Scholarly article on topic 'Retired Teacher's Self-values (A Sample from Çanakkale)'

Retired Teacher's Self-values (A Sample from Çanakkale) Academic research paper on "Educational sciences"

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Abstract of research paper on Educational sciences, author of scientific article — İlknur Maya

Abstract This study aims at specifying retired teacher's self-values and determining whether or not those values differ significantly on the basis of gender. The participants in the research are the 482 retired teachers living in Çanakkale in the May-September 2012 period. The Rokeah Value Scale (RVS) of 56-value adjectives was used in this research. According to the findings, the three values that they considered the most important were “national security”, “a peaceful world”, and “being healthy” whereas the ones they considered the least important were “social power”, “authority”, and “enjoyment”. According to another finding, the gender variable brought about a significant difference in terms of the value of “accepting one's share in life”, “enjoyment”, “authority”, “a variable life”, and “an exciting life”. Female retired teachers considered them more important than the male ones.

Academic research paper on topic "Retired Teacher's Self-values (A Sample from Çanakkale)"

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Social and Behavioral Sciences

ELSEVIER Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 116 (2014) 601 - 605

5th World Conference on Educational Sciences - WCES 2013

Retired Teachers' Self-Values (A Sample from Qanakkale)

ilknur Maya a*

Qanakkale Onsekiz Mart University, Faculty of Education, Department of Educational Sciences, Qanakkale 17100, Turkey

Abstract

This study aims at specifying retired teachers' self-values and determining whether or not those values differ significantly on the basis of gender. The participants in the research are the 482 retired teachers living in Qanakkale in the May-September 2012 period. The Rokeah Value Scale (RVS) of 56-value adjectives was used in this research. According to the findings, the three values that they considered the most important were "national security", "a peaceful world", and "being healthy" whereas the ones they considered the least important were "social power", "authority", and "enjoyment". According to another finding, the gender variable brought about a significant difference in terms of the value of "accepting one's share in life", "enjoyment", "authority", "a variable life", and "an exciting life". Female retired teachers considered them more important than the male ones. © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Education and Research Center. Key words: Self-value; retired; teacher; teaching profession.

1. Introduction

What does value mean? How do the values form? What is the significance of values in education? Attempts are made to answer such questions on philosophical bases, and a great deal of knowledge is produced in this respect. Value is a phenomenon which is available both within and outside our national borders and of our cultural contexts and which shapes our life, influences our actions and enables us to show our beliefs (Rokeah, 1979). According to another definition, values are the criteria determining what is right and what is wrong, what is good and what is bad (§i§man, 2002). Values form the foundation which keeps a society standing (Bursalioglu, 2002), and therefore it is found that some values are commonly adopted by some societies (Ersoy, 2006).

It is clear that a high level of national and international interest in values and values education is available today; because values constitute an important part of educational system, and they specify the type of person desired to raise. Hence, they may be said to play an important role in determining the goals of the educational system and in achieving those goals. Yet, the attainment of the goals occurs via teachers. However, the self-values held by teachers here becomes important because while instilling certain values in their students as a part of their pedagogical tasks, teachers can also encourage the sudents into their own values (Veugelers, 2000; Willemse, Lunenberg and Korthagen, 2005). On the other hand, teachers' self values can also be seen as a tool facilitating the explanation of their behaviours in their professional life and of their communication with their students.

The phenomenon of globalisation has made it clear today that the organisations of the third millenium cannot exist with obsolete principles of management and organisation (Wallin, 2010). As in other organisations, the atmosphere of certainty, definiteness, clarity and regularity which was available formerly is now replaced by an atmosphere of uncertainty, instability, chaos and risk (§im§ek, 1994). Considering the dynamics of internal and external environment, it could be estimated that a rapid change might occur in the structure and operation of the system of education at any time (De Souza, Francis, Norman, Higgins and Scott, 2010). Hence, it is inevitable that the values system of teaching profession and the values of teachers undergo a change in educational institutions, which are in a process of rapid change. Therefore, the need for continuously determining the self-values of teachers who work in the system of education or who retire from the system has been increasing. A review of field literature shows that a great number of studies on teachers' values in the educational system are available (Aktepe and Yel,

• Corresponding Author: Ilknur Maya Tel: +21 444748840 E-mail address: mayailknur@gmail.com

1877-0428 © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of Academic World Education and Research Center. doi: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.01.264

2009; Donmez and Comert, 2007; Turan and Aktan, 2008; Yilmaz, 2009) whereas fewer number of studies are available with regard to the values of retired teachers (Bajol and Bardakfi, 2008; Koybaji and Donmez, 2012).

Research conducted so far demonstrates that the type of school where teachers work, the culture of the school, teachers' work experience and the role of teachers are important in the formation of teachers' self-values (Ergun, 2003; Koybaji and Donmez, 2012; Sunley and Locke, 2012). Expectations from teachers - an element important in the formation of teachers' roles (Bajar, 1994) - however, may change from time to time and from region to region (Qelikten, §anal and Yeni, 2005). Thus, the values that a teacher considers important while playing his/her role may differ from the ones that he/she considers important when he/she quits his/her role (for instance after retiring) (Qileli, 2000). In this context, it is clear that knowing the self-values of retired teachers is necessary.

Medical and technological advances and improvement in nutrition have resulted in a rise in life expectancy, and thus the number of retired people has increased in societies. Retirement is a state in which an individual who has met the requirement of working in an institution for an expected time quits working in that institution and is given an income for that (Akjay, 1994). Compared to all the professions in Turkey, the number of working teachers is higher (Dogan, 2003). This situation may be said to lead to a number of retired people higher than those in other professions. Taking all these circumstances into consideration, the importance of knowing the self-values of retired teachers becomes evident.

Determining the self-values of retired teachers may provide an opportunity for recognising the importance of lifelong learning from the perspective of Turkish system of education- which many international organisations use as a strategy in resolving the problems that the changes in the 21th century cause- and for implementing it (Aspin and Chapman, 2007). Because retired teachers' sharing their achievements, experiences and values with working teachers, with parents and with other members of the society through lifelong learning may serve to the formation of occupational learning teams. In this way, policies necessary for lifelong learning may be formed and pursued. This research aims to specify the self-values held by retired teachers and to determine whether or not those values differ significantly on the basis of gender. Additionally, it is believed that the research will make contributions to lifelong learning literature, to the history of education and to educational sociology.

2. Methods

2.1. Participants

482 retired teachers who lived in Qanakkale and who were accessable participated in the research. 282 (59%) of them were female while 200 (41%) were male teachers. On analysing the participants on the basis of age variable, it was found that 440 (91%) of them were in the 45-60 age range, 34 (7%) were in the 61-75 age range, and 8 (2%) were in the 76-90 age range.

2.2. Instruments

The Rokeach Value Scale (RVS) was used in this research. The RVS contained 18 instrumental and 18 target value adjectives in relation to the individual attitudes and behaviours. This is a 7-pointed likert type scale ranging from -1 (opposite to my value) to 7 (highly important) for each value (Rokeah, 1973). Compared to other scales used in values research studies, the RVS was found to be psychometrically more consistent (Kelly, 1990).

The Turkish form of the RVS, which was translated into Turkish by Ba§ (2004), was used in this research. In calculations of the research conducted by Baloglu and Balgalmij (2005), the internal consistency of the RVS items for the 56 value adjectives (Cronbach alfa=.95) and the halves reliability coefficient (.91) were found to be high.

2.3. Data Collection and Analyses

For the purposes of data collection, visits were paid to the retired teachers associations located in Qanakkale and to the homes of retired teachers in Qanakkale by the researcher in the May-September 2012 period. Besides, they were asked for information for contact with their retired colleagues, and thus the research was performed with them.

The quantitative research method was adopted in the research. Firstly, statistics such as X , median and standard deviation were employed so as to determine the self-values of the retired teachers. After that, in order to find out whether or not their self-values differed significantly on gender basis, the homogeneity of the variance was checked and the independent t-test was applied.

3. Results

The ten self-values considered the most important by retired teachers are shown in Table 1 below. As is observed in the table, the three most important self-values are "national security" (X=6.49, SD=0.50), "a peaceful world" (X=6.43, SD=0.53), and "being healthy" (X= 6.40, SD=0.66).

Tablo 1. Self-Values Considered As the Most Important by Retired Teachers

Values

X Median SD

1. National security 6.49 6.00 0.50

2. A peaceful world 6.43 6.00 0.53

3. Being healthy 6.40 7.00 0.66

4. Self-esteem 5.87 6.00 0.33

5. Liberty 5.80 6.00 0.39

6. Family security 5.75 6.00 0.70

7. Equality 5.71 6.00 0.60

8. Keeping one's word 5.65 6.00 0.77

9. The meaning of life 5.52 6.00 0.58

10. Real friendship 5.43 5.00 0.52

According to Table 1, the other self-values that retired teachers consider the most important are "self-esteem" (X=5.87, SD=0.33), "liberty" (X=5.80, SD=0.39), "family security" (X=5.75, SD=0.70), "equality" (XX=5.71, SD=0.60), "keeping one's word" (X=5.65, SD=0.77), "the meaning of life" (X=5.52, SD=0.58), and "real friendship" (X= 5.43, SD=0.52).

Tablo 2. Self-Values Considered As the Least Important by Retired Teachers

Values X Median SD

1. Social power 0.88 1.00 1.52

2. Authority 0.90 1.00 0.88

3. Enjoyment 1.45 2.00 1.00

4. An exciting life 1.51 1.00 1.09

5. Accepting one's share in life 1.57 2.00 0.88

6. A variable life 1.62 2.00 0.82

7. Being brave 2.54 3.00 0.49

8. Wealth 2.60 3.00 0.49

9. Being impressive 2.66 3.00 0.76

10. The sense of belonging 2.69 3.00 0.64

The ten self-values considered the least important by the retired teachers are shown in Table 2. Accordingly, the first three of them are "social power" (5=0.88, SD=1.52)-which means having control over others- "authority" (5=0.90, SD=0.88), and "enjoyment" (5=1.45, SD=1.00) respectively. The other least important self-values are "an exciting life" (5=1.51, SD=1.09), "accepting one's share in life" (5M.57. SD=0.88). "a variable life" (5=1.62. SD=0.82). "being brave" (3^2.54. SD=0.49). "wealth" (5=2.60. SD=0.49). "being impressive" (5=2.66. SD=0.76). and " the sense of belonging" (5=2.69. SD=0.64).

The t-test was used in order to see whether or not retired teachers' self-values differed significantly according to gender. As is clear from Table 3 below, significant differences are available between male and female retired teachers in giving importance to such self-values as "accepting one's share in life", "enjoyment", "authority", "a variable life" and "an exciting life" [t (480)= -14.16. p< .05; t (480)= -3.12. p< .05; t (480)= -4.78. p< .05; t (480)= 3.90. p< .05 and t (480)= 2.79. p< .05]. Female retired teachers attach more importance to "accepting one's share in life" (5=1.97, SD=0.98), "enjoyment" (5=1.57, SD=1.01)", and "authority" (5=1.06, SD=0.87) whereas the male retired teachers place more importance on "a variable life" (5=1.79, SD=0.69) and "an exciting life" (5M.67. SD=1.10).

Tablo 3. Self-Values of Retired Teachers According to Gender

Values Gender N X SD t df P

Female 282 1.97 0.98 -14.16

Accepting one's share in life 480 0.000»

Male 200 0.80 0.74

Female 282 1.57 1.01 -3.12

Enjoyment Male 480 0.002»

200 1.29 0.97

Female 282 1.06 0.87 -4.78

Authority Male 480 0.000»

200 0.68 0.85

Female 282 1.50 0.89 3.90

A variable life 480 0.000»

Male 200 1.79 0.69

Female 282 1.39 1.08 2.79

An exciting life 480 0.005»

Male 200 1.67 1.10

p< .05

4. Discussion

The self-values that are considered the most important by the retired teachers were "national security", "a peaceful world" and "being healthy". Clearly, the self-values that were considered the most important by retired teachers were related to "security". Thus, various research studies conducted with retired persons (Akjay, 1994; Salami, 2010) display that health is important in retirement and that it affects satisfaction. Besides, it was also found that they considered the self-values such as "self-esteem" and "liberty" very important. This demonstrates that retired teachers have a high level of self-esteem. "Family security", "equality", "keeping one's word", "the meaning of life" and "real friendship" were among the other self-values that they considered important. These findings are similar to the ones obtained in many previous research studies concerning the values in educational institutions. In those studies, "security" is one of the values considered the most important by educators (Aktepe and Yel 2009; Baloglu and Balgalmi?, 2005; Qavdar, 2009; Dilmaf, Bozgeyikli and Qikili, 2008; Erjetin, 2000; Ku?dil and Kagitfibaji, 2000). The general characteristics of Turkish society can account for this situation (Sargut, 2001). Research conducted by Ku?dil and Kagitfibaji (2000), on the other hand, found that "universalism", "security" and "benevolence" were the values that were considered the most important by teachers. In a similar vein, research performed by Donmez and Comert (2007) found that elementary school teachers considered "family", "close friendship", "belief', "personal development" and "being healthy" the most important values. Yet, Aktepe and Yel (2009) concluded in their research that the values of "national security", "family security", "being healthy" and "self-esteem" were the ones that were considered the most important by elementary school teachers.

The values that were considered the least important by retired teachers were "social power", "authority", "enjoyment", "an exciting life", "accepting one's share in life", "a variable life", "being brave", "wealth", "being impressive" and "the sense of belonging". It may be said that the least important values for the retired teachers are similar to the ones for the working teachers. In pieces of research conducted with elementary school teachers, Donmez and Comert (2007) found "wealth" but Aktepe and Yel (2009) found "wealth", "social power", "authority", "being ambitious", "an exciting life" and "enjoyment" as the values considered to be the least important. Unlike these research studies, the research performed by Turan and Aktan (2008) found that teachers were positive in the value of "being pleased with what is available at hand". The differences in findings may stem from the fact that each research study was conducted in geographically different areas or that teachers' roles differed each time.

Retired teachers' self-values differ significantly on gender basis. Thus, female retired teachers attach more importance to "accepting one's share in life", "enjoyment" and "authority" while male ones attach more importance to "a variable life" and "an exciting life". It may be claimed that those self-values are consistent with gender roles that are assigned to males and females by the society.When seen from the perspective of social gender roles, only the value of authority is considered to be more compatible with males (Temel and Aksoy, 2001). However, the reason for this result may be that retired female teachers have higher levels of self-esteem, or that they might have wanted to regain their influence and power and thus to avoid loss of status and to be more powerful than male teachers owing to the fact that they are in late adulthood period of their life (Akjay, 2011). In research conducted with adults with European sample significant correlations were found between self-esteem and power, and between achievement and satisfaction values. As supportive of this research, Dilmaj et al (2008) found that women's scores were higher than those of men on the dimension of power. Similarly, in research conducted by Yilmaz (2009), the importance attached by female teachers to conformity values was higher.

The findings of this research showed that retired teachers' self-values and the self-values that they attached importance according to gender were similar to those of working teachers'. Yet, as is evident from research studies, today's students will face a more uncertain, more chaotic and more different future (Aspin and Chapman, 2001). It is necessary to recognise all these changes and to handle them in combination with the value issues of the current state. According to the decisions made at the 18th National Education Council (Ministry of Education, 2010), retired teachers may be helped to be included in the school environment in an atmosphere where attempts are made to transform schools into lifelong learning centres and their views may be consulted. In this way, working teachers' motivation and adherence to the profession may be raised on the one hand, and retired teachers' self-development may be secured and they may grow stronger psychologically on the other hand. In consequence, a more democratic structure may be assured in society and teachers can share their views as to what values are under threat or what values should be acquired. This may, in turn, provide an opportunity to raise the prestige of teaching profession-which has decreased recently- in society (Koyba?i and Donmez, 2012). Indeed, the examples in the world show that activities in which retired teachers are included in the school environment yield successful results in the solutions of the problems in the educational system (Martinez and Frick, 2010). Yet, in order for lifelong learning to liven up in schools or in other educational settings with the participation of retired teachers, a positive perspective should be established in society concerning the retired teachers (Martinson and Minkler, 2006).

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