Analyzing the Challenges and Obstacles to the Leadership of Professional Learning Communities in Schools and Identifying Strategies for Addressing the Obstacles: A Mixed Approach

Document Type : Mixed Method Research Paper


1 . Ph.D. Student In Educational Administration Urmia University. Urmia. Iran.

2 Professor, Department of Literature and Humanities of Urmia University Urmia. Iran.

3 Professor, Department of Literature and Humanities of Urmia University Urmia. Iran

4 Associate Professor in Educational Administration, Department of Education, Azarbaijan Shahid Madani University, Tabriz, Iran.


This research is with a mixed approach. The study population quantitatively consisted of all Urmia’s high school principals and assistant principals (n=452). Cochran’s formula was used to determine this quantity. 204 subjects were chosen as the study sample through stratified random sampling. Qualitatively, the study population who consisted of education pundits was chosen by a purposive sampling—snowball. That is to say, 13 subjects were chosen by the theoretical saturation technique. To collect the quantitative data, a researcher-made questionnaire ensuring a face and content validity of 0.88 was developed by the experts. The qualitative data were collected according to semi-structured interviews. The data analysis was performed by two software programs—SPSS and MAXQDA. The results of the quantitative findings suggested that the challenges and obstacles to the leadership of professional learning communities are not in satisfactory condition in schools. Furthermore, the results of Friedman’s rank test indicated that the highest rank mean relates to the organizational challenges and obstacles, while the lowest rank mean was depicted by the individual challenges and barriers. According to the results of the qualitative findings, four strategies were suggested to address the challenges and obstacles to the leadership of professional learning communities as follows; organizational strategies, educational and selection strategies, cultural strategies, and leadership strategies.


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