Teacher educators' professional learning: A necessary case of 'on your own'?

Berry, A 2016, 'Teacher educators' professional learning: A necessary case of 'on your own'?' in B. De Wever, R. Vanderlinde, M. Tuytens and A. Aelterman (ed.) Professional Learning in Education: Challenges for Teacher Educators, Teachers and Student Teachers, Academia Press, Gent, Belgium, pp. 39-56.


Document type: Book Chapter
Collection: Book Chapters

Title Teacher educators' professional learning: A necessary case of 'on your own'?
Author(s) Berry, A
Year 2016
Title of book Professional Learning in Education: Challenges for Teacher Educators, Teachers and Student Teachers
Publisher Academia Press
Place of publication Gent, Belgium
Editor(s) B. De Wever, R. Vanderlinde, M. Tuytens and A. Aelterman
Start page 39
End page 56
Subjects Science, Technology and Engineering Curriculum and Pedagogy
Curriculum and Pedagogy not elsewhere classified
Specialist Studies in Education not elsewhere classified
Summary Teacher educators' reports of their professional preparation as teachers of teachers are typ- ically characterized by experiences of isolation, loneliness, and neglect. These feelings of aloneness have been longstanding and the current situation for teacher educators seems unchanged. At the same time, an accumulating body of international research highlights both the complex nature of teaching, and an urgent need to improve the quality of teachers and teaching, worldwide. This sets up a strange discrepancy between on the one hand, a pressing need to prepare high-quality teachers, and on the other, a relative lack of organized preparation for those whose responsibility it is to prepare these future teachers. This chapter addresses the issue of teacher educators' professional learning. First, I present some of the issues related to the professional situation of teacher educators and explain how these notions of aloneness may have arisen. Then, I put forward an argument about the nature of teacher educators' professional learning and how it might be better understood and pro- moted based on an analysis of teacher educators' accounts of their work, including my own. I draw on Mezirow's (1991, 1995), theory of transformative learning in interpreting these accounts Finally, I re-frame notions of teacher educator aloneness from that of 'isolation and disempowerment' to 'autonomy with agency', and assert that being 'left alone' is a nec- essary condition for promoting teacher educators' professional learning.
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ISBN 9789038225968
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