Networked Learning Communities: Supporting Teacher Leaders’ Bottom-up Initiatives Within A Centralised Education System in Singapore

Project Number
SUG 10/15 TLS

Project Duration
November 2015 - July 2016

Status
Completed

Abstract
This study aims to investigate networked learning communities (NLCs). Prior to the emergence of Networked Learning Communities (NLCs), Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) is the main platform for teacher learning. In these PLCs, teachers could choose to use Learning Circles (LCs), Lesson Study (LS) or Action Research (AR). PLCs however are predominantly situated within a department or a school. NLCs however are learning communities of teachers across schools. There is the need to espouse the dynamics and relationships within and across the NLCs. It was found that effective NLCs attended more to the quality of the collaboration than to the size of the network, and were organized and structured to include everyone who had a contribution to make to reach the network’s goals. Ideally, we expect diffusion of teacher learning occurred when teacher leaders in turn mentored other teachers over topics in the curriculum that were often seen as particularly difficult or when a new pedagogy was to be introduced. These interactions occurred largely as an across-schools’ phenomenon. However, we do not rule out the possibility of teacher learning happens among teachers. Through their participation in these NLCs, these teachers may diffuse and share what they have learnt from the NLCs to other teachers in their respective schools. It is also the interest of this proposed study to examine the impact of NLCs in relation to student attainment, achievement and well-being.

Funding Source
MOE

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