Doctor of Education student
An interest in education policies attracted her to the Doctor of Education, says Clare Curtice who has been a teacher for 25 years.
“I love to learn. I was very interested in some of the policies introduced by successive governments that impacted on the work of teachers, and wanted to find out more about how the policies were designed and what research had been done to support their implementation.
“The support, the relationships and the ability to work collaboratively in the first two years of this programme were key reasons I chose the Doctor of Education. As most of my study up to that point had been extramural and in professional isolation, the chance to share my thinking and listen to others was a definite drawcard for me.”
She would recommend the Doctor of Education to other education professionals, Clare says.
“I’m grateful for the diversity of the group that I study with, and am inspired by their lives and commitment. The support for my work and the philosophy of continuous conversation and feedback from my supervisors have helped me work harder and improve.”
She has enjoyed working with others who are on the same pathway as her.
“It’s very helpful to have group conversations, and challenges to your thinking, to help you see your work as others see it. It’s also hugely beneficial to see how your work intersects with the ideas of other doctoral students, giving you insights that may not be apparent through your own research.”
Exploring collaboration in education
For her doctoral research, Clare is focusing on the Communities of Learning/Kahui Ako initiative. Her research is supervised by Professor Nesta Devine and Associate Professor Georgina Stewart.
“I’m interested in the positive potentialities that were envisaged from their implementation, and whether those positive outcomes have come to fruition. I would like to know what the experiences of teachers who are involved in these communities have been.
“My research will highlight the ways this collaboration has been effective, possibly highlighting any areas where this collaboration could be improved. If my work contributes to a pool of knowledge about effective collaboration – what it is and what it isn’t – and makes people question who decides, that would be fantastic.”
She hopes to encourage other teachers to become more engaged in education policy, Clare says.
“I hope to raise an awareness in teachers for the necessity for them also to be aware of policy that affects their work, and to inspire them to be more directly involved in decisions that affect their working lives and the education of their students.”