Facilitating factors in programme renewal: Faculty's perspectives
Keywords:Programme planning, teacher education, teacher educators, change management, curriculum planning
This paper examines the process of change in curriculum planning at a higher education institution involved in teacher education and sought to find out what were the facilitators in a change process in the given context. The conceptual framework is constituted by theories of organisational development, innovation and change management, and leadership. This study falls within the qualitative research paradigm. It is a descriptive intrinsic case study (Stake, 1995) with embedded units. The case is teacher educators' experiences at one teacher education institution in a developing country. Twenty-one teacher educators of varying years of experience comprise the embedded units. The case itself is of interest to this researcher and the intention is to better understand the current perspectives and experiences of these participants (Stake, 1995) with a view to drawing conclusions about implications for the institution as a provider of teacher education. To better understand their stories (Crabtree & Miller, 1999), all participants were interviewed using an interview protocol which allowed for probing. Interviews were transcribed and participants had the opportunity to confirm and even add to their responses in print. Guided by the research questions, patterns in the data were sought, and emerging categories were further clustered into themes. The data were further analysed to make comparisons and to highlight differences or contrasts. Implications for practice within the institution and beyond were presented. While there were many potential barriers and challenges as well as possible tensions in the change process staff also recognised that there were elements that facilitated the success of the process. Findings revealed that the main facilitators of programme renewal that emerged for the teacher educators fell under the broad categories of staff attitude, leadership style, use of consultation and collaboration, management of the process, external factors, and capitalising on institutional strengths. This case study builds upon work done by Cohen, Fetters and Fleischmann (2005), Wolf and Hughes (2007), Hyun and Oliver (2011), Carter and Halsall (2000) and [name deleted to maintain the integrity of the review process] (2016) as it captures the perspectives of one group of teacher educators who were engaged in programme renewal, adding to the literature on effective change process.