Organisational cognisance: introducing a cognitive dimension to the concept of organisational alignment

Jeyaraj, Senthurini (2011) Organisational cognisance: introducing a cognitive dimension to the concept of organisational alignment. [Thesis (PhD/Research)]

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Abstract

Contemporary understandings of the concept of organisational alignment in the management and education literature are predominantly strategic and structural in nature. While researchers have postulated cognitive aspects of the concept of organisational alignment, no definitive conception of a cognitive dimension has been proffered. Furthermore, while strategic and structural aspects of organisational alignment are considered important in research-based proposals, an understanding and agreement is yet to be fully established in the education literature regarding the significance of cognitive processes, for whole school capacity building.
Based partly on the researcher‟s interest in the nature of cognitive processes in organisations, and partly on a review of authoritative literature on the concepts of organisational alignment and capacity building, the aim of the doctoral study was twofold: first, to explore the core underlying processes of cognition that emerge within a school‟s professional learning community upon completing a whole school revitalisation process emphasising strategic and structural aspects of alignment; second, to explore the impact of emergent cognitive processes on capacity building for whole school improvement.
Data were collected through various methods such as in-depth individual interviews; focus groups; mindmapping; observations and focused conversations with teachers from two Singaporean schools that had undergone a three-year trial implementation of a whole school revitalisation program entitled Innovative Designs for Enhancing Achievement in Schools (IDEAS). This program emphasises strategic/structural alignment in its core processes and also recognises the importance of shared cognition. The research data were analysed using procedures underpinning the constructivist approach to grounded theory methodology. The collection, analysis and interpretation of data occurred in four distinct stages that resulted in two conceptual frameworks emerging: (1) an explanatory framework of the emergence of organisational cognisance and (2) the conceptual model of the impact of organisational cognisance on enhanced school capacity.
The explanatory framework of the emergence of organisational cognisance comprises five elements: „schema‟; „factors of influence‟; „factors of support‟; „cognitive change dynamics‟; and the core concept of „the emergence of organisational cognisance‟. The framework details the developmental nature of the effect of whole school revitalisation on the emergence of organisational cognisance.
The insights gained into the construct of organisational cognisance were explored through further data analysis to help enhance current understandings of school capacity building. To this end, a conceptual model that details the impact of organisational cognisance on enhanced school capacity was constructed out of the second data analysis. The model captures an understanding of organisational cognisance as a vital source in developing aspects of personal capacity, interpersonal capacity and professional capacity for enhancing schoolwide capacity.
The significance of the research resides in two postulations: first, of a cognitive dimension to the concept of organisational alignment; second, of its importance for school capacity building.


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Item Type: Thesis (PhD/Research)
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Education
Supervisors: Crowther, Frank; Andrews, Dorothy
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2013 03:42
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2016 03:19
Uncontrolled Keywords: organisational alignment; education; learning community; school capacity building; cognitive processes; conceptual frameworks
Fields of Research : 13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130199 Education systems not elsewhere classified
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130304 Educational Administration, Management and Leadership
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130101 Continuing and Community Education
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9304 School/Institution > 930403 School/Institution Policies and Development
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/23412

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