Proceedings of The 5th International Conference on New Approaches in Education
Comparing Factors Influencing the Participation of Professional Learning Communities in Korea and the US
Suji Lee, Jihee Seo, Suyeon Park, Moonyoung Eom
This study aims to explore the factors influencing the participation of Korean and American teachers in Professional Learning Communities. PLCs reform schools based on teacher autonomy and positively affect student achievement. However, unlike the US where the birthplace of PLCs, PLCs in Korea are implemented as a top-down policy, raising questions about teacher autonomy and sustainability. This study conducted a multiple regression analysis comparing teachers in Korea and the US. We used the Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) 2018 data, which is conducted by OCED. The results showed the commonalities and differences in factors that make Korean and American teachers participate in PLCs. We found that factors, such as perception of social values, self-efficacy in instruction, and student engagement had a meaningful effect in both countries. Five factors, such as teaching experience, school type, and student-teacher ratio factors only influence teachers in Korea. Interestingly, only two factors, the percentage of refugee students and school delinquency and violence impact teachers in the US. We discussed the significance of understanding the influencing factors on the participation of PLCs in Korea and the US. We suggest that policymakers consider ways to change environmental factors that can induce individual teacher participation in PLCs.
keywords: professional development, teacher communities, teacher autonomy, school climate, school reform.