Multiculturalism & Diversity (226 items)To section archive
Teacher educators’ perspectives on preparing student teachers to work with pupils who speak languages beyond English
This article reports on a mixed-methods study investigating teacher educators’ views on their role in preparing future teachers to work effectively with multilingual children. A survey was conducted with 62 teacher educators who have responsibility for inclusion or English as an Additional Language (EAL) teacher training, which was followed up with a series of semi-structured interviews. Key findings suggest that there may be a mismatch between the perceptions of teacher educators and newly qualified teachers, as the vast majority of the participants reported that they were either confident or very confident about teaching student teachers how to teach EAL children. Additional themes explored were related to concerns over a performativity culture in education, and to balancing linguistic diversity training alongside other pressing priorities in initial teacher education.
Updated: Jul. 27, 2021
Exploring elementary teacher self-efficacy and teacher beliefs: are we preparing teachers to teach culturally diverse students?
As student demographics continue to change in countries across the world, questions remain as to how well teacher education programmes are training teachers to teach students who are culturally diverse from their teacher. Preservice teachers (N = 523) from six different teacher education programs across one state in the U.S. completed a teacher self-efficacy scale used to determine their beliefs about teaching culturally diverse students at the end of their training and again after their first year of teaching. Teacher education programme descriptions across six programs suggested programs are provided and it was determined that these varied in their structure and in required coursework. Furthermore, findings revealed statistically significant differences across programs. Generally, preservice teachers rated their capability to teach diverse students as “adequate” to “well” on a five-point Likert scale. Scores dropped after one year of teaching full-time. However, these differences in mean scores as participants moved from the preservice to the inservice stage were not statistically significant. These findings suggest that teacher self-efficacy to teach culturally diverse students remain fairly stable as teachers make this critical transition so the work done at the teacher training stage is critical. Recommendations and implications for teacher education programs are provided.
Updated: Jul. 20, 2021
This study, based on a corpus of interviews with student primary school teachers engaged in a two-year programme of initial teacher education in France, investigates their readiness to meet the challenges of the multicultural classroom. Their attitudes towards the cultural and linguistic diversity of their classrooms, and their capacity to go beyond simply ‘managing’ the situation are analysed. The results suggest that without major changes in approach at the levels of teacher education, schools administration and within schools themselves; the rich possibilities to develop positive attitudes to inclusion and interculturality offered by the presence of plurilingual and pluricultural children in primary school classrooms will continue to be overlooked.
Updated: Jul. 14, 2021
Student teachers’ beliefs about diversity: analysing the impact of a ‘diversity week’ during Initial Teacher Education
This article reports findings from a week of enrichment placements framed around ‘diversity’ within a secondary Initial Teacher Education (ITE) programme in England. The authors outline the demographics of the county – a largely rural, White county in the East Midlands of England – and describe the challenges this presents for ITE. A mixed-methods approach was used to study student teachers’ (n = 56) beliefs about diversity, generating data through: pre- and post-survey of beliefs and attitudes; student-created reflective videos; journaling; and one pre- and post-diversity week interview. The findings reveal shifts in student teachers’ perceptions about gender, race and sexuality, and these attitudinal shifts were more significant in those attending all week than those attending only the first day. This is particularly interesting because for some topics the only formal input was on the first day, and so the authors argue for the importance of time and space for creative reflection in beginning teachers’ professional development.
Updated: Jun. 23, 2021