Assessing international mindedness in staff at an IB PYP school in Erbil
Martin, Robin Ann
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This action research explored using an assessment tool to assess international mindedness with the multi-cultural and multi-lingual staff of one International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (IB PYP) school in Northern Iraq. The study went on to explore the staff’s reactions to and reflections on the tool and international mindedness as well as the administrators’ reactions and reflections on the analysis of the staff responses. The study gathered data from staff using surveys before taking the Global Competence Aptitude Assessment (GCAA) and used surveys and focus group interviews to gather data after the GCAA was completed. The data analysis from the GCAA found a significant difference in international mindedness between two groups of staff members – those from Iraq and surrounding countries (Turkey, Greece, Azerbaijan) and staff from Western countries. Staff from both groups found the GCAA to be written from a Western business perspective and they disliked the style and amount of questions in the GCAA. Administrators at the school reflected that information from the GCAA could lead to the development of a more internationally minded teacher induction program and on-going professional development about international mindedness in the school. The PYP coordinator, as the action researcher, found that the GCAA and focus group interviews identified gaps in the understanding of international mindedness of the staff. Identifying the gaps in understanding completed the first part of the action research cycle that can then lead to further discussion and development of the meaning of international mindedness across the school and how that meaning is developed further.
Primary Years Programme