What are the critical factors in ensuring successful collaboration between mainstream teachers and teaching assistance

Thomas Nielsen, Tony Shaddock, Chris Kilham, Loretta Giorcelli

    Research output: Book/ReportOther


    This study used Actor Network Theory (ANT) to study five schools that had different models of teacher – teaching assistant collaboration. The study did not assess the efficacy of the teacher-teaching assistant model but the ways in which the model might work. The study found that: • School culture and ethos, particularly as mediated by the executive, influenced the success of the teacher - teaching assistant team. • The different operational models were unspecified, dynamic and reactive. • The models depended on the maintenance of good relationships between school personnel and also between school personnel and the home. Stakeholders frequently mentioned the importance of: • Professional development. • Adequate resources. • The need for assistants and teachers to have more time to plan and collaborate. This study, and the research on which it was based, suggest that schools will be successful in utilising teaching assistants if they: • Treat assistants as an integral part of the team. • Provide clear guidance about roles and responsibilities and if the teacher directs the teaching assistant on how to contribute to the class program. • Involve the assistant in indirect support roles, e.g. Monitoring of student achievement and recording of performance or in small group work. • Build and maintain good relationships among school personnel and between home and school. • Facilitate joint professional development for teachers and teaching assistants. • Involve teachers in the selection of their teaching assistant. • Arrange workloads so that teachers and teaching assistants have time to build their relationship, to plan and to reflect on their work
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationAustralia
    PublisherCommonwealth of Australia
    Number of pages51
    ISBN (Print)0642777033
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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