Family Engagement in Early Childhood Education

Linda Harrison
 
Imagine for a minute your most valuable possession. Think about a stranger coming up to you and saying, “I’ll take care of your valuable possession for you every day. I’ll take good care of it, but I might change it a little because I’d like to have my own relationship with it. You can pick it up from me at the end of each day, but you’ll need to bring it back to me again every morning. (Keyser 139)

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Janis Keyser is a published author that cares about parent-teacher partnerships and her works have been adopted by the National Association for the Education of Young children (NAEYC). Her writings are about the success of the whole family in their homes and child care when the family is actively involved in their child’s education. Her quote is meaningful when you replace the words “valuable possession” with “child.” Would her words make you want to get to know that person first? Would you think it was important to spend time in conversation with the person caring for your child? Of course you would. Parents want to know the person responsible for their child in their absence. Communication becomes paramount in this situation. Parents and teachers need to develop a good relationship with open lines of communication. Teachers want you as a partner in your child’s education. When you don’t talk about school or to the teacher your child hears a message. That message says school isn’t important. The child may reason he or she isn’t important either.
Families know about their children and teachers know about education. This knowledge needs to be shared to promote your child’s success. Any connection between family and school is good. Family involvement is a term used to describe the family’s participation in their child’s school. Participation includes spending time at the school or a function, being active, and doing it with a smile. The school’s self-interests and ideas are supported through involvement. If the teacher would ask for someone to bring in sea shells for beach week, the parent is only in control of whether or not they will be able to complete the task. Family engagement is better as it is the family as co-contributor rather than merely a client. The family’s ideas and self-interests interconnect with the school’s interests when they are actively engaged. Eric’s family went camping and his mother and teacher were talking about how much Eric enjoyed it. Eric’s mother offered to bring in tents and other camping items if the teacher chose to do a study on camping. The idea and interest came from the family. Eric’s mother came and participated in telling stories to the children about camping. Children learn that school matters by seeing their family actively engaged. When everyone’s interests in the child’s education are supported and encouraged the teacher is better equipped to individualize the child’s learning, the family is comfortable to approach the teacher, and the child gains confidence. The family and child are also able to build trust within this new relationship. Engaged families allows for flexibility through the sharing of ideas and information to achieve beneficial outcomes. Children learn that school matters by seeing their family actively engaged. It is crucial that families and teachers develop trust and reciprocal relationships to enhance the partnership. That relationship is as important as the teacher-child relationship.
Teachers must have relationships with children that include trust and attachment. Education theorist, Erik Erikson said the first human emotional milestone is the infant’s trust and attachment to a caregiver. His theory states “this stage sets the life-long expectation that the world is a good place to live” (qtd. in Santrock 25). This allows them to take chances and risks in learning. Without trust they experience doubt and won’t take initiative and may feel anxious. The children need to make connections in order to develop independence. When they have a strong trusting relationship with adults it promotes cognitive, literacy, social and emotional developments.
You are your child’s first teacher and first experience in trust. When your child observes you and their teacher having a conversation it sends messages to your child. This message is that their family is valued and appreciated. Another message may be that your child is important to both parties. That happens when your child realizes the conversations are about more than problems your child may be having. Children enjoy feeling pride in their families and that has an influence on their self-esteem. When the family and the child are feeling confident it improves morale, energy and positive thinking among all involved. That will promote an enhanced learning environment for the child whether it is in a classroom or home environment.
The Family Involvement Network of Educators (FINE), a Harvard Family Research Project reported that children spend, “20 percent of their waking time annually in formal classroom education, leaving 80 percent of their time to explore and enhance their learning interests in non-school settings. (Lopez) Since the family is the child’s first teacher, the home is the child’s first learning environment. The family’s success is not about the clothes they wear, where they live or where they work. It is how they care for and nurture each other. Family interactions at home are learning opportunities. When conversations take place children learn new vocabulary and literacy development is supported through reading together. Children’s social and emotional development is promoted watching family members in social settings. They see how people deal with happy, sad, and angry moments. They watch problem solving when something isn’t going as planned. Their literacy development gains through familiar labeling in the home and regularly visited places. In a grocery store they see familiar brands on items. Children enjoy games about naming the color of the item, finding the letters in the name of the item, and counting how many items Mother needs to buy. At home while putting the groceries away the child learns responsibility while helping. Your child enjoys having conversations with you. Asking what happens if the ice cream isn’t put in the correct place supports your child’s critical thinking while they may be having fun talking about melted ice cream. There are many learning opportunities in the home environment that you do every day without being aware you are teaching.
I always talk to my daughter. When we go on a walk or to the store or on the bus, we are continually talking. We talk about what we see, we ask questions, and we tell stories. When her teacher saw us one day having a conversation in the garden at school, she told me that I was helping my daughter learn a wonderful vocabulary, which would help her learn to read. I felt so proud that I was helping my child learn. I thought only teachers did that. (Keyser 7)
These interactions are paramount to the child’s development. “Almost any activity – reading or play – does more to develop their minds, imagination, physical coordination, confidence and character than sitting in front of the tube.” (Griggs 1)
At home activities help promote school readiness. Children are learning more at earlier ages than in previous years. It may be due to both parents working and there are multiple early childhood programs in every city. Children entering kindergarten are expected to know their letters, how to use a pencil, count with an awareness of its meaning, and how to take turns. They need to know colors, write their name, and recognize some words. Children from homes where families actively engaged in literacy activities like daily reading together were above average in being ready for kindergarten. (Bower 1) There are families that expect early childhood programs to be responsible for the child learning these skills without the family doing anything at home to support the skill development. Today’s working parents feel overwhelmed with the time restraints. It’s not about the time it’s about “singing songs, reading books, and telling stories are important parent–child activities that support learning when children are young” (Lopez). These activities can be done anywhere and anytime the family is together. The National Institute for Early Education Research reported it is important to note that progress can be seen where a partnership between school and home will reinforce the learning and further the child’s development. The National Institute for Early Education Research also reported that discussing changes in a child’s readiness skills can open a dialogue about the child’s strengths and concerns of the teacher or family. (Snow 1) The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) published this article by Snow on the research findings and is a dedicated group that supports teachers and anyone interested through communication of information in early childhood development and education. It is a great source of information and knowledge and can be found at www.naeyc.com.
Communication is the usual one-way means of delivering information. Conversation, on the other hand, is a two-way exchange of information and much more apt to lead to a successful relationship between the family and the teacher. Is your child’s caregiver the previously mentioned stranger or your partner in your child’s education development? Teachers are well aware that many families have time restraints and must hurry off to deal with their daily responsibilities. Families feel “no news is good news” as the saying goes about teachers informing them about the child’s day. The families feel that the teacher would certainly approach them if something important needed to be communicated. (Drugli 7) Sammie’s family didn’t think it was important to tell the teacher during drop off about the death of Sammie’s fish. That would have been important knowledge for the teacher when Sammie suddenly broke down in tears because “My mommy flushed “Goldie” in the toilet at home.” That was a lost opportunity of a conversation between partners. It also would have prepared the teacher for the emotions and following conversation with Sammie. To adults this would seem inconsequential but a very important impact on Sammie’s emotional development. What message did she get from the family not taking time to discuss the incident? Sammie had to depend on her teacher for warmth and comfort. Children need to feel safety and security in every environment. It is important for teachers to understand the family structure of each child. Each family is different and cultures need to be respected. The dynamics of each family make it important how the teacher addresses family members. There may not be a father or mother. There are new practices in creating families. There are extended and blended families. There are multiple homes that a child may be living in.
Urie Bronfenbrenner, childhood theorist, says children’s development is affected by all the different systems they are part of and how those systems interact with each other. (Keyser 1) Children observe the adults interactions and learn from them. During drop off when the adults greet each other the child learns who is welcome at the school. The child sees mutual respect shown and that is comforting to a child. It is important for them to observe conversations and see the body language connected with it. This is a way they learn social interactions. Children are learning all the time everywhere they are.
Children are very perceptive and need help learning about social interactions. Parent-teacher relationships and partnerships are important but need to be developed with the children in mind. If one child’s parents aren’t able to come into the classroom to participate in activities the child may feel left out or unimportant. We should always approach ideas and activities considering the child’s perspective and feelings.
Parents’ feelings are important too. Recently a parent confided in me that she is overwhelmed with work, home, and raising two children as a single parent. Her children are well cared for, clean, and always smiling. The children are a little behind in some of the areas of development. Teachers are educated about the domains or areas of development and are able to help support the child’s successful development. Teachers are caregivers that include education and developmental support. While talking with this parent I learned she felt inadequate and not good enough to engage in conversation with teachers or other parents. I assured her that all parents have doubts but they have children in common and they may find even more support and friendships along the way. Parents are as important to teachers as they are to their children.

I invite you to share an example of what you think family engagement in anywhere, anytime learning looks like. Let’s start a list of no or low cost activities families can do together. One idea may lead to another!
Reflection
Works Cited
Bower, Carolyn. “Early Childhood Education Increases Participation and Attention, Teachers Say Study of Kindergartners Shows That Parental Involvement is Vital To Readiness for School”St. Louis Post-Dispatch[St. Louis, MO] 04 Nov. 1999: B,1:2. Print.
Drugli, May Britt & Undheim, AnneMari. “Partnership between Parents and Caregivers of Young Children in Full-time Daycare.”Child Care in Practice18.1 (2012): 51-65. Web. 7 Dec. 2011.
Grigg, France. “Teachers Ask Parents to Be Partners in Learning.” Cincinnati Post 9 September 1996, 8A. Web. 28 July 2014.
Keyser, Janis. From Parents to Partners: Building a Family-Centered Early Childhood Program. St. Paul: Redleaf Press, 2006. Print.
Lopez, M. Elena, & Caspe, Margaret. “Family Engagement in Anywhere, Anytime Learning.”Family Involvement Network of Educators (FINE) Newsletter, 6(3). 2014. Web. 3 August 2014.
Santrock, John. Children. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010. 5-49. Print.
Snow, Kyle Ph.D. “Research News You Can Use: Family Engagement and Early Childhood Education.”NAEYC. Web. 22 July, 2014  

Role of Community Engagement in Education

This paper is written from multiple perspectives after taking part in a community engagement activity. The three perspectives are all unique in their own way and each is important to the student. The first is from the teacher’s perspective so it will cover things from a more academic point of view. The next is from the parent’s and it will cover things from an adult’s point of view outside of the school. The last perspective is from the leader’s perspective where it will reflect on everything as a whole from a point of view that is outside of the classroom and outside of the house.

A Teacher’s Perspective

Learning to read is one of the most important skills that a student will learn. It is a teacher’s hope that they will learn the skill at home, but due to many different circumstances most students do not. Reading is taught at school and grows in to something more for students who read at home either by themselves or with their families. This skill is important because it aids in a student’s writing ability by enhancing their vocabulary. Students who read more know and understand more words.

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Parents and families can help play a key role in fostering student learning. Communication is one of the ways for them to do so. It will also impact our school and students in a way that it will improve the overall academic achievement levels (Cheema and Kitsantas, 2014). They need to openly communicate with school administrators, teachers, and their student about their school work and what is happening in the school with their student. Parents also need to be aware of how to access or provide learning materials for their child that is appropriate to their grade level and school work.

Parent’s Perspective

 In today’s time students are pushed to think about and work towards their life after high school. They can further their education at different levels such as a four-year university, specific career focused institution, or a technical college. Parents expect for their student to be prepared throughout their middle and high school experiences so that they are best prepared. Technology drives the world today and the job market, parents want their students to have access to that technology so they can prepare themselves for using it in their future. Most parents also want to be actively involved in their student’s life and to help when possible. In today’s time though this is hard because parents have too much pressure and obligations that they are responsible for. Hornby and Lafaele (2011) researched and says that parents are often over-committed with work and their duties at home making it difficult to spare time for teachers. At the high school level this is especially true, time constraints keep them out of the classroom.  At the high school level, the biggest way that a student is involved is electronically through emails, or on the telephone. It is important to work towards trying to get parents in the classroom. Parent partnership and team work in the classroom increases community involvement.

Leader’s Perspective

 At my school I have noticed that parents do not always connect with the curriculum that their child is learning. I teach at a low in come school, in a poverty-stricken part of the county. The parents of the students are not as educated and feel overwhelmed by the curriculum that they student is learning. They do not understand the information, so they are unable to help with the work. As a leader I have to embrace this problem and work harder to communicate with parents and get them involved with the school. Community help and partnership is important to fostering a good school community. In order to get the community involved I have to reach out to small businesses and ask for them to sponsor or donate to clubs and organizations. These can be done different ways such as internship for students, monetary donations, or seminars where their personnel will lead activities for students on campus. Parents can serve on committees that help with policy making at the school. An increased level or parent and community involvement means that the students will be more successful.

 These perspectives all talk about the importance of parent and community involvement and the role that each play on student’s lives at school. The school environment can be drastically changed by parents and community members being involved. It shows students that they are loved, and people want them to succeed and be prepared for life after school.

References

Cheema, J. & Kitsantas, A. (2014). Influences of disciplinary classroom climate on high school student self-efficacy and mathematics achievement: A look at gender and racial-ethnic differences. International Journal of Science & Mathematics Education, 12(5), 1261-1279.

Hornby, G. & Lafaele, R. (2011). Barriers to Parental Involvement in Education. EducationalReview, 63 (1), 37-52

 

BBC Organisation Analysis for Community Engagement

INTRODUCTION

 Community engagement is termed as the process of working in collaboratively manner with various groups in order to address issue that impact the groups well-being (Baldus, Voorhees and Calantone, 2015). In the following report, BBC has been taken into consideration. It is a British Broadcasting Company that is headquartered in Westminster, London.

 In the following report, analyse of BBC has been done. This analysis includes size, scope, structure, environmental factors affecting it along with the goal, mission and vision of BBC.

MAIN BODY

PART A

Organisational Analysis

 BBC is a public sector broadcaster and is situated at mass medium house in Westminster, London. It is the oldest national medium structure in the world. The figure of worker that are involved are 20,950 in total. Among this 16,672 are in public sector broadcasting. (Blanchard, Thacker and Ram, 2017).

Sector that BBC operates, size, structure, goals, mission and values

Sector and size

 BBC Company operates in Public sector and is a public limited company. Thus, it is the largest shop in England by floor space having 17230 square metres of floor space. It employees 20950 members in total.

Structure

 BBC has a hierarchical structure that has its focus mainly on different types of departments available in the particular business (Gupta, 2018). It use this structure due to large organisation having multiple layers within it.

Goals

 The main goal of BBC is to create its value with the customers in order to earn loyalty customer base for lifetime. They also believe in providing accurate and impartial news, current affairs and factual programmes.

 

Mission and values

 The main mission of BBC is to improve life of group with programs and also provide work that communicate people and entertain others.

 Values of BBC states that Trust is the foundation of BBC and as they are self-reliant, fair and also genuine. Creativity is the lifeblood of BBC.

Customers and their expectation

The customer expectation with BBC includes the following-

Good value information- The main expectation of people is that they must have good quality information about the environment they are living in (Habibi, Laroche and Richard, 2014). So the cited company has to offer the people with good value information. For this they will also have to keep their watch on news that are being displayed by competitors.

Clear and honest information- people will like to know information that is expected in order to know. So the company must not have any hidden charges. If anything like this occurs it may result to bad customer service for BBC.

SWOT and PESTLE analysis

SWOT analysis

 SWOT analysis is a framework that helps in analysing strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats of a company (Jenkins and Williamson, 2015). This is explained as per below context-

Strengths:

BBC has improved their technology and also updated it to perform various operations.

It also has won number of awards in terms of excellence in channel, customer service and overall experience in terms of news.

It has long standing history that gives assurance that it will continue in order to operate in the future.

It has very significant reserves of cash and also property of wide range which is underdeveloped.

BBC also has various store formats that appeal to local and cultural needs which helps in terms of offering more personalised experience of service.

It has been considered as the largest and most profitable news channel that generates radio and television production of about 120 hours as well as news coverage online.

Weakness:

BBC has been facing competitive pressures that has led them to price wars which have eroded the profit margin. This forced BBC to focus on other relevant way in order to gain competitive advantage.

BBC for sales and has spent time and maximum resources in order to develop other markets where they basically operate.

The cited company must have not done research of market as much as expected or required.

The profit of BBC has been affected by awful obligation and also by extreme level of home security claims.

They also have low experience in several industry that they think in order to enter.

World issues controversies have caused disruption.

News that are covered gives a partial view which doesn’t go out with convinced people.

Opportunities

The major chance for BBC is expansion into markets as digital entertainment.

They also have opportunities in private label market.

They try to be fair whenever they try to screen any type of message.

They must also arrange worldwide events to fortify their brand further.

Threats

Threat from rival and internal news channels.

Threats from newspaper.

Labour threats in terms of increased wages and benefits further puts pressure on pricing strategy of BBC.

Economic recessions and credit crunches will continue in order to threaten share of market and also profitability.

PESTLE analysis

 It is the model that is used by social class in order to analyse and supervise the macro environmental factors that has impact on the particular organisation i.e. BBC (Pollock, Jefferson and Wick, 2015). Thus, the external factors that affect BBC has been discussed as per below context-

Political factor- BBC operates in many countries. Therefore, it has been exposed to many political factors. This affect the operation of BBC to large extent. Political factor include tax rates, legislation, political instability, unemployment rate and also economic condition of a company. The thatcher government planned an absolute privatisation of BBC in 1986. the government also supported holding of public funding for entrance of organisation into competitor market.  Due to this, economy of London is passing through hard times.

Economic factor- The important economic factor that may affect BBC in London is labour cost. The minimum wage rate has also been increased by 4.4%. Moreover, there are many factors including cost, price and profits that affect BBC is large extent. The structure of organisation were dynamic from focused to decentralise in approval of justifying the bureaucracy that has been exercised usually in the particular organisation.

Social factor- As the analysis has been done of London population that helps in finding out member of retired people are more rather than children. Political advantage were therefore targeted towards BBC that doubted public funds sequel. The British public were therefore aware of highly bureaucratic structure of organisation. BBC had maintained ever its honour as a genuine news broadcaster with momentous figure of viewership.

Technological factor- BBC has met various new opportunities due to advancements in technology has taken place. These advancements are in terms of development and introduction of digital services. In addition to this, the cited company has also invested in energy efficiency projects with significant amount in order to fulfil its long term objective. Along with airing its digital services the particular organisation went under technologies like BPR in order to reduce cost of doing business that helps in supporting agenda of decentralisation of BBC and also capitalising on resources that are allocated.

Environmental factor- there is increase in pressure in order to address environmental issues and also to adopt ways of operations that may give maximum benefit to society, there is clear commitment of BBC. The cited company is also trying in minimising waste that is produced with the help of increase in social conscience of customers. Thus, internal market was formed in order to reduce subsidiaries, reconstruction of structure of organisation.

Legal factor- there is direct impact on performance of BBC due to government policy and legislations. It has also faced legal action as they accounted fraud and mislead investors and also agreed to pay 12 million in order to settle legal action. The cited organisation is self regulated and self-reliant of government and governmental power. Thus, to meet the market shift, BBC required to set its inner environment and culture.

Role of employees in BBC

 The roles’ portfolio involves various departments (Rahman, 2016). It is very important for every department that are involved to work accordingly by having effective communication to meet present trends of market. Employees having particular role and responsibility has to attend meetings, contribute to decision making and also has to solve problems related to latest and trendy news that has to be broadcast. Thus, there are many more responsibilities of senior manager that has been discussed as per below context-

They have to ensure clarity around priorities and also around goals for areas of functions entirely.

They also have to manage overall financial budget.

They also have to facilitate goal level creation for functions that are broader in order to ensure that cited company meets the goals.

Importance of training and development.

 Training and development presents premier possibility in order to expand knowledge base of all worker (Sarathe, Gupta, Basediya and Kuchi, 2018). But the major advantage of this is that it provides both that includes employees and company with various benefits that helps in making cost and time as investment that is worthwhile. Thus, importance of training and development has been discussed as per below context-

Addressing weakness- Employees that are involved in cited company has some or other weakness. Thus, training and development program helps them in strengthen this weakness and also helps in bringing all employees to higher level. This leads all workers to have similar skills and knowledge. This helps in reducing weak points and increase strength.

Employee satisfaction- training and development programs helps employees in gaining access to training that they don’t know themselves. Thus, this helps in increasing the satisfaction level of employees towards job.

Improved employee performance- employee that receives necessary training gains ability of performing their job in better way. Thus, they become more aware towards safety practices and also towards procedures for basic tasks. In addition to this, training and development session also helps in building confidence of employee of BBC and also make them understand their actual responsibility towards their job in cited company.

Selecting role and its importance in BBC.

 Senior manager has to carry various role and responsibilities. They are responsible in order to plan, direct the work that has been allotted to group of individuals (Seidle, Fernandez and Perry, 2016). They are important for BBC because they help members to reach particular task by providing guidance of directing reports. They are also responsible for operations and activities that has been undertaken in BBC in order to earn long term profitability.

Skills and knowledge needed to carry role.

 In order to get success as a senior manager the skills that are required by them includes the following-

They must be perfect in managing act.

They must respect team and their supervisors.

They should also have ability in order to manage work of entire department.

They must have adaptability nature. This nature will help them in taking quick decisions in any type of situation that may arise in BBC.

Ability of problem solving is also very essential as it leads in resolving conflict between members that are involved in BBC.

Training and development requirement that is needed to be considered.

 To become an appropriate senior manager, they must have complete knowledge of the particular company and also of their position. This is possible only due to training and development sessions. This session is been considered as major advantage in order to achieve high volume profitability and long term success.

CONCLUSION

 From the above report, it has been concluded that BBC is the leading company that has to face many challenges in order to gain competitive advantage. Thus, to analyse various factors that affect the working of a business, internal and external analysis has been done with help of SWOT and PESTLE analysis. In addition to this, this report also highlights on training and development as it is important in maintaining good relations and achieving long term success.

 

REFERENCES

Books and Journal

Baldus, B.J., Voorhees, C. and Calantone, R., 2015. Online brand community engagement: Scale development and validation. Journal of Business Research. 68(5). pp.978-985.

Blanchard, P.N., Thacker, J.W. and Ram, V.A., 2017. Effective Training: Systems, Strategies, and Practices. Pearson Education South Asia Pte Limited.

Gupta, S., 2018. RETAILING–A STEP TOWARDS PROGRESS. International Journal of Scientific Research. 7(1).

Habibi, M.R., Laroche, M. and Richard, M.O., 2014. The roles of brand community and community engagement in building brand trust on social media. Computers in Human Behavior. 37. pp.152-161.

Jenkins, W. and Williamson, D., 2015. Strategic management and business analysis. Routledge.

Pollock, R.V., Jefferson, A. and Wick, C.W., 2015. The six disciplines of breakthrough learning: How to turn training and development into business results. John Wiley & Sons.

Rahman, M.M., 2016. Critical analysis of the influence of discount retailers on BBC plc in the UK. GRIN Verlag.

Sarathe, A., Gupta, R., Basediya, A.L. and Kuchi, V.S., 2018. Recent Trends and SWOT Analysis of Food-Processing Industry Infrastructure in India: A Review. Bull. Env. Pharmacol. Life Sci. 7. pp.107-116.

Seidle, B., Fernandez, S. and Perry, J.L., 2016. Do leadership training and development make a difference in the public sector? A panel study. Public Administration Review. 76(4). pp.603-613.

Barriers for Parent Engagement in Childcare Services

Critically discuss the barriers that parents may face in engaging with one area of the children’s services. What role can practitioners play in overcoming some of these barriers?
Parents and practitioners trying to access help for children with disabilities face many barriers when engaging with children’s services. While changes have happened in society over the past number of years it can still be said that there is always room for improvement in children’s services. This TMA will focus on children with a disability and how parents and practitioners face the barriers of being heard and accessing the help available to them. While children with disabilities have been integrated into mainstream school or given the opportunity within a special need schools, parents still face barriers of the integration of multi-agencies and getting the right help and advice.

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Over the past few years change has come about from children with special needs been hidden away to now being integrated into mainstream education or special need schools. This has developed as a result of the implantation of new laws and legislation to protect child’s rights e.g. children’s NI order (1995), Education Act (2011), and also the present Ten year strategy for children and young people in Northern Ireland 2006-2016. While this has brought about significant change and better quality of education for special needs children it can be critically argued that parents still face many barriers within the education system. Ashley Walter (2014) identified that children with disabilities have more unmet health needs. This was further seen more from children of rural areas. Parents are not only having to coping with the additional needs of their child’s disability, but also the barriers of seeking help and being heard for their child to receive the right education. As a foster parents for a disabled child I can refer to these parents as I too found the barriers of known what services was available as information is limited. Lambing (2009) supports these parents when his studies identified that parents face the barriers of not knowing how the system works and the support available to access for their child’s needs. It can also be equally argued that parents themselves set the barrier to engage with the services. This may be a result of not coming to terms with their child’s disability being in denial or that they feel ashamed of not being able to cope. I was inspired by the research of Brodhurst (2003) which shows that parents of disabled children have a social barrier in engaging in services. Chin and Philip (2004) support this when talking about Cultural capital, on how parents from different social strata define how their child is raised. It can be seen how parent’s aspirations can influence barriers as they can higher expectations for their child than they are capable of. This is when the role of the practitioner plays an important role to overcoming these barriers. Parents need the support in knowing that there is something wrong as well as learning that engaging with different services will overcome barriers. The integration of children’s services has been set up to reach out to these parents. Guaralnick J M talks about early intervention and its importance to both the child and their family. The development of Sure Start is seen as a crucial early year services. They provide an invaluable network of support and guidance to help overcome some of the integration barriers parents’ face.
Cohan (2005) sees that while services change and multi-agencies work together, so too does the relationship with the child change. Parents are therefore faced with the new barriers of how the child will intergraded into this system. This is supported by the research reported in the Journal of developmental and behavioural paediatrics, where parents and providers both perspective in barriers where children with disabilities are unable to integrate into the system due to their complex needs of coping with change and new facilities. It can be critically argued that our system tends to fit the child into the services rather than the service into the child. Can appointments not be carried out in the home or school environment? Has the child condition been taken into consideration especially a child who can’t cope with new places or people? These are some of the many questions and barriers that parents face. As service providers it can critically be said that we have a tendency to look at what we think is best for the child rather than listening to child themselves. As a foster parent I too faced these barriers as the child I cared for found difficult is coping with change. When attending appointments it caused stress and anxiety given the many barriers to overcome. Child A had the difficulties of dealing with not only the new surrounding but also the different faces and assessments needs. Then there are the barriers of waiting on decisions. I can say that I found it hard to know the outcomes and faced the barriers of frustration in not knowing what is happen and how Child A needs were being met. It is important as services providers to remember while all areas of development are interlinked each child is an individual. Like Young C talked about in video clip three learning guide 17.2 while the contributing of information is important we have to consider how we gather this information as it can be seen an innovation when professional visit the setting within short period to carry out similar assessments. This is the same for parents attending numerous appointments as it becomes frustrating to getting the same feedback and not answers to the services their child needs. Turner (2003) research I feel is important as he talked about the importance for the child’s welfare of having numerous agencies while at the same time having the support of a co-ordinator known as a Key worker to work on their behalf to reduce stress. These methods would help reduce some barriers and provide the support for parents during difficult periods. As stated in the Warnock Report (1978) “Parents provide valuable if not unique information for professionals who can then decide on the appropriate course of action in the ‘best interest of the child.” Parent’s participation is crucial in the ongoing development of services as they will be there for the children when professional are not.
An interesting Journal came to my attention was the Facilitators and barriers for co – ordinated multi-agency services which highlighted that while there is little evidence on the effectiveness of multi-agency it has been found that barriers are reduced of collecting information, clear aims and timelines. While we talk about partnership it is argued that it evolves, grows and develops a style of attitudes and working together, it can be critically argued that this attitude constantly influences relationship within the partnership and the children needs are met. Like Savage J in Video clip 2 Learning guide 17.2 states there is no point in ‘demonising’ agencies who are viewed as not contributing; it should be recognised that they have their own objectives which need to be linked to shared objectives which need to be linked to shared objectives. While this is true the barriers both parents and schools face are of professionals not wanting to over step their role in making formal decisions as they don’t feel they have the authority as its beyond their job title.
The key to direction of interagency work was set out as a process of consulting the children, young people, and parents using the service. It is to enables the children to comment on their needs and issues directly related to interagency service delivery. While this is the aim barriers are still faced todays parents and practitioners. While the interagency is to help relieve these barriers as a childcare practitioner working in the early years I too face the barriers of been heard. In schools practitioners also have to overcome barriers to help the child as well as building parent’s relationship. As a practitioner we need the parents support as they are the main source of vital information for the child welfare. This can be challenging when a child is unknown to have a special need and is identified within the school. While the UNCRC (1989) legislates the right for children to be educated in mainstream schools both practitioners and parents face the barriers of being heard and having the support needed to allow their children needs met. In my own setting we face the barriers of children not been assessed before school age especially children that present with autism, this therefore leads onto being declined the support needed within the setting. These barriers have an ongoing effect not only on the child but the stress parents face to being heard.
Guralnick J M (1991) highlights the importance of early intervention and the benefits it has on the child’s development as well Government DFE (2012) suggesting that poor provision for children and young people with SEND, particularly those with needs such as autism and dyslexia is likely to significantly affect their quality of life. However it does not always happen in practise. In my own voluntary organisation we do not have the support of the education system as we are seen as a pre-school and not a nursery even though the difference is the title. This therefore does not enable us to have the support of early intervention to get children assessed for autism. These children are suffering and barriers are set against the pre-school in providing services and helping parents to get the best start for their child. It can be seen that while new laws and legislation has seen improvements in children’s services it can be seen that the voluntary organisation who focus on the specific needs of the child, know more about children’s needs rather than the local authorities. The voluntary organisations work hands on with parents and children taking strategic partnership forward. It therefore is important that voluntary agencies are not set barriers but be included within partnership with children. Some families will turn to smaller community group for supporting needs resulting from the mistrust of statutory organisations. Voluntary organisations are user lead in that they are focusing on the child as well as the policy. That’s why it’s important that they feed into policy rather than local authorises which don’t work hands on. The sure start organisation has had a great impact in helping parents with barriers they face. Within the organisation they have provided a service where all personal meet under the one complex reducing the barriers for parents whose children have complex needs and find change difficult to cope with. It can however be critically said that some organisation only reach out to rural areas and parents outside this catchment area still face the barriers. It could be therefore said that the government need to review their services and enable all users to avail of the services. Voluntary organisations like the pre-schools also need to be included in these services so barriers can be reduced and children assessed at a young age. This would not only have the nature of the partnership been redefined but so too has the concept of childhood on the role of the community strengthened. As DH 2001 research shows that power can over view the resources needed and the children’s needs.
In conclusion to this ATM it can be said that Law recognises disabled children as being in need. While many parents and practitioners still face barriers to accessing services for disabled children in need, many barriers can be overcome through multi – agency support services that has a evolve to adopt a ‘holistic’ approach with the child at the centre. Voluntary organisations integrating into government and state holders are contracting these powers, drawing them into policy process would give children and parents an important role in the shaping of government and how finance is distributed. This approach is supported by Tuner (2003) in research carried out with disability and young people for the Welsh Assembly, it was clearly demonstrated that the views of the disabled people and parents was of importance. There has been and will continue a constant shifting of barriers for children, parents and practitioners within the integration of agencies, to ensuring that our children’s wellbeing’s are met.
References
Barriersto inclusion – Joseph Rowntree Foundation
 
Dixon SD (2010) Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics: official Journal of society. Publisher: Wolters Kluwer Health
Frost N, (2008) ‘Interagency working with children and families: what works and what makes a difference’ in Collins, Foley P & Rixon A (eds), Changing children’s services, The Policy Press, The open University Bristol.
Guralnick M J, (1991). The Next Decade of Research on the Effectiveness of Early Intervention. Published by University of Washington
Hammond L, L, (2013). Integrated services for Aboriginal children and families, New Zealand, Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, Vol. 38 Issue 1
journals.lww.com/jrnldbp/Pages/default.aspx‎
Kimberly P (2014). “Barriers and Facilitators of Access to Health and Support Services for Adolescents Living with Disabilities in a Rural Area”. Publisher University Honours Program.
Lesack, Bearss r, Celano k, Sharp m, William G. (2014) Parent–Child Interaction Therapy and autism spectrum disorder: Adaptations with a child with severedevelopmentaldelays. Publisher: Educational Publishing Foundation.
 
Leverett S, (2008) ‘Parenting, practice and Policy’ in Collins, Foley P & Rixon A (eds), Changing children’s services, The Policy Press, The open University Bristol.
Lewis J (2011) From Sure Start to children’s centres: an analysis of policy change in English early years programmes. Publishers Cambridge University Press
Meghan N. MD, D. (2014) Parent and Provider Perspectives on Procedural Care for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Volume 35 issue 3. Publisher: Wolters Kluwer Health
Royston S & Rodrigues L (2013) Breaking Barriers: How to help children’s centres reach disadvantaged families. Publishers The Children’s Society
Sloper P (2004) Facilitators and barriers for co‐ordinated multi‐agency services, Volume 30 Issue 6. Publisher: Child: care, health and development, 2004 – Wiley Online Library
Stone B & Foley P, (2008) ‘Towards integrated working’ in Collins, Foley P & Rixon A (eds), Changing children’s services, The Policy Press, The open University Bristol.
www.childrenssociety.org.uk (20 April 2014)
www.sagepub.com/upm-data/25240_01_cheminals_ch_01.pdf (29 April 2014)
www.foundationyears.org.uk (1May 2014)
KE312 Working together for children Activity 17.2
KE312 Working together for children Activity 17.3
Sinead Bartley (Sb35636) TMA5
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Impact of Community Engagement on Urban Planning: Case Study

Case Study: Johor Bahru (Iskandar, Malaysia)
Essay Topic: How do the social, environmental, economic and political processes observed within your chosen case-study city interplay with each other, producing distinct spatial outcomes and giving rise to specific planning policy issues and responses?
 
INTRODUCTION
Johor Bahru (Iskandar Malaysia), is the main development corridor in the State of Johor, Malaysia which has been established on 30 July 2006 and administered by Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA). The location of Iskandar Malaysia is perfect as South Johor has always been a strategic and important area in the history and development of Malaysia and its surroundings. Today, this well diversified economy, built around Johor’s capital, Johor Bahru, and its surrounding areas, has made South Johor Malaysia’s the second most important metropolitan.
Johor Bahru is well connected with its outlaying urban centres and residential townships, in particular Pasir Gudang, Tebrau, Tampoi, Skudai and Kempas, as it is surrounded by Jalan Lingkaran Tengah (Inner-Ring Road). It is also a major employment and financial service centre serving its hinterland.
This essay will first look into the definition of community engagement in urban planning and subsequently it will examines the effectiveness of community engagement regarding the approaches in urban planning and development process, specially looking at the development of Johor Bahru (Iskandar Malaysia) Transformation Programs, as the case study.
Southern Johor has been able to leverage on its proximity to an international hub and the large markets of Singapore and Indonesia, as well as China and India. It has developed successful clusters around electronics, logistics, food and agriculture, tourism, as well as oil and petrochemicals industries. Moreover, Johor has a rich supply of natural resources and human capital, which will continue to underscore its future prospects.
THE INTERACTION
The purpose of this integrated synthesis essay is to demonstrate an understanding of the interplay between the four types of processes you studied in the Pillars of Planning module within the same city. Which processes seem to have been dominant in shaping the development trajectory of the city over the past decades and at present? What linkages, tensions and contradictions exist between the four different types of dynamics?
The state of Johor is our country’s second most important conurbation thanks to its strategic location that is close to the thriving markets of Singapore and Indonesia, and in the centre of some of the world’s busiest routes. On top of that, it is rich with natural and human resources.
In recent years, however, Johor has been facing increasing competition for capital, human resources and ideas, proliferated by globalisation and advancement of technology. In 2005, the Federal Government and the Johor State Government decided to adopt a more focused and developmental approach to the South Johor region. The aim was to leverage on the region’s strengths, including competitively priced land, strategic geographic location, industrial base and connectivity as well as its cost structure, while ensuring that Johoreans continue to enjoy its social cohesion.
Based on the key objectives set up for the region, Iskandar Malaysia will:
â- Be international – the centre of transportation, information, quality living, culture, shopping and tourism;
â- Have sustainability – environmental objectives are, and will be, given equal consideration to economic and social objectives;
â- Focus on promoting development within the identified growth boundary, development corridors and the existing urban footprint;
â- Have economic growth driven by identified key economic clusters concentrated at identified growth nodes.
Based on these principles, the Comprehensive Development Plan for South Johor Economic Region 2006-2025 (CDP) will have the following features:
â- Ensure the rights of the Federal and State Governments under the Federal Constitution are preserved, specifically Johor’s constitutional rights on land matters.
â- Emphasise on sustainable development, conservation of the environment and equitable distribution of the benefits of growth among the local population.
â- The creation of a “one-stop fast track mechanism agency” where Federal and State Government agencies will work seamlessly to provide a facilitative environment for investors and consumers.
â- The creation of an investor-friendly environment by facilitation of matters related to immigration, education, tax and land as well as close liaison with local authorities.
The masterplan will also address some of the key risks that have hampered regional development in the past, including uncoordinated and duplicative development, excessive speculation of value of private assets and potential marginalisation of the local population.
ISKANDAR MALAYSIA: COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT PLAN
Secondly, the synthesis essay should briefly consider how this interplay between these processes produces distinct spatial outcomes or policy issues, which are dealt by particular policy responses (planning or otherwise). A spatial ‘outcome’ can be a specific spatial issue or problem: housing shortage, transport congestion, socio-spatial segregation, environmental degradation, urban violence etc… Examples of policy responses should focus on spatial planning, urban and territorial development policies. How do planning interventions and policies try to address those spatial problems, or mediate between the tensions which arise from the four types of dynamics?

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Try to stand back from your previous work, and look at the bigger picture: think of the four ‘pillars’ as a whole and what they have taught you about your case-study city. A good way to get started about the essay is to imagine you have a guest who comes to visit your city and who knows a bit about planning and spatial development, but knows absolutely nothing about the city in question. How would you summarize to him/her in 5 minutes what are the key factors, processes and actors which have shaped the urban development of that city? What are the most important problems and issues which planners have to deal with at present? How has government responded to that?
In the past, Johor has often times played second fiddle to its more prominent neighbour, Singapore but this is expected to change with Iskandar Malaysia and the Comprehensive Development Plan (CDP). Johor Bahru City Centre (JBCC) to play an important role and has been identified as one of the five catalyst development areas in the Regional Land Use Framework Plan.
Under the Iskandar Malaysia development plans, the administrative centre for Johor state has been moved to Kota Iskandar from Johor Bahru, allowing the capital city to focus on its role as a transportation hub and the major gateway into Johor from Singapore.
CONCLUSION
In conclusion, even though the community engagement has an overwhelming response in the western countries such as the United Kingdom, but the response in Malaysia, especially in Johor Bahru is very low. Simultaneously, the government should create more awareness to the local community to raise their interest to participate in urban planning and development processes. Apart from that, the government also needs to explore a much easier approach facilitate the local community to indirectly involve in the planning process in Malaysia. The community engagement approach should be seen in a wider context, and must not only involve the existing approach that has been set in the planning guidelines, but the government also needs to explore new approaches to spread the awareness among the local community.
References
Aykroyd, V.R. 2012. Exploring Social Media (Facebook and Twitter) as a Public Participation Tool for Design and Planning. Thesis (MLA) The University of Guelph.
Baker, S. 2006. Sustainable Development. Oxon: Routledge
Bryer, T.A. 2012. Identifying a Model for Effective Public Participation Using Social Media in Urban Infrastructure Projects. [online]. Available from: http://drbryer.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/identifying-a-model-for-effective-public-participation-using-social-media_remarks-for-amsterdam1.pdf [Accessed 31 March 2014].
Chief Minister of Johor. 2013. Chief Minister of Johor Facebook Page: Transformasi Bandaraya Johor Bahru. [online]. Available from: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151556097393173.1073741833.48750023172&type=3 [Accessed 31 March 2014].
Government of Malaysia. 2007. Town and Country Planning Act 2007 (Act 1312). Kuala Lumpur: JPBD (Federal Department of Town and Country Planning).
Hashim, H. & Abdullah, R. G. 2009. Penglibatan Komuniti Dalam Program Pembangunan Luar Bandar: Kajian Kes di Pusat Pertumbuhan Desa Gedong, Sarawak. Akademika, 77(12), pp.41-67.
Ho, C.S., et al. 2013. Year 2012/2013 Annual Report the Project for Development of Low Carbon Society Scenarios for Asian Regions. Johor Bahru: UTM – Low Carbon Asia Research Center.
IRDA (Iskandar Regional Development Authority). 2014. Iskandar Malaysia. Johor Bahru: IRDA.
JPBD (Federal Department of Town and Country Planning Peninsular Malaysia). 2010. National Physical Plan-2. Kuala Lumpur: JPBD.
Malaysia Law. 2002. Town and Country Planning Act 1976 (Act 172). Kuala Lumpur: International Law Book Services.
Mansbridge, J. 1999. On the idea that participation makes better citizens. In: Elkin, S. L. & Soltan, K. E., eds. Citizen Competence and Democratic Institutions. Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State University Press, pp. 291-325.
Masram, H. 1996. Pencapaian fungsi rancangan tempatan – Kes kajian: Rancangan Tempatan Tampoi, Kempas dan Larkin. Skudai: UTM.
Mohamad, J. 2004. Meningkatkan keberkesanan penyertaan awam dalam rancangan tempatan. Kawasan kajian: Batu Pahat, Johor. Skudai: UTM.
Omar, D. & Oliver Ling H.L. 2009. Malaysian Development Planning System: Kuala Lumpur Structure Plan and Public Participation. Asian Social Science, 5(3), pp.30-36.
Othman, M. S. 2000. Penyediaan Garis Panduan Perlaksanaan Kerajaan Elektronik (E-Goverment) dari Perpektif Meningkatkan Penglibatan Orang Awam (Public Participation) di dalam Proses Rancangan Tempatan. Kawasan Kajian: Daerah Sentral, Johor Bahru. Skudai: UTM.
Rydin, Y. 2011. The Purpose of Planning: Creating sustainable towns and cities. Bristol: The Policy Press.
Shirky, C. 2011. The Political Power of Social Media: Technology, The Public Sphere, And Political Change. . [online]. Available from: http://www.cc.gatech.edu/~beki/cs4001/Shirky.pdf [Accessed 31 March 2014].
Strange, T. & Bayley, A. 2008. Sustainable Development: Linking economy, society, environment. France: OECD Publishing.
Tweet. Results for #JBtransformation. [online]. Available from: https://twitter.com/search?q=#JBtransformation&src=typd&mode=photos [Accessed 31 March 2014].
WCED (UN World Commission on Environment and Development). 1987. Our Common Future: Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development. Switzerland: WCED.
 

Can Active Engagement with Assessment Improve Student Outcomes?

Can active engagement with assessment improve student outcomes?

Introduction

Assessment is one of the most pervasive aspects of our current education system and is undeniably a powerful tool that, when used correctly, can enhance learning. It is through carefully considered assessment decisions that teachers are able to determine whether the intended learning goals have been met; in turn this allows them to provide quality feedback to learners that they can use to improve their work. The quest for improved methods and procedures is ongoing and concerns regarding assessment, results and accountability continue to dominate political discussions regarding educational reform. 

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Methods of successful assessment are essential to the daily practice of all teachers as they are required to review and monitor the progress of learners both long term and in lessons. When I first embarked upon my career as a teacher, I believed assessment to be the relationship between examinations and results but my experiences in schools as a trainee have highlighted that it is much broader than I first believed. The confusion I experienced regarding assessment and its purpose was not uncommon for an individual new to the teaching profession. Research in this area is extensive and much of it suggests that teachers enter the profession with insufficient practice in developing strategies for assessment. Deluca and Klinger (2010) argue that this is a direct result of training courses focusing on the use of assessment for evaluating student performance rather than on the use of assessment as part of the learning process for students. Brown, McInerney and Liem (2009) further explore the rationale for assessment and state that we as teachers assess our students for three key purposes: to improve student learning; to certify that learning has taken place; or to evaluate the quality of instruction.

The rationale for this project stems from my interest in how assessment is being implemented in schools and how teachers and students construct and experience assessment. I am increasingly interested in the idea that assessment can be used to improve the process of education rather than simply as a tool to evaluate its results and agree whole heartedly with Dylan William (2013) who states that assessment can be thought of as the bridge between teaching and learning.

I developed a personal interest and concern with the role of the student in assessment throughout my teacher training year as I found myself asking how can students improve the quality of their work and how can I support them in this process? It became apparent to me that very little is being done to include the student in the assessment process. Davis, Miller and Summers (2012) discovered that in including students in assessment you enable them to demonstrate their learning and achievement in relation to the learning outcomes set out by the teacher. When students are given the opportunity to make choices or create their own goals in relation to their learning it increases engagement and achievement. The research by Davis and et al (2012) showed that as a result, students have a deeper knowledge of the criteria which they are going to be assessed against; they reflect on the desired outcome by considering their current knowledge and how they can move forward which in turn leads to them feeling they have some ownership of the assessment and therefore it is more relevant to them.

As I examined the research literature related to assessment practices, student engagement and student outcomes in order to further understand how assessment can be used to support students, two significant themes emerged that influenced this action research project. First, students must be an active participant in the assessment process to allow them to understand what they are learning and why and second, providing clear assessment criteria and feedback enables students to understand what is expected of them and as a result they understand how to advance their own learning. Therefore, the intention of this assignment is to review the research literature and its implications for practice to help answer the question: Can active engagement with assessment improve student outcomes? 

Assessment

Assessment is one of the main factors that contribute to a high-quality teaching and learning environment. It is an integral part of instruction as it enables teachers to establish whether the pre-determined learning goals have been met and in turn, they can evaluate their students’ performance. It is surprising, considering the importance of assessment in education, that the term itself is largely used without a clear definition. There is a presumption in the profession that we are all speaking the same language of assessment; however, it appears that this may not be the case. Butt (2010) suggests that the lack of clarity regarding the definition has arisen as a result of researchers attempting to secure a singular term for an incredibly complex process that is used to monitor both national standards of performance, as well as individual progress over time. The literature addresses this difficulty and widely acknowledges that assessment, on any scale, has two key functions; to report on learning or to aid learning. As such, Lambert and Lines (2000) propose the most fitting definition stating that assessment is ‘the process of gathering, interpreting, recording and using information about students’ responses to educational tasks’ (p. 12).

According to the work of Bloom, Hastins and Madaus (1971), teachers should employ assessment as a learning tool which they can use to identify student weaknesses and in turn devise a solution. In other words, rather than using assessment to evaluate student learning at the end of a unit of work (summative), Bloom (1971) recommended interweaving assessment with the teaching process to diagnose difficulties and provide corrective measures along the way (formative). Under this definition assessment becomes a lens for understanding student performance, identifying difficulties and helping teachers to improve their approaches.

The role of the learner

A common theme in the literature is that learning and feedback cannot be the sole responsibility of the teacher. Falchikov (2003) argues that ‘our task as teachers is to help students learn and we can harness the power of assessment to achieve this end by involving them in the process’ (p. 102). The concept of using assessment to support students in closing the gap between their existing performance and their desired performance has come to be known as assessment for learning.  There is a plethora of evidence that I will shortly go on to review that points to the benefits for both student and teacher if assessment is used to support student learning. The literature suggests that when students are involved with the assessment of their learning, they become empowered to take ownership over the process. Students no longer feel victimised by the end of unit test, instead they feel confident, empowered and in control of their own learning.

Adie and Willis (2015) argue that for students to be actively engaged in their own learning journey, they need to know what they are learning, why they are learning it, how well they are currently learning it and how to take the next steps to advance their learning.  Powell and Kalina (2009) argue that an effective classroom, with empowered students is dependent on using constructivist strategies, tools and practices as suggested by Piaget and Vygotsky (p. 241) In cognitive constructivism, ideas are constructed through an independent, personal experience, whereas in social constructivism they are constructed through interaction with the teacher and other students. Whilst the theories are very different, both approaches argue that ideas are constructed from experience to have a personal meaning for the student (Powell & Kalina, 2009, p. 242). The most interesting concept of both theories is the fact that they position the learner as an active agent in the process of knowledge acquisition, thereby challenging the idea that knowledge can be transferred from expert to student. As a result, the role of the educator changes from someone who ‘teaches’ to someone who facilitates learning’ (Bodner, Klobuchar, and Geelan, 2001, p. 6).

In order to create an effective teaching and learning environment teachers need to know how to incorporate constructivist strategies into their daily practice. Rust, Donovan and Price (2005) argue that ‘acquiring knowledge and understanding of assessment processes, criteria and standards needs the same kind of active engagement and participation as learning about anything else’ (p. 232) which highlights the necessity of inviting the learner into the process.  The student should be a central figure within a constructivist classroom and the focus should always be on learning rather than teaching. In the classroom this can be achieved through setting learning goals, providing exemplars, self/peer review and feedback to name but a few strategies. In general, the research on these strategies shows that not all approaches are equally effective and are largely dependent on the manner in which they are carried out by the teacher. 

Transparent criteria

 The research sadly shows that many students enter an assessment feeling confused about what is being asked of them and resort to guessing as a way of interpreting assessment standards (Rust et al., 2005). It is evident that in order to succeed students must possess an understanding of the teachers’ concept of quality through transparent assessment criteria. Nicol and MacFarlaneDick (2006) argue in doing so it can support students in understanding how to advance their performance from the perspective of a marker.

Baartman and Prins (2018) argue that ‘understanding tacit criteria in a (work) community of practice takes place through an active, shared process rather than a one-way communication of explicit criteria’ (p. 2). Their work suggests that it is insufficient to simply provide students with criteria as this does not aid them in developing an understanding of the teachers’ concept of quality. In 2003, Rust et al carried out a study exploring the effect the provision of transparent success criteria had on student outcomes. The study was carried out with a view to improve student performance through a structured pre-assessment workshop in which students were able to engage with the success criteria. During a ninety-minute workshop, students received a clear explanation from the tutor of each criterion and had the opportunity to engage in the marking of exemplar assignments through a discussion-based activity. The study discovered that learners who had been given this opportunity subsequently achieved better results thus providing support for the value of the student having an active role in understanding criteria.

A further study in 2013 was conducted by Lipnevich, McCallen, Pace Miles and Smith into the effect the provision of rubrics and written exemplars had on university students’ work. Within their investigation, students were given the opportunity to revise an assignment that they had previously completed but not received feedback for. The participants were split into three groups in different feedback conditions with group one being issued detailed rubrics, group two written exemplars and group three, both. Following a period of independent engagement with these materials, students revised and resubmitted their work.  The study reported that significant improvements were made under all three conditions, with the stand alone rubric leading to the greatest improvement. Lipnevich et al (2013) summarised the findings of the study stating that ‘giving students the opportunity to revise their written work, and providing them with information on how to improve, led to substantially enhanced performance (p. 550). The results of this study, whilst positive, could be criticised for not strictly following the principles of AfL as students were given no feedback on their original assignment and therefore had no concept of their current state of understanding against the desired goal.

These case studies show that making assessment criteria transparent has a positive impact on student performance. It should be noted however, that these studies, among others which report on improved performance are situated in the higher-education context and therefore it is challenging to suggest whether similar results would be found in a secondary school setting.

Self-Assessment

Within an assessment for learning framework, teachers are responsible for providing feedback that allows students to close the gap between their current knowledge and desired knowledge. Sadler (1989) established that feedback could actually only have an effect if a student was able to: develop an understanding of the standards and qualities required in their subject; relate their own performance and the feedback on it to those standards; and take action towards producing higher quality work.  As with assessment criteria, the research reflects that feedback is of little value if students do not have the opportunity to engage, discuss and question it, therefore highlighting the necessity of student understanding. 

Hattie and Timperley (2007) suggest that the following three major questions must be asked by teacher and/or student throughout the process:

Where am I going (what are the goals?)

How am I going (what progress is being made toward the goal?)

Where to next (what activities need to be undertaken to make better progress?) 

They argue that students receive very little valuable feedback on assessment as it too often does not address these three major questions (p. 101). The research, whilst making a number of valid arguments, also poses a significant number of challenges in that it gives very little information as to how one successfully builds an effective feedback model that answers each of these questions.

Many researchers argue that effective formative feedback comes from the instructor as well as from self and/or peer assessment and is based on clear criteria (Sadler 1989). Student self-assessment is a process by which a learner collects information about themselves and reflects on his or her own learning. It is the student’s own assessment of personal progress in knowledge, skills, processes, or attitudes (Black & William, 1998). Logan (2009) explored how self-assessment can enhance teaching and learning effectiveness and indicated that it gives students a better understanding of assessment criteria and leads to deeper learning” (p. 30). Whilst the findings of this study are mostly positive, it is worth noting the research has limitations due to the small sample of students used. Andrade and Valtcheva (2009) highlight that ‘self-assessment is done on drafts of works in progress in order to inform revision and improvement’ (p. 13). It is not a case of students determining their own grades. It is largely agreed within the literature that the process of self-assessment is valuable, however, as Demore (2017) notes ‘this value is dependent on the teaching methods, practice and support provided by teachers for students in the classroom throughout the school year’ (p. iii). Demore’s research shows a clear relationship between self-assessment and their own performance, it highlighted that students need to have a rubric to guide their thinking and sufficient training must be provided by the teacher to increase the reliability of the practice.

Conclusion

 The purpose of this review was to critically evaluate the trends in assessment for learning case studies in order to establish whether formative methods of assessment improve student outcomes. In 1998, Black and William conducted an extensive review of the literature with a view to establishing whether improvement in classroom assessment leads to improvement in student achievement. After analysing over 250 articles they reported effects of a half to a full deviation when formative assessment methods were used. In light of such literature student centered practices are widely accepted to have a positive impact on learning. 

 The literature has highlighted the challenges faced by teachers, particularly those newly qualified, when trying to decide on a best practice approach to assessment. I am reminded that learning is recursive and about students revisiting and reshaping existing knowledge, thus confirming that assessment really is for learning. As teachers we face the challenge of trying to find out what works best for our students and I am interested in exploring whether employing constructivist strategies will improve the learning and assessment process for my own pupils.

The findings of this review would suggest that when carrying out my own research, I will find that student outcomes will improve as a result of enhanced engagement with assessment criteria. Some may argue that this makes my study futile, however, there is a significant lack of empirical data regarding student centered assessment practices in secondary schools thus highlighting the need for further investigation. Therefore, my research question is: can active engagement with assessment improve student outcomes?

References

Adie, L., & Willis, J. (2015). Involving students in assessment conversations [Web log post]. Retrieved June 28, 2019, from https://www.bera.ac.uk/blog/involving-students-in-assessment-conversations?cv=1

Andrade, H., & Valtcheva. A. (2009). Promoting Learning and Achievement through Self-Assessment. Theory into Practice, 48(1), 12. https://doi-org.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/10.1080/00405840802577544

Baartman, L., & Prins, F. (2018). Transparency or Stimulating Meaningfulness and Self-Regulation? A Case Study about a Programmatic Approach to Transparency of Assessment Criteria. Frontiers in Education. https://doi.org/10.3389/feduc.2018.00104

Black, P., & William, D. (1998). Inside the Black Box: Raising Standards through Classroom Assessment. The Phi Delta Kappan, 80(2), 139. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsjsr&AN=edsjsr.20439383&site=eds-live&scope=site

Bloom, B.S., J.T. Hasting and G.F. Madaus (1971), Handbook on Formative and Summative Evaluation of Student Learning, McGraw-Hill Book Co, New York.

Bodner, G., Klobuchar, M., & Geelan, D. (2001). The Many Forms of Constructivism. Journal of Chemical Education, 78(8), 1107. doi:10.1021/ed078p1107.4

Brown, G. T. L., McInerney, D. M., & Liem, A. D. (2009). Student Perspectives on Assessment : What Students Can Tell Us About Assessment for Learning. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=521924&site=eds-live&scope=site

Butt, G. (2010). Making Assessment Matter. London: Continuum. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsebk&AN=344093&site=eds-live&scope=site

Davis, H. A., Miller, L. M., & Summers, J. J. (2012). An Interpersonal Approach to Classroom Management : Strategies for Improving Student Engagement. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Corwin. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=nlebk&AN=941519&site=eds-live&scope=site

DeLuca, C., & Klinger, D. A. (2010). Assessment Literacy Development: Identifying Gaps in Teacher Candidates’ Learning. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy & Practice, 17(4), 419–438. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ901706&site=eds-live&scope=site

Demore, W. (2017). Know Thyself: Using Student Self-Assessment to Increase Student Learning Outcomes. SMTC Plan B Papers. 63. Retrieved from http://repository.uwyo.edu/smtc_plan_b/63

Falchikov, N. (2003). Involving students in assessment. Psychology Learning and Teaching, 3(2), 102-108. Retrieved June 28, 2019, from https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.2304/plat.2003.3.2.102.

Hattie, J., & Timperley, H. (2007). The Power of Feedback. Review of Educational Research, 77(1), 81. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsjsr&AN=edsjsr.4624888&site=eds-live&scope=site

Lambert, D., & Lines, D. (2000). Understanding Assessment. London: RoutledgeFalmer.

Lipnevich, A. A., Mccallen, L. N., Miles, K. P., & Smith, J. K. (2013). Mind the gap! Students’ use of exemplars and detailed rubrics as formative assessment. Instructional Science, 42(4), 539-559. doi:10.1007/s11251-013-9299-9

Logan, E. (2009) Self and peer assessment in action. Practitioner Research in Higher Education, 3 (1). pp. 29-35.

Nicol, D. J., & Macfarlane-Dick, D. (2006). Formative assessment and selfregulated learning: a model and seven principles of good feedback practice. Studies in Higher Education, 31(2), 199- 218. doi:10.1080/03075070600572090

Powell, K. C., & Kalina, C. J. (2009). Cognitive and social constructivism: Developing tools for an effective classroom. Education, 130(2), 241-250.

Rust, C., O Donovan, B., & Price, M. (2005). A social constructivist assessment process model: how the research literature shows us this could be best practice. ASSESSMENT AND EVALUATION IN HIGHER EDUCATION, (3), 231. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsbl&AN=RN164452280&site=eds-live&scope=site

Rust, C., Price, M., & O Donovan, B. (2003). Improving Students’ Learning by Developing their Understanding of Assessment Criteria and Processes. ASSESSMENT AND EVALUATION IN HIGHER EDUCATION, (2), 147. Retrieved from https://search-ebscohost-com.proxy.library.lincoln.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=edsbl&AN=RN126324686&site=eds-live&scope=site

Sadler, D. R. (1989). Formative assessment and the design of instructional systems. Instructional Science, 18(2), 119-144. doi:10.1007/bf00117714

William, D. (2013). Assessment: The Bridge between Teaching and Learning. Voices from the Middle, 21(2), 1-6. Retrieved June 28, 2019, from https://www.ncte.org/library/NCTEFiles/Resources/Journals/VM/0212-dec2013/VM0212Assessment.pdf

 

Effect of Engagement in Self-Directed Learning on Academic Development

‘A student’s ability and willingness to engage in Self- Directed Learning has a direct impact on their academic Development.

Critically discuss this statement in relation to Distance Learning, describing the elements necessary for students to focus on in order to achieve their academic goals.’

 

Introduction:

         In recent years, Self- Directed Learning has exploded onto the Educational Scene and has quickly become the course of choice offered to prospective students by Institutions and Colleges World Wide. Distance Learning refers to the use of information and improved technologies to enable the learner to access both online learning facilities and teaching resources (Arkorful & Abaidoo, 2015).  Self- Directed Learning has become the popular route for students and learners to take when broadening their education. Self- Directed Learning enables learners to take charge of their learning; they have to take primary responsibility and ownership of their own educational needs. Essentially, distance learning has one main goal; to enable and give learners the power to use their own learning to better their working conditions and lives. Over time, Distance Learning has evolved from a fully online course with little to no interaction between students and their peers and tutors, to using modern day technologies to allow students to learn part of or all of a course regardless of a permanent time or place. The following essay will discuss the elements necessary for students to focus on in order to achieve their academic goals with regards Self- Directed Learning.

Main body:

         One of the key elements necessary for students to focus on in order to engage successfully in Self- Directed Learning is motivation. Motivation is an important attribute for all distant learning students to have in order to achieve their academic goals, and to improve their personal growth. Essentially, it is the student’s ‘ability to motivate themselves to involve in the learning process’ (Song & Hill, 2007, p33). 

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        There are two types of motivation; positive motivation and negative motivation. On the one hand, positive motivation is what some students need to focus on in order to achieve their academic goals. They have a positive outlook on the situation. For example, when a student completes an assignment they see it as one less assignment to go before completing their course and become qualified. On the other hand, students may use negative motivation as their motivation to succeed, i.e., the students in question use their fear of failing as their motivation.

         Motivation is the driving force to make things happen, and for personal and academic goals to become a reality. Motivation is what keeps people focused during a task. It is easier to be motivated when one wants to do the task and has an interest in it. They will subsequently put more effort into the task, as they have a keen interest in it and they will not see it as a burden.  The onus is on the person in question to remain motivated as they are primarily responsible for their own learning.

         A lack of motivation can lead to procrastination. Some distance learning courses require students to log into online seminars, talks and presentations as part of the online learning process. It would be ill-advised to assume that once a student is logged into the online seminars that they are actively participating in the activity. Being present in an online seminar/ discussion does ‘not mean they are actually engaged in meaningful cognitive thinking’ as the students mind may be elsewhere, they may also be surfing the web (Biesenbach- Lucas, 2003 as cited in Song and Hill, 2007, p34). It is easier to procrastinate in a Self- Directed Learning environment as some online learning institutions may not have a strict schedule or timeframe on when assignments and readings have to be completed by. This can result in assignments and coursework being left to the last minute to be completed and submitted. An important issue to note is that students can still procrastinate in face-to-face lectures; however, as they are present in a class setting, the course content and relevant material is readily available and accessible to them. Therefore, it is imperative that students remain motivated in order to engage in Self-Directed Learning and achieve their academic goals.

         Resources and how they are used play a vital part in a student becoming academically successful. Resources can come in different forms: human and information resources (Song & Hill, 2007). A student’s ability to use correct and credible resources plays an important role in order to achieve their academic goals. Students must evaluate the resources unearthed during their research, and assess the credibility and the trustworthiness of them. Evaluating the resource will encourage students to think critically in relation to the source and will assist them in deciding whether it is reliable, credible and trustworthy. It is important that the student takes note of the date of the sources and use the most revised editions to date in order to ensure the information gathered is correct and factual. Using reliable and credible resources, such as scholarly sources, will help students achieve their academic goals as it will enable them to conduct correct and concise research.                    

         Planning and time management are important factors which contribute to students achieving their academic goals. Planning and time management are two key elements needed to be successful in Self- Directed Learning. It is vital that a student has the ability to plan and efficiently manage their time. They have to ensure they have enough time allocated per day to study. They must plan their day to ensure that they can include study with their working hours and family responsibilities. Distance Learning allows the student to determine their own pace of study. It gives the student the flexibility to choose what suits their needs and goals. Distance Learning requires students to be organized, to plan their day ahead and to allocate the appropriate time needed per day to their academic studies. It does not matter where in the world you live you can get a degree in your own place of study.

         There are many advantages associated with distance learning. Advantages such as convenience, flexibility, the ability to work independently and the ability to set your own pace and time are elements that lead to successful Self- Directed Learning. With regards flexibility, distant learning enables students to choose the time and place that suits him/ her to complete their studies. It also allows students, on the most part, the ability to study in the comforts of their own home or their chosen place of study. At times, distance learning courses may require a student to complete days in a face- to- face classroom. However, on the most part distance learning is quite flexible in their teaching approach with the majority of the course being online.

         One of the main reasons students successfully partake in distance learning is convenience. On the most part, students who choose to complete a course via distance learning are those who want to pursue their studies but do not want to give up their job. Distance learning provides easy access for those with family responsibilities and those who work irregular hours.

         The beauty of distance learning is that is allows students to study at their own pace. Students can study as quick or as slow as they wish. No two people are the same, and that applies to students undertaking a distant learning course. Different people learn at different paces, times and speed. Some people grasp ideas and concepts quicker than others. In a face- face class environment, some students may be embarrassed to raise their doubts and concerns in relation to a topic being discussed in the classroom. With distant learning, the opposite applies. If a student struggles to grasp or understand a topic, they have the ability to take their time and research the topic with no pressure from their peers and teachers. They can, on the most part, touch base with their tutors online and address their difficulties with them. Some distance learning courses allow students to access and communicate with their peers through the use of the online learning facility. The use of online discussion boards ‘helps eliminate barriers that have the potential of hindering participation including the fear of talking to others’ (Arkorful& Abaidoo, 2015, p34).

         Distance learning enables students to study using their own initiative cupped with the support of their trainer to successfully complete their studies. This element of distance learning allows students to take charge of their own learning. Self- Directed Learning ‘encourages learners to depend on themselves for the reason that instructors are no longer the solitary source of knowledge’ (Arkorful & Abaidoo, 2015, P35).

        Distance learning is also cost saving and time saving. One main advantage of distance learning is that students can essentially earn while they earn. As most of the syllabus is conducted online, distance learning saves students money on travel expenses they would incur if they were in a classroom environment. It also saves accommodation costs. Self- Directed Learning is not only cost affective for students, it allows students to save time as they do not have to factor in travel time they would usually incur whilst attending face- to- face classes.

         With advantages come disadvantages. As previously mentioned, motivation is a key aspect in Self- Directed Learning. If there is lack of motivation, procrastination can set in.  According to Arkorful &Abaidoo, 2015, if a student procrastinates, this can put their academic learning on hold as they can fall behind on their studies to an extent that they cannot recover. This is why it is imperative to devise a weekly study schedule and stick to it regimentally. Lorraine Sherry agrees with Arkorful &Abaidoo, as she feels that Self- Directed Learning ‘may disenfranchise students who lack discipline or time management skills’ (Sherry,1995, Pg 343). Students may feel isolated when completing a Distance Learning Course. The ‘’independence’ of participants can too readily turn into isolation and disillusionment with SDL as a whole’ (Hammond & Collins, 2004 p25).  This isolation may contribute to the loss of motivation some students feel due to the lack of face- to- face contact with their tutors and their peers. Distance Learning can take away the social aspect of completing a course. Some students can feel that they need to interact with peers and tutors on a daily basis to get social satisfaction from their course. 

Conclusion:

        In conclusion, adult education comes from either face-to- face classes or Self- Directed Learning. Self- Directed Learning is ‘an important aspect of adult education’ (Song & Hill, 2007 p37). It contributes to students becoming self- confident in their learning abilities. It allows students to think critically and access what is available for them online or through scholarly sources. It enables students to work on their own initiative, whilst also allowing students to reach out to their teachers if they are experiencing difficulties. Over the years, distance learning has transformed from a fully online course to a course which allows students access to study some or the entire course in a location which suits them with little to no time constraint.  In order for Self- Directed Learning to be successful, there are many elements necessary for students to focus on in order to achieve their academic goals. As previously discussed, elements such as motivation, resources, a student’s ability to plan and manage their time, and the advantages of distance learning play a vital role in ensuring that Self- Directed Learning has a direct impact on their academic development. Essentially, students must have the ability to complete a distance learning course and also be willing to undertake such a course in order to be academically successful in distance learning.

References:

Arkorful V & Abaidoo N, 2015, ‘ The role of e-learning, advantages and disadvantages of its adoption in higher education’, International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning, Volume 12, Issue Number 1, pages 29-36.

Sherry, L., 1995, ‘Issues in Distance Learning’, International Jl. Of Educational Telecommunications, Volume 1, Issue Number 4, pages 337-365.

Song,L., & Hill, J., 2007. ‘A Conceptual Model for Understanding Self- Directed Learning in Online Environments’ Journal of Interactive Online Learning, Volume 6, Number 1, pages 27-38.

Hammond, M., 1991.  Self- Directed Learning: Critical Practice. NJ, USA: Routledge.

The Advantages of Distance Learning. 2019. The Advantages of Distance Learning. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.usjournal.com/en/students/help/distanceleanring.html.

[Accessed 13 June 2019].

 

Controlled Cognitive Engagement for Detecting Deceptive Passengers

Article 1: “Searching for Explanations: How the Internet Inflates Estimates of Internal Knowledge” (Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. Published online March 30, 2015)
Matthew Fisher, Mariel Goddu, and Frank Keil, the three researchers in charge of this study, were interested in studying the Internet’s effects on the brain and cognition. More specifically, they wanted to find out if having access to the Internet for the purpose of searching for answers to general knowledge questions would increase one’s self-assessment of confidence in answering other questions unrelated to the original Internet-based questions.

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In introducing the topic, the researchers introduced the idea of a transactive memory system – a system wherein multiple individuals encode and retrieve memories and information as a whole. This allows individuals in a group to divide cognitive tasks between group members, and it reduces the mental load on each individual within the group. As an example, in the case of a three-person hunting and gathering group, one individual may be responsible for remembering where to find food, another with how to hunt animals, and another with how to cook the food. Each individual does not have to remember all three – the entire set of information is stored across the memory systems of all three individuals. All individuals are required to work together and piece together their individual stores of knowledge to hunt and gather food, and all individuals rely on each other for information. This is a transactive memory system.
The idea behind this study is that, theoretically, one individual and the Internet can form a sort of transactive memory system in which the individual feels that the vast stores of knowledge on the Internet are readily accessible at any time, and the individual will feel much more confident in his or her ability to answer general knowledge questions simply because he or she can query an Internet search engine (the other party in this sort of transactive memory system) at any time and access the knowledge stored on the Internet. To test this hypothesis, the researchers used a between subjects design with two groups of participants and two conditions. Participants in the first group were asked a series of general knowledge questions and told to use the Internet to find answers. Participants in the second group were asked the same set of general knowledge questions; however, they were told not to use the Internet to find answers. After this, participants from both groups were asked to rate their ability to answer unrelated questions from various subjects. The study didn’t test actual ability to answer subsequent, unrelated questions, but rather perceived ability, or confidence.
The resulted showed that participants who used the Internet to look up general knowledge questions prior to being asked to rate their confidence in answering other questions were significantly more confident in their ability to answer the subsequent, unrelated questions than the individuals who did not use the Internet to search for answers to the initial knowledge questions. Various additional experiments were performed by the researchers to account for time spent answering questions while searching the internet and whether participants were considering Internet knowledge when self-assessing confidence. Additionally, the study showed that this confidence-boosting effect is a result of having access to and using an Internet search engine. After using an internet search engine, participants were much more confident in their own knowledge and in their ability to answer any other general knowledge question, even though the knowledge was not stored in their mind but on the Internet.
Article 2: “Narcissism and the Use of Personal Pronouns Revisited” (Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Published online March 30, 2015)
In this study, researchers wanted to determine whether or not a connection exists between an individual’s usage of “I-talk” and his or her level of narcissism. “I-talk” is the use of first-person singular pronouns such as I, me, and my. It is a commonly held belief that individuals who talk about themselves frequently and use a large amount of I-talk are more narcissistic than those who do not. However, this intuitive relationship between I-talk and narcissism hasn’t been thoroughly tested and concretely proven or disproven. The goal of this study was to definitively identify a relationship between the two, if such a relationship exists at all.
Very few studies have been done on this topic, and the results of those studies have been inconsistent. Additionally, previous studies on this topic have not employed very large sample sizes. This research study’s goal was to come to a concrete conclusion on the topic by employing a very large sample size and answering a few related questions concerning the relationship between gender, I-talk, and narcissism and context, I-talk, and narcissism.
To accomplish this goal, researchers set up a large database of information from over 4,000 participants and 15 individual samples collected across five laboratories in the US and Germany. Each sample contained anywhere between 68 (in the case of Sample 2) and 1,209 (in the case of Sample 14) participants. Each sample was assigned to participate in a different activity designed to identify usage of I-talk in participants. For example, in Sample 1, university Psychology students videotaped self-descriptions that were later transcribed and analyzed for I-talk. In Sample 4, university Psychology students were seated in a classroom at random and asked to individually step forward and introduce themselves to the other participants in the classroom. They also participated in various other tasks, including writing down attributes about themselves and rating the other students’ presentations. Everything was transcribed, recorded, and analyzed for I-talk usage. Other samples involved analyzing participants’ Facebook status updates, performing a stream-of-consciousness recording task, and other various activities designed to allow for the measurement of I-talk. Additionally, each group’s assigned task was categorized based on the context of the activity prescribed by the task. These included identity, personal, impersonal, private, public, and momentary thought contexts.
After each participant in each sample group participated in the prescribed activity, he or she completed a narcissistic personality questionnaire and a self-esteem test. Most participants were administered the 40-item or 16-item Narcissistic Personality Inventory and the Rosenberg Self-Esteem test.
After analyzing the data, the researchers found that there is not a statistically significant connection between I-talk and narcissism. Participants’ self-esteem and narcissism scores had no significant correlation with their usage of I-talk. Additionally, the context of the activity did not affect this finding. There was a slightly higher correlation between male participants’ use of I-talk and narcissism than females’ use of I-talk and narcissism, but it was still statistically insignificant and near-zero, just as for the female participants. The researchers found that, contrary to popular belief, there is no connection between I-talk and narcissism, and this applies to all conversational contexts and genders.
Article 3: “Finding a Needle in a Haystack: Toward a Psychologically Informed Method for Aviation Security Screening” (Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. Published online November 3, 2014)
The researchers involved in this study identified a significant problem with current aviation security screening procedures and introduced a new security screening method of their own creation. They provide experimental evidence suggesting that their method is much more accurate and consistent in detecting deceptive passengers passing through airport security checkpoints.
Currently, most aviation security checkpoints employ a behavioral method of deception recognition. Security screeners look for nonverbal behavioral cues from passengers that may indicate that the passenger is trying to deceive the security screener, including twitching, nervousness, aggressiveness, fidgeting, and some verbal indicators such as stumbling over words and hesitating while speaking. This method results in an alarmingly low rate of passenger deception detection of 5%. This is, according to the researchers, a result of the failure of this method to account for the real content of the passenger’s verbal account and the truthfulness of his or her statements.
The researchers proposed an alternative method of screening called Controlled Cognitive Engagement (CCE), which was developed based on laboratory studies done on veracity testing techniques in two-person verbal exchanges. CCE does not focus on behavioral cues, but rather on the actual verbal exchange and conversation content between screener and passenger. CCE involves a security screener conducting a short, one-on-one interview with a passenger. The interviewer does not ask scripted questions; instead, the interviewer uses a process to create new questions in real time for the passenger that are based on the conversational context of the interview. CCE is trained to security screeners as an algorithm that the screeners can use while conducting an interview to create unique questions for each passenger that are designed specifically to test for passenger truthfulness. Interviewers can then analyze a passenger’s answers to all of the question for consistency and, thus, truthfulness.
To experimentally test CCE and compare it to the traditional, behavioral method of aviation screening, the study employed two groups of security agents and two groups of passengers. The first group of security agents was assigned to use traditional behavior-based screening at a checkpoint, and the second group was assigned to use CCE screening. The first passenger group was a genuine group of passengers selected from individuals passing through the airport checkpoint. The second group of passengers was a sample of individuals chosen by the researchers to pass through the same security checkpoint, but with a deceptive cover story being told to screeners. The two passenger groups were matched in composition by the researchers. The researchers measured the rate of detection of deceptive passengers for non-CCE security agents and CCE security agents.
The results of the study show that veracity testing methods, like the CCE method developed by the researchers, are significantly more effective at detecting deceptive passengers. Traditional behavior-based screening methods only detected about 5% of deceptive passengers in this study, but CCE, a method of veracity testing, detected 66% of deceptive passengers.
 

Employee Engagement for a Multigenerational Workforce

Abstract:

The 21st Century global workforce consists of multi-generations of employees from a multitude of backgrounds, values, work ethics, goals, education, and expectations.   The current multigenerational workforce consists of employees mainly from 3 generations; Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y.   Through this research paper, I will attempt to understand the difference and dynamics of the different generations and see if there are similarities or differences that can help foster enhanced employee engagement for all the generations in the workforce.  As the population is living longer due to healthier lifestyles and medical innovation, and for those who for personal or economic reasons are staying in the business world, businesses are faced with new challenges of how to create a solid corporate structure and culture for profitability and how to best leverage the skills, knowledge, and talents of all generations for overall business success, profitability and a happy, engaged workforce.  The findings from this research proposal suggest that while employee engagement tended to be higher among older workers than their younger colleagues, the key predictors of enhanced engagement were similar but varied in terms of weight and significance among the different generations.

Keywords

Employee engagement, multigenerational workforce

Introduction

         In the current 21st Century global workforce there are predominately 3 generations working together and to ensure businesses recruit, train and retain the best talent businesses must stay current in all HR practices including employee engagement.  The current full-time workforce contains employees from generations including Baby Boomers, Generation X and Generation Y (Millenials) and in the next decade, Generation Z.    The results of a Gallup (2013) poll from 2013, revealed that only 13% of employees are engaged worldwide at work. The concept of keeping employees engaged and the need to keep top talent within the corporation is not new but has introduced new challenges for HR professionals.  This multi-generational change in the global workplace has evolved over the more current decades due to the current population having a longer life expectancy and the need to continue working for personal and/or economic reasons beyond the standard retirement age.  This new global, multigenerational workforce has introduced a new paradigm to the HR spectrum with the need to possibly adapt or change the current corporate structure or corporate culture to optimize the workforce and ensure overall corporate success, profitability, and an engaged workforce.  

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Employee engagement has been described as employees need to have the desire to feel like they are an integral part of the business, feel that they are valued and are making a contribution to the success of the business which results in contributing to the overall success and the business’ bottom line (Berens, 2013).   The 21st-century workforce is made of Baby Boomers, Generation X and Millennials and in the future Generation Z.   The dynamics between generations can bring both challenges and benefits for both the employee and the corporation.   In a research study at the Center on Aging & Work by Pitt-Catsouphes & Smyer (2007)  state that according to the Department of Labor Statistics over the next 15 years, the 21st-century workforce will consist largely of employees over the age of 55.   This new multigenerational, diverse workforce can help guide and train future generations of employees.  Engaged employees benefit both the employee and their organization.  Research has shown that engaged employees tend to be less stressed, more satisfied with their personal lives and take fewer sick days than those who are disengaged.  There is clear evidence that employee engagement has a direct impact on performance and productivity levels for individuals, team and for all levels of employees within the organization. 

Corporations can create a highly engaged, well rounded corporate structure and culture by incorporating the best of each generation for a mutually beneficial work environment  (Blattner and Walter, 2015).    Human resource professional must work with leaders to create and develop a work environment that promotes and fosters this new dynamic by understanding the values and expectations of each generation (Markos and Sridevi, 2010; Jain, 2016).   Businesses who can adjust their culture as needed and embrace the dynamics of the new multigenerational workforce can ensure a profitable future (Jenkins, 2008).   There are a multitude of resources and programs that can be incorporated into the corporate culture and if needed, adapted for specific generations based on need and/or desire.  One such program that has been identified as an element to enhance employee engagement is organizational learning and development.  This program could be either internally and offered in person on-site or online and alternatively externally such as via tuition remission or sponsorship of a course related to their career path or for career advancement.  There are many other corporate-sponsored programs such as corporate social responsibility initiatives, mentoring and advancement programs, creativity and innovation programs that foster thinking outside the box for a new method or even device to help simplify or improve current processes.  It is hypothesized that organizations with a good corporate structure and strong corporate culture can successfully integrate and leverage the new multigenerational workforce by implementing strategic resources and programs to enhance employee engagement for the benefit of both the corporation and the employee.

Literature Review

History of Employee Engagement

In the published literature, there is no definitive definition of employee engagement.   It is also sometimes mentioned as employee satisfaction or even organizational citizenship behavior (Markos & Sridevi, 2010; Jain, 2016; Macey & Schneider, 2008).    For many years businesses and HR professionals have been evaluating their current practices and worked together to formulate the optimal model for engaging and motivating employees (Anitha, 2014; Bates, 2004; Berens, 2013; Jenkins, 2008).    Berens (2013) identifies one element of engagement to be employees wanting to be part of something bigger than they could ever have accomplished on their own.  They want to feel like they are involved and are a part of something they feel they have an investment in, have confidence in their ability to contribute and the feeling that it makes them happy to be part of the bigger picture. 

The traditional workforce of past generations has changed dramatically over the last few decades.  Previously, most corporations practiced a patriarchal approach to the workforce, with the promise of long-term employment for knowledgeable workers, the provision of expected long-term benefits package and enhancement of skills for workers who proved loyalty and were afforded the opportunity to advance in the business.  The 21st-century workforce has a completely different viewpoint on working than those of past generations such as traditionalist and baby boomers.   One thing that does differ for employees from Generation X and Generation Y is that they routinely do not plan to stay in a position for the long term in contrast to those from the Baby Boomer generation and those before them such as the Traditionalists.  Newer generations of workers want to have the ability to control the direction of their careers with the option to leave a dead-end position without consequence and be able to use their prior experiences as a means to secure a better position in the same or a different business.  The mindset of the more current generations has an impact on the triple bottom line of business.  The ability to change positions every few years as opposed to older generations who tended to stay with a business long term comes at a cost to businesses resulting in increased expenses to recruit, onboard and train new staff.   Additionally, employees who are not happy and are looking to change are disengaged, are usually underachievers and don’t give 100% to their job causing lost revenue (Bates, 2004). 

Research suggests that employee engagement can be enhanced where there exists collaborative working environment and teamwork is fostered (Mirvis, 2012), (Anitha, 2014).   Organizations must work continuously and collectively to assess the generational differences that exist so they can profit from the many benefits this new multigenerational workforce has to offer and procure the benefits to win the war on talent (Bursch and Kelly, 2014).    Employees who are engaged help nurture and foster the corporate mission, help in the fulfillment of the corporate vision, are generally happier and are an essential part of creating significant business results as well as profits.   Businesses with a highly engaged workforce will outperform their counterparts across all aspects of the business, especially financially and for overall improved customer satisfaction.  To help promote and foster highly engaged employees, there need to be corporate programs in place for continuous learning and development, improvement in as well as the measurement of metrics and actions (Sundaray, 2011).  Engaged employees tend to work harder and more efficiently, can effectively take actions to ensure customer needs are fulfilled and continuously contribute to the profitability of the corporation supporting the importance of studying the effect of employee engagement and the resulting economic benefits (Roberts and Davenport, 2002).  

Generational Differences

Benson and Brown (2011) studied the relationship between two generations, Baby Boomers and Generation X.  They evaluated the generations for overall job satisfaction, perceived organizational commitment ans willingness to leave their current position and their connection to the organization they currently work for.  Baby Boomers were found to have a higher level of commitment and job satisfaction was more inclined to stay the course with their current employer and overall have a stronger alliance to the organization than those from Generation X.    The Baby Boomers identified more closely with the organizational culture and work factors than those employees from Generation X.  HR professionals must be able to leverage the best of each generation to best serve all employees and have the knowledge and flexibility in the scope of their jobs to establish new standards and policies as needed and circumstances warrant.

The elements identified to enhance employee engagement include having a career or personal development program within the organization, encouraging employees to take part in corporate initiatives, fostering open lines of communication across all levels of the organization via surveys, suggestion boxes, team and town hall meetings, keeping employees informed of changes within the organization regardless of whether or not it has a direct impact on them, fostering a sense of feeling valued and being a part of the bigger picture and making a contribution to the business.  In more recent decades, workplace flexibility has become a hot topic in enhancing employee engagement.  The ability to work remotely, adjust hours for child or elder care has become an important element for staying or leaving a position.   Moreover, employees who are given the flexibility they need and desire to adjust their work responsibilities when appropriate for their position will be more engaged than those who are not afforded the flexibility they need regardless of the age group.  It was found that employees over the age of 45 valued work flexibility more and were more engaged than younger employees under the age of 21.  Job flexibility has been shown to be a positive predictor of increased engagement for all employees, especially for the older workers who have responsibilities outside the workplace.  Employees who are more engaged help improve business performance outcomes and work flexibility will have a lasting benefit for all parties with increased outcomes (Pitt-Catsouphes and Matz-Costa, 2008).

Research Sample

The information presented in this paper comes from published research in peer-reviewed journals predominantly from businesses in the United States.   There was no specific data to establish rules for a gold standard to evaluate the different parameters to enhance employee engagement.

Research Design

To better understand the relationship and differences in employee engagement for a multigenerational workforce, I propose to survey employees from different generations who currently work full time across different industries and positions within the industries.  The dependent variable is employee engagement and the independent variable, strategies to enhance engagement for a multigenerational workforce.  With these variables in mind, the following hypotheses were derived:

Null Hypothesis (H0):  Employee engagement strategies do not need to be modified or adjusted for the new multigenerational workforce. 

Alternative Hypothesis (Ha): Employee engagement strategies may need to be adjusted for different generations. 

Therefore, in this research paper, we are trying to see if there are indeed factors specific to a generation that can improve employee engagement and if so, do strategies need to be adjusted to accomplish higher employee engagement for all generations. 

Metrics and Analytics:

A survey was formulated and consisted of 5 questions which could be easily answered qualitatively.   The responses to the questions were framed using a 6 point Likert scale for the response ranging from agree to disagree.

Question 1: Do you understand the strategic goals and agree with the mission statement of your organization?

Response options: Strongly Agree (1), Mostly Agree (2), Agree (3), Disagree (4), Strongly Disagree (5), No Position (6)

Question 2: Are you proud to work for the company you are currently employed with?

Response options: Strongly Agree (1), Mostly Agree (2), Agree (3), Disagree (4), Strongly Disagree (5), No Position (6)

Question 3: You have the appropriate information, resources, and support to complete your work efficiently and effectively?

Response options: Strongly Agree (1), Mostly Agree (2), Agree (3), Disagree (4), Strongly Disagree (5), No Position (6)

Question 4: My Company motivates me to go beyond what I would in a similar role elsewhere?

Response options: Strongly Agree (1), Mostly Agree (2), Agree (3), Disagree (4), Strongly Disagree (5), No Position (6)

Question 5: I see myself still working for this company two years from now?

Response options: Strongly Agree (1), Mostly Agree (2), Agree (3), Disagree (4), Strongly Disagree (5), No Position (6)

Given the time constraints of the project, a sample of actual surveys was sent but insufficient responses were received to allow for detailed, comprehensive analysis of the results.  It would be interesting to see if the answers varied to the questions by age, gender, position, location, job type, industry or years of service.  

Limitations:

Some limitations which would affect the outcome of the survey proposed and possibly construe the results would be the type of work being performed (i.e. office work versus manual labor), the type of industry the work is being performed in (service versus consultatory), if there are options for possible advancement within the business, business size (number of overall employees) and sample size resulted in insufficient responses to formulate meaningful results.

Information Learned from this Project and Online Sessions

I was a little surprised that overall there were no significant differences between the generations that could be pinpointed to help enhance employee engagement.  If businesses have a solid corporate structure, foster their corporate culture and make sure employees have the appropriate resources to do their job, receive positive re-enforcement from management, employees from multi-generations can effectively work together and possibly even bridge the gap between generations and create a new set of norms to help foster employee engagement for all.   With this information, we would suggest reject the null hypothesis and accept the alternative hypothesis.  While the strategies don’t have to be completely changed or adjusted for the multigenerational workforce, there does need to be a culture that encourages interaction and adaptation of strategies to best fit the demographic and the ability to adjust strategies as the workforce continues to constantly change and advance.  Throughout the course, I have learned more about the elements of conducting a research project, methods of creating and analyzing statistical data to prove or disprove a theory and have a better understanding of the value of research carried out in the academic community and potential benefits for all.

References

Anitha, J. (2014),”Determinants of employee engagement and their impact on employee performance”, International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, Vol. 63 Iss 3 pp. 308-323 https://doi.org/10.1108/IJPPM-01-2013-0008

Bates, S. (2004). Getting engaged, HR Magazine, Vol. 49, No 2, pp 44-51.

Benson, J., & Brown, M. (2011). Generations at work: are there differences and do they matter? The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 22(9), 1843-1865.

Berens, R.  (2013). Roots of employee engagement.   Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 133, 106-115.

Blattner, J., & Walter, T. J. (2015). Creating and sustaining a highly engaged company culture in a multigenerational workplace. Strategic HR Review, 14(4), 124-130.

Bursch, D., & Kelly, K. (2014). Managing the multigenerational workplace. Tersedia secara online di: http://www. kenan-flagler. unc. edu/[diakses di Surabaya, Indonesia: 23 Oktober 2017].

Gallup (2103).  State of the American workplace:  employee engagement insights for U.S. business leaders.  New York, NY: Gallup.

Jain, M. (2016) Employee engagement: The key to improving performance. Journal of Maharaja Agrasen College of Higher Education, 3(1).

Jenkins, J. (2008). Strategies for managing talent in a multigenerational workforce. Employment Relations Today, 34(4), 19-26.

Macey, W. H., & Schneider, B. (2008). The meaning of employee engagement. Industrial and organizational Psychology, 1(1), 3-30.

Markos, S., & Sridevi, M. S. (2010). Employee Engagement: The Key to Improving Performance. International Journal of Business and Management, 5(12).

Mirvis, P. (2012). Employee engagement and CSR. California Management Review, 54(4), 93-117.

Pitt-Catsouphes, M., & Smyer, M. A. (2007). The 21 century multi-generational workplace. Chestnut Hill, MA, The Center on Aging and Work/Workplace Flexibility.

Pitt-Catsouphes, M., & Matz-Costa, C. (2008). The multi-generational workforce: Workplace flexibility and engagement. Community, work and Family, 11(2), 215-229.

Roberts, D. R., & Davenport, T. O. (2002). Job engagement: Why it’s important and how to improve it. Employment Relations Today, 29(3), 21-29.

Sundaray, B. K. (2011). Employee engagement: a driver of organizational effectiveness. European Journal of Business and Management, 3(8), 53-59.

 

Engagement of Employees & Organisational Learning

Employee engagement has been known to accelerate individual well-being and organisational performances by practitioner and academics which is of imperative interest within the HRM context (Truss et al., 2013). The aim of this essay is to discuss and critically evaluate two vital key models of engagement. The first model is by Khan (1990) personal engagement and disengagement research concerning the attributes of psychological conditions, followed by May et al., (2004) and Rich et al., (2010) similar findings. The second model is the Job-Demand Resource model (JD-R) by Bakker and Demerouti, (2008) followed by relevant research. Finally, work engagement is also reviewed as a vital part of employee engagement which led to the development of the JD-R model.

In the past decade, employee engagement has received a significant importance, where many organisations use engaged employee’s as a means of strategy within the business. The large attention has challenged HR and business leaders to ensure their employees are involved not only physically, but also mentally and emotionally engaged (Bedarkar and Pandita, 2014).

One of the models suggested by Kahn, (1990) defines personal engagement by the expression of a person’s “preferred self” in task behaviours that promote connections to work and to others, personal presence (physical, cognitive and emotional). However, personal presence is what Kahn says, not engagement, this implies that employees can operate and be able to express themselves in personal values and perform work roles simultaneously.

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Additionally, in Kahn’s model personal engagement must include all three; physical, cognitive and emotional, not singular. Personal disengagement is the withdrawal of a preferred self in behaviours that promote a lack of connections in physical, cognitive and emotional absence, in addition to incomplete role performances for instance, the demand of role links to behaviours without internal views and external influences.

The reference of disengagement is when employees can only perform their roles without integration of their personal values. Kahn, (1990) also noted that personally disengaged persons are not the same as underproductive persons, the main difference is that personal disengagement does not involve personal values when performing one’s role. Hence, the idea is that personal engagement and disengagement are on two sides, and people can move around the spectrum in workplace engagement depending on the influential factors.

Kahn’s focused and emphasised on three dimensions of psychological conditions at work that would impact and develop individual’s engagement and disengagement these include meaningfulness, psychological safety and availability (Lee and Ok, 2015). Meaningfulness is the notion of receiving a cognitive, emotional and physical acknowledgment in the work employees do which leads to engagement. This can be described as a return in on investment within role performances. The experiential component for employees is to feel valued in the working environment and influence them while, performing their task and roles for example, creativity, autonomy and self-image. Therefore, the criteria are fulfilled, when employees find meaning in the workplace in three specific dimensions; task, role characteristics and work interactions.

Task characteristics refer to when the tasks provided are clearly defined, varied, challenging in sense of creativity and a degree of autonomy which is seen as motivational, individuals are more likely to experience psychological meaningfulness (Shantz et al., 2013). In addition, routine and new skills are vital in meaningful tasks as they allow individuals to experience growth and learning from the new skills and competencies from routines.

Role characteristics is about the identities and status within a role carries or influence for instance, positions in which employees feel more empower and valued in organisations. Another, influence links to work interactions which is experiencing phycological meaningfulness in relationship with co-workers and clients. Consequently, this refers to self-appreciation and value among employees.

Also, psychological safety is the emotional or psychological support that is provided by the workplace environment such as; mutual trust, respect, positive feedbacks and behavioural consequences. It is also the ability of presenting and expressing oneself within the rules and norms of the organisation, without having fear of negative reactions or feedback. However, one critical aspect pointed by Andrew and Sofian, (2012) is to incorporate enhance communication element for instance, direct interaction, opinions, and overall collaboration as it has significant prominence in employee engagement.

Availability is another essential element for employee engagement as pointed by Kahn’s model. It is vital for employees to engross intellectual and emotional energies towards performing roles. Some of these traits are resources, confidence, status and prevention of social ambivalence. Similarly, psychological availability could be improved by providing supervisory support in workplace as it can also enhance career outcomes (Yang et al., 2018). Similarly, Employee engagement could also be advanced for newcomers’ by providing socialisation programs such as social support and enhanced task characteristics that will empower newcomers to further experience psychological safety, availability and meaningfulness (Albrecht et al., 2015).

Furthermore, in the view of related research May et al., (2004) also operationalized and confirmed Khan’s model, and found that meaningfulness is the greatest determinant of engagement. The findings of the study suggest that physiological meaningfulness is linked to various aspects of engagement such as; work motivation, job satisfaction and performance in as a behavioral outcome.

Additionally, Rich et al., (2010) also interpreted and Khan’s model using existing scales with more focus on the job engagement rather than personal which defines job engagement as a motivational idea that reflects upon the investment of an individual’s physical, cognitive, and emotional energy in a complete work performance. Job engagement signifies the investment of affective, cognitive and psychological energies in role performance, and how it illustrates task performance and organizational citizenship behavior which are the two different dimensions of job-performance. Similarly, drawing upon Kahn’s theory value congruence, perceived organizational support and core self-evaluations were further discussed as the three antecedents of engagement and their linked relationship with job performance. Nevertheless, the literature points that Kahn did not clearly elaborate on the association of engagement and job performance.

However, May et al., (2004) and Rich et al., (2010) overall interpretations of engagement are mainly derived from the psychological perspective of Kahn’s engagement model, when there are several factors that can determine and predict employee engagement within the workplace. For instance, Mani, (2011) suggests four critical predictors of employee engagement; employee welfare, empowerment, employee growth and interpersonal relationships. Hence, managers can enhance employee engagement by involving their subordinates in decision making and team counselling to ensure build and develop trust amongst the employees. Thus, it is argued that enhancing employee engagement is not only limited to psychological factors, management and workplace initiatives can also play a role in the overall engagement.

Moreover, the job-demand resource model (JD-R) gives further insight on the different elements that contribute towards work engagement differently that would result in either engagement, burnout or exhaustion. According to Bakker and Demerouti, (2008) the JD-R model consists of key areas for instance, job resources, personal resources, job demands and work engagement which are attained by the resources.

Job resources refers to the organisational, social or physical elements of the job such as; autonomy, social support and performance feedback which facilitates the work task and improves employee’s growth and development. Job resources are presumed to play a vital role in employees’ intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. For instance, employee feedback promotes better learning and enhance job competency in addition to development, growth and learning. Extrinsically as it considered as a tool in achieving work-goals, due to the nature of the workplace environment being resourceful, which enables dedication and efforts to achieve work-tasks.

Likewise, Mone et al., (2011) also points that managerial activities are positively related to employee engagement, such as providing continues employee feedback, managing performance and setting developmental objectives. Thus, job resources are considered as coping mechanisms in dealing with job demands and maintain their emotional, mental and physical wellbeing.

Another, vital element in JD-R Model is personal resources, defined as an individual’s resilience, positiveness and self-evaluation with the capability of self-control and assertiveness within workplace environment. Bakker and Demerouti, (2008) further elaborate that the higher the personal resources results in greater performance, self-regard and motivation. Consequently, these can outcomes in increased productivity and satisfaction, which enables a greater proficiency in dealing with difficult circumstances and prevention of unfavourable outcomes. This is due to the positive initiatives that lead to engaged employees and generates organisational effectiveness and job performance commitment (Kataria, Rastogi and Garg, 2013).

Likewise, Xanthopoulou et al., (2007) further examined the role with clarifying additional three personal resources. These focus on self-efficacy as one’s perception of being capable to satisfy requirements. Organizational-based self-esteem refers to belief of participating in organisational roles and can satisfy needs, and optimism is the inclination to believe that one’s experiences usually result in benevolent consequences. Hence, engaged employees whom retain personal resources such as self-esteem, optimism and resilience are more likely to adapt and maintain progression in work levels, which empowers employees to enhanced performance and career development.

Job demand includes; work pressure, mental, physical and emotional demands that are contributing factors to exhaustion and burnout when employees try hard to deal with the demands. High job demands could be facilitated through the management by creating a supportive workplace culture that incorporates managerial support and ongoing feedback to enhance work learning and opportunities (Mackay, Allen and Landis, 2017). When personal and job resources are balanced out, they facilitate and cause work-engagement. Nevertheless, when the intervention of job demands is high such as workload and stress, it provokes burnout and can eventually lead to work disengagement.

Podsakoff et al., (2007) indicates two types of pressures, challenge and hindrance related stressors. The challenge related stressor leads to job demands as a challenge and provides opportunities for their future career growth. Whereas, hindrance related stressors are more likely refers to job security and role ambiguities. Hence, challenges related stressors are more positively relevant to employees’ job satisfaction. In contrast, Crawford et al., (2010) states that high demands do not necessarily lead to exhaustion as findings were different in regards to the overall job demands. Employees who tend to perceive demands as hindrance are found to be negatively related to engagement as it causes negative emotions and reduced engagement, whereas challenging demands are presumed to be intriguing and meaningfully important for individuals to invest themselves in performing tasks.

However, Sonnentag, (2011) argues that employees work performance and the level of work engagement could fluctuate over time as it can also affect the output. For instance, highly engaged employees might be too engaged in doing their work, that the management would want to add more work due to their enthusiasm. Thus, the job demand increases and can potentially affect their well-being negatively. Hence, the JD-R model could be used as an appraisal tool in work engagement and its antecedents within organisations, whether to asses work engagement, personal resources or job resources by the level of score achieved. In addition, the model itself gave rise to personal resources for instance, self-efficacy, organisational self-esteem and optimism that are similar to Kahn’s individual differences of psychological safety and availability.

Furthermore, the JD-R model was a major development following Maslach et al., (2001) and Schaufeli et al., (2002) preliminary proposals. Work engagement and burnout are another fundamental model in employee engagement suggested by these authors. Schaufeli et al., (2002) describes engagement as a positive and gratifying mindset within the workplace with a prevalent and continual intellectual state that is characterised by; vigour, dedication and absorption. Vigour high levels of energy and mental resilience whom can view themselves as capable to fully handle job demands and have a dynamic connection in work-related activities. Dedication is the intense involvement with one’s work with a sense of pride, inspiration and enthusiastic challenge. Absorption is characterised by full concentration and favourable engrossment in one’s work through, which results in rapid time movements with a difficulty of separating one’s self from work.

Similarly, burnout is a mixture of emotional exhaustion and the inability to cope with cynicism alongside of reduction in personal accomplishments. Some of the factors that contributes on burnout are; organisational justice, fairness, firm system, policies and procedures that are perceived as unfair towards oneself (Maslach and Leiter, 1997; Maslach et al., 2001). However, Maslach and Leiter (1997) states that burnout and engagement are two oppositions, and burnout could be used to measure engagement, though exhaustion can also cause a mental and emotional distance from one’s relation to work. Whereas, Schaufeli & Bakker (2003) argues that work engagement is distinct from burnout and absorption is also what makes it distinct from burnout.

In conclusion Kahn’s model emphasises on the personal aspects of engagement; meaningfulness, psychological safety and availability that promotes work connections. May et al., (2004) operationalized Kahn’s model and Rich et al., (2010) illustrated the different dimensions of job engagement. Additionally, the JD-R model presented different aspects of resources and demands which can facilitate or impact employee engagement, with additional developments and contrary findings. Finally, Schaufeli et al., (2002) and Maslach et al., (2001) reviewed work engagement characteristics and burnout factors, with contrast outcomes on the relationship of work engagement and burnout which led to the JD-R model. Employee engagement is a fundamental part of workplace performances and individual well-being, management should reflect upon the determining factors of engagement and disengagement to the workplace environment.

References:

Albrecht, S., Bakker, A., Gruman, J., Macey, W. and Saks, A. (2015). Employee engagement, human resource management practices and competitive advantage. Journal of Organizational Effectiveness: People and Performance, 2(1), pp.7-35.

Andrew, O. and Sofian, S. (2012). Individual Factors and Work Outcomes of Employee Engagement. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 40, pp.498-508.

Bakker, A. and Demerouti, E. (2008). Towards a model of work engagement. Career Development International, 13(3), pp.209-223.

Bedarkar, M. and Pandita, D. (2014). A Study on the Drivers of Employee Engagement Impacting Employee Performance. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 133, pp.106-115.

Crawford, E.R., LePine, J.A. and Rich, B.L., 2010. Linking job demands and resources to employee engagement and burnout: a theoretical extension and meta-analytic test. Journal of applied psychology, 95(5), p.834.

Kataria, A., Rastogi, R. and Garg, P., 2013. Organizational Effectiveness as a Function of Employee Engagement. South Asian Journal of Management, 20(4), p.56.

Lee, J. and Ok, C. (2015). Drivers of work engagement: An examination of core self-evaluations and psychological climate among hotel employees. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 44, pp.84-98.

Mackay, M., Allen, J. and Landis, R. (2017). Investigating the incremental validity of employee engagement in the prediction of employee effectiveness: A meta-analytic path analysis. Human Resource Management Review, 27(1), pp.108-120.

Mani, V. (2011). Analysis of Employee Engagement and its Predictors. International Journal of Human Resource Studies, 1(2), pp.15-26.

Maslach, C., S. E. Jackson, and M. P. Leiter. 1997, ‘Maslach Burnout Inventory 3rd Edition.’ In Evaluating Stress: A Book of Resources, edited by C.P. Zalaquett and R.J. Wood, 191–218. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press,

Maslach, C., Schaufeli, W. B., & Leiter, M. P. (2001). Job burnout. Annual review of psychology, 52(1), 397-422.

Mone, E., Eisinger, C., Guggenheim, K., Price, B. and Stine, C. (2011). Performance Management at the Wheel: Driving Employee Engagement in Organizations. Journal of Business and Psychology, 26(2), pp.205-212.

Podsakoff, N. P., LePine, J. A., & LePine, M. A. (2007). Differential challenge stressor-hindrance stressor relationships with job attitudes, turnover intentions, turnover, and withdrawal behavior: a meta-analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology, 92(2), 438.

Schaufeli, W. B., Salanova, M., Gonzalez-Roma, V., and Bakker, A. B., 2002, The measurement of engagement and burnout: a two sample confirmatory factor analytic approach, Journal of Happiness Studies, 3, 71-92.

Shantz, A., Alfes, K., Truss, C. and Soane, E. (2013). The role of employee engagement in the relationship between job design and task performance, citizenship and deviant behaviours. The International Journal of Human Resource Management, 24(13), pp.2608-2627.

Sonnentag, S. (2011). Research on work engagement is well and alive. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 20(1), pp.29-38.

Truss, C., Delbridge, R., Alfes, K., Shantz, A. and Soane, E. (2013). Employee engagement in theory and practice. 1st ed. pp.1-2.

Xanthopoulou, D., Bakker, A., Demerouti, E. and Schaufeli, W. (2007). The role of personal resources in the job demands-resources model. International Journal of Stress Management, 14(2), pp.121-141.

Yang, F., Liu, J., Huang, X., Qian, J., Wang, T., Wang, Z. and Yu, H. (2018). How supervisory support for career development relates to subordinate work engagement and career outcomes: The moderating role of task proficiency. Human Resource Management Journal, 28(3), pp.496-509.