The Effectiveness of the Critical Friends Model for Teacher Collaboration

Johanna Miller, California State University, Monterey Bay

Thesis (M.A.) Teacher Education Department


This study analyzed teacher perceptions regarding the value of modified version of the Critical Friends collaboration model. Fifteen teachers completed an anonymous survey regarding current collaboration practices. The results of the survey indicated that many teachers were unhappy with current methods of administrator lead collaboration and felt teachers should have flexibility and choice for topics of discussion during collaboration time. To research the efficacy of a structured collaboration model, a small focus group of four teachers participated used the Critical Friends Collaboration Model which included strict utilization protocols and norms. Using a modified version of the Critical Friends Consultancy Protocol, the group engaged in a structured discussion of a teacher-presented current classroom issue and then provided critical feedback to the presenter. The participating teachers provided feedback on the process after completing four half-hour sessions. While three of the four teachers found the structure to be more effective than current practices, consensus was not reached on how to disseminate and sustain the process within the school community.