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Collaborating for Educational Improvement: Exploring cases of teacher collaboration for policy implementation

Stelitano, Laura (2018) Collaborating for Educational Improvement: Exploring cases of teacher collaboration for policy implementation. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Teacher collaboration holds great promise for improving educational outcomes. Education policies commonly seek to foster teacher collaboration to bring about improvements in teacher learning, instructional quality, and improved student outcomes. Collaborative approaches including professional learning communities (PLCs), grade level teams, instructional coaching, and co-teaching are common in the reform landscape. Teachers’ collaboration is deeply enabled or constrained by school organization and the broader educational systems in which it is embedded. My dissertation studies employ an organizational and systems lens for exploring the embeddedness of teachers’ collaboration for policy implementation. Specifically, my studies explore two different policy contexts that utilize collaborative approaches for improvement: the inclusion of students with disabilities and ambitious mathematics instruction. Policies related to inclusion count on teachers’ collaboration as a means for ensuring that students with disabilities are appropriately supported in general education settings. With regard to math instruction, schools and districts commonly employ collaborative approaches to enhance teacher professional learning and ultimately enhance the quality of their math instruction. Findings from these studies suggest that using an organizational lens and exploring teachers’ practice in terms of collaboration can reveal important barriers and unintended consequences to collaboration for policy implementation. Together, my dissertation studies illuminate the organizational and social aspects of teacher collaborations for policy implementation that matter if collaboration is to be productive for supporting students in inclusive settings or improving teachers’ professional learning for math instruction.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Stelitano, Lauralem109@pitt.edulem1090000-0002-9808-8439
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Thesis AdvisorRussell,
Committee MemberStein, Mary
Committee MemberRobertson,
Committee MemberSiciliano,
Date: 27 September 2018
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 20 July 2018
Approval Date: 27 September 2018
Submission Date: 11 August 2018
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 202
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Learning Sciences and Policy
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Policy implementation, qualitative, case study, special education, organizations, education
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2018 14:20
Last Modified: 27 Sep 2018 16:45


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