Title

Exploring in-charge teachers' academic and administrative experiences at religious education centres (REC) in Karachi

Date of Award

8-1-2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Education (M. Ed.)

Department

Institute for Educational Development, Karachi

Abstract

This qualitative study explores the experiences of lncharge Teachers (ITs) of Religious Education Centres (RECs) established and run by the Shia Imami Ismaili Tariqah and Religious Education Board (ITREB). ITs play a very significant role in managing the RECs and in the implementation of the curriculum. This study focuses on the experiences of ITs in managing the day-to-day activities of their RECs. As a result of a thematic analysis, key findings emerged. The first finding described the IT's perception regarding their roles and responsibilities. The second finding portrays the practices of IT's two main leadership roles such as administrative and academic. In the administrative roles, ITs perform multiple roles. They manage daily activities, mediates between REC committee and ITREB, act as problem solvers and community mobilizers. In the area of academics, findings reveal two important roles of ITs as academic facilitators and as resource persons. The third finding indicates some conditions that ITs consider as supporting factors that facilitate ITs in managing both their academic and administrative roles in REC. These opportunities within their roles provide ITs possibilities to practice their leadership role, by bringing about change in the learning practices and how REC functions as an academic institution in the domain of religious education. The findings also disclose some challenges which were experienced by ITs in their efforts to bring about change in the RECs and its work. Some challenges take long time to be resolved while some are sorted out on a daily basis. These challenges are generally related to students, teachers, parents and administration, their inter-relationship and how they relate to the work of REC. The study findings have important implications. These implications have been discussed in terms of myself, ITREB, REC, ITs and Parents. Analysing the data and reflecting on the ITs responses enabled me to understand the ITs experiences in their RECs. Learning about these experiences helped me to better prepare myself in terms of understanding expectations, demands and responsibilities.

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