Date of Award

2021

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Education by Research

School

School of Education

First Advisor

Mandie Shean

Second Advisor

John O’Rourke

Third Advisor

Michaela Pascoe

Abstract

Mindfulness practices are increasingly being introduced into schools as a whole-school approach, with teachers often responsible for implementing the exercises with their students. The aim of this research project was to explore the attitudes secondary teachers hold towards mindfulness practices and determine the barriers to and facilitators of teachers buying-in to a mindfulness initiative. A qualitative research methodology was utilised with twelve semistructured interviews conducted across three Perth metropolitan secondary schools. Interview questions were devised using both attitudinal constructs and the Revised Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF-R). In order to separately explore both teachers’ attitudes towards mindfulness practices and the barriers to and facilitators of their buy-in to an initiative, the interview data were analysed twice. In the first instance, deductive analysis was used within the suite of questions relating to each attitudinal construct. Following this, a hybrid approach was used to determine which TDF-R domains acted as either barriers to or facilitators of achieving participant buy-in to a mindfulness initiative.

Findings indicated that this sample of secondary teachers held ambivalent attitudes towards the implementation of mindfulness practices as a whole-school approach. This included participants’ having a positive attitude towards mindfulness practices in schools, while holding reservations regarding whether teachers should be the ones to implement the practices. The TDF-R domains Situational Knowledge and Beliefs about Consequences were deemed to be facilitators of participant buy-in. The following domains were considered barriers to participant buy-in: Beliefs about Capabilities, Professional Role and Identity, Organisational Culture and Resources. The implications of the research include ensuring schools’ expectations of educators are clearly defined, providing staff with adequate training, and ensuring the leadership have authentic and consistent intentions.

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