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Departamento de Educao Coordenao de Ps-Graduao

Prova de Lngua Inglesa J unho 2011

Identificao: __________________________________________________________
Nota: ________________



As respostas devero ser dadas em PORTUGUS, mas no devem ser uma cpia ou uma
traduo literal do texto.
Inclua apenas informaes que constem do texto em anexo.
permitido o uso de dicionrio.
S sero aceitas provas escritas a caneta.
Tempo de durao: 3 horas

1. Explique o conceito de compromisso do professor tal como apresentado pelo texto e comente os
exemplos que ilustram esta viso.

2. Discuta a afirmao de Day e de Gu que estabelece que "o compromisso do professor
comumente associado qualidade."

3. Discorra sobre as consideraes feitas pelos autores a respeito das dimenses do compromisso e
dos ingredientes para um ensino de qualidade.
Teacher commitment: A necessary condition for success?
Day, C. & Gu, Q.

Teacher commitment has been identified as one of the most critical factors in the progress and
achievement of students. If you talk with any teacher, teacher educator, schools inspector, headteacher,
teacher or parent about reform in raising standards or the quality of education, it will not be very long
before the word commitment enters into conversation. They know, also, that without commitment,
change efforts those within and especially those which are initiated from outside the school or other
organisation will be limited in their success.
Commitment to the workplace is understood as a hallmark of organisational success (Rosenholtz
and Simpson, 1990:241). In their research, Rosenholtz and Simpson found that the commitment of
teachers to their profession and to the schools in which they work varied across different phases of their
professional lives. Their research supports our observations regarding the impact of critical influences on
teachers work and lives, which points to the importance of various qualities of organisational contexts in
promoting or hindering teachers ability to sustain their professional beliefs and emotional commitment.
For example, to avoid teacher stress and burnout, Rosenholtz and Simpson (ibid.) argue that teachers felt
commitment and performance will be enhanced most by different kinds of organisational support that are
fit for the purpose and are context sensitive over the course of their professional lives.
Like other more experienced teachers, Peter had experienced many changes of policy and practice
during his 21 years of teaching. Not all were to his liking, and he expressed considerable frustration with
many of the broad policy changes from relative teacher classroom autonomy to increased results and
target-driven teaching, more prescriptive curricula and the external school inspection regime that had
resulted in the school being placed on special measures, the failing category. He saw all of this as
detracting from his capacity to add value to pupil learning and achievement rather than improving it as
they were intended to do, and felt that they and those who advocated them, contributed to the erosion of
his long-held values of autonomy and creativity in the classroom because the school itself had been
placed on special measures for a period.

I dont feel able to relax now that my teaching is being rigorously monitored by local authority and national school
inspectors. (Peter)

Peter felt that, until recently, a disproportionate part of the day was given over to literacy and
numeracy teaching, that there were fewer opportunities for cross-curricular activities and that curricula
guidelines acted as a straight-jacket. He believed that many had left teaching because they no longer
have the opportunity to explore with children what they [the teachers] know they can do well. For Peter,
teaching had become more tiring with more pressures and less satisfaction. He spoke of fluctuations in
his belief that he was able to make a difference:

Im always OK until it comes to the SATs
and then there is a bit of a down.

The following illustration from Faith shows the extent to which changes in assessment procedures
and the challenges to her self-belief over the years have eroded her confidence in her belief that her work
can make a difference:

Since the SATs Ive got absolutely no self-belief. I think as teachers, were our own worst critics. Were very, very
critical, we do evaluate almost every lesson and were always striving, even after 30-odd years Im still looking to
learn and therefore you never feel satisfied, you never feel as being as efficient as you could be. I mean people tell you
youve done well, youve made a difference, but I dont know. I dont believe it as much as I used to. (Faith)

Faith criticised the high level of external target setting which, far from improving standards, in her
view just made things unnecessarily harder for the teacher:

The SAT Reasoning Test is a standardized test which is required for college admission by many colleges and universities in the United


I get so across about their intervention, because theyre not altering my commitment I teach the way Ive always
taught; you want to achieve the very best you can like you always have and theyre not altering that one iota, its just
making it more difficult and making you feel deflated when you want to do well and want to be committed and do what
youve always done setting stupid targets doesnt make you more hard working, you cant be.
At my age, I tend to think, Is it me, am I becoming disenchanted with it? But I dont think so. I still want to do a
really god job but I think sometimes the children are becoming more challenging and more difficult and they just
dont treat you with the same respect they used to. I dont know whether we are old-fashioned in our approach at my
age that is affecting my motivation.

Commitment is also, often, associated with quality. It has been defined as a predictor of teachers
performance, burnout and attrition, as well as having an important influence on students cognitive,
social, behavioural and affective outcomes. It is a term often used by teachers to describe themselves and
each other. It is a part of their professional identity, and may be enhanced or diminished by factors such
as student behaviour, collegial and administrative support, parental demands, and national educational
policies. Teachers who are committed have an enduring belief that they can make a difference to the
learning lives and achievements of students (efficacy and agency) through who they are (their identity),
what they know (knowledge, strategies, skills) and how they teach (their beliefs, attitudes, personal and
professional values embedded in and expressed through their context-sensitive behaviours in practice
Ebmeier and Nicklaus (1999) connected the concepts of commitment and emotion, defining
commitment as part of teachers affective or emotional reaction to their experience in a school setting and
part of the process which determines the level of personal investment they make to a particular school
group of students.
In a report of empirical research on teachers commitment in Australia, Crosswell (2006:109)
suggests that there are six dimensions of commitment: (1) commitment as passion, (2) commitment as
investment of extra time, (3) commitment as a focus on the wellbeing and achievement of the student, (4)
commitment as a responsibility to maintain professional knowledge, (5) commitment as transmitting
knowledge and/or values, and (6) commitment as engagement with the school community.
Commitment is felt by many teachers as part of their professional values and sense of moral
purposes. Such commitment is not an option, but a necessity, since it is an essential condition for
teachers success.
Nurturing good teaching that results in successful learning is not something that can be left only to
the accumulation of experience by teachers, reflective or otherwise. It must be nurtured by deliberate acts
of care by leaders whose job it is to establish and develop conditions for the growth of expertise which
provide sustained attention to the four ingredients identified by Fenstermacher and Richardson (2005) as
being essential to quality teaching:

1. the teachers context, task and person knowledge (including self knowledge);
2. the desire to learn and the effort of the learner;
3. the social contexts of family, peers and community; which will exert positive and/or negative influences;
4. the facilities, time and resources necessary to accomplish learning.

It is through an acknowledgment and understanding of the dynamic mix of these ingredients,
through acts of care, challenge and support that leaders will promote teaching that is both good and
successful. Yet such teaching expertise does not appear overnight in most schools. Whilst it may be
present in some, or even many teachers, it takes time to build. It also needs regular attention for there are
many challenges posed on teachers which may hinder the individual or collective growth of good and
successful teaching.