Browsing by Subject "Teacher education"

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  • Poom-Valickis, Katrin; Löfström, Erika (2019)
    The aim of the study was to understand the development of professional identity of prospective teachers, their ideals and experiences during interactions with their surrounding learning environment, including university studies and pedagogical placement during their 5-year studies. We also aimed at understanding how students with different motivational pathways to teacher education may be supported to explore teaching as a possible career choice. The findings reported in this article emerged primarily from interviews with 13 student teachers at the end of their teacher education programme. Survey responses collected during earlier stages of the study were utilised to provide data about the student teachers' professional development prior to the point of the interviews. The findings of the study point to various concerns and dilemmas, which in turn suggest that student teachers take different identity development routes. The study identified four possible "identity routes" to becoming a teacher. The implications of different identity routes on teacher education are discussed.
  • Kyong, Jin; Hilden, Raili; Lee, Jinkyong (2021)
    Purpose: This paper compared the curricula of English teacher education programs in Finland and Korea. The purpose of the study is two folds: to explore what the professional teacher competencies of both countries pursue and how they are reflected in course syllabi. Methods: Data are collected by analyzing course syllabi presented on web pages of each university where the researchers are teaching. Specifically, the study analyses course objective statements using the teacher competence framework, which consists of knowledge, skills, and dispositions. Results: The results show that the knowledge domain is more emphasized in Korean English teacher education courses, while skills prevail in the Finnish program. The different value each teacher education curriculum places on the teaching practicum might produce the result. The Finnish English teacher program integrates skill domains into extensive practice courses, while the practice is more modest in the Korean program. The domain of values and dispositions seems to have less importance in both countries curricula, although dispositions are fundamental in teacher competencies. Conclusion: Both countries’ teacher education needs to achieve a balance between knowledge, skills, and disposition, which are large categories of teacher competence, as well as among elements within each domain. In particular, it seems necessary to deviate from the GPK-centered goal setting and have a balanced perspective with PCK. Also, it is required to introduce a future-oriented perspective such as active integration of information and communication technologies.
  • Hinostroza-Paredes, Yenny (2020)
    This article uses critical discourse analysis (CDA) to interrogate the discursive construction of Chilean university teacher educators’ professionalism in government initial teacher education policy and institutional policy enactment documents. The study examines the network of discourses—new managerialist, quality assurance, performance, functionalist professional development—producing a version of professionalism akin to organizational professionalism. Used as a form of managerial control over teacher educators’ professional practices, such professionalism exacerbates performativity while reducing professional agency opportunities and consistent professional/academic development. Ultimately, this study contributes to the necessary questioning of Chilean ITE policy reform and the need to examine its effects on university TEs’ professional lives and the professional modeling of their student teachers.
  • Hummelstedt-Djedou, Ida; Holm, Gunilla; Sahlström, Fritjof; Zilliacus, Harriet (2021)
    The aim of this study was to explore the role of social justice in multicultural education taught in teacher education. The study investigated discourses on multicultural education among Finnish teacher educa-tors, and the subject positions constructed in them. Discourse theory analysis revealed six discourses on multicultural education, ranging from conservative to liberal and critical, with liberal discourses having the most articulations. Although Finnish teacher education has taken steps towards social justice, the results also highlight racialisation and the subject position of the immigrant Other as themes that need to be challenged to prevent the reproduction of inequalities in teacher education. (c) 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (
  • Seppänen, Sirke; Toivanen, Tapio; Makkonen, Tommi; Jääskeläinen, Iiro P; Anttonen, Mikko; Tiippana, Kaisa (2020)
    Objectives Teaching involves multiple performance situations, potentially causing psychosocial stress. Since the theater-based improvisation method is associated with diminished social stress, we investigated whether improvisation lessened student teachers’ stress responses using the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST; preparatory phase, public speech, and math task). Moreover, we studied the influence of interpersonal confidence (IC) – the belief regarding one’s capability related to effective social interactions – on stress responses. Methods The intervention group (n = 19) received a 7-week (17.5 h) improvisation training, preceded and followed by the TSST. We evaluated experienced stress using a self-report scale, while physiological stress was assessed before (silent 30-s waiting period) and during the TSST tasks using cardiovascular measures (heart rate, heart rate variability [HRV]), electrodermal activation, facial electromyography (f-EMG), and EEG asymmetry. Hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA-axis) reactivity was assessed through repeated salivary cortisol sampling. Results Compared to the control group (n = 16), the intervention group exhibited less f-EMG activity before a public speech and higher HRV before the math task. The low IC intervention subgroup reported significantly less stress during the math task. The controls showed a decreased heart rate before the math task, and controls with a low IC exhibited higher HRV during the speech. Self-reported stress and cortisol levels were positively correlated during the post-TSST preparatory phase. Conclusions These findings suggest that improvisation training might diminish stress levels, specifically before a performance. In addition, interpersonal confidence appears to reduce stress responses. The decreased stress responses in the control group suggest adaptation through repetition. Keywords: Improvisation; Anticipatory anxiety; Interpersonal confidence; Psychophysiology; Teacher education; Trier Social Stress Test
  • Byman, Reijo; Jyrhämä, Riitta; Stenberg, Katariina; Maaranen, Katriina; Sintonen, Sara; Kynäslahti, Heikki (2021)
    Education makes a difference and teacher educators are an important part of that circle. However, there is very little research done in Finland on teacher educators' professional development. The main purpose of this study was to develop and test the psychometric properties of three scales that measure the components of teacher educators' professional development, namely (a) developmental needs, (b) preferred ways of fulfiling those needs and (c) hindrances to fulfiling developmental needs. The differences between different occupational groups were also discussed. The survey was distributed in May 2019 to all eight Finnish universities that offer teacher education. The final sample size was 354. Using scale development techniques, we succeeded in generating items to all three inventories. We also tested the psychometric properties and the construct validity of the inventories. Our study revealed that teacher educators are not a homogenous group. Different occupational groups have different professional development interests.
  • Maaranen, Katriina; Stenberg, Katariina (2020)
    This research focuses on the identity development of ten student teachers during a one-year Teacher’s Pedagogical Studies program in Finland. The students wrote narratives that represented their beliefs of ‘good’ teaching, and in this study, these beliefs are called as personal practical theories (PPTs). After two teaching practicum experiences, the students were interviewed about the realisation of their PPTs. The most significant change, based on both the narratives and the realised PPTs, was related to contextual factors (such as collaboration with school members and shared organisational culture) that became increasingly significant as teacher education proceeded, which may narrow the potential gap between the student teachers’ ideals and the real world of the schools. On the basis of the results, we see that it is extremely important that future subject teachers should have the opportunity to focus on topics that fundamentally affect their forthcoming work, that is, their personal images, ideals, and values regarding teaching.
  • Kangas, Jonna; Ukkonen-Mikkola, Tuulikki (2019)
    Early childhood education (ECE) is the first step of a lifelong learning pathway. In Finland, the institutions of ECE have went through many chances in recent years and the ongoing development of policies and practices of young children’s educational system have been the focus of many projects and much research. In this paper researchers describe and analyse how dynamic development in regional development projects is implemented in teacher training programs, ECE field work and research in boundary spaces. The researchers describe the Finnish ECE system, its policies and practices to form a basis for the development project. Through that the basic principles of development are illustrated. The essential voices of participants of the project are introduced to form a picture of shared development goals, through opportunities and challenges, in multi-voiced community of education. Finally, the development work of ECE in the light of international knowledge of ECE is discussed. The findings of this research suggest that development in a multi-voiced community with different participators and organizations of the ECE can be successful and that the partnership approach can be development to create an active learning society of students, practical teachers and researchers.
  • Puustinen, Mikko; Säntti, Janne; Koski, Anna; Tammi, Tuure (2018)
    This article analyses teacher training in Finland from the teacher candidate's perspective. The focus is on two key concepts, the Teacher as a Researcher and the Personal Practical Theory, which characterise the agenda of Finnish teacher education. Cluster analysis divided the respondents into five groups, and each cluster had a short textual description. Qualitative data were included in the summary. According to our analysis, the main concepts of the Teacher as a Researcher and the Personal Practice Theory are unclear to teacher candidates and are appreciated differently. Subject teacher candidates in particular, who come from other academic cultures, might consider these concepts educational jargon that have no substance. We also argue that teacher students are not always able to connect the theoretical parts of their studies with practice. These results challenge the claim that Finnish teacher education has resolved the demanding relationship between theory and practice. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Furuhagen, Björn; Holmén, Janne; Säntti, Janne (2019)
    There are many similarities between the Nordic countries of Sweden and Finland, but they have made different decisions regarding their teacher-education policies. This article focuses on how the objectives of teacher education, particularly the vision of the ideal teacher, have changed in Sweden and Finland in the period after the Second World War. In Finland, the period since the 1960s can be described as a gradual scientification of teacher education. The image of the ideal teacher has transformed according to a research-based agenda, where teachers are expected to conduct minor-scale research in the classroom. In Sweden since the 1980s, on the other hand, teacher education has oscillated between progressivist and academic orientations, following shifts in government between the Social Democratic Party and the centre-right. Since the turn of the millennium, however, a consensus in favour of a strengthened research base of teacher education has also emerged in Sweden.
  • Lonka, Kirsti; Ketonen, Elina; Vermunt, Jan D. (2021)
    University students' epistemic beliefs may have practical consequences for studying and success in higher education. Such beliefs constitute epistemic theories that may empirically manifest themselves as epistemic profiles. This study examined university students' epistemic profiles and their relations to conceptions of learning, age, gender, discipline, and academic achievement. The participants were 1515 students from five faculties who completed questionnaires about epistemic beliefs, including a subsample who also completed a questionnaire that included conceptions of learning. We measured epistemic beliefs: reflective learning, collaborative knowledge-building, valuing metacognition, certain knowledge, and practical value. First, we analyzed structural validity by using confirmatory factor analysis. Second, we conducted latent profile analysis that revealed three epistemic profiles:Pragmatic(49%),reflective-collaborative(26%) andfact-oriented(25%). Then, we compared the conceptions of learning across the profiles as well as demographic information, credits, and grades. The profiles' conceptions of learning varied: Thereflective-collaborativegroup scored high on conception of learning named "construction of knowledge." Its members were more likely to be females, teachers, and mature students, and they had the highest academic achievement. Thefact-orientedgroup (mostly engineering/science students) scored highest on "intake of knowledge." Thepragmaticgroup scored highest on "use of knowledge:" During the second year, their academic achievement improved. In sum, the epistemic profiles were closely related to conceptions of learning and also associated with academic achievement.
  • Kangas, Jonna; Harju-Luukkainen, Heidi (University of Eastern Finland, 2022)
    Reports and Studies in Education, Humanities, and Theology
  • Kangas, Jonna; Harju-Luukkainen, Heidi (2021)
    In Finland the education system and teacher training programs have been under a reform during the past decade. All policy documents on the field of early childhood education have been renewed and this has had its influence on the teaching training practices and teachers’ work as well. Teachers are challenged to implement pedagogical methods to support children to become active agents of their learning. Further, also teachers should act as active agents in their professional development. Finnish teachers’ competences and quality of the teaching are defined in recent policy documents that introduce the future competences of teachers, including expertise agency and innovative approach. The aim of this research is to understand and critically evaluate the teacher’s agency and agentic approach of these recent policy documents through thematic content analysis. In total three policy documents were analyzed. As our theoretical frame we describe the agentic and life-long-learning approach in the educational context. We explain the Finnish early childhood education context and current policies and practice within the field of ECEC in Finland, through the viewpoint of teachers’ agency and competence. According to the results, the focus in the analysed documents was more on today and less on future aspects of the teacher’s agency. Further, the main focus on the teacher’s agency today was on notions describing pedagogical and relational agencies. Our results suggest that teachers are given a large number of different roles as well as values across the different documents. Teachers are asked to be ‘more of everything’ now and in the future. We conclude this paper with a critical reflection. We argue that policymakers in Finland, on the field of ECE, should take a more critical perspective on teacher’s future skill requirements especially regarding teachers’ agency.
  • Aksit, Fisun; Niemi, Hannele; Nevgi, Anne (2016)