01 SES 03 C, Professional Culture
Power can be defined as the ability to influence opinions, values, and behaviour of a person or a group of persons (McCroskey, 2006) and as such it has been a traditional topic in social sciences (for example Simmel, 1896; Weber, 1922; Foucault, 1975) and also in educational sciences. This is understandable because if power relationships are not clearly established in the classroom there is no benefit from the teacher’s knowledge of their field, no matter how vast it can be (Šalamounová & Švaříček, 2012). It can therefore be said that setting up the power relationship determines the degree of realisation of didactic aims. This assertion is in accordance with Bernstein (1996) who claims that regulative discourse is dominant in the classroom and contains didactic discourse. Hence, power negotiation and its use is an inherent part of the education process (McCroskey & Richmond, 1983; Šeďová, 2011). As Sarason (1990) notes, teachers’ professional competence can be also measured in relation to their ability to set up power relations in the classroom. According to the research findings (Richmond & McCroskey, 1992; Staton, 1992) newly qualified teachers know necessary information of their teaching subjects, but they do not know how to meet conditions for establishing power relationships in the classroom.
In accordance with these findings our research focuses on the following question: Are there any differences between perceived power of novice and expert teachers´ in lower secondary classes? Through questionnaire we collect information regarding a) how pupils perceive the power of teachers, b) how pupils and teachers perceive the power of pupils, c) how teachers perceive their own power.
Adapted Teacher Power Use Scale (TPUS) by Schrodt, Witt, and Turman (2007) will be used for measuring the perceived power. The scale is based on French and Raven’s (1960) traditional typology of relational power which distinguishes power in relation to a principle which it is based on (i.e., coercive, reward, legitimate, referent, and expert). TPUS consists of 30 items and uses a 7-point Likert scale. It shows better psychometric properties than previously preferred Perceived Power Measure by McCroskey and Richmond (1983) and Roach’s (1995) Power Base Measure. TPUS demonstrates better internal reliability, concurrent and discriminant validity, and it contains more valid and reliable indicators for the five power bases (coefficient of reliability Cronbach´s alpha ranges between .77 to .90). TPUS is better in measuring of so called anti-social forms of power (coercive and legitimate) and pro-social forms of power (referent and reward) at the aggregated level.
Foucault, M. (1975). Surveiller et punir: Naissance de la prison. Paris: Gallimard. French, J., & Raven, B. (1960). The bases of social power. In D. Cartwright & A. Zander (Eds.), Group Dynamics (pp. 259-269). New York: Harper and Row. McCroskey, J. C., & Richmond, V. P. (1983). Power in the classroom I: Teacher and student perceptions. Communication Education, 32(2), 175-218. McCroskey, J. C., Richmond, V. P., & McCroskey, L. L. (2006). An Introduction to Communication in the Classroom: The Role of Communication in Teaching and Training. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Richmond, V. P., & McCroskey, J. C. (Eds.) (1992). Power in the classroom. Communication, Control, and Concern. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum. Roach, K. D. (1995). Teaching assistant argumentativeness: Effects of affective learning and student perception on power use. Communication Education, 52, 259-276. Šalamounová, Z., & Švaříček, R. (2012). Komunikace z pohledu učitelů. (Communication from the point of view of teachers). In K. Šeďová, R. Švaříček, & Z. Šalamounová, Komunikace ve školní třídě (Communication in Classroom) (pp. 215-228). Praha: Portál. Sarason, S. B. (1990). The Predictable Failure of Educational Reform: Can We Change Course Before It's Too Late? San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Schrodt, P., Witt, P. L, & Turman, P. D. (2007). Reconsidering the measurement of teacher power use in the college classroom. Communication Education, 56(3), 308-323. Šeďová, K. (2011). Mocenské konstelace ve výukové komunikaci (Constellations of power in educational communication). Studia Paedagogica, 16(1), 89-118. Simmel, G. (1896). Superiority and Subordination as Subject-Matter of Sociology. American Journal of Sociology, 2 (2), 167-189. Staton, A. Q. (1992). Teacher and student concern and classroom power and control. In V. Richmond, & J. McCroskey, Power in the Classroom: Communication, Control and Concern (pp. 159-176). New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Weber, M. (1922). Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft. Tübingen: Mohr.
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