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Lee, Ai Noi
Teaching is a known to be a multifaceted job, often associated with a high workload and extensive demands. These demands include the need for continuous professional development and integration of technology in their classroom practice. Teachers need to engage in professional development as it enables them to effectively educate students to prepare their students to thrive in the rapid-changing, knowledge based 21st century. Given the extensive demands at the school workplace, it is crucial for school leaders to support the psychological functioning of the teachers at work. The learning support provided to teachers by their direct supervisors in their day-to-day work is vital in supporting teachers’ professional learning and psychological functioning at work. Given Singapore’s emphasis on teachers’ use of technology in schools and wellbeing at work, the present study sought to examine the relationships between teachers’ perceived supervisor learning support and basic psychological needs satisfaction with respect to teachers' use of technology and job satisfaction.
A convenience sample of 180 Singaporean teachers was used in the study. Informed consent was obtained from the participants. Participants voluntarily took part in the study by completing either a paper or online questionnaire. Analysis of the data using path analysis revealed that perceived supervisor learning support positively predicted the satisfaction of basic psychological needs based on the need for autonomy, competence and relatedness. Perceived supervisor learning support directly and positively predicted the use of technology and job satisfaction. Results from mediation analysis signified that perceived supervisor learning support indirectly predicted teachers’ use of technology via basic psychological need satisfaction for competence, but not autonomy and relatedness. However, perceived supervisor learning support indirectly predicted job satisfaction by virtue of all three components of basic psychological needs fulfilment: autonomy, competence, and relatedness.
Using the Self-Determination Theory’s (SDT) to understand teachers’ basic psychological needs satisfaction at work in the Singapore teaching context, the present study suggests important implications for practice and research. The present study investigated the three psychological needs in terms of autonomy, competence and relatedness as unique and different dimensions instead of an aggregated construct of basic psychological needs satisfaction. It highlights the importance of promoting and supporting these three psychological needs of teachers to enhance teacher effectiveness. Additionally, direct supervisors of teachers play critical roles in teacher learning as they interact and work closely with the teachers in the day-to-day work. Specifically, leadership development programmes that enhance the direct supervisors’ need-supportive behaviours is important for direct supervisors to effectively support teachers’ professional learning and psychological needs satisfaction at work.
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checked on Jun 7, 2023
checked on Jun 7, 2023
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