Source: Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, Volume 36, Issue 1 February 2008 , pages 35 - 51
This paper is a reflective exploration of major challenges facing new teacher educators as they make the transition into the academy, and of ways that best support them. The transition problems identified in the emerging body of literature about teacher educator career entry were offered for comment to a small group of new teacher educators in an Australian regional university. Their responses added complexity and nuance, suggesting a heterogeneity of entry pathways and experiences, as well as avenues for further inquiry. Consideration of the resulting issues leads to wider questions about the place of teacher education in the academy.
In turn, this leads to question if the challenges faced by newly appointed teacher educators are distinctive from those experienced by all new academics. The paper argues for multidisciplinary cohorts for induction, and makes recommendations for systematic, inclusive induction programs for all new academics, including teacher educators. The paper concludes with two further recommendations. First, large-scale research is required to inform us about the contemporary teacher education workforce. Little is currently known about entry and career pathways, nor of the impact of recent policy and funding changes such as research performativity measures and increasing employment of sessional staff. Second, induction must be seen as an organisational and professional responsibility shared by many, including new and experienced academics, faculties, departments, institutions and professional associations.