The 1st Issue of the Journal of Contemporary Education Theory & Research for 2023, presents a compilation of insightful papers that explore diverse facets of education in our ever-evolving world. We are privileged to feature a range of thoughtprovoking contributions from esteemed authors who delve into critical areas of education, share with our readers their research and conceptual papers and shed light on the challenges and opportunities that exist within the field.
Change and Risk Management Roadmap towards Higher Education Quality
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 3-15.
Aristeidis Chatzipoulidis, International Hellenic University, Greece Spyros Avdimiotis, International Hellenic University, Greece, Spyros Avdimiotis, International Hellenic University, Greece, Theodoros Kargidis, International Hellenic University, Greece
Purpose: Change and risk management is gaining increasing importance in the higher education sector mainly due to the fact that this educational environment is a complex system, which is characterized by the low level of predictability, innovation and manageability. Nevertheless, all students merit access to a high quality education that empowers them to thrive. Academics and administrators face situations such as increased workload, uncertain funding, greater competition, and globalization. These challenges are forcing Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) to examine their governance and consider how they might set themselves up to better adapt to a rapidly changing market.
Methods: If we assume that each HEI is an open social system and not a static organization, this leads us to the study of ΗΕΙs’ change management process, a topic that has yet to be explored in depth. This implies that change initiatives associated with human behavior are not well understood. Research reveals the majority of change initiatives in HEIs fail due to lack of planning prior to the commencement of a change, the misconception that off-the-shelf solutions will work and lack of sensitivity towards those who are rejecting or resisting the change. Driven by limited research in this domain and misfits of existing change management approaches, we focus on building a roadmap for a plug and play solution in a complex learning environment. This proactive solution contains principles for the implementation of effective change for improvement.
Results: In this respect, we identify four drivers of educational change namely macro, micro, individual and operational drivers. Specifically, we combine strategic planning frameworks in terms of PEST and SWOT analyses for the macro and micro drivers based on literature review and analysis from Artificial Intelligence tool. Then, we address individual drivers with a set of “What’s In It For Me” (WIIFM) questions. This aims to capture the multi-dimensional depth of educational change considering students, academics and administrators in order to help in change quantification. The operational drivers derive from the process approach concept supported by an implementation example. Considering the fact that change usually represents a calculated risk, we develop a risk roadmap to filter the findings and implement change.
Implications: Change initiatives need a consistency of approach and simply sharing a vision for the future is often not enough to motivate change. The purpose of this paper is to assist policy-makers and educational managers in formulating sound change management programs based on risk management. In addition, it builds a change-awareness culture reflecting on how to avoid behavioral pitfalls, it improves educational quality with knowledge management and prevents setting unrealistic targets that can expose HEIs under pressure and risk.
Keywords: change management, risk, governance, quality, higher education, artificial intelligence
Conceptual Dimensions of Quality in School Education
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 16-21.
Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the conceptual content of the term ‘quality’ in primary and secondary education through the content analysis of 32 scientific publications.
Methods: The analysis of the qualitative data is based on the methodology of grounded theory, revealing 21 major dimensions of quality with a high frequency of occurrence that are divided into five broader categories. The learning environment category includes psychosocial elements, physical elements, respect for diversity, and collaboration, sharing, and team spirit. The learning content category includes student-centred pedagogy, well-structured knowledge base, continuous curriculum improvement, interest in all students, and life skills. The processes category includes teaching, learning, assessment, and support and supervision. The students category includes involvement/participation, feedback, challenging learning activities, and improved learning outcomes. Finally, the teachers category includes knowledge of educational context, content, curriculum, pedagogy, pedagogical skills, emotional/management/reflection skills, and teacher professional development.
Results: In In the learning environment category, the dimension regarding the psychosocial elements prevails; in the learning content category, the dimension student-centred pedagogy prevails; in the processes category, three dimensions prevail – the first is support and supervision, and the other two are teaching and assessment. From the students category, the dimension improved learning outcomes prevails. Finally, from the teachers category, two dimensions prevail: emotional/management/reflection skills and knowledge of the educational context, content, curriculum, and pedagogy.
Keywords: educational quality, primary education, quality dimensions, quality education, school education, secondary education
Review of Online Teaching and Course Design Through K–12 Leaders’ Practices
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 22-31
This paper studies the Usability Evaluation of Educational Robotics Systems in preschool and first-primary ages (5-8 years old). Direct observation was the methodology. The inquiring tool was a structured observation plan in order to simplify the process and to obtain reliable and valid results. The plan was based on the principles of Usability according to ISO-9241 and the questionnaire USE proposed by Lund (2001), which considers usability. The research focused on four axes evaluating usability: Effectiveness, Efficiency, Satisfaction and Ease-of-Use. According to the findings, the Educational Robotics Systems utilized today tend to be quite usable for the users of these ages.
Keywords: usability evaluation, educational robotics (ER), user, satisfaction, ease of use
Advancing Inclusive Education Policies: The Vital Role of Human Rights
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 32-36
Purpose: Across the world and particularly in Europe a number of students-learners, including students-learners with disabilities, Roma students- learners, students- learners with a migrant-refugee background, encounter an increased level of vulnerability within society and multiple barriers to the full enjoyment of their rights, including their right to education with long-lasting effects on their life course.
Methods: The paper is based on a systematic legal analysis of international and regional human rights regimes, literature research and document analysis, towards identifying the framework of policies and strategies required for upholding the right of all students-learners to inclusive education and advancing equal education opportunities for all without discrimination. The literature-scientific research included publicly available documents, reports (e.g., World Report on Disability), peer-reviewed studies and other publications primarily of human rights bodies at the United Nations level (e.g., the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child). These sources are published in English. They tend to provide useful interpretation material for the role of inclusive education towards promoting equal education opportunities for all students-learners. Notably, these sources further clarify the meaning and process of inclusive education by employing a rights-based approach.
Results: Within this context, this paper argues that a greater focus on the establishment of inclusive education environments is required for providing quality education to all students-learners without discrimination and on the basis of equality of opportunity.
Implications: To this end, a human rights-based approach to inclusive education can assist marginalised and disadvantaged students-learners in catalyzing their claims for the realization of their right to education, while guiding and intensifying state action to this end.
Keywords: Children, Human Rights, Inclusive Education, Learners, Participation, Vulnerability
Web Tools 2.0 for Recording and Monitoring the Training Process in V.E.T. Institutions: Adult Educators’ Satisfaction with their Use
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 37-41
Purpose: The purpose of this study is to investigate course instructors’ level of satisfaction of the WEB 2.0 tools usage in documenting, tracking and monitoring the training process in Vocational Training Institutes. WEB 2.0 tools include electronic curriculum book, and electronic attendance of both instructors and trainees.
Methods: The survey was completed by 53 course instructors of a Vocational Training Institute in which they used the WEB 2.0 tool. The participants completed a structured electronic questionnaire through google form. Quantitative analysis of the data was applied, using the statistical package PSPP and the Microsoft Office Excel application.
Results: According to the results of the study, the majority of course instructors reported a high degree of satisfaction with the use of WEB 2.0 tools in all categorical variables, such as i) usability and usefulness, and ii) structure and functionality.
Implications: The results showed that these tools are very useful for documenting and monitoring the training process in Vocational Training Institutes.
Keywords: WEB 2.0 tools, Information and Communication Technologies, Satisfaction, Teachers, Vocational Training Institutes
Transmutation of Culture to Culture-Oriented Activities in Foreign Language Education: The Constructive Challenge of Intercultural Awareness
Georgios Linaroudis, International Hellenic University, Greece, Chryssoula Chatzigeorgiou, International Hellenic University, Greece, Evangelos Christou, International Hellenic University, Greece, Fotis Kilipiris International Hellenic University, Greece
Published online: 31 July 2023, JCETR, 7(1), pp. 42-47
Purpose: Nowadays, it is commonly agreed that foreign language education does not exclusively consist of fields such as morphology, vocabulary, syntax, and phonetics. On the contrary, it incorporates aspects of culture and worldviews. The importance of the co-examination of second language acquisition and intercultural awareness has been the drive behind this paper in an attempt to address the fact that communication is unpredictable even when it takes place within specific frameworks.
Methods: Based on the present bibliographical research an approach towards intercultural communication is made from the scope of the culture-oriented activities in foreign language acquisition. In the first part, it is crucial to define all those complex components that surround this topic, while the second part, focuses on the perceptions around the activities that help achieve intercultural awareness.
Results: Lastly, the importance of intercultural awareness as well as the challenging nature of this endeavour, which amplifies the contribution of the contemporary educator within the field of educational policies consists one of the most important conclusions that this research has produced.
Keywords: Culture, Intercultural Awareness, Foreign Language Education.