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Classroom observations and supervision - essential dimensions of pedagogical leadership
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Principal Development.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Principal Development.
2014 (English)In: International Journal of Educational Management, ISSN 0951-354X, Vol. 28, no 7, 856-868 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose– The main task of every school is to contribute to student learning and achievement. In the twenty-first century, national and international evaluations and comparisons have focussed on measurable student and school results. Not only teachers but also principals are held accountable for school results, which increase expectations of principals to work to enhance student learning and improve outcomes. In Sweden, a principal's work with a given school's core mission is labeled as pedagogical leadership, a concept that includes diverse activities related to national goals and school results. Aspects of pedagogical leadership include principals’ classroom observations and communication about teaching and learning issues. The purpose of this paper is to describe a model of pedagogical leadership as a base for principals’ experience with the aim to develop their understanding of pedagogical leadership.

Design/methodology/approach– The paper builds on data from three groups of principals who participated in a course to learn more about pedagogical leadership.

Findings– The participating principals performed their pedagogical leadership in different manners and with varying quality. During the course, there was a shift in what activities and duties the principals prioritized. The findings highlight the importance of democratic leadership and the improvement of teacher capacity and student outcomes.

Practical implications– The paper gives practical examples on how principals can improve their understanding of pedagogical leadership.

Originality/value– There are few articles on how pedagogical leadership is understood and practiced. The paper provides a model for pedagogical leadership and empirical data that shows that the concept deserves to be viewed as a qualitative concept that need interpretation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2014. Vol. 28, no 7, 856-868 p.
Keyword [en]
Educational Leadership, principal, classroom observation
National Category
Educational Sciences Public Administration Studies
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-96196DOI: 10.1108/IJEM-01-2014-0001OAI: diva2:762568
Available from: 2014-11-12 Created: 2014-11-12 Last updated: 2015-05-09Bibliographically approved

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Ärlestig, HeleneTörnsén, Monika
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