questions, and demonstrated the individual's ability to understand and articulate responses. It was
believed that some individuals may have never reflected on motivation issues before but could still express concepts related to teachers' motivation when prompted during an interview.
In the same way, an unusual instructor may have had thoughts about motivational issues but might not have been able to accurately express those thoughts. Only six candidates were chosen based on the three criteria mentioned above and were contacted through mobile phone. The researcher decided to conduct a focus group interview because it enabled her to interview all the selected respondents simultaneously. Fontana and Frey (2000) suggest that focus group interviews are more adaptable and allow for variations in responses.
According to Cohen et al. (2001), using this interview method had benefits for both the researcher and participants, as it saved time and allowed for a significant amount of data collection in a limited timeframe. The focus group interview in this study was conducted with a semi-structured approach, where the researcher created an interview schedule with relevant questions about teachers' motivation and school leadership.
The above information was derived from the topics discussed in the literature review. These topics were identified through questioning, examining, and focusing on follow-up inquiries. The researcher invited the participants for a focus group interview via informal invitation using mobile phones. The chosen participants were requested to suggest a convenient time and date for the interview.
The study took place within the school premises as all of the participants were from the same establishment. As a result, the researcher obtained permission from the principal to use the Art Room for conducting the focus group interview. Additionally, consent was obtained from the participants to
record the interview.
Phase III: Qualitative Phase: Interviewing the school leaders: Individual interview
The researcher arranged a meeting with the school principal.
During the meeting, the researcher explained the research and its goals and humbly asked the school leaders to participate in the survey. The minister, his assistant, and the director all took part in stage III of the study. They were contacted on their mobile phones for individual interviews. An individual interview is a verbal conversation where one person gathers information from another (Pole and Lampard, 2002). The researcher used these interviews to collect data from the school leaders.
According to Denscombe (2000, p. 113), the interview allows interviewees to freely express themselves and delve into personal histories, experiences, and feelings. The director, school curate, and deputy curate, being in leading positions at their school, can provide insightful information about teachers' motivation. The purpose of the individual interview was to gather data on the professional experiences, practices, and roles of the school leaders in motivating their teachers. The researcher was particularly interested in the specific motivational strategies used by different school leaders. These interviews were conducted using the same procedures as the focus group interview.
An interview agenda was created to uncover the motivation strategies used by school leaders, enabling the research worker to encourage participants to provide important and pertinent information. Each interview lasted approximately 30 minutes.
Data collection for interviews during stages II and III
Interview sessions were recorded and analytical notes were made to collect data and identify patterns (Maxwell, 1996). The recorded sessions were transcribed at a later time.
All transcripts and paperss were coded with any identifying forms removed. Consequences are reported in such a mode
that instructors, school leaders ( Rector, deputy curate or the director ) , the secondary school, and school 's features can non be identified.
- Qualitative informations for stage II and Phase III
The undermentioned stairss, typical of qualitative informations ( De Vos et al. , 1998 ) , were used for the analysis of the collected information. The research worker read through all the transcripts, wrote down the thoughts and made a list of the subjects involved.
The research worker clustered together similar items and then performed analysis, identifying patterns and differences. The study was ultimately presented in a narrative format, using relevant quotations. Additionally, the trustworthiness of the collected information was assessed according to Bell (2004, p.
- Trustworthiness of data collected
There is always a risk of bias in interviews (139). This is because interviews involve humans, who are not machines, and their behavior can influence the respondents. To ensure the reliability of the data obtained, the researcher followed these procedures: the interviews were recorded on tape and transcribed exactly as spoken.
The provided information was thoroughly validated through extensive verification from the participants. In addition, their positions and opinions were presented using direct quotations. It should be noted that the interviews were conducted in an unaltered environment, with agreement from both the researcher and the participant. Furthermore, English language was chosen for conducting interviews with the instructors. These methodologies enabled the researcher to prevent bias. Schumacher and McMillan (1993) stated that researchers using qualitative data do not aim to generalize results, unlike the quantitative aspects of the
On the other hand, they desire comprehensive information and a deep understanding of the job. As a result, the acquired outcomes can be useful to other school leaders and instructors, both in the public sector as well as in private educational institutions.
Ethical issues in research pertain to an agreement between the researcher and the respondents. Initially, the researcher must obtain the respondents' consent for participating in the survey.
According to Bell (2004, p. 413), ethical research in pattern requires that all respondents have the opportunity to remain anonymous and that all information is treated with strict confidentiality. Bell also emphasizes that respondents should be able to verify their statements. In this study, ethical codes regarding data collection and analysis were followed. To ensure this, the researcher directly contacted the school's director to obtain permission to administer the two research instruments.
Moreover, all participants were provided with equal information about the survey's objectives and procedures. The obtained information was kept confidential and the participants' identities were protected. Additionally, they were assured that the findings would only be used for academic purposes and that all questionnaires, taped interviews, and recorded data would be permanently deleted.
Chapter three provided a comprehensive explanation of the research problem's investigation through both quantitative and qualitative research designs.
The text stresses the importance of the theoretical objective and justifies the chosen methodology, data collection methods, reliability, and applicability of the survey. Ethical considerations for this research are also included. The next chapter will discuss the presentation and interpretation of the gathered data.
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