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The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher 17:2 (2008), pp.

157-171

http://www.philjol.info/index.php/TAPER/article/viewFile/729/675

Inquiring into Filipino TTeachers’
eachers’ Conceptions
of Good TTeaching:
eaching: A Qualitative Research Study
Ma. Alicia Bustos-Orosa
Counseling and Educational Psychology Department
De La Salle University, Manila, Philippines
orosam@dlsu.edu.ph

Teacher beliefs and conceptions about good teaching were explored among Filipino teachers
from private schools and universities situated in different provinces throughout the country.
Teacher respondents from elementary, high school and college levels (N=272) were asked to
respond to an open-ended questionnaire for the study from which qualitative research data
were gathered. Qualitative analysis of the data was conducted by identifying dominant emergent
thematic categories and related core ideas. The study concludes that Filipino teachers’ constructs
of the nature of good teaching involve personality-based trait dispositions and teaching
competence-based dispositions. These conceptions are also rooted in Filipino cultural ideals
and values.
Keywords: teachers’ conceptions, teachers’ beliefs, good teaching, qualitative research, Philippines

The quest for good teaching has been an
unending inquiry in the academe. Perhaps the
interest in good teaching is strengthened by the
prevalent assumption that a good teacher makes good
students. However, the complexity of the teachinglearning process and the unpredictable nature of
classroom dynamics often hinder good teaching.
With marked reforms implemented in the
educational system, expectations of teacher
characteristics and teaching competencies are also
evolving. More often, ineffective teaching has been
linked to student rather than teacher factors. In a
Department of Education Memorandum, it is even
stated that “several factors constrain teachers from
playing their role as facilitators of the learning
process” (Philippine Department of Education
Bureau of Secondary Education, 2002). Even

more critical is the fact that there has been a dearth
of research on teaching in Philippine schools.
Apart from Reyes (2001), there has been no
systematic investigation of teaching expertise
pursued in the last five years.
Thus, the current study aims to elucidate critical
constructs and variables related to teaching and
learning, specifically focusing on teacher beliefs
about good teaching that might inform teaching
practices and changing instructional roles.

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Studies on teacher beliefs
Teachers’ thoughts and beliefs are integral
aspects of successful teaching. Teachers’ thinking

© 2008 De La Salle University, Philippines

honesty. caring relationships. 1978 as cited in Kolis & Dunlap. p. kind (McIntyre & Battle 1998. namely: subject matter expertise. A local study examining teaching expertise was conducted by Reyes (2001) among 69 expert teachers from Philippine private and state colleges and universities. teacher’s identity has been cited as a source of good teaching (Palmer. teachers may wish to promote a particular image of themselves (Donaghue. belief does not lend itself easily to empirical investigation. Also related to this issue is selfimage. or a teacher’s role for example guide teachers in their practice. content knowledge base.158 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER VOL. In the model-building study. Hopkins and Stern (1995) synthesized the findings of case studies and identified the six most important characteristics of excellent teachers : a passionate commitment to doing the very best for their students.. a collaborative working style with other teachers to plan. and the process of teaching (Kane. and modifying of their own practice. Reyes reveals that expert teaching is comprised of 6 subdomains. yet they influence teacher perceptions. 1993). Traits of good teachers The research on good teaching nonetheless seems to all notably point to specific personality traits and dispositions – such as being caring. knowing how to identify. behavior management practices. empathy). Good teaching has also been related to personal integrity (Palmer. Good teaching comes in an astonishing array of forms. 2003). traits of good teachers are largely described rather than categorized into a specific personality type (Palmer. and learning knowledge base. organization. Pajares (1992) states that as a global construct. At the highest level of expertise. Beliefs about teaching. Murphy. However. use of a variety of models of teaching and learning.. judgments. intangible traits of personhood and integrity are mentioned equally as competence to some extent. Teachers’ beliefs are often implicit and unarticulated. materials. McIntyre and Battle (1998) also identified 4 trait configurations: personality traits. In most studies. a love of children enacted in warm. The three knowledge bases specifically are: student knowledge base. observe and discuss each other’s work. genuineness. present. 281). In the early 1990’s. 2001). respectful treatment of students. Pajares. Sandretto & Heath. 2005). and a constant questioning of. Kolis and Dunlap (2004) meanwhile refer to the K3P3 model which illustrated the interplay between knowledge bases and pedagogical processes. and decisions and direct teachers to act in certain ways (Vartuli. 2 may be guided by a personally held system of beliefs. and explain key concepts). . 1990. 1992). 2004). and are derived from sources such as experience and personality (Donaghue. reflecting on. and instructional skills. 17 NO. 2002). Murphy et al. Delli & Edwards. Beliefs are formed from personal experiences. Noddings. 2004. 1993). courageous. 1993).g. 2004. Bhattacharya (2004) also cites the study of Darby (1997) which found that the quality of teaching is derived broadly from two types of attribute: technical skills (content. It is quite interesting to note that in most studies about good teaching. subconsciously or consciously. pedagogical content knowledge (e. learners. and respect for students. The congruence between method and the Studies of excellent or exemplary teachers One other approach to the study of teaching effectiveness and good teaching has been to focus instead on the practices of excellent teachers (Nuthall. applicability) and personal skills (attitude. the master teacher provides a seamless integration of the three knowledge bases through the three pedagogical knowledge processes in order to facilitate the actualization of student learning (Gage. They are a major determinant of behavior as teachers respond to questions and make classroom decisions. (2004) concluded that good teaching emphasizes the value of the interpersonal aspects rather than the academic goals of teaching. 2003). values and principles or by a broad knowledge base of content and teaching strategies that inform their teaching practice and go largely unarticulated (Isenberg. education and values.

The various responses were then content analyzed and coded individually by the researcher. M. s/he possesses the knowledge in his/her subject area? Why would you say that he/she is knowledgeable? Questionnaires were then distributed to 272 teachers (Males= 70. and two from Mindanao.A. Aside from these sub-domains. All the responses of the participants were then encoded verbatim. Females= 199. typical or variant. RESEARCH PROBLEM Given the premise that teacher beliefs and social cognitions can influence teaching practices. The study adapted guidelines from Heppner and Heppner (2004) where categories that emerged from the analysis of the data were separated into three types (general. What is the nature of good teaching? b. and engagement of the students in the classroom learning activities and on the teachers’ rapport with the class” (p. How would you describe the qualities that make him/her a good teacher? 3. Furthermore. . instructional expertise. the current study adopted the objective of exploring Filipino teachers’ beliefs and cognitions about good teaching. the researcher developed a brief open-ended questionnaire with the following questions written in English: 1. an indication of how often a response was given is provided as general. 159 2. What personal and social qualities of teachers are related to good teaching? c. An external audit review was then done by a professional colleague of the researcher for verification of categories and themes. a final set of thematic categories were then developed by the researcher and again audited by the two research associates. typical. The content analysis was then validated by two research associates who were PhD candidates in Educational and Counseling Psychology prior to determining the final thematic categories for the responses to each of the research questions. These cities and provinces are widely distributed throughout the country’s archipelago with four schools from Luzon. The outcomes provide a culturally-appropriate framework for exploring these social cognitive variables for purposes of understanding teachers’ beliefs about good teaching. Once the data coding of the responses was validated. and communication expertise. the coded responses were then categorized into themes. Furthermore. Do you think that as a good teacher. and Batangas . A frequency count of the responses under each thematic category was then undertaken.B. one from Visayas. the study intended to generate new models for categorizing and understanding these concepts and beliefs about good teaching based on these specific dimensions: a. All the private schools and universities included in this study were affiliated with and supervised by a widely-respected Catholic University System. METHOD As the study was qualitative in nature. Bacolod. Why would you say that he/she is a good teacher? OROSA. diagnostic expertise. In ‘general’ responses. Reyes also identifies ‘enhancers’ or teacher characteristics or behaviors that have “corresponding observable effects on the interest. no conceptual nor theoretical framework was used on which to anchor the analysis of the research data in this study. variant) and summarized in a table. 33). Iligan.FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING classroom management expertise. relational expertise. As the respondents were quite well-versed in English. From these. attention. no responses had to be translated. No indication = 3) from eight (8) private schools and universities in different cities and provinces in the Philippines namely: Metro Manila. Think of a teacher who exemplifies good teaching. What knowledge and pedagogical processes are related to good teaching? As such.

160 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER almost all of the participants indicated the response. As stated. ‘Typical’ responses were stated at least by a fourth to half of the participants. there were also no variances in the responses of the three educational levels (i. The summary tables will help the reader better understand the results and inform the reader as to how common the conceptions were among the teacher respondents in the study. a summary of the themes and core ideas gathered from the qualitative results is given in Table 1. In the analysis of the data. elementary. responses to each of the questions were coded into core ideas and themes were generated to exemplify the various dimensions investigated in the study. college) identified. high school. responses indicated as ‘variant’ were mentioned by only one or two participants. In defining the nature of good teaching. diligence. . the researcher categorized the Table 1 Themes and Core Ideas on the Nature of Good Teaching Major Themes and Underlying Themes Frequency of Responses Core Ideas Dispositional and Personality-related traits Caring and concern for others’ welfare General Ability to inspire students General Commitment to the profession General Ethical conduct and integrity Typical Self-awareness and confidence Typical Motivation for selfimprovement Typical ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Caring Love for children Empathy Drawing out the best in students Inspiring Has a positive effect on student’s life Motivating Passion for teaching Drive for excellence Professional commitment Professional attitudes (punctuality. On the other hand. Based on the data. well-preparedness. VOL. 17 NO.e. 2 RESULTS In the succeeding discussion.. efficiency) Collegiality Faithfulness to vision and mission of school Integrity Ethics Just and fair Consistency Professionalism Acts a good role model Positive regard for students and colleagues Self-assurance Self-awareness Humility Openness to experience Dynamism Versatility Well-rounded personality Optimism Patience for learning table continues.. the qualitative results of the study based on the research questions posed are presented.

cognitions. M. Under the thematic category of teaching competence. attitudes. caring and concern for others’ welfare. In the analysis of the data under this thematic category. pedagogical knowledge and skills were the most common responses given. Subsumed under personality-related traits are core ideas that refer to teacher beliefs which related good teaching to the teacher’s inherent personality traits. there were also teacher ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Classroom management behaviors Lesson Planning Resourcefulness Setting conditions for effective learning (makes learning fun and enjoyable) Use of a variety of instructional strategies Setting appropriate learning expectations Result-oriented Innovation and creativity Content mastery Simplifies content to students’ level Alignment of content and strategy Explains well Attention to details Insightful Social relevance of teaching context Teaching by example Discovery and hands-on learning Focus on application Develops critical thinking Mastery of the medium of instruction Has an audible voice Conversant Teacher as researcher Catalyst of change respondents who pointed to spirituality. . emphasis on the application of knowledge.FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING OROSA. selfawareness and confidence. and communication skills were also highlighted by the teacher respondents. Research skills and the transformative role of teaching were sparsely mentioned however. aptitude and expertise. physical attributes. Second to these were ethical conduct and integrity. ability to inspire students. and even social-emotional states. and skills that are related to classroom teaching per se. Knowledge of content and subject matter.A. core ideas include teacher behaviors. Under this theme. In this category. there is emphasis on the role of the teacher. and sense of humor as integral to the nature of good teaching. internal attributes. and motivation for selfimprovement. and professional commitment were the most recurrent responses given by the teacher participants .B. 161 Table 1 continued Spirituality Physical attributes Sense of humor Variant Variant Variant ≈ God-fearing ≈ Personal grooming ≈ Has a sense of humor General ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Teaching Competence Pedagogical knowledge and skills Knowledge of content and subject matter Typical Emphasis on the application of knowledge Typical Communication skills Typical Research skills Transformative role Variant Variant findings under two major themes that were apparent from the data analysis: (1) Dispositional and personality-related traits and (2) Teaching competence-related variables. self-concept. Remarkably.

t r u s t w o r t h y.. having a sense of humor.162 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER VOL. much importance is given to a teacher’s adeptness in establishing personal relationships. It is evident that a good teacher is perceived to b e s o c i a b l e . k i n d . caring and concern. respectful. 17 NO. In illustrating the qualities of a good teacher. Similarly. wise. 2 The summary of themes and core ideas for the qualities of a good teacher are outlined in Table 2. happy. the good teacher is perceived to also be self-assured. motivating and enthusiastic. Akin to the analysis on the nature of good teaching. . c a r i n g . responses were also categorized under two thematic categories: personality-related trait dispositions and teaching competence-related traits. ethical conduct and temperament. wellgroomed and spiritual to a certain degree by a few respondents. Table 2 Themes and the Core Ideas related to the Qualities of a Good Teacher Major Themes and Underlying Themes Frequency of Responses Core Ideas Dispositional and Personality-related traits Adeptness in establishing personal relationships Typical Caring and concern for others’ welfare Typical Professional commitment Typical Ethical conduct Typical ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Has good rapport with students Flexible Sensitive Friendly Patient Approachable Good listener Establishes relationship with colleagues Caring Kind Shows concern Motherly/fatherly Compassionate and generous Empathetic Sincere Life-affirming Appreciative Inspiring Loyal and dedicated Has a passion for teaching Faithfulness to the mission and vision of the school Manifests an academic/research attitude Collegiality Trustworthy Respects students Fair/Has integrity Good role model table continues.

A.B. M.FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING OROSA. 163 Table 2 continued Temperament Typical Self-awareness Variant Age and wisdom Sense of humor Physical attributes Variant Variant Variant Spirituality Variant Teaching Competence-related variables ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Happy Motivating/Pleasing Enthusiastic Self-assured Self-aware Self-confident Humble Wise Has a sense of humor Looks dignified Well-groomed and neat Values-centered Values teaching as service Christian God-fearing Motivated to improve in teaching Intelligent Knowledgeable Lifelong learner An expert Thinks critically A wide reader Organized Academically-equipped in the field of specialization Responds to learner differences in ability levels Acknowledges developmental needs of students Adaptive to students’ needs and pace of learning Can simplify content to students’ level Has good presentation skills Resourceful Creative Innovative Uses a variety of teaching strategies Literate with technology Good planner Anticipates what can happen in the classroom Manages student behaviors well Manages time effectively Makes a lesson meaningful Connects lessons to real life Makes subject matter interesting Provides examples Acts as a facilitator Engages students in critical thinking Proficient language ability Audible voice Building expertise Typical ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Student-centeredness Typical ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ ≈ Adeptness with instructional methods Typical Classroom management skills Typical Focus on application of knowledge Typical Communicating skills Typical .

17 NO. As teacher respondents stated: “There is one teacher who taught me that ‘Education is not just filling the bucket. a good teacher also has to be a lifelong learner and interested in developing one’s knowledge base in the field. In building expertise. such as: “models true Christian values.” Responding to learners’ needs and adapting student-centered teaching were also cited as descriptive of good teachers.”. there is apparent reference to a teacher’s proficiency to effectively adapt teaching to the pace of learning and ability levels of the students. It’s lighting a fire’ and for me she is one of the teachers who exemplifies good teaching” “has the ability and desire to make the students discover their gifts and talents which they can fully utilize to build a better future for themselves.” The reference to values teaching and spirituality of good teachers was also noted in some of the responses given. Within teaching-competence related variables. prays and shares faith with the students and views education and formation of students as a priority. and pleasing) which includes positive traits or dispositions is also highly regarded as characteristic of a good teacher. A few respondents also pointed to physical attributes and appearance as an important perception of good teachers. teachers stated: “A good teacher has the heart to touch the children” “She can also be their second mother who is willing to help in any way she can. .. there is consistency in the notion that good teachers should also be competent in their work. The respondents also highlighted the value of building expertise. Hence. clear. A succinct response to this item was “you cannot give what you do not have. 2 “A well-prepared teacher knows what to teach. adeptness with instructional methods. Nevertheless. were equally valued as one’s commitment to teaching and proficiency in language and communication. In this study.” Nonetheless. and areas of expertise. how to teach and has good command of the subject matter being taught” “has the facility to deliver lectures with amazing spontaneity in simplistic ways that become clearly understandable by students” “provides a thorough.164 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER In describing the teacher as a compassionate and caring person. interactive presentation/discussion of material. student-centeredness. teacher respondents related that a competent teacher may be described as: VOL. motivating.” “gives so much of herself in teaching not only about the lesson but most of all about life.” The responses also emphasize the inspiring role teachers have in students’ lives. Statements illustrating this description included that a good teacher: “goes down to the level of students’ level of understanding” “is sensitive and easily thinks of strategies that suit the needs of the students”. and focus on application of knowledge. These pedagogical and knowledgebased skills however. building expertise was cited as characteristic of good teachers. For Filipino teachers. there is the notion that teachers should be well-informed about content. it was evident that teaching is closely related to one’s own abilities. Equally emphasized was that temperament (i. enthusiastic. in building expertise. classroom management skills. intelligence. grows in personal faith life.e. being happy.

FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING In the following section. In this category. and (5) adeptness in interpersonal relationships. . a summary of the emergent thematic categories and core ideas related to the knowledge and processes attributed to good teaching are presented in Table 3.A. (3) knowledge of learner differences. Filipino teachers attribute good teaching to content mastery and expertise. their responses indicated five major categories: (1) content knowledge. OROSA. motivation for building expertise. (2) knowledge of content application. Such expertise is further substantiated by the recognition by peers that a good teacher is an expert based on the awards and continuous training or education he/she receives or pursues in the field of specialization. 165 Content knowledge may be defined as one’s knowledge of the subject matter. Table 3 Knowledge and Processes Attributed to Good Teaching Major Themes Underlying Themes Frequency Content Knowledge Knowledge of subject matter General Academic background Typical Motivation for building expertise Typical Valued expertise Variant Clarity in presentation of concepts Typical Knowledge of content application Core Ideas ≈ Expertise in the field ≈ Content mastery ≈ In-depth knowledge and understanding of content ≈ Knowledge of appropriate resources ≈ Insightful about the content area ≈ Comprehensive teaching ≈ Accuracy and reliability of information imparted ≈ Good grasp of concepts in the field ≈ Goes beyond textbook content ≈ Previous educational experience ≈ Related industry practice ≈ Awards received ≈ Continuous training in the field ≈ Continuing education in the content area ≈ Credibility ≈ Updates oneself professionally ≈ Voracious reader ≈ Lifelong learner ≈ Has an inherent love for field of expertise ≈ Personally values knowledge taught ≈ Can answer students’ questions ≈ Ability to present subject matter in practical and relevant terms ≈ Ability to explain and discuss subject matter well ≈ Simplifies content ≈ Has purpose and organization of concepts table continues. M. and valued expertise.B. academic background.. When the teacher respondents were asked as to the kind of knowledge that a good teacher should possess. (4) knowledge of instructional models.

yet retains its originality. 17 NO. Responses that exemplify content mastery also refer to a wide knowledge base about a content area often manifested in one’s ability to answer questions.” . to go beyond the text. authentic learning. 2 Table 3 continued Authentic learning Typical Precision of language use Typical Art of questioning Integration with other disciplines Typical Typical Knowledge of learner differences Adaptive teaching Typical Knowledge of instructional models Adaptive instructional models Typical Teaching for critical thinking Variant The findings in this dimension are closely similar to the responses on the traits of good teachers regarding content mastery and building expertise. Responses given that relate to knowledge of content application stated that a good teacher: “has the ability to link the subject matter to other fields and other ways where his/her teaching can be a means of answering practical and concrete problems at present” “he can readily accept challenges especially in an unexpected moment when students ask questions that are unexpected” “can elaborate and give graphic examples or illustrations to abstract concepts” “she can expound on the subject matter well” “can provide examples which are life-based” “you can tell if he expounds without hesitation when asked. and integration with other disciplines. “takes knowledge and translates it to students in a way which is comprehensible to them. art of questioning. and facility to expound on the subject matter.” “can provide alternative examples and activities” The theme of knowledge of content application refers to good teaching as involving: clarity in the presentation of concepts.166 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER VOL. Some responses included: ≈ Goes beyond the lesson ≈ Emphasis on student application of learning ≈ Provision for practical life experiences related to learning ≈ Practical and relevant teaching ≈ Explains ideas well ≈ Confident in verbalizations ≈ Rephrases ≈ Asks good questions ≈ Ability to integrate with other disciplines ≈ Understands related issues ≈ Integrates new knowledge ≈ Responds to individual differences ≈ Adjusts teaching to students’ learning needs ≈ Organizes key ideas ≈ Organizes classroom learning experiences ≈ Creative in use of a variety of teaching strategies ≈ Executes a good lesson plan ≈ Encourages students to think critically ≈ Makes students excel in competitions precision of language use.

good teachers are able to relate content to students’ needs and are able to make connections with other disciplines and new knowledge. she gave us activities where we could develop our communication skills.” DISCUSSION Beliefs and Conceptions about Good Teaching The prominence attributed to dispositions and personality traits in relation to good teaching is congruent with research studies cited previously (Kane et al. Good teachers are reportedly flexible with the pace of instruction. 1997). The findings are also similarly fitting with the conclusion offered by White (1995) that the personality of the teacher is the most important factor in a successful teacher. Integrity.” Filipino teachers also highlighted adapting instructional models and teaching for critical thinking as important to good teaching.g. The reference to challenging students in evident in the response that teachers can make students excel in competitions.B. Good teaching is also ascribed to personality traits. a construct that some researchers opt to call dispositions. and voluntarily a pattern of behavior that is directed to a broad goal. Murphy et al. it was also evident that caring and ensuring smooth interpersonal relationships are construed as desirable traits. 2002. consciously. 1993). Noddings. Responses that illustrate this key point included: “She takes the students from where they are and provide experiences that will measure success. 2001. Palmer. as cited in Thornton. Good teaching hence. Ritchchart (2001) views dispositions as a collection of cognitive tendencies that capture one’s patterns of thinking.. The current study thus proposes that constructions of good teaching among Filipinos may be rooted in cultural conceptions of a good person or ideal values. 2001). Further. Oftentimes we are not aware that it . Thus. these traits may in essence be embodied in a cultural concept Filipino anthropologists call asal (Jocano.. have established routines and transitions and makes use of instructional time effectively. In this study.” “During our classes before. 2004. McIntyre & Battle. 2004. 1993) including the emphasis on good teaching as caring and concern OROSA. 1998. and good character. dispositions as cognitive tendencies would also aptly characterize both personality-based traits and teaching competence-related variables (e. as cited in Thornton. Murphy et al. may largely be associated with dispositional traits. building expertise) identified in the current study. if one were to follow this argument. similar to Thornton (2006) and Ritchchart (2001. 2006). 167 for others (McIntyre & Battle 1998. etc.’ However. there is also notable emphasis on the teacher’s ability to respond to the needs of individual learners in the classroom. In this study. the study indicated that Filipino teachers believe that professional dispositions are essential to good teaching. We engaged in role plays. a construct that is highly valued in Filipino culture. and ethical conduct were also accentuated (Palmer. 2006). a definition grounded on a dispositional view of intelligence (Ritchchart. Asal. dialogues. pertains to ethical ways of acting. self-knowledge. Katz (1993) defines a disposition as a tendency to exhibit frequently.A.FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING In this regard. On the other hand. Reyes (2001) referred to this as the expert teacher’s ‘relational expertise.. M. An illustrative statement in this regard was that good teachers: “provide experiential learning area where learners can apply practical knowledge and life skills” “provide opportunities for critical thinking. Jocano (1997) states: “Asal lies deep in the Filipino subconscious.

1997. p. colleagues. Asal is intrinsic in (the Filipino personality)…It emanates from within us as part of our human nature. “It is an ethical demand and a moral obligation to maintain harmonious relations with others because we are dealing with our kapwatao (fellow humans) who also seek the same harmonious relations with us.168 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER influences the way we think and do things in relation to the situations we are in or in terms of our relations with other members of a group. 2002. More so. and professional commitment and faithfulness to the mission and vision of the school. Other notable findings in this study were the reference to spirituality. 63). Moreover. as a people. The emphasis on spirituality may also be justified by the fact that the respondents in this study all belonged to a Catholic-based university or school. Reyes proposed that expert teachers have subject matter expertise. it was revealed that teacher VOL. This study therefore raises a notable finding related to the beliefs about good teaching that clearly reflect cultural values like asal which are embedded in and highly-valued among Filipinos. 64). p. It is in within this construct of asal that the Filipinos’ value for pakikipagkapwa-tao (harmonious relations with others) is defined and the intrinsic quality of our pagkamakatao (concern or compassion) over other human beings is made manifest” (p. In her study. p. In a related study by Suplido (2006). using comparable sample respondents from the same schools in this study. the Philippines being the largest Christian country in Asia with a predominantly Catholic population has long highlighted spirituality and religion in almost every aspect of everyday life. a construct closely synonymous to content knowledge. The stress on values teaching is also a unique focus among Filipino teachers. In this study. Perhaps this finding may be ascribed to the propensity of Philippine schools to model and pattern teaching practices on researchbased Western instructional programs and models. BSED. particularly in the elementary and high school levels as values education is integrated in all the core learning areas and content of the curriculum (e. So too. Knowledge and processes attributed to good teaching The current research further indicated that Filipino teachers emphasize the value of content knowledge and pedagogical knowledge processes in good teaching.” (Jocano.g. 17 NO. in most schools. as a teacher is more committed to the vision and mission that the academic community shares collectively. Such a finding is characteristic of schools in the Philippines which require their teaching and non-teaching staff to undergo an immersion into the charism of the institution. “the emphasis on interdependent relationships expresses well the principle of egalitarianism found in the Filipino concept of kapwa” (Jocano. often overtly facilitated through in-service seminars. The findings suggest that there is a marked congruence with the conceptions of teachers in previous studies (Kolis & Dunlap. religious order. 1997. teachers are required to deliberately state the value integral to a lesson by explicitly stating the same in a lesson plan or subject area curriculum. the value of pedagogical knowledge and application are also . feelings and behaviors are closely related to the other stakeholders in the academic community: their students. teachers would expectedly espouse the same religious doctrine and educational mission. English and Values Education) (Phil. 58). administrators and the university as a whole” (p. In popular usage.. In this case. Functionally. 208). Another plausible perspective that is supported by this study relates to the sub-domains of expertise proposed by Reyes (2001). since the schools and universities all belonged and are supervised by one Catholic. Further. or character. 2004) about the knowledge that good teachers should possess. 2 commitment grounded on “occupational motives. it serves as the standard against which our pagkatao (personhood) as Filipinos is expressed and known. Filipinos highlight the importance given to maintaining harmonious relationships.2). Thus. he/ she is also perceived to be a good teacher. asal is often used to mean ugali.

an image which tends to describe the good teacher as a role model. In essence. Such a finding may be argued as a result of the value placed on a highly regarded Filipino cultural trait called asal. 103).FILIPINO TEACHERS’ CONCEPTIONS OF GOOD TEACHING closely parallel to Reyes’ sub-domains of classroom management expertise. Hopkins & Stern. “the challenge for the greater part is to create a climate in which caring and professionalism are compatible” (p.A. ethical conduct and integrity (Bhattacharya. Moreover. in this study Filipino teachers clearly placed more significance on the teacher ’s ability to establish rapport and maintain harmonious interpersonal relationships with students and colleagues. This study as well highlighted the importance and the interactive nature of knowledge and knowledge processes by Kolis and Dunlap (2004) and the sub-domains proposed by Reyes (2001). The themes on knowledge of learner differences and instructional models raised in this study are also congruent with some of the specific ‘enhancers’ in Reyes’s study. The current study also lends support to previous studies that point to the personality traits that make a good teacher. There is an apparent collective notion about the multi-dimensional nature of good teaching as a balance between what one knows and what one is. a notion also rooted in cultural conceptions of the good person. professionalism should also be equally recognized by the school. Schools may have to institute means and venues where both caring and professionalism are equally valued. there is a clear indication that dispositional traits are essential in good teaching. Therefore. 2001. However. kindness. instructional expertise. In this current research. Woolfolk. and communication expertise. With regard to the implications of the study. McIntyre & Battle. Given . Hativa. good teaching is best described as a profile rather than just a single dimensional trait. However. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS The current study identifies the convergence of beliefs Filipino teachers have about good teaching.B. it may be more prudent to consider that good teaching involves a diverse array of dispositional traits and not a unitary personality type. but that there is no single personality profile of what makes a good teacher. As Noddings (2001) had stated. a construct which involves dispositional traits based on personality traits and professional competence. it may be risky to assume that schools should seek an ideal personality profile among its teachers. Such an inference is based on the responses Filipino teachers gave about their own experiences as students when asked to recall an image of a good teacher. In this study. the findings of the current research point to the plausible relationship between instructional self-efficacy and good teaching. Barak & Simhi. OROSA. It would be even more unfair to many teacher candidates to be chosen or disqualified based on specific personality traits. schools will need to balance two conflicting dispositions. 2003. compassion. Perhaps implicit in these notions about good teaching is a shared respect and high regard for teachers. 2007). As such. In light of the research findings that present dispositional traits as essential to good teaching. 169 Over all. there is also the premise that with the emphasis on caring in good teaching. the study is congruent with the cross-cultural studies of Hopkins and Stern (1996) which found that good teachers demonstrate dispositional and professional characteristics. interestingly there seems to be strong evidence that teaching selfefficacy is closely parallel to good teaching practices as stipulated in related literature. 1996. it may in fact be more constructive if teacher educators focus on developing dispositions that relate to professional competence than personality over time. M. Hence. in the current study. such traits as caring. schools will need to create mechanisms to ensure that teachers can develop a caring relationship with students such as looping and regular student-teacher conferences. 1998.

Secondly. As the research evidence has also revealed consistently that teaching beliefs begin early on. H. What is good teaching in engineering education in India? A case study. and pedagogical knowledge. . administrative support and academic mentoring may need to be systematized to help teachers develop the requisite teaching repertoire and dispositions. the implications of the research study to practice and teacher-training are presented. 344. 57(4). An instrument to elicit teachers’ beliefs and assumptions. A proposed framework for defining the different dimensions of this study is provided in Figure 1. emphasis must be given to the role of teachertraining in demystifying and clarifying conceptions early on at the pre-service level. there is an apparent congruence between the dimensions of good teaching with studies on instructional self-efficacy. 17 NO. Evidently in this study. However. The current study has certainly pointed out that Filipino teachers’ conceptions of good teaching are expressed as diverse and multi-dimensional constructs. Further research into the relationship and role of instructional self-efficacy and good teaching practices may yield more substantial data in the future. Innovations of Education and Teaching International. the traits identified of good teachers all correspond with the characteristics of teachers with high instructional self-efficacy. (2004). In conclusion. The current study also mentioned that in conjunction with developing dispositional traits. enhancing one’s knowledge and pedagogical knowledge processes are also significant in good teaching.170 THE ASIA-PACIFIC EDUCATION RESEARCHER VOL. In this regard. though this study proposes that there are no clear and defined teaching behaviors and teaching models that characterize all good teachers. content mastery and expertise. Critical factors in good teaching the responses related to good teaching and the traits of good teachers. The present study. teaching competence. 329-341. and knowledge of learning processes to achieve effective teaching. pedagogical knowledge. B. ELT Journal. the present study sought to inquire into Filipino teachers’ conceptions and beliefs on the following dimensions: the nature of good teaching and the personal and social qualities related to good teaching. REFERENCES Bhattacharya. Donaghue. 2 Personality-based Personality-based dispositions dispositions Content mastery mastery Content andexpertise expertise and Good Good teaching teaching Pedagogical Pedagogical knowledge knowledge Teaching Teaching competence traits traits competence Figure 1. (2003). 41 (3).351. it is inarguable that teachers need to develop content mastery. concludes that good teaching is the confluence of several critical factors: personality-based dispositions. therefore.

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