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Looking into early headship: the socialisation experiences of new primary headteachers in Cyprus

Theodosiou, Valentina (2015) Looking into early headship: the socialisation experiences of new primary headteachers in Cyprus. PhD thesis, UCL Institute of Education.

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Abstract

This thesis draws on socialisation theory and the stage theory of headship to explore the professional and organisational socialisation experiences of new Cypriot primary headteachers. The study examines the ways in which new heads have been prepared for headship and formed their professional identity as heads. It also offers insights into novice headteachers’ socialisation in schools, the challenges they encountered upon assuming headship, as well as their progression through stages of headship during their early years in post. The study employed a sequential mixed-methods approach comprised of unstructured face-to-face interviews, a survey of all 90 novice primary headteachers appointed during 2009-2010, in-depth semi-structured interviews with 12 novice headteachers and follow-up interviews with ten of them two years later to shed further light on the issues under examination. The overall findings portray Cypriot headteachers’ preparation for headship through formal and informal leadership development opportunities and provide empirical evidence of the complex process of their socialisation in schools and the challenges they encountered during early headship. Findings from this study contribute towards theory regarding headteachers’ transition through stages of headship that could be used to develop practice and enhance understanding of how the professional and organisational socialisation experiences help shape the professional identity of headteachers. Empirical evidence from this thesis has important implications for policy makers, training providers and researchers with regards to headship preparation and induction in Cyprus and internationally. The findings also suggest several important directions for future research, most importantly in professional identity formation and leadership styles; gender issues in pathways to headship; the importance of ‘people’ as socialisation agents for new heads; and the need for longitudinal studies on transition through stages of headship within the Cypriot educational context.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Controlled Keywords: professional socialisation, headship preparation, organisational socialisation, headteachers
Subjects: Departments > London Centre for Leadership in Learning
Depositing User: Mr Julian Zerfahs
Date Deposited: 07 Jul 2015 11:10
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2015 11:10
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