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This study examined how student teachers thought about their teaching, exploring their professional evolution as they progressed from academic study within the university to formal employment as teachers. It highlighted a 10-week secondary school placement in their final university semester. Each student teacher was observed teaching and interviewed immediately afterwards. Interviews examined what they had been thinking about and what had been occurring in the classroom. Results indicated a lack of explicit attention to formal student achievement in terms of targets, standards of attainment, and performance indicators. Maintenance of specific patterns of students' classroom activity that student teachers regarded as normal and desirable was considered important. The greatest proportion of statements emphasized factors influencing the circumstances under which teaching occurred. Respondents considered five broad conditions to have important contextual influences on their teaching: student characteristics; impact of teachers' and other adults' presence; time; content; and resources. Classroom conditions exerted a powerful influence on student teachers' actions. Though student teachers were not asked to evaluate their own performance, most did so. There was a marked contrast between how student teachers thought about their teaching as they taught and the ubiquitous models of teaching as a technical delivery/decision-making activity. (SM)

Descriptors: Classroom Techniques, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Preservice Teacher Education, Secondary Education, Student Behavior, Student Teacher Attitudes, Student Teacher Evaluation, Student Teachers, Student Teaching, Teacher Influence, Teaching Conditions, Time Factors (Learning)

Autor: Brown, Sally


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