Developing professionally: The role of teacher associations in the professional development of teachers.

Year: 1999

Author: Mullins, Les, Ingvarson, Lawrence

Type of paper: Refereed paper

This paper reports on a study of five subject associations in Victoria.The central question was, "To what extent are subject professional communities?" We wanted to know more about the significance of 'subject associations' in teachers' work life, in their professional development, and in their aspirations to improve their status as members of a profession To address this question, a conceptual framework was derived from an extensive review of relevant literature. This literature led us to focus on the nature of "professional community", membership of which was a defining characteristic of professionals according to this literature.This led to the development of an eight-element 'framework' with which to examine these five case studies.It was also used to focus the research questions and data gathering methods. Case studies were conducted on each of the five subject associations and two surveys of teachers (450 in total) - those who were members and those who were not. The data was analysed using the eight elements of the framework for professional community.