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Teacher educators : transition into higher education and developing research identities Prof Vivienne Griffiths and Liz Hryniewicz Canterbury Christ Church.

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Presentation on theme: "Teacher educators : transition into higher education and developing research identities Prof Vivienne Griffiths and Liz Hryniewicz Canterbury Christ Church."— Presentation transcript:

1 Teacher educators : transition into higher education and developing research identities Prof Vivienne Griffiths and Liz Hryniewicz Canterbury Christ Church University Dr Simon Thompson, University of Sussex UCET Annual Conference November 11-12th 2010

2 Research focus Focus on practitioners (teacher educators) developing research identities Focus on practitioners (teacher educators) developing research identities Explores mentoring and support Explores mentoring and support Highlights barriers to research Highlights barriers to research Identifies key factors with wider application e.g. entitlement to research time, induction, buddying and an active research culture Identifies key factors with wider application e.g. entitlement to research time, induction, buddying and an active research culture

3 Previous research Dual transition of teacher educators from school to university (Murray 2008) Dual transition of teacher educators from school to university (Murray 2008) Poor induction into academia (Harrison & McKeon 2008) Poor induction into academia (Harrison & McKeon 2008) Lower status of teacher educators (Maguire 2000) Lower status of teacher educators (Maguire 2000) Importance of internal support and collaborative learning (Dinkelman et al 2006, McGee & Lawrence 2009) Importance of internal support and collaborative learning (Dinkelman et al 2006, McGee & Lawrence 2009)

4 Methodology Case study approach (Cohen et al 2007) Case study approach (Cohen et al 2007) In-depth interviews with 12 teacher educators and research mentors (9 f, 3 m) In-depth interviews with 12 teacher educators and research mentors (9 f, 3 m) Explored biographies, experiences of transition, support and barriers to research Explored biographies, experiences of transition, support and barriers to research Beginning researchers as interviewers (Stenhouse 1975) Beginning researchers as interviewers (Stenhouse 1975) Situated learning framework (Lave & Wenger 1991, Eraut 2004) Situated learning framework (Lave & Wenger 1991, Eraut 2004)

5 Context Pre 1992 University Research intensive Research intensive 66% education faculty entered into RAE 66% education faculty entered into RAE Small teacher education provision (250 students) Small teacher education provision (250 students) Highly developed research culture Highly developed research culture Post 1992 University Former teacher training college Former teacher training college 6% education faculty entered into RAE 6% education faculty entered into RAE Large teacher education provision (2500 students) Large teacher education provision (2500 students) Developing research culture Developing research culture

6 Strengths & skills of practitioners Up to date knowledge of field Up to date knowledge of field Access/ sensitivity to context Access/ sensitivity to context Valued dual perspective of insider and outsider Valued dual perspective of insider and outsider (They have) a much better understanding than people who've just been through a research career of what the evidence means, the classroom observation... People with teacher education expertise...have a greater depth of understanding about interpretations (They have) a much better understanding than people who've just been through a research career of what the evidence means, the classroom observation... People with teacher education expertise...have a greater depth of understanding about interpretations Research Mentor (Pre 1992 University)

7 Challenges Possible lack of understanding of practitioners work: Possible lack of understanding of practitioners work: I feel that there are some people who don't understand...the nature and role of the work (of teacher education). Different roles of work involved in terms of demands and what can be expected Research Mentor (Pre 1992 University) Perceived status of practitioner research Perceived status of practitioner research

8 Barriers Lack of support Dual Transition Time: the massive issue Student Support Luxury of Research Low confidence

9 Lack of time If you get involved with trainees, the main part of the job, things come up and thats not accounted for in your workload calculations. And some of the problems that trainees have take a lot of time to unravel so theres precious little time in the week anyway If you get involved with trainees, the main part of the job, things come up and thats not accounted for in your workload calculations. And some of the problems that trainees have take a lot of time to unravel so theres precious little time in the week anyway Teacher Educator (Pre 1992 University)

10 Need for support Formal: research training –a kind of induction into that world … an introduction to research research training –a kind of induction into that world … an introduction to research role of supervisor role of supervisor research mentor research mentor research seminars research seminarsInformal: peer support peer support role models role models collaborative research activities – similar to this piece of research collaborative research activities – similar to this piece of research

11 Working with experienced researchers Working with L on the conference paper was brilliant...I suppose she was modelling and team working and that enabled me to do it myself. Someone whos really inexperienced working with an experienced person, I probably learnt more than anything else. Working with L on the conference paper was brilliant...I suppose she was modelling and team working and that enabled me to do it myself. Someone whos really inexperienced working with an experienced person, I probably learnt more than anything else. Teacher Educator (Pre 1992 University)

12 Building Research Identities Hurdle: Self perception as academic Landmarks: Higher degree, conference papers, publications Landmarks: Inherent satisfaction and reward Landmarks: State of dependency to greater autonomy PRACTITIONERPRACTITIONER RESEARCHERRESEARCHER

13 Changing identities For me, its actually to see myself as a researcher, as an academic, cos I still see myself so much as a teacher. And youve got to get over that hurdle, and if you get over that hurdle it might get easier to say, I cant go to that meeting or I cant see that student For me, its actually to see myself as a researcher, as an academic, cos I still see myself so much as a teacher. And youve got to get over that hurdle, and if you get over that hurdle it might get easier to say, I cant go to that meeting or I cant see that student Teacher Educator (Post 1992 University)

14 Being able to step outside yourselves and your subject and researching to challenge what you do, rather than to validate what they do and think...Research is the bit that pulls the rug from under them. I know it did for me, changed my thinking totally. It opens doors...Its about empowering...Once you become research active you have valid grounds to challenge. Research Mentor (Post 1992 University)

15 Conclusions Study indicated importance of: collaborative research, learning alongside experienced researchers collaborative research, learning alongside experienced researchers mentors modelling research practice mentors modelling research practice strong institutional support for research as well as valuing of teacher education strong institutional support for research as well as valuing of teacher education active research culture active research culture acknowledging complexity of transitions acknowledging complexity of transitions

16 Recommendations Structured induction Structured induction Raise aspirations Raise aspirations Balance teaching and research Balance teaching and research Dedicated research time with accountability Dedicated research time with accountability Set expectations, with targeted support Set expectations, with targeted support Buddying, mentoring and collaboration Buddying, mentoring and collaboration Stenhouse model: co-research and co- teach Stenhouse model: co-research and co- teach

17 Thank you very much for listening Griffiths, V., Thompson, S. & Hyrniewicz, L. (2010) Developing a research profile: mentoring and support for teacher educators. Professional Development in Education 36(1-2):

18 References Cohen, L., Manion, L. & Morrison, K. (2007) Research methods in education, 6th edn. London: RoutledgeFalmer. Cohen, L., Manion, L. & Morrison, K. (2007) Research methods in education, 6th edn. London: RoutledgeFalmer. Dinkelman, T., Margolis, J. & Sikkenga, K. (2006) From teacher to teacher educator: reframing knowledge in practice, Studying Teacher Education, 2(2), 119–136. Dinkelman, T., Margolis, J. & Sikkenga, K. (2006) From teacher to teacher educator: reframing knowledge in practice, Studying Teacher Education, 2(2), 119–136. Eraut, M. (2004) Informal learning in the workplace, Studies in Continuing Education, 26(2), 247–274. Eraut, M. (2004) Informal learning in the workplace, Studies in Continuing Education, 26(2), 247–274. Harrison, J. & McKeon, F. (2008) The formal and situated learning of beginning teacher educators in England, European Journal of Teacher Education, 31(2), 151–168. Harrison, J. & McKeon, F. (2008) The formal and situated learning of beginning teacher educators in England, European Journal of Teacher Education, 31(2), 151–168. Lave, J. & Wenger, E. (1991) Situated learning: legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Lave, J. & Wenger, E. (1991) Situated learning: legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Maguire, M.(2000) Inside/outside the ivory tower: teacher education in the English academy. Teaching in Higher Education 5(2): Maguire, M.(2000) Inside/outside the ivory tower: teacher education in the English academy. Teaching in Higher Education 5(2): McGee, A. & Lawrence, A. (2009) Teacher educators inquiring into their own practice, Professional Development in Education, 35(1), 139–157. McGee, A. & Lawrence, A. (2009) Teacher educators inquiring into their own practice, Professional Development in Education, 35(1), 139–157. Murray, J. (2008) Teacher educators induction into higher education: work- based learning in the micro communities of teacher education, European Journal of Teacher Education, 31(2), Murray, J. (2008) Teacher educators induction into higher education: work- based learning in the micro communities of teacher education, European Journal of Teacher Education, 31(2),

19 Discussion Do the issues raised from this research resonate with your own experience? Do the issues raised from this research resonate with your own experience? What are the key challenges for pre and post 1992 universities and are they different? What are the key challenges for pre and post 1992 universities and are they different? What positive strategies to address these issues are taking place in your own institutions? What positive strategies to address these issues are taking place in your own institutions? What else can we do as individuals and groups, institutionally and nationally? What else can we do as individuals and groups, institutionally and nationally?


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