Professional Development (385 items)To section archive

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In Malta, most science teachers are likely to have a teaching degree level qualification in one science subject. When teaching science in the first two years of secondary school they will be teaching outside their area of science specialism, that is teaching a subject/s that was not studied at degree or Advanced level. A study was conducted to investigate how a group of science teachers, who are non-chemistry specialists, could be supported to teach chemistry topics by participating in a year-long professional development programme. Data were gathered through individual and focus group interviews. This paper focuses on the teachers’ views of this programme and how it affected their views of teaching chemistry. After conducting experiments, discussing and planning lessons within a community of learners teachers felt better prepared to teach chemistry. This enabled them to change their views and expand their identity as a science teacher.
Published: 2021
Updated: May. 25, 2022
This study examined student teachers’ perceptions of how well their Teacher Education (TE) had prepared them for 21st-century competencies, and how well they applied these competencies to their teaching. In addition, the study sought to identify best practices, major obstacles, and suggestions to achieve these competencies. The study was implemented in two universities and three universities of applied sciences in Finland that have TE programmes. This study used a mixed-method approach. Data were collected both quantitatively and qualitatively from student teachers (n = 227), who assessed 21st-century competencies with a structured questionnaire that included open-ended questions. Quantitative data analysis used descriptive statistics and correlations, while qualitative data analysis used content analysis. The study found that based on the student teachers’ self-assessment, the student teachers achieved successfully 21st-century competencies despite differences between competencies. The best-achieved competency was ‘Collaboration’ and the least well-achieved was ‘Global connections.’ The study illustrated student teachers’ perception of their success in applying 21st-century competencies to their teaching at schools. Answers to open-ended questions produced convincing evidence that courses involving collaborative and interactive learning, high quality, sufficient support, related 21st-century competencies, certain pedagogical methods used by teacher educators, and integrating theory and practice can contribute strongly to the development of student teachers’ 21st-century competencies.
Published: 2021
Updated: Apr. 08, 2022
The authors investigate whether differences in professional vision (PV, both in noticing and reasoning) can be found between prospective teachers using a knowledge test as an economic, performance-based expertise indicator. Furthermore, they examine whether novices can be supported in their PV through a specific compared to a general task instruction, activating knowledge schemata promoting top-down processes. An online-based study with N = 85 prospective teachers using video vignettes reveals that PVs' accuracy and velocity depends on knowledge. The specific task instruction does not contribute to more effective PV. Results emphasize the relevance of knowledge transfer during university education for prospective teachers.
Published: 2022
Updated: Mar. 24, 2022
This study explores pre-service and in-service teachers’ experiences in working as a learning community. Pre-service teachers (N = 60) and teacher educators (N = 9) from a Finnish university and in-service teachers (N = 27) from four local comprehensive schools worked together over six months. The teachers-as-learners continuous learning model was created and implemented in practice. The participants’ written reflections were collected to explore what they learned, what challenges they experienced and how they would further develop the model. The results showed that the pre-service and the in-service teachers reflected on their work somewhat differently. The former experienced learning group working, self-regulation, and pedagogic and didactic skills. The latter learned group working skills and new teaching methods. Both groups of teachers experienced challenges, one of which was named role confusion. The pre-service teachers experienced role confusion in terms of guided versus independent work. The in-service teachers’ role confusion led them to wonder whether they should provide the pre-service teachers with expert support or participate as equal group members. Both pre-service and in-service teachers reflected that the model would require active involvement of all teachers and teacher educators involved. The results provide implications for pre-service and in-service teacher education.
Published: 2021
Updated: Feb. 16, 2022