Best books for educational leaders

  • A brief guide to cloud computing by Barnatt
  • A whole new mind by Pink
  • Dealing with difficult teachers by Whitaker
  • Drive by Pink
  • Education nation by Chen
  • Failure is not an option by Blankstein
  • Focus by Schmoker
  • Getting things done by Allen
  • Leadership & the force of love by Hoyle
  • Leading school change by Whitaker
  • Mastery of management by Kahler
  • Playing for pizza by Grisham (just for fun)
  • Results now by Schmoker
  • School leadership that works by Marzano
  • Teacher evaluation that makes a difference by Marzano & Toth
  • The global achievement gap by Wagner
  • The manufactured crisis by Berliner
  • The wizard and the warrior by Bolman & Deal
  • Visible learning by Hattie
  • Where have all the leaders gone by Iacocca

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Force-Field Analysis

Describe Lewin's Theory of FFA and explain how it might be helpful for a school leader's successful implementation of a new initiative.  


  1. Lewin's theory of FFA can be explained by stating that there are driving forces for change that are equal to the resistance for change which meets in the middle as the status quo. In order to impart meaningful change an administrator must decrease those resistant forces and increase the driving forces in such a way that the status quo is challenged, changed, and the resulting culture is better than it was before. In the text there is a three step model prescribed for effectively proposing and implementing change within this theory. The first step is the unfreezing stage, or the stage at which the resisting forces must be reduced through information pointing out the inadequacies of the current state. In this state a leader must paint the whole picture for a staff so that they can see and buy in to the need from his or her perspective. Now that the organization is unfrozen it must move, a new value system, or a restructuring can now take place to address the needs made ever apparent in the unfreezing stage. Lastly, the change must be stabilized through the refreezing process. This theory and these steps can be extremely important to the leader's successful implementation of a new initiative if practical steps are taken to ensure that all three steps are followed. It is not possible to move with so much resistance coming from the other side. An example I can think of in my professional experience took place in my previous job as a supervisor in a call center. The call center had reached a point where we were at capacity for the amount of personnel we could hire, but had more calls coming in then we could handle. In order to address this concern we spent a considerable amount of time trying to figure out how to increase efficiencies by putting in place a script that all call center agents had to follow in order to achieve high ratings on their calls and obtain a full bonus at the end of the month. In order to sell this to the staff it had to be explained to them how inefficient we were being and how it was leaving money out there that they could access through this new system, this was unfreezing. We would then be able to provide them all the tools needed to be more efficient and reduce the errors they made so they could reach the goals set forth to have access to these extra funds, this was the moving. And finally we had to refreeze by following through with the incentives promised and helping agents achieve the newly set goals under the new system. This worked much better as we were able to paint a picture they could see in full and tie the benefits directly back to them so that resistors to change became positive change agents along with management.

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    1. Lewin’s Theory of FFA can be described as factors that influence a given situation. It considers both helping and hindering forces that move people toward reaching a goal or stop progress. In either case there will be change that occurs in the situation. The book references three steps in implement change: unfreezing, moving and refreezing. In unfreezing you are trying to point out the reason for change, get your co-workers to realize that, yes, there is a problem. Once that is achieved you can move on to the moving phase. During this phase you are taking action in the situation, causing change. Finally you end at the refreezing phase. This is important to master; otherwise you may be in a constant state of stage one and two. Like we saw in the youtube video about presidential change, our administration seems to be stuck in phase 2. Following these phases in education is good for your staff because you want to make sure you have a receptive audience before you go about changing things. Maybe you are the only one that thinks things need to change, but your teachers are the ones that live out the situation on a day-to-day basis and they love the current system. By thoroughly flushing out the refreezing phase you can get your staff to agree, and stop the hindering that Lewin describes in the FFA model, that yes we need to move and then refreeze. Currently we hired a new administrator for next school year. The school board did a fabulous job getting the teachers on board with this huge change. In the beginning there were a lot of hinderers and a few helpers in regard to changes that the teachers wanted made for the next administrator. Teachers and school board members were able to move through the 3-step process and we have hired a very quality administrator who is beginning to make steps toward a successful school year in 2012-2013.

  4. According to Lunenburg & Ornstein (2008) they describe Lewin’s Theory of FFA as, “Moreover, a change involves a sequence of organizational processes that occurs over time. Lewin suggests this process typically requires three steps: unfreezing, moving and refreezing.” (p.207)
    I believe this theory is important to the success of implementing change or new initiative because we have to put things in perspective when asking staff members to do something that is new or different. I have experienced that teachers do not adapt well to change. They say they do but their actions show differently. For example, our school/organization has implemented the formative assessment process and unit planning. When it was rolled out in our building it was just “dropped” on us. We had very little training on the unit planning process and some training on formative assessing. Teachers were very angry about this and refused to implement the unit planning portion of the formative assessment process. They felt it is something else for them to do and they did not have a say in the decision. According to Lewin’s theory, this was a disastrous way to implement this change. Lewin’s stated, “One of the best methods for reducing resistance to change is to invite those who will be affected by the change to participate in planning, design, and implementation.” (p.208)
    As a leader, it is important to involve the team as much as possible, introduce in small increments (if possible) and ask the staff for feedback. Let them know how the process will benefit them and the students and how you will support them. As a leader you will have to go through the process of unfreezing, moving and refreezing in order to make the new implementation successful.

  5. Lewin’s theory of Force Field Analysis states that when implementing change leaders need to be aware that change is a, “dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions within the organization” (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012, p 191). The factors are the forces for change or driving factors and the resistance to change or resisting factors. Some forces for change are accountability requirements, staffing shortages and processes or people. Some resistance factors are interference with need fulfillment, fear of the unknown and limited resources. According to Lewin the current condition can be thought of as equilibrium which results from balancing the driving factors and resisting forces.
    For a school leader to successfully implement a new initiative, they must evaluate the factors for change and resistance that may take place so that they may make strategic decisions and change the equilibrium so there will be movement toward the change required. According to Lewin, there are three ways to create change: increasing the driving forces, decreasing the resisting forces or changing the driving forces (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012). However, the theory of Force Field Analysis notes that if you increase driving forces only, there will most likely be an increase in resistance to the change which will result in conflict within the organization. Obviously, as a school leader you would want to be mindful of this theory and potential conflict when trying to implement change.
    Lewin’s theory points out three steps to implementing change which are unfreezing, moving and refreezing. For a school leader unfreezing an organization would result from demonstrating to staff why a change needs to take place either by introducing new information or due to a crisis. Unfreezing an organization through communication with and participation from staff would be a good example a way a school leader could reduce resistance forces to change and “unfreeze” the school to start effecting change. Moving an organization happens when the changes are taking place within the organization, after it has been unfrozen. This would be a time for school leaders to utilize their prior evaluation of potential barriers to change and to implement a plan which works to both increase driving forces and decrease resistance forces. For example, a leader could continue to explain accountability factors as a driving force throughout the moving process while working to decrease fear of the unknown through communication and training with staff. This combination of increasing driving forces while reducing resistance forces would help the leader implement a new initiative without creating additional conflict within the organization. Refreezing results when a new equilibrium has been created and the change has effectively been implemented.

  6. Dawn Brooks 3/25/12
    Lewin’s model lends itself to an analysis by the administrator or principal of all the driving and restraining forces involved in a present state of the school and/or the desired state they want to move the school towards. What is interesting about his theory is that people within the organization can have views that are both in support of positive change and other thoughts, feelings and behaviors that are resistant to change. Determining where those in the school are at will allow the principal to determine how to move people within the organization. New initiatives within a school system require a great deal of thought and planning prior to piloting the initiative. Crises are a good stimulus for what Lewin calls “unfreezing”. Unfreezing means reducing the forces acting to keep the organization in its current condition. Once these forces are reduced “moving” to a changed state is possible for the organization. This involves the development of new values, attitudes, and behaviors through internalization. Lewin’s final step is termed “refreezing”. This allows for stabilizing the change in a new equilibrium.
    A force field analysis could play an important role in determining the schools’ readiness for change, barriers to that change and what practical steps they can take to begin to implement change. Our previous module on communication fits in nicely here as communication is vital to the successful implementation of any initiative. Active listening, obtaining feedback and providing information to all staff will be critical in assessing readiness to the new initiative. I also think that this type of analysis allows the principal to very clearly identify the resistance to change that exists within the organization and the thoughts, feelings, beliefs and attitudes of staff that fuel this resistance. Many new initiatives are unsuccessful because all the efforts are put into pushing or driving the change. Without a corresponding reduction in resistance to change fiction and conflict occur which hampers are kills the initiative before it has the opportunity to start.
    Lewin, K. (1951). Field Theory in Social Sciences. New York: Harper & Row.

  7. Lunenburg and Ornstein (2008) describe Kurt Lewin’s Theory of Force Field Analysis, which states that change is implemented through the imbalance of driving forces and resisting forces (Pg. 207). Driving forces have been identified as “factors acting to change the current condition, also known as “pressures for change,” whereas resisting forces have been identified as “factors acting to inhibit change, also known as “resistance to change” (Pg. 207). When an organization is stagnant, then both the driving forces and resisting forces have reached a point of equilibrium, which results in no change. However, when an organization is in the process of change, then the driving forces and the resisting forces are working against one another in an attempt for either side to reach the preferred outcome or “change.” The authors acknowledged three ways to move toward a preferred outcome, which included: increasing the driving forces, reducing the resisting forces, or considering new driving forces. Change occurs in a three-step process, which normally includes: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing has been identified as decreasing the resisting forces and providing information to the individuals involved on why the organization’s current position is in dire need of change. Moving involves the change that takes place within an organization, which can include, but is not limited to the creation of new behaviors, attitudes, and values. Finally, refreezing takes place. Refreezing consists of the driving forces and the resisting forces reaching a state of equilibrium (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008).
    If a school or educational leader were to use the Force Field Analysis as a way to help implement change, I believe that this technique would produce positive results. School leaders would be able to utilize the three step process to reduce resistance to change, which would result in increased driving forces. During the unfreezing process, school leaders/administrators should gain as much participation as possible from their supervisors, co-workers, and community. At this point, the educational leaders should take the time to communicate what issues have arisen within their organization and explain the need for change. Once the issues have been communicated and accepted, these individuals would proceed to the next step, “moving.” During the “moving” phase, all participants will begin to plan the change and implement the change. Finally, a quasi-stationary state of equilibrium is reached, also known as refreezing. This is a helpful tool/ technique for school leaders to utilize when attempting to implement change. It provides these individuals with an understandable three-step process on how to communicate and gain participation and support, resulting in change.
    For example, recently, within my work environment, I have been attempting to implement change. Prior to reading this chapter, I was unaware that the process that we were using to make changes within the department was referred to as the Force Field Analysis. My coworkers and I began to see the needs of our students changing, such as they needed more academic, social, and personal support. At this point, it was necessary for us to gain their participation, as well as notify them that many of them were in jeopardy of losing their scholarships or being dismissed from the university; therefore, many changes needed to be made. We moved from the stage of “unfreezing” to “moving” which allowed us to implement various resources for our students, such as one-on-one meetings, cultural competency meetings, and study sessions. Currently, we are in the state of “refreezing,” as our students’ grades are increasing, we have begun to reach a state of equilibrium.

  8. The basic system of theory of organizations includes input, processing, output, and feedback. All five categories are important steps to consider in the ever changing environment of education. Schools are constantly changing procedures and policies to align with new standards and to improve academic achievement and provide quality education. An understanding of this system is essential for the principal and other administrators. This system of understanding can be seen in the current “Race to the Top” and the new Arizona Framework for Measuring Educator Effectiveness. Development of a plan to meet these requirements as well as implementation can be achieved effectively using the basic theory of organizations. The inputs are the resources available to a school and within the Framework these would be identified as the teachers available resources and professional development opportunities as well as an other resources used to promote educator effectiveness. In the framework the processing would be identifying the strengths and weakness in the inputs and strengthening them with multiple observations of teachers and collection of student and could include surveys from all stakeholders. The outputs are what the organization achieves and with the framework this would be identified as the knowledge gained with the achievement of educator effectiveness and knowledge gained by students. The feedback is the information concerning the effectiveness of the outputs and with the framework this would be the final score for the individual teachers and administrators. With this new change, it is important for principals to be evolved in and monitoring all stages of development and realize the dangers during each stage. Change is inevitable in education but not always welcome with open arms. The framework change scares teachers who are not aware of how it will directly effect them and it is the principals job to support the change and ensure the best outcomes and expect the constant change to always strive for a better outcome.

  9. Lewin’s three-step model called force-field analysis (FFA) is model that is used when change happens within a school system. Lewin feels when a school has a current condition that is what the desired condition people want is. When change happens there is two different theories behind it, one is there are driving forces or factors acting to change (forces for change), and second resisting forces or factors acting to inhibit change (resistance to change). People have a hard time accepting change and as a principal one will need to understand that some of the staff and students will be forced to accept change and others will resist the change. Lewin also states that there are three steps that follow the process of change: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing is reducing the forces acting to keep the organization in its current condition. This is where new information has been pointed out and it shows the issues that are happening with what is currently being done. For example, if there is a big increase is student drop out rate, or a dramatic student enrollment decline, or teacher turnover rate. In order to help alleviate these from happening and to possible determine the problem the principal can do a survey or do a projection on student enrollment. Moving is knowing that the problem is there and people know that change is ready to happen the organization is ready to move forward with the change. This means the development of new attitudes, behaviors, and values. Some of it may be minor and affect a few people and some change may be major and effect many people. An example of this would be a new evaluation system when evaluating staff. Refreezing is stabilizing the change.
    Currently my school district is in the new process of changing how we evaluate teachers. With the new laws that are passed on teacher evaluation, the administration decided that there needed to be a point system to the evaluation process and also include data in the process to. Using this model a school leader would need to make sure that everything is structured and detailed when changing an evaluation process. Any loose ends would create resistance and would make it more difficult to create the change from happening. The first move is for the school leader to unfreezing the organization and the current condition. Pointing out how the old evaluation system is inadequate and how it needs to be more creditable and have a point value to it. Next, moving towards the change by changing the values, attitudes, and behaviors of the old evaluation. The last thing that would help a school leader is making sure that refreezing the evaluation process or stabilizing it or everyone is able to understand it.

  10. Ruben Daniels Middle School in Saginaw Michigan is a school in a process of initiating changes in order to make annual yearly progress. Yet there are things that must be considered before this process continues. According to Kurt Lewin’s force-field analysis, this process begins when an organization (school) understands resistance to changes displayed by behavior within the organization. Behavior within my school can be observed in our staff meeting when staff openly disrespect administrators, disagree with new ideas and try to recruit new staff in on their ideas. On the other hand, there’s the new staff that has been there less than a year. The new comers are open, have no reason to disrespect other staff or administrator. These weekly behaviors should be seen “as a dynamic balance of working forces in opposite directions within an organization”. One side of an organization consist of “driving forces” (some recent staff) of change while others are “factors acting to inhibit change” (some experienced staff).
    This process began two years ago when the superintendent left the school district and placed a new principal at Ruben Daniels. Staff members were not happy with the former principal and were not opened to their new leadership. To make matters worst the new superintendent had the district audited, which exposed “inadequacies in the current state” of the district, including Ruben Daniels. Therefore we are most definitely are in an unfreezing process, according to Lewin’ first step of successful implementation of a new initiative. The next two steps Moving forward and Refreezing will occur after the first step is complete.
    Administrators who would use this approach will experience many benefits. First of all, employees will know administrators are serious when they make standards clear and continuing consistency with their plan of change. Also when administrators taking this approach may help the resistant teachers or staff recognizes the harm they are bring to the organization if they continue. Some people may need help seeing a perspective outside their own, which can be hard when holding a critical position in the process of change. Therefore I believe it may perhaps be beneficial for school leaders trying to successfully implement change in their school.

  11. (Jim Markey)
    Levin’s force-field analysis of organizational change provides a useful framework for understanding how to bring about meaningful and lasting change. Levin views an organization as a dynamic entity that achieves equilibrium when the forces for change are balanced with the forces resistant to change. The nature of these forces may internal or external to the organization but they all need to be taken into account when seeking to bring about change.

    Levin suggests that if an administrator seeks to make a change by increasing pressure for change then he or she must also consider reducing the factors that are resistant to change. Not doing so will only increase the tension and likely increase resistance. Change happens in a three step process according to Levin: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. The first step involves reducing forces that keep the organization in its current equilibrium. There are a variety of techniques for reducing resistance including participation, communication, support, rewards, planning, and coercion. Once the organization is “unfrozen” it can move forward by an explicit change in culture, attitudes, or structure. Finally, the organization is refrozen by solidifying the changes put in place.

    As an administrator seeking to implement a new initiative, Levin’s force-field analysis provides insights and tools to help insure success. The key message for administrators is that pushing for a change will often result in push back from those that are resistant. Too often the focus is on the elements of the change rather than looking at the factors associated with resistance. Taking time to reduce these factors is essential. The fear of the unknown can be addressed through targeted communication and participation in the process. Knowledge and skill obsolescence can be addressed through support and rewards. Finally, a well planned process that incorporates all the above approaches for reducing resistance is really the beginning and end for making a new initiative, reality.
    (Jim Markey, EDL 660)

  12. Lewin's Theory is quite basic when you view it from the outside. Looking at it up close and implementing it can give one a very complex, yet straight forward perspective on how to gain a desired change. Lewin states that as a district lies in its current state there lies an equilibrium between Driving Forces of change and Resisting Forces of change. To get your desired change to occur an administrator needs to increase the driving forces and decrease the resisting forces. If the resisting forces are not decreased while putting pressure on driving forces, tension will result and tension is an unfortunate cause of a negative school environment. There needs to be a process to "unfreeze" the current state, bring in the desired state, and "freeze" the new state into place. In the efforts of creating such change and reducing the resistance, Lewin suggests a few tactics. Participation of those who could potentially cause the resistance will bring about a feeling of ownership in the desired state by all involved. A District School Improvement Team is an efficient way to accomplish the participation by all. Communication between the administration and staff is key to an efficient understanding of the reason for change and "Why are we deciding to go in this direction?" Support to those who may cause resistance is crucial to decreasing the resisting force. Resistance is created by those who are uncomfortable and no individual or group ever feels discomfort when they know they have material and administrative support. Rewards are key to any change in any organization; individuals need to feel a sense of accomplishment. They will when they see their own desirable rewards. A well planned approach will usually fend off any resistance in the sense of it being a "well oiled machine." Coercion is a last resort; however, it is an effective method.
    If an administrator is able to use Levin's ideas and methods, the administrator should find success. Following the basic rule of decreasing the resisting force prior to any increase in the driving force is a key to successful implementation of change. When tension is created, the outcome is not of the quality it could or should result in.

    Alan Dawe EDL 660

  13. Lewin's force-field analysis is a balance of forces concerning change working in opposite directions within an organization. All organizations have a position that they are currently in which is their current condition. When an organization wants to make a change they look forward to improving and that improvement or change is called the desired condition. The forces for change is the force that presses towards the desired condition. Resistance forces are the forces working against forces of change to maintain their current condition.

    There are strategies that can transition an organization or school from their current condition to their desired condition. “There are three ways of doing this: increasing the driving forces, reducing the resisting forces, or considering new driving forces” (Lunenburg and Ornstein, 2012, p.191). Lewin explains to prevent tension in an organization resisting forces must be reduce as driving forces are increased.

    I believe force-field analysis can help an administrator implement a new initiative in a school. Lewin’s force-field analysis gives strategies on the process of how administrators can make a change. One of the strategies that can transition a school from the current condition to the desired condition is unfreezing. This term unfreezing is decreasing the forces that are resisting change. There are several ways administrators can reduce resisting forces. One way Lunenburg and Ornstein suggest is communication. They discussed if administrators explain the need for change and how it will impact the organization then employees would understand the reasoning of the decision. Support is also another way to decrease resisting forces. Providing individuals with the training they need to adapt and implement the change is important. This is my first year teaching math in the fourth grade and with the change to common core I was nervous about teaching the new curriculum. My school sent me to the county’s math workshop that gave me a variety of resources and methods to use during this school year. My administration sending me to that workshop gave me the ability and confidence to be prepared to teach common core math.
    Once administration has unfroze the organization they can start moving. The moving process is when the organization can start to change and administration can start to implement their new ideas. Administration getting participation is a wonderful strategy that can be used in the moving step of change. Recruiting those who will be affected by the change to help plan and design ways to implement the change can help overcome resistance. Lunenburg and Ornstein explain in Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices that participation will build ownership of the change and they would more likely want to see the change carried out.
    After the changes have been made the last step is called refreezing. Refreezing stabilizes the organization in their new position.
    Lewin’s force-field analysis can successful help leaders implement change because it gives them strategies to help the organization change. It also is an organized process that has three steps to lead an organization from current condition to the desired condition.

    Chaz Douglas EDL 660

  14. Lewin's force-field analysis states that there are always two forces working against each other: change and status quo. Changes must be looked at as the potential gain from the change as opposed to the resistance it will recieve. No matter the gain Lewin believes that reducing resistance to change is better than forcing change to occur (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012). A way to reduce resistance is by introducing information that shows gaps in performance of the status quo. This is known as unfreezing. Moving can only occur once an organization has been unfrozen. This step represents the movement toward adopting the elements of a change. Once the change has been accepted an organization moves back to a frozen state. That is the change agents and the agents against change gain an equilibrium (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012).

    Lewin's theory can be helpful when introducing new ideas, because it acknolwedges that change is not something that can be pushed or bullied through. Instead, an adminstrator has to make a case for change in order for the change to occur. This is a good thing to remember. Often I find a really good idea and want to act right away. However, after reading Lewin's theory I think I'll try to build more of a case for why the change is beneficial before pushing for the change. It is a longer process, but if it can reduce resistance than I think it is a good thing. Pushing change against resistance can lead to bad blood between teachers and principals and hurt further changes in the future.

    Mark McGarry
    EDL 660

  15. After much consideration and deep investigation I discovered a definition that helped me better understand what Lewin's theory of Force-field analysis meant. Force-field analysis is an influential development in the field of social sciences. It provides a framework for looking at the factors (forces) that influence a situation, originally social situations. It looks at forces that are either driving movement toward a goal (helping forces) or blocking movement toward a goal (hindering forces).( The principle, developed by Kurt Lewin, is a significant contribution to the fields of social science, psychology, social psychology, organizational development, process management, and change management. As stated in our text, Lewin believes that there are two forces pushing against each other. These two forces are the driving forces for instance accountability, or staffing changes, and the resisting forces for instance the fear of the unknown, or limited resources (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012). Lewin stated that if we increase one of the forces and neglect to increase the other we will increase working tension that could cause disagreements and lack of satisfaction in the work place.

    Within my district, Lewin's theory directly correlates to the recent contract negotiations that are taking place. This negotiation has been occurring for the past 3 years with many employees working without a contract. In the last couple months we were notified that a contract is finally "coming down the pipes but we would not be getting our yearly steps (raises for each year we have been employed) as well as the individuals who had obtained a masters/doctorates degree would not be receiving their pay steps until a contract has been negotiated. This caused a lot of individuals to become irritated and demand answers. With the current contract negotiations there have been a lot of collective bargaining agreements that have hit the table and are pushing against our contracts being finalized. After reading about Lewin's theory I believe that it is important for us to take a very close look at the current conditions we are in and try to do what is best for the majority. With that comes negotiations and compromise when and where it is necessary. This in turn, will lead to much more welcoming and comforting work environment for everyone.

    Julie Jackson
    EDL 660

  16. Kurt Lewin’s theory of force-field analysis involves two forces. The driving forces or factors are actions to change the current condition of the situation, where the resisting forces or factors act to inhibit change or “push back” (Lunenburd & Ornstein, 2012). To get to the desired goal or condition school administrators must play an active role in this change. Administrators must work to decrease the resistance to change and increase the driving forces in change. This is a delicate process, which involves balance between the two. Lewin explains, if administrators push too much on the forces to change, the resistance will get stronger, and push back harder. Therefor it is effective to decrease the resistance to change with different strategies and tactics. There are three important steps in any process of change, which include unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing will occur when driving forces arise and the need for a change is evident. The moving is the process that it takes to change, involving both factors, driving and resistance. Refreezing is stabilizing the new model at equilibrium when desired change is met (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012).

    As a future administrator it is important to consider this process any time a change is going to be made or new initiatives are put in place. This force-field analysis can help an administrator to consider all parties involved when implementing a new initiative. This will allow them to work on the resistance to change and make the people involved feel more comfortable and accepting towards the initiative which will allow the administrator to reach the desired condition. One new initiative that we put in place in DeWitt recently, as well as many other school districts, is the evaluation system of teachers that we are using. We are using a system called STAGES, which is a change from what they used 3 years ago. The resistance to change came from the teachers which included their comfort level with the program, the uncertainty of how it would work, and how effective or fair it would be when evaluating us as educators. Educators and administrators alike knew the change was coming as we approached change in tenure, and teacher rankings becoming implemented. Our administrators did a nice job using some methods in Lewin’s theory to get to the desired condition. We were eased into the program and the process the first year (2011), and we were able to go over the functions and applications in many staff meetings and professional developments. We were also not using every function that was available the first year. We started off with basics to get teachers familiar with the system and comfortable with the way it worked. As we approached the second year of use teachers were more comfortable with the fact that this would be used in a process of ranking them minimally effective, effective, or highly effective. Many teachers were happy with the results of the program and our district is in the process of “refreezing” with STAGES in place.

    Lewin’s Theory also comes into play in the article we read, “What is a Professional Learning Community”. It is a time of change in all schools around the country and it is important to handle each change and new initiative put in place with careful thought and consideration. As DuFour (2004) discussed, there has been a simple shift from the focus of teaching, to the focus of learning. Ensuring all students are learning and making growth in each subject area is key to a schools success. As new data driven methods are put into place at all schools, it is important to consider Lewin’s theory and the resistance some educators might give. I believe that we must work together giving the teachers the proper time and training to learn these new initiatives and to feel comfortable using them. With programs such as DIBELS and Rocket Math being put into place at the elementary level it is important to support teachers and ease the resistance as new programs are introduced.

    Marcus Fray
    EDL 660

    1. Dufour, Rick. (2004). What Is a "Professional Learning

      Community"? Educational Leadership, 61:8, pp. 6-11.

      Lunenburg, F.C., & Ornstein, A.C. (2012). Educational

      administration: Concepts and practices (6th ed.).

      Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

  17. Current school practices and behaviors hang in a balance between progressive forces for change and resistant forces pushing against the forces of change. The current school practices shift and settle depending on how much force each pressure applies. As a systematic way to work through change in an organization Kurt Lewin developed a three-step model in which Unfreezing, Moving, and Refreezing are the three steps needed to create change in an organization (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012). In the first step, unfreezing, current feelings toward the organizations current position are weakened. With current feelings softened the next step, moving, can begin. Movement occurs when an administrator adds changes large or small. As a result new feelings and beliefs must be developed. Upon successful implementation of new practices, beliefs, or attitudes it is essential to refreeze these new elements of the organization to prevent a shift back to old ways (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012). Since Lewin’s work from the late 1940s and 1950s some modern models have built upon this three-step model. On his website Mark Connelly points out the ADKAR model which is very similar to Lewin’s but adds more direction after the refreezing step by adding a reinforcement step to help keep the new changes and condition locked-in and unchanged.

    As a future administrator I will need to keep Lewin’s three-step plan in the back of my mind at all times. Obviously as new change is implemented I will need to make a deliberate effort to unfreeze the current status of the school to prepare for a change. Once a change has been implemented it will be essential to keep tabs on any lingering feelings of resistance to prevent sliding backwards along the path of progression.

    Unfortunately, the best example I currently have for why Lewin’s three-step model makes sense is that our district is having a terrible time with a current change. The initial step in Lewin’s model seems to have been completely ignored by our superintendent which has not allowed for much movement toward the new, desired condition. Four days before the start of the school year our superintendent implemented a change to the school day, adding 30 minutes each day and two additional hours weekly for staff professional development. With no plans in place, a lack of communication, and certainly no support from the staff who was caught off guard it has been more like a gradual melting rather than an unfreezing. Without a proper thawing our district as a whole has built up a stronger resistance to the change rather than entered into the moving step. I do not think what the superintendent is asking us to do is wrong or even too much, but through improper management of the desired change our organization is not moving to where we should be at this point of the year.

  18. Force Field Analysis was created by Kurt Lewin in the 1940’s. Lewin originally used this while working as a social psychologist. However, today in the school setting, Force Field Analysis is also used for making decisions, as well as communication decisions. To use Force Field Analysis, you list all factors (forces) for and against your decision in change. By doing so, you can determine, which force wins. Also, when doing so, you can look at strengthening the forces that support the change and managing the forces against the change, determining which one is more successful.
    Using Force Field Analysis may be helpful for a school leader's successful implementation of a new initiative when implementing change, this will ensure success. By using Force Field Analysis, will also reduce resistance factors in teachers and staff. As an administrator, it is important to identify as many of the factors that will influence change where and when you can. If possible it is also vital to involve other people such as team members or administration from your organization.

  19. There are multiple approaches to managing change. Lewin’s theory of Force Field Analysis is one of these approaches and was developed to try to understand resistance to change. According to Lewin, behavior within an organization is not static, but is a balance of forces working against each other in opposite directions (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012).

    As a school administrator it’s important to be directly involved in making change in the school. In order for change to occur, a school administrator would have to try and reduce the amount of resistance and increase the driving forces to lead the school towards the desired change.

    Three steps, unfreezing, moving, and freezing, were developed by Lewin to work towards the process of change. Unfreezing is the first step and involves presenting new information to staff members and addressing problem areas that have arisen. Moving is focused on developing new behaviors, values or change within the organization. The final step is refreezing which simply refers to bringing the organization back to equilibrium after making a change (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012).

    An effective way to reduce resistance is to have staff participation in making changes within the school. Staff participation relates back to the unfreezing and moving stages of FFA as it gets teachers directly involved. They are learning about why there needs to be change and then they are actively working to move the process along in order to create steps towards the desired change.

    With all of the changes occurring in schools right now due to state standards, it’s important to involve teachers. If they are kept out of the process they are going to feel more anxiety and will ultimately resist the change even more. As an administrator it is much easier to work towards change if this resistance is minimal. For that reason it’s important to present as much information to staff as possible to allow them to see that the change in necessary.

    The article we read, “What is a Professional Learning Community”, discussed professional learning communities and how their development and proper implementation can be beneficial to a school. This is a current change that is occurring in schools and something that many administrators are trying to create within their building. It changes the focus from just teaching the material to actually looking at what students are learning. The article discusses how important it is for teachers to work together in order to analyze student learning across the grade level. This allows the teachers to discuss and develop common goals and common assessments so that they can evaluate data from tests to look for problem areas (DuFour 2004).

    This is a wonderful use of teacher time and resources. They are able to compare how students are doing and work together to try and improve student learning by implementing change into their classrooms. By having the teachers actively participating in looking at data, they are going to be more open to making changes. Having PLC’s in the building allows the administrator to minimize resistance to change and ultimately increase driving forces because the teachers themselves are finding the areas in which change needs to occur.

    Lewin’s theory is an interesting and helpful way of approaching change within a school as he points out that people don’t like being pushed into something. In order to get people to accept a change it’s important to involve them and keep them informed. As an administrator I would want to inform my staff members of the problem and then work with them to try and develop ways of implementing change to fix the problem. I feel that this approach will help reduce resistance and hopefully instill a sense of ownership and commitment among my staff to meet individual goals and ultimately the school’s goal for change and growth.

  20. References

    DuFour, R. (2004). What is a professional learning community? Schools as Learning Communities, 61 (8). Retrieved from¢.aspx

    Lunenburg, F.C., & Ornstein, A.C. (2012). Educational administration: concepts and practices. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.

  21. Lewin’s theory of force field analysis is built on the idea that when a change is needed in an organization (or there is pressure for change) there are driving forces pushing forward to make that change, but there are also resisting forces that are resilient to that change. These forces work against each other, and only when the driving forces are greater than the resisting forces can a change be made.

    There are three steps in making a change: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing refers to introducing a change (an idea) that needs to take place. Once this idea is in place, the actual change takes place in the movement state. This is when “the development of new values, attitudes, and behaviors through internalization, identification, or change in structure” takes place (Lunenberg, p. 208). Finally, in the refreezing process this new idea becomes the “norm” and is truly implemented.

    During these three steps, there is a need for change, but there may be resistance to change. Resistance can be made easier through creating opportunities for participation, communication, support, planning, rewarding and even coercion. It is the job of administration to make sure their staff hear and understand the change, they are included and supported in the change, and that they follow through with the change.

    As an administrator there are some key things that need to happen when forming an idea and implementing it with staff. First, staff must be informed on the change and why it is taking place. Often, resistance to change occurs because of a fear of the unknown. Next, it is important that administration believe in a change they are making and help support and form those beliefs in their staff. They must also work along with their staff and include them in implementation and discussions. Finally, they need to follow through, provide feedback and communicate with those involved. When working closely and communicating, administrators can break down barriers and drive out resisting forces.

    This theory can be helpful in implementing new policies, dealing with behavior and relationships within a building, and in educational changes in learning that may need to take place.

    Alicia Adams
    EDL 660

  22. Lewin's theory of Force field analysis, indicates that there are three states organizations find themselves in. There are driving forces for change, resistance to change and the condition that is balanced in the middle. (equilibrium)

    Lewin proposes that administrators should mind both the driving and resisting forces when proposing change, and in fact should plan for it. It is also proposed that the best way to work change is to decrease the resisting force, so push back does not occur.

    In his theory, Lewin predicts three steps, unfreezing, moving and refreezing.

    PLC's are also discussed in this week, and they can serve as a powerful vehicle for change. Our school is implementing PLC's, as I believe that they were intended this year. I would like to explain how our PLC time is directly tied into Lewin's theory.

    Brief history

    Our school has been working in PLC’s for about three years now. It has been ok, but not consistent, and certainly not what teachers would hope for in terms of collaboration.

    Last spring the principal approached me and asked about this crazy idea. What if we stated a few minutes early each day, and every other week we could have 90 minutes of collaboration time. He asked me to take a straw poll of the staff. Most staff was very curious/excited by this prospect, and a few wanted nothing to do it.

    This summer we were able to sit down with the superintendent and propose our plan. The superintendent was thrilled and gave us his ok. Now the difficult part began.

    We had to move our parents and staff (unfreeze) to the idea of starting early and having a late start every other week. We also had to get more staff involved in this as well. Most were excited, and we only had a few conflicts with schedules. Our principal was able to anticipate this, and work out several compromises for the effected staff.

    We have now moved our schedule, we have 90 minutes every other week to work together and the first session ran out of time way to soon! For the first time in 15 years, I was able to sit down with the teacher I teach chemistry with, and really work for the benefit of our kids. The 5 minutes here and there, and the 2 hours of planning time we get every 4 months really did not do a lot for helping us. Our kids are in for such a great change. After the first day, we had such great feedback from staff, students and parents. We are pretty excited for the next opportunity we get to meet together.

    We hope that we will be able to refreeze this idea with our school district, as this is only a one year pilot at this point. If the growth with students occurs as expected, I believe that this will be not only a yearly plan, but it will spread unto the other high schools in our school.

    Even though we had some resistance to starting this program, our principal was able to plan, and make a change happen. No teacher is working any more hours than anyone else in the school district, we have apportioned our time differently, and we are sacrificing some contractual time in the morning in order to meet with peers, consistently and have true time to collaborate.

    A good administrator plans for change. Plans for the driving factors, and plans for the resistance. Plans to make the change that works for the staff as well. Sometimes things need to move fast, and sometimes things need to move slow. A good administrator will recognize this and enact his plans according to the situation.

    Bob VandenBerg
    EDL 660

  23. Change in any organization is a process that will take place over time. That change will take even longer if confronted with resistance. Kurt Lewin developed force-field analysis to help better understand resistance to change and how to overcome it (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 190). An administrator can successfully use Lewin’s force-field analysis to implement a new initiative as show through an analysis of force-field analysis as related to educational administration, by connecting it to my professional experiences and how I plan to incorporate it as an administrator.

    Force-field analysis acknowledges that with change there exist opposing forces; those who initiate change and those who resist change (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191). Most changes in schools will be initiated by administrators who must also take into account those who could resist change (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191). Lewin claims there are three ways to move toward the desired change: increasing driving forces, reducing the resisting forces or consider new driving forces (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191). However, one must be careful to keep tabs on the balance between moving toward a desired change because pushing too hard for change can cause equal push back and thus nothing is accomplished (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191).
    Lewin recognizes three steps that typically occur in the sequence of change in organizational processes: unfreezing, moving and refreezing (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191). Unfreezing involves reducing forces to keep the organization in its current state (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 191). Moving involves introducing new values, attitudes or behaviors, once unfreezing is accomplished (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 192). Finally, refreezing involves stabilizing the desired change as the new agreed upon equilibrium within the organization culture (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012, p. 192).

    Changes that have been successful are those that not only give staff time to digest and understand the reasons for unfreezing, but also that offer support in the moving stage of force-field analysis.

    A primary example of this would be the implementation of literacy strands as related to Common Core Curriculum. It was made clear to staff that not only would standardized tests be changed to relate to literacy strands, but that staff would be held accountable to those standardized test scores as related to a percentage of our overall evaluation. As a teacher, it is tough to argue with that logic and thus, moving began. Once it is accepted that change was inevitable, teachers bought in and new attitudes and behaviors occurred. Teachers soon began to create lessons and assignments aligned directly with the literacy strands as related to Common Core Curriculum and thus the change was no longer a change, it was part of the culture of the staff and refreezing could finally occur.

    Changes that have been unsuccessful are those that are simply thrown at staff with little explanation, support or follow through from administration. An example of an unsuccessful attempt at change that I experienced was the implementation of 6+1 writing traits as related to my social studies department. As a staff, we had a one hour introduction to 6+1 writing traits. We were then asked as a social studies department to give one assignment during the entire school year to show we implemented the change and collect one piece of student evidence. The vast majority of teachers did one assignment that related to 6+1 writing traits and they were not assigned until the last few weeks of the school year. Essentially, the social studies department did not see the need to complete this task and treated it like busy work as a way to satisfy the implementation requirement.

    1. As an administrator using force-field analysis will be extremely helpful when looking specifically at the unfreezing, moving and refreezing portion of it. Staff must know specifically why a change is being implemented and the necessity of the change. Without that, there will be no buy-in from staff. In addition, staff must know that they will be held accountable for the changes being implemented. Finally, staff must be given an acceptable amount of minimum times in which they demonstrate they attempted to make a change. Without that, implementation becomes busy work and the change does not occur.

      Once staff buys in, support must be offered through additional professional development opportunities, follow up in department meetings, follow up from administrators and further ideas staff can use to implement whatever change is being asked of them. Without these tools, staff may become frustrated and resent the change and moving may not occur.

      Finally, once the change becomes a norm, the change must not be given up on. There should continue, for as long as the change is necessary, an appropriate minimum amount of times staff must demonstrate their implementation of the change and periodic support.

      I look forward to becoming an administrator and my knowledge of force-field analysis is simply another tool I can use to successfully implement change and become an administrator that staff looks forward to working with as members of a team working toward a common goal, whatever that goal may be.


      Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2012). Development of Administrative Theory. In Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th, pp. 183-202). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

  24. Jon Banker
    EDL 660

    Kurt Lewin's three-step model is more commonly known as force-field analysis. “He looks upon a level of behavior within an organization not as a static custom but as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions within the organization.” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, p. 191) Within this model we have forces of change interacting with the resistance to change. It is suggested that this should not be a battle of pure force. The more that one tries to force a change onto a group of people, the more that they will resist. The key is to reduce the resistance to allow the equilibrium to shift in favor of the desired change. The hope is that the change will be accepted and the equilibrium becomes anchored as the new norm.

    In the most basic form, his model is an explanation of the constant give and take that we find in our world. This model can be found in any change within our lives. How much did we push to obtain a new equilibrium, how much was it resisted, and where did that leave you? These factors are found in our professional career as well. Becoming a highly effective administrator will be determined by how we present and respond to each of these variables. I was drawn specifically to three explanations for reducing resistance to change. “As those affected by the change plan, design, and implement it, new ideas and information can be generated. The increased information is likely to result in a more effective change; participation builds ownership for the change, thus leading to a commitment to see the change successfully implemented; and by providing information about the nature and consequences of the change, anxiety about the unknown is reduced, and rumors are stifled.” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, p. 188)

    Whenever one becomes an agent of change, it is in their best interest to understand the opposition first. If I can understand why a group my be opposed to an idea, I can use this information to tweak and adjust my presentation. Communicating the plan effectively reduces anxiety in those reviving the information. Empowering my staff within the decision creates ownership. Generating short term wins contributes to moral and further progress. Using continual feedback allows for more production and furthering the change. All of these pieces are useless unless the new equilibrium becomes anchored into the culture. To become a highly effective administrator I must learn to always consider each of these pieces before presenting an idea. To me this model states that forcing change is the most difficult route. To become a highly effective administrator I will need to create a plan and incorporate the staff so well that they accept and strive for it themselves.


    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2012). Development of Administrative Theory. In Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

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  26. Lewin believed that organizations are systems in which the present situation is not static, but a dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions. These two opposing forces are, 1-factors seeking to promote change (driving forces), and 2-factors attempting to maintain the status quo (restraining forces). In order for change to occur, the driving forces must exceed the restraining forces, thus shifting the equilibrium.
    When a change is planned, a FFA will help you look at the big picture by analyzing all the forces impacting the change, and weighing the pros and cons. Change can be fostered by adding to the driving forces, or reducing the restraining forces. Lewin observed that diminishing the restraining forces was the more effective of the two (DePaulSNLOnline, 2010). This would constitute the unfreezing step of change (usually by a crisis or diminishing of restraining forces). Once the unfreezing has occurred, we start moving–the second step (we develop new attitudes, behaviors, etc., and head toward the positive side of change). Finally, we stabilize at the refreezing state, with a new (presumably improved) state of equilibrium. A diagram with three “columns”--the left being the driving forces for change, represented with forward/right-pointing arrows; the middle being the equilibrium/current condition; and the right being the resisting forces to change with arrows pointing left/backwards—is helpful in visualizing the process (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012). In working with a group using the FFA tool, you can write each “force resistant to (or driving) change” on an arrow in your diagram (MindTools, ~2013).
    Lewin's FFA can be a powerful tool for administrators introducing change to a school. In a school where there is resistance to a change, this is a respectful way to look at the resisting forces, get them on the white board or PowerPoint, address them, and move forward. The grapevine method of communication would be great for this!--toss a question, for example, “Why don't teachers want to do this initiative?”--out to the staff, keep an ear out for what people are saying, write those responses on the “Restraining Forces” side of the diagram, present them at a staff meeting (allowing time for adding more, if needed), then work with staff to fill in the “Driving Forces” side. Assigning a number value (based on the question, “How important is this force?”) to each arrow-point is a helpful way to measure the restrainers and drivers. Addressing the restrainers in this proven way may be just the impetus needed to unfreeze a staff and get them to the moving state. I can imagine a teaching staff growing accustomed to the use of this tool, and making forward movement more easily as a result of the comfortable framework and simplicity of the FFA model.
    In the Burlington School District (Vermont), PLCs have recently been ordained by the administration, complete with a restructuring of the school day—i.e. PLCs are the current change/initiative for the organization. Lewin's FFA would be an excellent tool for assessing the restraining forces (such as a lack of training in PLC operations, lack of consensus on the ultimate goal, lack of consistent scheduling of meetings, etc.), listing the driving forces (such as the state mandate for PLCs, better learning outcomes for students, higher quality collaboration between teachers), and ultimately moving the district in a positive direction, which will result in implementing PLCs effectively.
--- Christina Norland, EDL 660SP ---

Lunenburg, F. & Ornstein, A. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices, Sixth Edition. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

    DePaulSNLOnline. (2010, March 15). Force field analysis [Video file]. Retrieved from
    MindTools. (1996-2013). Force field analysis: analyzing the pressures for and against change. Retrieved from

  27. Jared Hubbard

    Force Field Analysis was developed by Kurt Lewis to better understand resistance to change. To produce a change in a school, administrators must work hard to bring about a change and reduce the resistance. Lewis explained we should consider any changes in terms of driving forces, and resisting forces. Driving forces are the factors that are trying to create the change, and then of course resistant forces are factors that are trying to prevent this change. Administrators must weight out both the possible driving forces and resistance forces. Both forces work against each other, so principals must bring a change that can balance the forces and end at their desired conclusion. It’s typically better to reduce the resisting forces because when you increase the driving forces you increase the resistance. In other words when you change things that people don’t like they typically will resist it more just because they are upset.
    Change involves three steps to come to fruition; unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing is when you slowly stop enforcing the current policies, and start heading for a change. Moving is when you slowly start to adopt these new norms or policies. Refreezing is then making the new change the norm at your school.
    As a school principal I see this process being imperative. There is nothing worse for students than a school divided. By doing this process I can bring about a change slowly, and keep the resistance from my staff low. Change is hard on everyone, but you must give your staff time to process the changes, adapt to the changes, and then start acting on the changes. If you’ve done those things and still are experiencing great levels of resistance, it’s time to go back to the drawing board and see what adjustments you can make to reduce the amount of resistance the change is receiving. Principals must become good compromisers for the good of the school.
    This chapter really rang true to me. This school year our school has adopted many changes. Our aid’s hours were cut drastically this year meaning teachers have to adjust to the new set of changes at school. We are now asked to help out with drop off in the morning, a tight specials schedule, and helping with the kids get to where they need to go at the end of the day. We had no choice but to do a complete change. My principal got a lot of resistance from other teachers about the changes because it interrupted their plan. We had a very short “moving” stage because we were told about the cuts and then that was the only possible solution. Right now we are in the refreezing phase, although there is still some resistance, it seems to lessen by the day as people remember we are there for the kids.

    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2012). Development of Administrative Theory. In Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

  28. Kristine Lance
    EDL 660

    What is change? According to Kurt Lewin change is a “dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions within the organization” (Lunenburg & Ornstein 2012, p 191). Change has to two force factors, driving factors and resisting factors. The driving factors, these are all of the facts that point out that change is necessary. Some example of driving factors can be accountability, changing student population, change over in staff or staffing shortages, processes and changes in technology. The other set of factors is the resisting factors, these are the facts that point out why the change might not be needed. Examples of these factors are fear of something new, not enough resources, not having the proper skills or knowledge, the structure of the school, and contract. These two forces are always working together to create the current condition of the school.
    School leaders who are seeking to change the status quo will need to reduce the resisting forces or increase the driving forces. It is important to remember that there are a variety of ways to do this. For example, a school leader can reduce the driving force by appealing to the “higher ups”. For example, if as a building principal I want to implement a change and I don’t think my staff will support it , I could “sell” the change to my superintendent or school board and encourage them to mandate this change. If this works the driving forces have increased because it is now not a choice, but you have not reduced resisting forces at all. I believe the best way is to have change happen is by communicating with others and encouraging participation and dialogue. If you effectively do these two things you will see a decrease in resisting factors.
Unfreezing, moving and refreezing were the three steps that Lewin gave for effective change. School leaders need to work at the “unfreezing” first. This can be done by effectively communicating that change needs to happen. If leaders do the unfreezing part correctly this could help reduce your resisting factors. The moving of the school in a new direction can only take place after the school unfrozen. School leaders should move the school forward by trying to remove barriers. One way a school leader can do this is by communicating very clearly and openly about the change, this will help elevate fear. In addition the leaders should capitalize on the skill sets their staff has so they do not feel like their skills are obsolete. The approach will also reduce resisting forces and increasing driving forces. Once the the two forces reach an equal point the school will refreeze.

    Lunenburg, F.C., & Ornstein, A.C. (2012) Education Administration Concepts and Practices. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

  29. According Lunenburg and Ornstein in Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices, Kurt Lewin's force-field analysis theory is defined as the level of behavior within an organization not as static custom but as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions within the organization (2012). Lewin describes two different forces (driving and resisting) pushing against each other to resist change. Since the forces are pushing against each other to resist change and individual would have to find a way to “unfreeze” or lessen one of the resisting forces to allow the driving force to begin to “move” the group in the direction of change. Once the driving force has overcome the resisting force, the individual would want to “freeze” the group within the current state of change to ensure that the change is maintained and both resisting and driving forces are at an equal state (Luneburg and Ornstein, 2012).

    Building administrators can use Lewin’s force field analysis theory to examine current school programs and their current implementation and apply then Lewin’s theory to any program that is not moving forward in the progress for improving the school. In today’s educational world, data is playing a huge role in accountability and school improvement. In my current district, teachers are expected to use data to show growth among their classes. Many of the teachers are resistant to using programs like Data Director as a tool to evaluate the data collected. There are teachers who are comfortable in their old ways of evaluating student assessment and fear that using the new program will be difficult or disrupt their stable routine. Once the resistant force (teachers’ fear of the Data Director program) is identified, building administrators can begin to implement a driving force to push the resisting force. An administrator could use the driving force of additional training or more department time to the resistant teachers to help them become comfortable using the program and for them to find ways to implement Data Director with their current assessments. Once the staff begins to use the Data Director Program the building administrator needs to ensure that the staff maintains the change by providing professional develop to keep teachers ahead of the changing and upgrading of the Data Director program.

    As a classroom teacher and a future building administrator, I feel that Lewin’s force-field theory is an organized and concise way to evaluate and promote change within my school community. The district that I currently work in is constantly undergoing some type of change. It seems that in many cases when an idea is implemented with my district and the idea is met with resistance from staff, the idea eventually fades away. Many teachers comment on how the district will start something and then never return to it or just change it around the next year. I believe that introducing Lewin’s theory into my school community could help my district focus and maintain initiatives that could help improve the school.

    Lunenburg, Fred. C., & Ornstein, Allan. C. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

  30. Lewin’s theory of force field analysis deals with people’s resistance to change. The theory states that the current conditions have opposite forces working for and against the change. These forces are the forces for change which are driving forces and the resistance to change which are resisting forces. Lewin believes that administrators have to first decrease some of the resisting forces before building on the driving forces. If not people are less likely to accept the change and may be more likely to push back. Using the force field analysis tool it will let principals see the negative and the positive of the change that may need to be made.
    There are a couple steps to the force field analysis first is the unfreezing process. This is when a principal would try to reduce the resisting forces that want to keep the school as it is and not accept the change. During the unfreezing the principal can gradually explain the change and give data to support its reasoning. The next step is moving. During this step schools would come up with their values and their mission on what they want to happen from the change. The last step is the refreezing phase. This is where schools would put the change into affect. They would follow the new policy, rules, or curriculum; based on the values and the mission that they decided on in the moving phase.
    As I principal I would defiantly use this theory. I think it is important to first have your staff learn about the change and have them be part of the change. I would like them to buy into the change. This would make it easier to make the necessary change. As a staff we would come up with group norms that we would follow for the change. After we do this then we would put the change into practice as a staff.
    Lunenburg, Fred. C., & Ornstein, Allan. C. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

  31. Kurt Lewin developed Force Field Analysis to help understand how and why individuals resist change. Lewin describes resistance to change "as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions." These forces are the forces that are acting to change the current condition (driving forces) and the forces acting to inhibit change (resistance force) to reach a desired outcome or goal. Administrators must take an active role in the initiation of change and be aware of the challenges in regards to the resistance individuals may express to that change. Lewin states that to implement any change a leader (administrator) must increasing the driving forces, reduce the resisting forces, or evaluate the need to development new driving forces. If the driving forces are increase without decreasing the resisting forces the tension within the organization will increase. “When we push people, they are likely to push back.” So it is best to reduce the resisting forces and establish a new driving force to reach a desired change, so that this equilibrium is not tarnished.

    “Unfreezing” is technique used to get an organization out of its current way of thinking or reduce the forces acting on the current way of thinking. Pointing out some meagerness within the current condition and changing current beliefs, or behaviors, usually does this. For example, administration may point out a large student population that earned poor scores on a standardized test to back-up his concerns with data to reflect the need for the change in the current state.

    Once an organization is unfrozen, it can be changed. School Board members, administration, and staff may participate in a discussion as to how to develop a plan to change the current state (poor scores). Once the plan of attack, so to speak, is in place and the proper restructuring of jobs and duties in allocated, the next step is “refreezing.” Refreezing is the final step. Refreezing is to keep the new set of established state of mind moving in the right directing, and to prevent change from moving backwards. This may take change in organizational policy or change in organizational structure.

    Projecting into the future, as a principal, I find this theory extremely resourceful. I feel that it is very important to inform my staff of areas that struggle with, as a district. I would back it up with good viable data to support my cause for a change, and hope to improve their understanding that change must take place. Next, I would hold a staff meeting to brainstorm ideas on to develop and implement this change. What has to happen? What will it require us to do as a staff and what kind of timeframe are we looking to make this change. Getting the staff involved in the development and implementation of changes is a great way to allow them to take ownership and to ensure smooth transition with the new changes. We are all in this together. What kind of support and resources are available to use, so that we can make an informed decision as to what is the proper way to go about making these changes?

    The final step that I would add is how do we evaluate the effectiveness of the changes that we made? Do we have to wait for new data, conduct surveys, or will me be able to see physical changes as soon as the new changes are in place? What happens if we do not obtain the results that we anticipated?

  32. Lunenburg, Fred. C., & Ornstein, Allan. C. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

  33. Lewin's Force Field Analysis looks at behavior in an organization where there is a balance of forces that work in opposite directions within an organization. Lewin says that change in driving forces, forces for change; and resistance of factors that make the change,resistance to change, come from internal/external environment of the organization or in the behavior of the change agent. Change agents much reach the change potential and resistance and try to change the balance forces so that there is a movement toward the desired change. The three ways of doing this is by increasing the driving forces, deducing the resisting forces, and consider new driving forces--the change.

    Lewin says that increasing one set of forces without decreasing the other set of forces will increase the tension in an organization. Increasing driving forces is sometimes effective but it is better to reduce the resisting forces because the increase in driving forces tend to increase the resistance. In other words, when we push people, they push back.

    Lewin suggests that change requires the steps-unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing means reducing the forces that keep the organization the way it is. Moving is when the organization has been unfroze steps can be taken to make a change. Refreezing occurs when the change occurs.

    An example using these steps would be a call for a change so layoffs will not occur to move teachers around to different grade levels. As an administrator, I would have to let the staff know why the change needs to be made and try to convince them that this is the solution to the problem that fits the needs of all involved. The information presented would show the staff that this is a crisis that can be fixed. The moving process that would involve developing new values and expectations for the teachers that will be moving to new grade levels. The restructuring of their job duties and collaboration teams would be discussed. Input and feedback would be accepted from the staff that the change will effect so they would feel they are a part of making the change a success. Once the moving process took place the refreezing process would occur. This process would involve making sure the change is taking place in a positive manner and that the change is showing that there is less tension on the staff involved. I would want to make this transition period to go as smoothly as possible. Being open to suggestions and deciding what is best for everyone involved. The restructuring of the staff will be part of a positive change for all involved.

    Change is hard for almost everyone to accept, especially when it comes to education. There are so many times that a new concept or policy is introduced then it tends to just fizzle out, either because of resistance or because it just isn't working. Lewin's force field analysis and the three step process can help make the change a smoother transition for all involved.

    Lunenburg, Fred. C., & Ornstein, Allan. C. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

  34. As with everything in life, change is going to happen. Sometimes change will be a good thing and sometimes change will be a bad thing. When change arises in a school, usually that change is for a good thing, even if it is making cuts to save money. Usually though it is to help improve the quality of education that we are providing. With change though comes the need to resist it because it is something new that we are not familiar with or that we are going to have to adapt to it over time. I think that the two biggest reasons why people resist change is because they have to adjust to a new routine and that they are really not sure what is going to happen in the end. Lewin's concept of force field analysis helped identify the change process by explaining that in order for change to take place you need to increase the driving forces for the change and decrease the resisting forces for the change. In other words the reasons for change need to exceed the reasons not for the change. Before the process takes place or is set in place, both the reasons of change and resistance for change are equal and there is a sense of balance. When the change process takes place, one needs to try to eliminate some of the resistances so that the positives are greater than the negatives and the change can happen. Once this has happened, with time things will equal back out. In Lewin's process he stated that there are three phases to this, unfreezing (reducing the resistances), moving (making the change happen), and refreezing (get back to a normal state and setting the change in place).
    This process of change can be helpful for an administrator because they can sit down and brainstorm ways to make the change before presenting it to everyone for input. One column can be set up for why the change can make place and one for whats holding the change back. It can be presented to staff so that they can give their input on how it is going to be handled or what they can do to help make the change happen. They can compare the reasons why the change needs to happen and whats holding them back. After that it can be discussed how they are going to adapt and what the end outcome may be. This should help eliminate some fears or negative feelings so that the process is a little easier on them. Communication definitely needs to take place among the staff in order for things to run smoothly.


    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2012). Development of Administrative Theory. In Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (6th). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

  35. Luke Reynolds
    EDL 660SP

    Lewin’s theory of force field analysis focuses on how there are two driving forces that work against one another in an organization. The two forces are the driving force (forces for change) and the resisting force (resistance to change). The area where the two forces meet is the equilibrium area, which is the result of the forces driving against one another. For school administrators, the driving force, to establish change in their organization, they must do two things. They must attempt to initiate change while attempting to reduce resistance from the force against them.

    Lewin stated there are three steps to help change an organization process. They are unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. Unfreezing is an attempt to reduce the resisting force. Administrators can reduce the resisting force by introducing areas of weakness or to decrease negative attitudes or behaviors. There can also be crises. School crises include dropout rate, enrollment decline, teacher turnover or strike, a lawsuit, or shift in the school population. After unfreezing, the next stage is moving. According to our text, moving is, “the development of new values, attitudes, and behaviors through internalization, identification, or change of structure. There are four ways to help with moving, they are: 1. changes in the recruitment or selection procedure, 2. restructuring the school district, 3. reassigning jobs and duties, or 4. implementing a new evaluation system. Finally, the last stage is refreezing. Refreezing is stabilizing the change or the area of equilibrium. Once change is established, school administrators may need to change the organization structure, group norms, or organizational policy.

    In our supplemental reading, “What is a Professional Learning Community?” by Richard DuFour, he documents how schools around the country are implementing change. The article referred to Freeport Intermediate School in southern Texas. It were a struggling school. School administrators decided their needed to be a change based off standardized tests and statistics from the state of Texas. They decided to focus on professional learning communities where teachers work in collaborative teams for 90 minutes daily to work on outcomes and to align them with the state standards. The school also implemented consistent instructional calendars and assessments. The school went from being one of the poorest performing schools to one of the nation’s best. They still work in professional learning communities daily and annually. The teachers work together on successful practices and not as individuals. The staff is honest with results and understands that changes can be made if test scores are low. The school was able to embrace data and change traditional practices.

    Lunenburg, F. C. & Ornstein, A. C. (2012). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices, 6th Edition. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

    DuFour, R. (2004). What is a Professional Learning Community? Schools as Learning Communities, 61 (8), 6-11.

  36. Lewin’s Theory of Force Field Analysis considers change initiation as a balance of forces operating in two different directions in an organization. Those forces or factors are working to change the current situation but then there are the resisting forces or factors that are working to stop the change. The forces or factors can originate from inside or outside the organization, and can also be connected to the person initiating the change.

    Change is inevitable in any organization. School administrators have the responsibility to initiate change in their organization in a way that will create the least amount of resistance and to provide the greatest amount of support possible. I believe that if school administrators have a clear understanding of the forces for change and what they are in their organization, then they can use them to their advantage to minimize the resistance to change. This process must be balanced in nature because as Lewin pointed out in our text this week, increasing one set of forces without decreasing the other set will increase tension and conflict in the organization (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012). The process of using the three steps, unfreezing (releasing new information); moving (developing new ideas, plans, values, or behaviors); and refreezing (establishing new norms), to systematically create change within the organization will determine its success, according to Lewin.

    Approximately two years ago, my school initiated the dean model, which was a change in our organizational leadership. At that time our school leadership consisted of a principal and an assistant principal. The dean leadership model consists of the principal and three or four deans who operate as assistant principals on a smaller scale, by wings, grade levels or departments. Although staff members were made aware that we were moving to the dean model, there was no communication as to what that was going to look like or how that was going to affect them and their positions. That year we lost 6 teachers. As I was reading through Lewin’s Theory, I can see how using the Force Field Analysis process could have helped eliminate some of the fears and misunderstandings that occurred during this transition.


    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2012). Education administration: Concepts and practices. (6th ed.). Belmont: Wadsworth.

  37. Lewin’s theory of Force-field analysis is a model of how people can make change happen. In his model, the organization is in a state of equilibrium with two forces acting on it. On one side there are driving forces, which are pressures for change, and on the other side are resisting forces, which are resistances to change (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008). When these forces are acting on each other in an equal manor, the organization stays constant. According to Lunenburg and Orenstein, in the book Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices, Lewin suggests reducing the resisting factors when change needs to occur. This allows for change to happen without extra tension or conflict. Lewin states that sometimes increasing the driving forces can be effective; however, it is more likely to increase the resisting factors as well. This would cause things to stay in place and no change would occur. Lewin’s theory of force field analysis involves three steps: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. The first step (unfreezing) involves reducing the resisting factors. The second step (moving) involves people opening up to the change and internalizing it. The last step (refreezing) involves making the new change stable and placing the organization back in a state of equilibrium.

    A school administrator can make successful changes in their school by following Lewin’s model. A couple years ago, before I started working at my school, my principal had the task of incorporating Kagan Cooperative Learning into the school. The reason for the implementation was to give students more opportunities to work together, move, and learn from each other. Since I was not working in the school yet, I did not witness how she introduced the change to the school or staff and how implementation began (unfreezing and moving stages). I arrived after it was already being implemented and the school was in the refreezing stage.

    1. If I was tasked with making this change, I would follow Lewin’s model. In the unfreezing stage, I would realize staff members might be resistant to the change and then find ways to reduce that resistance. Lunenburg and Orenstein outline reasons people may be resistant to the change (fear of the unknown and limited resources) and ways to help reduce their resistance (communication, participation, support, and planning) (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008). As a principal, my staff may resist the incorporation of Kagan Cooperative Learning because they do not know what it is or what is involved. Also, when starting a new initiative/program, resources can be limited. My first step as an administrator to combat these resistances would be to communicate the need for the program. Kagan was designed to help children learn from each other, work together, and move. With limited recess time, children need more opportunities to move. Kagan allows children to move while still covering necessary content. After my staff understood the need, I would ask for their participation and ideas on best strategies for implementing the new program. By allowing my staff to generate their own ideas and strategies, I can reduce their resistance to the program. As a principal I would also provide support and time for planning, especially if resources were limited. Support would be provided in the form of trainings as well as listening to teachers explain their struggles with the new program. To help teachers be successful, I would plan for them to incorporate the new program a little at a time. Therefore, I create an environment where teachers would be less stressed about the new program. After facing the resistances to change, I would work through the second step of Lewin’s model (moving). This would involve continued support for my staff and the hope of changing their views about Kagan Cooperative learning. During this step, I would solicit feedback from staff and make sure everyone was “moving” forward. Lastly, as a principal, I would need to work through the last step (refreezing). This would include full implementation of the program and the school at a state of equilibrium.

      Overall, Lewin provided an excellent model of how principals and/or administrators can effectively implement change in their schools. Schools have constant pressures to change. With Lewin’s model, administrators can reduce the resistance to those changes and continue to have their schools run smoothly.


      Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2008). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices. Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth.

  38. Scott Hart
    EDL 660SP

    According to the textbook Educational Administration: Concepts & Practices by Fred C. Lunenburg and Allan C. Ornstein, force-field analysis is described as “a level of behavior within an organization not as a static custom but as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposite directions within the organization” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008). Force-field analysis was developed by Kurt Lewin as a way to help understand resistance to change. Lewin provides three steps to sequence a change within an organization: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing.

    If an administrator has a goal of effectively implementing a new initiative, he or she must take into consideration the change capability and resistance. These must be done to ensure the administrator takes the proper precautions to maintain a balance with the forces to produce the anticipated outcome. “There are three ways of doing this: increasing the driving forces, reducing the resisting forces, or considering new driving forces” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008), but one must make sure not to simply increase only one force. The result of tension and conflict will occur if only one force is increased without also decreasing the other forces.

    If an administrator would like to implement a new reading curriculum, using the force-field analysis would make it successful transition. As an example, in the unfreezing stage, the administrator would see the need to adopt a new reading curriculum to align with the Common Core State Standards. During the moving stage, the administrator would determine a new reading curriculum that is compatible with the Common Core standards. The administrator would probably work with a team of teachers or academic coaches to find the best curriculum. Finally, in the refreezing stage, the administrator provides the staff with why there is a need to change the reading curriculum, as well as provide resources such as trainings to help reduce resistance. If the staff is more knowledgeable on how to use it, they’ll be less resistant to using it in their classrooms. Once teachers are using the new curriculum to teach their students, they will be able to apply their trainings and actually utilize their resources first-hand. Now that the curriculum is actually in place, exact expectations can be defined as to how it will be most effectively utilized within the classroom.

    Having just adopted a new reading curriculum over the summer, the process is relatively recent. With the State of Florida adopting the Common Core State Standards, our district had to choose a new reading curriculum that met the standards. Knowing this was going to happen, the teachers were a bit fearful as they had grown used to the previous curriculum. As stated in the text, “School administrators can use six specific methods to reduce resistance to change: participation, communication, support, rewards, planning, and coercion” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008). Confirming what the teachers already knew regarding Common Core, the principal communicated why it was necessary to switch. Additionally, to help ease the transition, this summer the district offered training courses for each grade level on many different dates to allow teachers the ability to view the materials, which allowed for participation. Also, the district was very supportive by providing a day-by-day overview for the entire school year that teachers can access online. This really eased teachers’ minds as they now had a better idea of what to teach. Once they actually started using it, expectations were then able to be determined.

    1. As a future administrator, Lewin’s force-field analysis will be a method I will utilize in my school. It is relatively simple and provides for success. Change can be difficult for many, as they get comfortable with “the way it’s been”. I want to ensure my future staff has as little anxiety as possible regarding any changes that are made within the district and school, and it will be my responsibility to make sure they are content with the changes being made. By doing this, it will make the transition easier and less stressful, and make everyone more successful.

      Lunenburg, F. C., & Ornstein, A. C. (2008). Educational Administration: Concepts & Practices (5th ed.). Belmont, CA, USA: Thomson Higher Education.

  39. Scott Wicke
    EDL 660

    In Kurt Lewdin's concept of force-field analysis there are two opposing forces that work against each other to create the current condition. These two forces are the driving force for change and the resisting force to the change.

    When looking at the driving forces for change, there are three steps, unfreezing, moving, and refreezing. To unfreeze, the organization has to remove previous constraints that would impede change, the text states that often crisis can do this. Moving is the step in which new ideas are developed, these ideas can be small or large. Finally, refreezing is when these ideas are adopted and implemented into the school. It is important to note that if you add pressure for change but don't address the resistance to change you "will increase tension and conflict in the organization." (Lunenburg, p. 207).

    While implementing a new policy there will be resistance to that change. The text gives six methods an administrator should use to reduce resistance. These methods are, participation, communication, support, rewards, planning, and coercion. By using these methods you invite "participation in planning, design, and implementation." (Lunenburg, P. 208). You also explain the need for change, its best to have data to support your position. Show that the change is going to be supported at all levels. Reward those who take time and commit to the change. Make sure there is a detailed plan in place before the change is to occur. Finally, some may not be receptive after all of these strategies and you will need to coerce or threaten.

    I believe the force-field analysis model is a great way to implement change in a school district. As an administrator I think that once you have decided what change needs to be made your focus needs to be on those reducing resistance methods. I will again use our schools Gradual Release of Responsibility as my example of how to do this. Administration created a team to find a model of instruction that could be used district wide, this increased participation. To start the school year professional development focused on this model and explained how to use it, communication. At this professional development all administrators were present, including the Superintendent, giving the school of support district wide. The plan for the staff to learn how to use this model was shown and stretches over this entire school year. It is to early to see any rewards or to have staff who refuse to use this model so we will have to see on those two aspects of the resistance.


    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2008). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices (5th ed.). Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth.

  40. Kurt Lewin developed force-field analysis in order to "better understand resistance to change" (Lunenburg, 190). When we are in a school that requires change, it is important to know why some people are resisting. Lewin said “we should think about any change situation in terms of driving forces or factors acting to change the current condition and resisting forces or factors acting to inhibit change” (Lunenburg, 191). There are three steps that help reducing the amount of risk from resistance: unfreezing, moving and refreezing. Unfreezing is releasing the school or organization from its current condition and may provide those with information about why they are proposing a change. The moving step is when the change happens. It is providing new rules, values or structure that will help move away from what it used to be. The last step is refreezing, which means they are stabilizing and utilizing the new change.

    As an administrator it is important that you make changes that will better your school, students and faculty. While going through change, it is important to inform all of those who are affected by the change. In order for us to reduce the resistance, we need to explain to them why we need the change. An administrator has to come up with other ways to reduce resistance when the forces resisting are not budging. The text says, when Lewin is discussing how to move toward the new condition, “There are three ways of doing this: increasing the driving forces, reducing the resisting forces, or considering new driving forces” (Lunenburg, 191).

    When I started my current position as a health and PE teacher, there was no health. I had to initiate a change in the students’ routines or PE every day. The students were very resistant to the change but it took me convincing them of the importance of it and trying to make it as fun as possible, and now there is no resistance. The force-field analysis and the experience I had at my current school, will give me a great leg up on when I am an administrator and I want to initiate a change.

    Lunenburg, F., & Ornstein, A. (2008). Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices. Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth.

  41. Force Field Analysis is a theoretical model that describes the process of organizational change in terms of driving and resisting forces. Kurt Lewin, the developer of the model, believes that organizations exist in a state of balance or equilibrium and the change process threatens that balance also known as the status quo. To achieve balance then, organizations naturally increase and decrease opposing forces which may or may not result in organizational change.

    For example a school district being effected by low per pupil funding and low enrollment may consider an open enrollment policy to generate revenue. The surrounding community, fearful of what changes may come with an influx of out of district students and families, could become vocal in there expressions of disapproval. The two forces at work, the driving force of the revenue seeking district and the resisting force of the skeptical community, strike a balance that holds them at their current state.

    Our texts “Educational Administration: Concepts and Practices” (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008), states that according to Lewin’s theory, a will not be achieved without addressing the above forces. However if the district simply increases their efforts to impose open enrollment, the community is likely to proportionately increase their resistance to that change: thus striking a balance of opposing forces.

    If on the other hand the struggling school district is able to effectively address the community’s concerns and decrease their resistance, them balance can be found through a shift in the status quo. Such a shift would result in movement toward the district’s goal of an open district policy.

    The above example describes the current state my own school district. Our superintendent and other school executives have acknowledged the effects of decreased government funding and would like to mitigate their effects by opening limited slots for out of district students. Despite the financial advantages that would accompany this change, the prospect of non-district families is still a no-go for many community and school board members.

    It could be argued that the resisting forces cover all seven categories of reason listed by Lunenburg and Ornstein. Particularly, interference with need fulfillment, fear of the unknown and limited resources seem to make up the majority of arguments against an open enrollment policy. The need to maintain a specific image of our district and the fears associated with what out of district families might bring along with them are regularly sited. Additionally, a concern that the students that enroll will ultimately cost the district more resources than are generated by their enrollment has also been expressed.

    As an administrator, employing Lewin’s theory will be extremely valuable when implementing organizational change. Looking at the environment as balance of driving and resisting forces gives perspective on what strategies can be used to reduce resistance and increase buy-in. Also, members of an organization benefit from the increased communication and opportunities to play an active roll in shaping the change to implemented.

  42. Kurt Lewin's Theory states that "An issue is held in balance by the interaction of two opposing sets of forces - those seeking to promote change (driving forces) and those attempting to maintain the status quo (restraining forces)". This is a very interesting and helpful approach to implementing change within a school. He initially points that there will always be driving forces that make change attractive to people, and restraining forces that work to keep things as they are. Trying to force people into change is not the way but by involving them and keeping the lines of communication open will aid in getting them to accept and conform. Within his theory successful change is achieved by either strengthening the driving forces or weakening the restraining forces.
    Lewin's force field analysis is used to distinguish which factors within a situation or organization drive a person towards or away from a desired state, and which oppose the driving forces. As an administrator I realize that it’s important to be directly involved in making change in the school. I would want to inform my staff members of the problem and then work with them to try and develop ways of implementing change to fix the problem. This type of approach may possible help reduce resistance among my staff to meet individual goals and hopefully move them to submit and commit to authority and the task at hand in order to ultimately fulfill the school’s goal for change and growth.
    Lewin developed a three-step model in the text(Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2012) :
    • Unfreezing: reducing the forces acting to keep the organization in its current condition.
    • Moving: development of new values, attitudes and behaviors
    • Refreezing : stabilizing the change at a new quasistationary equilibrium (it is essential to refreeze these new elements of the organization to prevent a shift back to old ways)
    which are said to be needed in order to create change in an organization and upon successful implementation of new practices, beliefs, or attitudes.
    As I currently sit in the seat of administration, I realize that it is important to consider this process any time a change is going to be made or new initiatives are put in place. This force-field analysis can help all parties involved when implementing a new initiative. It will allow them to work on the resistance to change and make the people involved feel more comfortable and accepting towards the initiative which will allow the administrator to reach the desired condition.
    Lewin’s Theory also comes into play in the article we read, “What is a Professional Learning Community”? Today we see change taking place in all schools around the country and it is important to handle each change and new initiative put in place with careful thought and consideration. As DuFour (2004) discussed, there has been a simple shift from the focus of teaching, to the focus of learning. As new data driven methods are put into place at all schools, it is important to consider Lewin’s theory and the resistance some educators might give. I believe in working together and giving the teachers the proper time and training to learn new initiatives and to feel comfortable using them. Allowing teachers to teach and students to learn and make growth in each subject area is key to a schools success .

    DuFour, R. (2004). What is a professional learning community? Schools as Learning Communities, 61 (8). Retrieved from¢.aspx

    Lunenburg, F.C., & Ornstein, A.C. (2012). Educational administration: concepts and practices. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.
    Mark Connelly, Retrieved from