Teaching as a form of work: effects of teachers' roles and role definitions on working to rule

Pamela M. Warton, Jacqueline J. Goodnow, Jennifer Bowes

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    Abstract

    Teachers' ideas about the nature of their work become more explicit during times of industrial action, The present study explored the effects of some characteristics of teachers (gender, length of teaching) and their current roles (K-6 classroom, secondary classroom, school executives) upon their perceptions of what teaching involves, their actions taken during the work-to-rule campaign, and their definitions of and attitudes towards work-to-rule. Most teachers saw their work in interpersonal terms rather than in terms of duties and conditions, and distinguished between 'essential' and 'gift' activities. Current roles had little effect on attitudes towards work-to-rule, but a strong effect on action: K-6 classroom teachers were significantly less likely to participate or make sizeable changes. These findings were discussed in terms of the differing social and interpersonal contexts of teaching.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)170-180
    Number of pages11
    JournalAustralian Journal of Education
    Volume36
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 1992

    Keywords

    • ACTIVISM
    • TEACHER ATTITUDES
    • TEACHERS
    • ROLE PERCEPTION
    • TEACHER MILITANCY
    • UNIONS
    • CONTEXT

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