NATED Profile: Professor Jorunn Møller
Professor Jorunn Møller is leading track 3 in collaboration with Professor Berit Karseth (UiO) and Associate Professor Gunn Søreide (UiB). Her research interests are within educational leadership and workplace learning, reform policy, governance and accountability.
Professor Jorunn Møller works at the Department of Teacher Education and School Research, University of Oslo. She was elected Vice Dean for Research at the Faculty of Educational Sciences in 2009 (running to 2012).
Møller takes this opportunity to tell about and reflect upon the track 3 work activities:
Track 3 themes
"Research activity within track 3 unites around three broad themes, which simultaneously overlap and are closely connected: educational leadership and organizational learning; school reform and curriculum studies; education governance.
At present there are 15 phd - candidates enrolled in the track, and their studies cover a broad field.
One group of candidates has chosen themes tied to assessment for learning. Organizational learning and perspectives based on institutional theories are the point of departure for some of these projects. The approach takes into account that leadership is not necessarily synonymous with a particular position, and the leadership concept is closely related to a family of terms like authority, influence, and power.
Other candidates have chosen to focus on curriculum development, workplace learning and collective knowledge building at the local school, with professional learning communities as a starting point. Some projects within this group imply an intervention or action research approach.
A third group is studying marginality in education and leadership in a multicultural school.
Finally, the track includes projects about teacher accountability, change culture, and school improvement.
Being a track 3 leader
Being a leader of track 3 is both stimulating and challenging. Our greatest challenge is that track 3 covers such a range of themes and theoretical perspectives. The themes are anchored in multiple disciplines like educational theories, sociology, political sciences, social psychology and social anthropology. These disciplines do not necessarily “talk” well together, and it calls for collaboration among researchers from a variety of research traditions. We see this as challenging but it also represents an important contribution to future development for the field, theoretically as well as professionally. It implies making clear the different perspectives and related methodologies, highlighting where there are overlaps or inconsistency, problematizing what makes an educational perspective on leadership, reform policy and governance distinct, and what may be learned from other disciplines.
In order to provide relevant courses for everyone enrolled in the track, it requires a great variety of topics in our seminars. The variety may, however, also represent an advantage because our candidates offer feedback, ask questions and challenge each other when it comes to the chosen theoretical perspectives. It is quite stimulating when the candidates themselves discover thematic and methodological overlaps and may share common interests.
Also, as a leadership team, Berit, Gunn and I collaborate very well together, and we learn a lot from each other. In sum, our research interests cover the themes within the track, and it provides an opportunity to differentiate the activities in the workshops for the candidates depending on when they started."
Møllers research activities
Jorunn Møller has been involved in a range of research projects on educational leadership and policy change, and is also participating in international research networks in the field of school leadership.
At present she is engaged in a five years’ project, which aims at analyzing the role of administration and institutions in the implementation of the current educational reform in Norway (the FIRE-project). The reform is analyzed according to perspectives on modernization of the public sector, and changes in instructional practice are discussed in terms of result-oriented output. The running date of the project is 2006-2012.
Møller is also involved in the International Successful School Principal Project (ISSPP)
Møller participates in two research groups: FALK: Research on Workplace Learning in the Knowledge Society and CLEG: Curriculum Studies, Educational Leadership and Governance.