Dr.Hab., Professor L.V. Vedernikova1
PhD, Associate Professor S.A. Elantseva1
PhD, Associate Professor O.A. Povoroznyuk1
1Tyumen State University, Tyumen
Keywords: research activity, research mission, consciousness, compassion, cooperation, self-identification, self-fulfillment, self-control.
Background. Success of the ongoing reforms of the school education system largely depends on how efficient is the school management in the initiatives to implement new education technologies, with a special priority to the efforts to encourage the research projects by the rural school teachers. Modern rural schools are viewed by many national researchers (including O.Y. Vasilyeva , I.G. Mazkova , M.P. Guryanova , A.N. Smirnov , V.I. Pogorelova  et al.) as socio-cultural hubs for the local communities, with rural teachers playing a key role in the efforts to develop a facilitating socio-cultural climate for the communities. This is the reason why the research and analytical activity of a teacher is critical for the progress of the school education services and rural community on the whole.
Objective of the study was to outline the key vectors for the rural/ urban school teacher’s research activity.
Methods and structure of the study. The research/ analytical skills of the rural/ urban school teachers were tested for the study purposes in the following domains: background knowledgebase; research skills; and the practical experience in the project design and research (own and students’) management service. Sampled for the anonymous questionnaire survey and tests under the study were 100 (50 rural plus 50 urban) teachers who were primarily tested with insufficient research competences.
The urban group was tested with somewhat better theoretical knowledge in research process design and management issues than the rural group; albeit the groups were found to face problems in distinguishing the education research from the scientific and creative research projects; spelling out the key specifics of a scientific research project; describing the modern standard research methodologies and stages in the scientific versus education research project activity etc.
It was found by the professional research knowledge self-rating survey that 25 (50%) and 10 (20%) of the urban and rural groups, respectively, rate their knowledge as excellent; 15 (30%) and 15 (30%) as insufficient; and 10 (20%) and 25 (50%) as poor – both in the scientific research and education research domains. This finding demonstrated the need in the research competence of the school physical education specialists being developed by special training courses with practical experience being accumulated in the relevant research/ innovative projects.
Study findings and discussion. The study was based on the assumption that the teacher’s research competence shall be developed by a harmonized cognitive (consciousness-centered), emotional (compassion-centered) and behavioral (cooperation-centered) progress domains to foster due world outlooks and professional educational agendas with the relevant professional and personality self-identification aspects .
The cognitive progress shall be secured by the personality development and professional competence building in the education specialist psychological and educational training process. The self-analytical competence and skills shall be improved in the process with accumulation of competence in the relevant research/ analytical methods; project design and management technologies; studies of the own self and teammates’ personalities; and discussions of the people’s positions, opinions, responses and behavioral models .
The emotional (compassion-centered) progress is interpreted herein as the introspection driven activity to analyze and transform the own internal world in the context of the professionally important values, educational service motivations, sentiments and professional Self-conceptions; with the relevant activities geared to encourage the individual self-assertion and self-fulfillment in the professional research project activity .
And the behavioral (cooperation-centered) progress domain implies the individual activity to master and apply, in a most creative format, the modern research/ analytical toolkits. This is the stage when the teacher realizes his/her own potential and asserts him/herself in the professional research activity by the relevant interim goals being attained, with the individual professional accomplishments analyzed versus the core values and priorities, and with a growing mastery in the research/ analytical toolkit application to facilitate and manage the students’ research projects.
The progress may be described as the teacher’s self-assertion via the personality development and professional progress in the research process geared to secure new quality for the individual education service. On the whole, the process will be designed to:
- Familiarize the teachers with the modern practical research design and management methods to facilitate the students’ research project activity assisted and controlled by the teachers;
- Encourage the teachers’ professional self-fulfillment in practical application of the research design and management methods to facilitate the students’ research project activity assisted and controlled by the teachers; and
- Help the teachers attain their individual professional progress goals in the research design and management process to facilitate the students’ research project activity assisted and controlled by the teachers.
It is the newly created University-School Cooperation Program to Advance School Research Projects designed by the P.P. Ershov Pedagogical Institute under Tyumen State University faculty and students that we rank among the key mechanisms to facilitate the rural teachers’ research activity. The Program has the following key goals:
- Design a consistent school education and cultural process to encourage the design and research initiatives by teachers and students;
- Cultivate the joint design and research activity at schools; and
- Create a facilitating climate for the cooperative design and research activity at schools.
The above Program includes the research methodology module and technology module. The research methodology module is designed to help the trainees build up their competences in the project research methods and tools applicable for success of their education service. And the technology module encourages the teachers’ progress in the research/ analytical knowledge and skills via practical experience in the students’ project research activity design and management service.
Of great contribution to and support for the Program is the networking laboratory that provides practical guidance in the teachers’ and students’ research activity to facilitate progress in the professional service and creativity domains and establish a good cooperative climate in the project teams. Success of the laboratory staff service is rated by the teachers’ and students’ progress and accomplishments reported at the relevant scientific research conferences at the municipal and regional levels; publications in the relevant theoretical and practical periodicals etc.
Conclusion. The modern rural and urban school PES specialists are in need of special trainings to advance their research/ analytical competences and skills to be able to effectively contribute to the ongoing innovative school research and development processes.
The study was supported by a grant financing under RFFI 18-013-00071А Project.
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Initiatives to encourage the research activity by the rural and urban school physical education specialists are given a high priority today due to the fact that contributions from the school physical education and sport specialists are critical for success of the facilitating socio-cultural environment formation process, particularly in the rural communities. We believe that the research activity of an education specialist is largely determined by the research mission in the context of the relevant cognitive (consciousness-centered), emotional (compassion-centered) and behavioral (cooperation-centered) aspects of the individual world outlook, socializing model and the professional service competences of importance for the personality development and professional progress agendas. The article overviews the newly created University-School Cooperation Program to Advance School Research Projects with contributions from teachers and students, with the following key goals:
• Design a consistent school education and cultural process to encourage the design and research initiatives by teachers and students;
• Cultivate the joint design and research activity at schools; and
• Create a facilitating climate for the cooperative design and research activity at schools.