Implementing Successful Change
Introducing changes to an academic environment is a task that is fraught with numerous challenges. For instance, when promoting a new idea or concept, one may face significant resistance from learners (Harris & Tessmer, 2014). Therefore, an educator must make sure that the appropriate tool should be used when encouraging the target audience to develop certain skills or modify their behavior. To build the foundation for change, a teacher should consider social factors, leverage leadership, and contribute to the creation of positive pressure that will compel learners to develop the suggested behaviors and acquire the necessary skills, such as critical thinking, creative thinking, communication, etc.
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Social Foundation for Successful Strategies (Recognize that All Successful Strategies Are Socially Based and Action-Oriented)
Active promotion of trust in the relationships between a learner and a teacher is crucial to the overall success of the learning process, as well as the performance of a student: “When relationships develop, trust increases, as do other measures of social capital and social cohesion” (Fullan, 2015, p. 48). While being admittedly difficult, the development of relationships based on trust can become a possibility in the environment of an academic institution. For this purpose, a teacher must provide consistent support to learners, as well as maintain their motivation levels high by incorporating a combination of the techniques based on positive and negative reinforcement.
The enhancement of action-oriented change may also be successful once the principles of peer support and the idea of cooperation as the basis for the communication process between learners is established. Personally, I have witnessed the situation in which a teacher shaped the behavior of diverse learners in a way that encouraged not only active knowledge acquisition and experience sharing but also a positive dialogue between them. As a result, a rapid improvement in academic performance, as well as the communication process, particularly conflict management, was observed.
Leveraging Leadership (Stay the Course through Continuity of Good Direction by Leveraging Leadership)
The use of an appropriate leadership strategy also defines the success of the learning process to a considerable degree. Therefore, it is essential that a teacher should adopt a positive leadership approach that will help motivate learners and provide them with a positive example that will allow developing the required academic skills and abilities. The significance of uniform instructions that will guide the target audience through the academic process must not be underrated.
For example, I have seen the situation in which a teacher misunderstood the concept of being flexible and failed to develop a homogenous leadership approach, switching between authoritative and laissez-faire leadership styles. As a result, the students did not receive the required directions and felt lost when being forced to handle specific assignments on their own. The identified situation could have been improved significantly if the teacher had adopted a more rigid approach toward leadership by transferring from close supervision to the transformative model. As a result, the students would have remained motivated and would not have felt abandoned when having to handle specific assignments individually (Garcia, 2015).
Evolution of Positive Pressure (Establish Conditions for the Evolution of Positive Pressure)
Eventually, the importance of the evolution of positive pressure must be addressed as a crucial step in improving the academic environment and contributing to student engagement. As stressed above, keeping learners motivated is one of the primary goals of an educator. Therefore, it is the responsibility of a teacher to promote positive pressure in the classroom environment.
Personally, I witnessed a stellar example of positive pressure when a teacher encouraged a sense of focused urgency among learners by giving them tasks associated with group thinking. As a result, the audience developed a better understanding of discussed problems within a shorter amount of time than they used to. In addition, brainstorming was enhanced significantly after the teacher gradually started reducing the time provided for discussions.
By introducing her learners to new topics and challenging ideas, the educator created the environment that was both challenging and engaging, inviting the learners to develop academically and acquire new skills. For instance, the ability to negotiate as a crucial skill in managing the discussion process was fostered in the members of class discussions. Moreover, the learners acquired the skills necessary for critical analysis and active search of a solution. Finally, the students were introduced to the idea that conflicts occurring in the process of discussion can be used as the tools for producing unique solutions and learning essential lessons (Witte & Mosley-Howard, 2014).
Conclusion: Exploring Organizational Capacity
To promote organizational change in the context of an academic institution, a teacher should focus on using the social factors affecting the learners’ behavior, leverage leadership successfully, and build the positive pressure that will encourage learners to acquire the recommended skills and knowledge successfully. As a result, a significant shift in students’ attitudes can be expected. Specifically, a rise in motivation levels can be viewed as a direct effect of the application of the approach mentioned above. Thus, the management of a range of educational issues will become a possibility.
Fullan, M. (2015). The new meaning of educational change (5th ed.). New York, NY: Teachers College Press.
Garcia, R. (2015). Bridging the English learner achievement gap: Essential lessons for school leaders. New York, NY: Teachers College Press.
Harris, D., & Tessmer, M. (2014). Analyzing the instructional setting: A guide for course designers. New York, NY: Routledge.
Witte, R. H., & Mosley-Howard, S. (2014). Mental health practice in today’s schools: Issues and interventions. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.