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Title: A case study of coaching in leadership in further education
Authors: Whiterod, Lindsey Janet
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: There have been many complex and contradictory policy changes in further education colleges in the last twenty years. Whilst there has been a focus on the need for good leadership and management in the sector by Ofsted and government agencies little research exists on leadership development and in particular coaching and the impact it can have on improving leadership in the sector. This longitudinal single case (embedded) study explores the implementation of a leadership development programme based on coaching in a general FE college in the North of England. Embedded units of analysis (individual participants on the coaching programme) were studied over the length of the case and my role as participant, manager and researcher provided both opportunities and challenges to the research design and ethics of the study. Questionnaires, semi structured interviews and focus groups were used to gain the perceptions of senior and middle managers in the college over the duration of the coaching programme. The research showed the importance and impact of coaching in leadership development in the college case study. It was also evident that being very clear about the aims of the coaching programme and setting the right ecological conditions in the institution are crucial to ensure that personal development and organisational development do not become out of kilter. The research showed that models of continuing professional development involving coaching can provide challenge and opportunities for new thinking in colleges which can give institutions the capacity to make a strategic leap. My own experience of introducing coaching to support teaching and learning in my new college also supported the findings that this kind of continuing professional development can have a significant impact on the participants. In conclusion, the use of coaching to support leadership and teaching and learning development in FE is still evolving. Against a cultural backdrop of governmentality and performativity, college leadership and teaching and learning can be transformed if managers and teachers are challenged to break old habits and move away from an obsessive focus on targets and policy drivers. Individual and college approaches can be enhanced particularly if the planning of development and the ecology is right in the institution to support both developments.
Description: EdD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

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