Bureaucracy and Teachers' Sense of Power

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Date
1999-11-18
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Virginia Tech
Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore the utility of Hall's (1961) conceptualization of Max Weber's (1946) theory of bureaucracy as an analytical tool in Turkey. The population was 1946 teachers in 91 public schools that employ five or more teachers. The instruments were distributed to 725 teachers in 68 schools in Karabuk province. Useable returns were 486. A pilot sample (one third of the useable returns) was generated to test the instruments by utilizing a series of item analyses. Remaining cases were used to answer the research questions in a separate sample. Items to measure bureaucracy derived from different versions of Hall's (1961) Organizational Inventory which operationalized six bureaucratic dimensions: hierarchy of authority, division of labor, rules and regulations, procedural specifications, impersonality, and technical competence. Item-analyses were done in the pilot sample. The surviving items were subjected to a factor analysis using the research sample. Generally, the factor structure of items obtained in the pilot sample was replicated in the research sample. Items measuring sense of power were also isolated from the literature and tested in the pilot sample. The surviving items were also subjected to a factor analysis in the research sample. The six moderately correlated bureaucratic dimensions clustered around two negatively related second-order factors. The first factor (control) was composed of hierarchy of authority, rules and regulations, procedural specifications, and formality in relations. The second factor (expertise) was composed of division of labor and technical competence. Based on control and expertise scores, teachers were classified into four typologies: Weberian, Collegial, Chaotic, and Authoritarian. Teachers in collegial cluster were the highest in sense of power and teachers in authoritarian cluster were the lowest in sense of power. Sense of power was inversely related to bureaucratization and positively related to expertise above and beyond the other relevant variables. It is concluded that there is support for the applicability of the western predisposition of bureaucracy to Turkish schools because of similar findings reported by western researchers. Max Weber's ideal theory of bureaucracy as it was operationalizaed by Hall is a useful analytical tool to examine the organizational structure of Turkish schools.

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Keywords
Alienation, Turkish Public Schools, Organizational Structure, Bureaucracy
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