If teacher education is to be taken seriously, it must be research-based with teacher educators as active researchers and perceived as ‘public intellectuals’.
This re-positioning of teacher education to be ‘research driven’ comes with pressure on teacher educators to focus on securing research funding and increase publication output.
This expectation for research productivity competes with increasing calls for more relevant and imaginative teacher preparation programmes.
To present the challenging contexts in which Irish teacher educators operate with respect to fulfilling both a teaching and research remit, this paper maps the changing higher education landscape, the regulation of teacher education along with a myriad of curricular reforms at primary and post-primary level.
The paper then explores current teacher educators’ positioning in the Irish context as active users and producers of research through in-depth interviews with ten experienced teacher educators.