Source: Studying Teacher Education, Volume 3, Issue 1 May 2007 , pages 53 - 66.
Survey data from 222 student teachers at a small, liberal arts college were used to address the following three questions: Do university supervisors add value to the student teaching experience? Do student teachers distinguish between the roles played by supervisors and those played by cooperating teachers? How do student teachers characterise good supervision?
Findings support the perspective that university supervisors serve a distinct and important function. Supervisors managed the experience, served as confidantes, and made evaluative judgments about performance. Cooperating teachers were viewed as instructional coaches who gave student teachers the physical and psychological space to try out strategies while supporting their efforts with feedback, modeling, and materials.
As a result of this self-study, the unit looked for ways to elevate the role of supervisors and to engage supervisors in conversations about programme improvement.