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ERIC Number: ED563518
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 140
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3035-2526-1
Examining the Nature of Critical Incidents during Interactions between Special Education Teachers and Virtual Coaches
Snyder, Kathleen
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, University of Cincinnati
Coaching is a powerful tool for improving special education teachers' use of evidence-based practices. Recent technological advances have great potential to influence the manner in which coaching is implemented. Virtual coaching is an innovative cycle of coaching that utilizes video-conferencing and bug-in-ear technology in internet-mediated environments to support teachers in their classrooms and with immediate feedback about their instructional practices. This type of coaching differs from traditional coaching practice, which typically relies on an observation and post-observation conference model of interaction between coaches and teachers. In the last decade, studies have investigated the potential of virtual coaching with bug-in-ear technology to impact specific teaching practices, with positive results. Little is known, however, about the nature of coaching and feedback in this virtual medium when the interactions between coaches and teachers are not predetermined or prescribed. Further, the studies investigating feedback via virtual bug-in-ear technology have not examined that practice in a larger cycle of coaching that includes post-lesson reflection. This study uses critical incident analysis to investigate the nature of interactions between teachers and coaches in a virtual context of coaching, which includes real-time responses to classroom events and instructional decision-making and collaborative reflection sessions. In addition, this study seeks to identify additional critical events that occur during the coaching sessions that may not be identified as critical incidents by the coaches or teachers. Data sources for this study include video of classroom coaching sessions, audio of collaborative reflections between teachers and coaches, written artifacts (i.e., emails, written reflections), and semi-structured interviews with participants. Analysis of the data revealed that the incidents identified during coaching sessions differed somewhat from those identified during collaborative reflection sessions. Coaching incidents involved instructional supports, communication, and praise. Incidents in collaborative reflections included instructional supports, communication, literacy, instructional content, and classroom logistics. Differences also existed in the manner in which different coach and teacher dyads addressed classroom incidents. These differences included identification during coaching sessions versus collaborative reflection and the depth of guidance provided to teachers about how to alter their instruction to address the critical incidents. Certain categories of critical incidents better suited to discussion in reflection sessions due to the depth of discussion needed to address any related instructional changes (e.g., technology). Other events could have been addressed during immediate feedback, but were either overlooked completely or addressed reflectively when an immediate impact on the classroom was no longer a possibility. The analysis indicated that both the immediate feedback through virtual bug-in-ear technology and the collaborative reflection after the lesson had an important role in the coaching process. Other important factors included the coaches' experience and expertise related to the classroom setting and needs and the coaches' comfort with and willingness to use the virtual bug-in-ear technology during coaching sessions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A