07 SES 05.5 PS, General Poster Session
General Poster Session
Teachers are playing an important role in addressing societal gender-related issues influencing social justice and inclusiveness. It means that “teacher education institutions have to ensure that their graduating teachers are well equipped with the necessary understandings and skills to enact this role” (Cushman 2011, 775). As stressed by Kreitz-Sandberg (2013), teacher education is an outstanding example for describing and analyzing horizontal segregation and other aspects of the gender order in higher education. There is need to “reconsider strategies for gender mainstreaming in higher education” and to understand how “gender structures and gender culture are reproduced in universities and in teacher education” (Kreitz-Sandberg 2013, 2).
Current study aims to identify the students' perceptions of gender equality in society and in teacher education. The main focus will be placed on Estonian teacher education with contextualization to the European equality politics. The topic is important because the gender equality discourse and policies for gender sensitive pedagogy have not been addressed in the frame of initial teacher education in previous literature.
Estonia offers an interesting case study because of high PISA results but low Gender Equality Index. According to PISA Estonian students are among the best performers in Europe but boys perform considerably lower than girls in reading. The difference is 44 points, which is more than one year of schooling. At the same time there is no gender difference in performance in science and in maths, the boys performing slightly better than girls (Summary of PISA 2012 results for Estonia).
In EU Gender Equality Index, Estonia places only 14th, scoring above the EU average in the area of women education and training but is very poor in the area of power. Women's representation in decision-making in political and economic spheres is very low (EU Gender Equality Index).
Due to the complexity of gender equality issues and also the actuality for Estonian society raises an important research problem - How do future teachers percieve the gender equality in Estonian society and in teacher education in particular?
Consequently, the study focuses on three main research questions: (1) What are the future teachers’ perceptions of gender equality in Estonian society? (2) How is the gender perspective integrated into teacher education programs? (3) What should be the role of gender equality in teacher education?
Aina, O. E., & Cameron, P. A. (2011). Why does gender matter? Counteracting stereotypes with young children. Dimensions of Early Childhood, 39(3), 11-19. Cushman, P. (2012) You're not a teacher, you're a man’: the need for a greater focus on gender. studies in teacher education. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 16 (8). 8, 775-790. Elo, S., & Kyngäs, H. (2008). The qualitative content analysis process. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 62(1), 107-115. EU Gender Equality Index http://eige.europa.eu/content/gender-equality-index, 23.01.2015. Kreitz-Sandberg. S. (2013) Gender inclusion and horizontal gender segregation: stakeholders’ strategies and dilemmas in Swedish teachers’education. Gender and Education, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09540253.2013.772566, 23.01.2015. Kvale, S. Doing Interviews. (2007). London: SAGE Publications Inc. Lahelma, E. (2014) Troubling discourses on gender and education, Educational Research, 56 (2), 171–183. Praxis (2014) Gender equity in general and higher education http://www.praxis.ee/tood/sool6ime-hariduses/tutvustus/, 22.01.2015 Sargent, P. (2005). The gendering of men in early childhood education. Sex Roles, 52(3/4), 251-259. Skelton, C. 2007. Gender, policy and initial teacher education. Gender and Education 19, no. 6: 677–90. Summary of PISA 2012 results for Estonia. Ministry of Education and Research, 2012 http://innove.ee/UserFiles/%C3%9Cldharidus/PISA%202012/PISA_2012_results_Estonia.pdf
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