THE PERCEPTION OF PROFESSIONAL AUTONOMY AMONG EDUCATORS OF ADULTS Doc Dr Kristinka Ovesni Faculty of Philosophy, Department for Pedagogy and Andragogy, University of Belgrade
Term autonomy is linked to multiple meanings • ordinarily it is used to refer to independence, political sovereignty, self-control in and freedom to performance • in psychology, the term autonomy is used to refer to a relative freedom of influence of others in a different process; or to refer to a psychogenic need linked to a control, or to a process of struggle for independence and resisting to a different influences • when associate to professionalism, term assumes socially recognized functional specificity with technical, organizational and ethical implications
In andragogy, the term is used to refer to a reflection of knowledge, or to a specific form of personal freedom, tightly interconnected with the concepts like independence, self-responsibility, self-determination or self-directed learning • The phenomenon of autonomy is one of basic concepts of distinction between adults and children: adult are autonomous individuals, old enough to be responsible for his/her actions. • Also, regarding HRD perspective, professional autonomy is a powerful incentive
Professional autonomy could be categorize on • external (by professional standards, by professional preparation and by continuing professional development driven) and on • internal autonomy (individual perception of professional power on: work conditions and contents, performance, making decisions, etc).
The basic research problem considered in is the perception of professional autonomy among teachers of adults • We considered it research problem through: • subsistence of professional autonomy, • conduction of independence in work, • importance of own professional influence as a reflection of professional autonomy
Research Findings and Discussion • The main research hypothesis - that more the formal gained professional knowledge teachers in adult education have, the more autonomy in their work they reflected - is completely confirmed. • Also, expression of some determinants of professional autonomy between the teachers in adult education differ than the perception of these determinants between the members of developed professions (law, medicine, etc.)
A research findings suggests that the most of respondents claim that autonomy in their work is reflection of: • complexity of their duties (88.3%), • continuing critical reconciliation of practice (92.4%), • confidence and self-determination at work (89.7%), • priority of own judgment (89.0%) and • that is proportional to the level of influence in makingimportant decisions in organizations (83.3%).
The most of respondents (79.4) perceive a frequency of autonomous professional acting and • easiness in accomplishing duties (81.9%) as a dominant moments in obtaining a professional autonomy
Respondents perceived that professional autonomy is a reflection of own professional influence on • clients/customers – adult learners/students (89.7%), • at associates (84.6%), • at own socially constructed context (85.8%) and • a reflection of overall influence (88.3%). • but, they estimate own professional influence on management and on the social settings of their clients as a relative weak (over 76.0%).
Teachers in adult education perceive (more than 50% per item) domination of combination of team and independent work on all of the activities in their work: • planning, • choosing contents, • identification and posing a objectives, • selecting of tools and methods, • overall activities, • making decisions, and • evaluation
Regarding the perception of own autonomy, we also learned that one could claim, with statistical significance at the p < 0.01 level that: • parent’s education and occupational status influence the continuing critical reconciliation of practice • the past service and professional rank of respondents influenced perception of a level of influence in making important decisions in organizations • the number of organizations of employment in respondents work history influence on perception ofown autonomy
father’s occupational status and organization of employment have a impact on the perception of own professional influenceat own socially constructed context; • the past service have a statistically significant impact on the perception of own overall professional influence; • father’s educational status and past service have impact on the perception of dominancy of independent, fully autonomous work in activities such as choosing contents, and in own professional influence at own socially constructed context and in making decisions; • the age have a impact on the perception of dominancy of autonomous work in activities such as planning and identification and posing a work objectives;
we also learned that one could claim, with statistical significance at the p < 0.05 level that: • the gender and mother’s educational status have a impact on the perception of own professional influence at the social context of their clients/customers. • the mother’s occupational and educational status have a impact on the perception of dominancy of independent work in overall activities and in evaluation.
Based upon a considered literature and on analyzed data it is concluded that: • regarding relevant criteria of professionalization teaching adults makes huge progress in process of professionalization, but that this dimension is more openly expressed between adequate professionally prepared ones • political dimension have significant impact in perceiving professional autonomy
gender influence perceiving professional autonomy as a reflection of culture, context and formal education • standing centralization in planning and managing work activities of teachers in adult education, as a relict of earlier practice have influence at perceiving professional autonomy
What imply emergency for • professional education obtained at universities or professional schools and for • mandatory, widespread coverage with the programs for continuing professional education