PhD project: Differentiated teacher roles: Teacher specialists in the Norwegian school system.
The teacher specialist initiative (“ Lærerspesialistordningen” ) was implemented in 2015, providing 200 teachers a new formalized position as a teacher specialist in either Norwegian or science. The specialists are intended to be working with professional development, sharing their knowledge with other teachers and contribute to the development of the school as a learning organization. The initiative brings several new elements into the historically egalitarian profession, including a role differentiation and knowledge specialization that has scarcely been present in the teaching profession (Donaldson et al, 2008).
The aim of the project is therefore to examine specialized teachers position in the school system, and how they contribute to schools' professional development. Central research questions in the project are:
- How does teacher specialists define their role and tasks, and how are they defined by principals and teacher colleagues?
- To what extent is school culture influencing the specialists’ work?
- What kind of knowledge resources are utilized by the specialists, and for what purposes?