Multivariate analysis of school principals’ technology leadership competencies, learning school environment and schools’ social network structures

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Multivariate analysis of school principals’
technology leadership competencies, learning school environment and schools’ social network structures

Köksal Banoğlu, Münevver Ölçüm Çetin, & Ruben Vanderlinde

Summary

The introduction of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in education has profoundly changed the way education is delivered in schools. Next to pedagogical innovations arising from the integration of ICT into the repertoire of teaching strategies applied by teachers in classroom environments, a major sociocultural transformation has been undergone in the organisational environment of schools. In the present dissertation, we address this transformation from a multidimensional perspective in Turkish public K-12 schools. For this purpose, we examine the multiple relationships between school principal’s technology leadership (TL) practices, schools’ learning organisation (LO) culture, and professional interactions among school actors, including school principals, vice-principals, ICT coordinators, and subject-field/grade-level teachers. While doing so, we control for the availability of ICT-enriched infrastructure in Turkish schools as a structural factor as well as teacher and principal demographics associated with ICT integration. For another important structural factor, we address the quality of internal ICT support in Turkish schools by developing a research instrument that is able to measure Turkish ICT coordinators’ professional self-efficacy levels. To clarify general connotations arising out of “sociocultural factors” and “structural factors”; school principals’ TL practices are specified by the five standards of the International Society for Technology in Education for Administrators (ISTE-A) framework which is a well-known professional competency framework conducive to evaluate school principals’ “visionary leadership”, “digital-age learning culture”, “excellence in professional practices”, “systematic improvement”, and “digital citizenship” standards.
School’s LO culture is considered a proxy for a positive school culture that promotes teachers’ five professional learning orientations, which are “team learning”, “shared vision”, “systems thinking”, “personal mastery”, and “mental models” as suggested by the LO theory. Professional interactions are
handled through technological and pedagogical advice-seeking relationships (ASRs) among school actors. While developing the research instrument, its items are constructed based on the performance indicators of the “National Competency Framework for ICT coordinators”, which is an official report issued by Turkish Ministry of National Education.
This PhD dissertation includes four empirical studies, which are all reported in separate chapters.