Know Thy Collective Impact


The Power of Collective Efficacy by Jenni Donohoo, John Hattie, and Rachel Eells
Educational Leadership: March 2018. Vol 75 No. 6, March 1, 2018

Conversations surrounding effective teaching often center on individual teachers in individual classrooms. In their Educational Leadership article, "The Power of Collective Efficacy," researchers Donohoo, Hattie, and Eells broaden their lens, describing the power of "collective efficacy." In their synthesis of several meta-analyses, the authors show that the beliefs teachers hold about their school’s ability to impact students is strongly associated with student success. When comparing the effect size of potential influencers, the analysis suggests collective teacher efficacy has an influence almost triple that of the next strongest one, prior achievement. Building a culture of collective efficacy takes time and must be foundational to a school’s ethos: educators should work to know "thy collective impact." Collaborative structures must be put in place to enable and encourage dialogue on learning and to help build confidence and trust in colleagues. Moreover, dependable data, which, when analyzed, is focused on collective success helps frame the conversations and can show collective impact. To create a culture of collective efficacy takes intentionality, but the rewards are reinforcing over the long term. In independent schools – where autonomy has traditionally been valued – shifting to a culture of collaboration demands a clear vision and patience. The recent work of Donohoo, Hattie, and Eells can help to set the pace.

Submitted By: John Rogers, Culver Educational Foundation, Culver, IN

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  1. Rowena Jimenez | Oct 17, 2018

    This makes sense to me because when collaborating, we also consider the strenghts/ weaknesses and resources of every team member, including time. This multiplies options and ways to solve various anticipated problems. Effective collaboration is founded on the culture of collective efficacy.


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