Autonomy and Innovation

Many teachers have deep personal and emotional commitment to their own education and the practices that marked their entry into the profession and their own teaching. Their understanding of purpose is grounded in these experiences, so teachers who have autonomy may reject the vision and purpose and pathways to change even if they are clearly and reasonably explained. Most math teachers, for example, became math teachers because they found meaning and value in their own math education; they will resist attempts to change the experience of teaching and learning math. The result is a paradox on autonomy; efficacious IT managers need to increase autonomy for teachers to adopt innovative technology and technology-rich pedagogy, but teachers are not used to having autonomy and those who do have it may reject the innovation and seek to subvert it.