Impoverishing Experience: The Problem of Teacher Education in England

Mar. 30, 2010

Source: Journal of Education for Teaching International research and pedagogy, Volume 36 Issue 1 (2010). p. 105 – 120.

Pre-service teacher education in England has been essentially school-based since 1992.

The current paper offers a critique of this design from the perspective of a practitioner and researcher working in one of its most influential schemes. The fundamental problem described concerns an impoverished understanding of experience that underpins how beginning teachers are intended to learn in schools.

The problem is not one of evaluating experience as adequate in terms of exemplary practices, but about the capacity within the teacher education system for critically examining the meaning of experience in order to develop professional knowledge.

The paper suggests that the ontological and epistemological dimensions of experience need to be brought into a dialogue if the potential of experiential learning for pre-service teachers is to be realised.

Updated: Sep. 27, 2010