Conditions in schools that facilitate implementation of peer coaching

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation


Donald Ely


staff development

Subject Categories

Other Teacher Education and Professional Development


The purpose of this study was to determine conditions within a school that facilitate the implementation of an innovation, specifically peer coaching. Peer coaching is a program designed to encourage teachers' professional development. Responses from teachers within the Onondaga-Cortland-Madison Board of Education Cooperative Services were obtained. There were 123 usable responses from 12 districts.

The independent variables were eight conditions as defined by Ely (1976, 1990) that facilitate implementation of educational innovation and demographic data. The dependent variables were the frequency and length of peer coaching use. A condition mean score was determined and stepwise multiple regression analyses were computed for seven of the eight conditions to identify conditions that are the best predictors of peer coaching use. A free response section was included to determine other conditions that respondents' perceived to facilitate, deter, or cause discontinuance of peer coaching activities.

The data showed the existence of all eight conditions to some degree through the survey response or free response comments. Two conditions showed a positive mean condition score and one condition, knowledge and skills, appears to be a predictor of peer coaching use. However, teachers in this study indicated that the same conditions that facilitated peer coaching use for some respondents in their presence, deterred this innovation's use in their absence. It would appear that "time" and "leadership" are crucial conditions to the implementation of peer coaching.

The recommendations from this study suggest that persons interested in implementation of a new program in schools should begin with a fundamental knowledge of the conditions that facilitate the implementation of innovations and a clear understanding of the specific innovation. When considering peer coaching as a way to encourage professional growth, staff developers, superintendents, administrators and teachers should determine the conditions that exist within a school and decide whether the current situation will facilitate the implementation of the program. If time and a supportive leader exist, the likelihood of success will increase. It is also necessary to consider the other conditions within the school that will provide teachers with an environment conducive to successful implementation.


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