Self-initiated high school teacher collaboration

Geoffrey Paul Riordan, J.L Da Costa

Research output: Contribution to conference (non-published works)Paperpeer-review


Teacher collaboration is characterized by joint work; shared responsibilities; and the existence of high levels of trust, respect, and mutuality. This paper presents findings of a study that identified some of the forms and contents of self-initiated collaboration among high school teachers. Data were gathered through interviews with 10 teachers (5 partnerships) in a large city in Alberta, Canada, transcripts of audiotaped discussions between the partners, followup interviews, and a focus-group meeting. The form and content of the collaborative partnerships were determined by a combination of individual and organizational factors. At various times these factors merged to form a nexus that resulted in the formation and later reformations of the collaboration. The degree to which the collaborations were self-initiated varied both within and between the partnerships. The nexus of organizational and individual factors affected the extent to which the individuals felt free to initiate or respond to the opportunities to enter into the partnerships. The activities undertaken in the collaborations served four broad purposes: pedagogical, professional development, micropolitical, and individual support/relationship maintenance. Salient features of all the partnerships included reciprocity of effort, mutuality of outcomes, and sharing of educational resources and materials. The ways in which individual differences were handled was one of the most important determinants of the nature of the evolving partnership. Two tables and two figures are included.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes
EventAnnual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association - New York, United States
Duration: 1 Apr 19961 Apr 1996


OtherAnnual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew York


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