Theory of the practicum. A discursive and narrative view of secondary preservice teacher education

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This paper reports on a study that questions whether the preservice secondary practicum delivers the quality learning experiences it promises. Many voices are silenced in preservice teacher education. This research highlights the complexities of qualitative research in schools. Contradictions are explored and lead to the examination of the gap between 'projects of possibility' and an education process hijacked by those looking backwards. A clearly articulated and defended 'theory of the practicum' is needed if the reflective and moral work of teachers is to underpin the practicum and promote knowledge construction in ways that are equitable and just for our young people. Six stories of the practicum are written into existence from observations in secondary preservice classrooms. These have been interrogated by the education community to uncover perspectives that support the role of 'theory' based teacher education as opposed to the currently proffered 'school based' training. Indeed there is evidence that reflection,understanding and meaning making (theory building) better support teachers as connected 'knowers' and 'thinkers'. Such teachers are capable of engaging students in quality learning that will prepare them for a future of change,challenge and authentic learning. These findings are counter to the politically expedient 'apprenticeship' and 'bag of tricks' discourse.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAARE2006
Subtitle of host publicationEngaging Pedagogies
EditorsPeter L Jeffery
Place of PublicationMelbourne, Australia
Pages1-12p (ROR06031)
Publication statusPublished - 2007
EventAustralian Association for Research in Education conference - Adelaide, SA. Australia, Australia
Duration: 26 Nov 200630 Nov 2006


ConferenceAustralian Association for Research in Education conference


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