10 SES 13 A, Professional Development and Dialogue
The aim of this presentation is to explore the idea of searching for constructional frameworks of the rationale for professional improvisation in teacher education (Sawyer, 2011) through an in-depht literature review. Our research question is formulated as follows:What characterizes improvisation in teacher education according to literature on the theme, and how can these findings be compared and conceptualized?
When producing the article Improvisation in teaching and education—roots and applications (Holdhus,Høsiæter, Mæland, Vangsnes, Engelsen, Espeland, M. & Espeland, Å., 2016) a comprehensive literature review was conducted. This article was a result of joint work within the research project Improvisation in teacher education (2012-2016). When writing, editing and publishing this article, one of the most complex tasks appeared to be the choice of literature to fit into the conceptual framework of the report, and it meant putting a huge number of interesting articles and books aside. The reviewed, ommitted literature anyhow forms a reservoir of knowledge and research which is still at hand. Our idea, then, is to revisit and subsequently conceptualize a part of these findings.The interest for our search this time will be improvisation in teacher education, which will mean narrowing down from the general overview presented in the 2016 article. Thus, the review task still will comprise a process of choice – what part of these findings actually touch improvisation in teacher education, and what should be the criteria for categorization?
The mentioned search for literature for our published article was performed in 2014, and subsequently we have to attend to recent research in a systematic and profound way and let it inform categories along with the material chosen from our prior findings.
Up till lately, teacher improvisation has not been addressed in a methodological way in teacher education, and a number of writers point at methodical rehearsal and training as major resources to achieve a professional level of teacher improvisation (REFS). Findings from our investigation of improvisation as a general phenomenon seen in relation to professional teacher education, (Holdhus et al, 2016) recognize professional improvisation in education as a young field, which thus must rely on a number of cultural and historical improvisatory practices and sources, though with the aim of developing and establishing itself as a key curriculum concept in teacher education.
It seems to us that the discussion on improvisation in education, which started out as a view of teaching as performance and inspired by the traditions of music and theatre (Greene, 1995; Sarason, 1999), is now being balanced by other writers.
These writers remind us of the fact that artistic expression can relate and enrich educational enterprise. However, professional improvisation in education, artistically related or not, will take place in a curriculum-driven context where planning and given structures are basic prerequisites (Sorensen, 2016; Sawyer, 2011;Dezutter, 2011).
Although we still think the essentials of improvisation as seen in other traditions (e.g. music, theatre, rhetoric) are highly relevant, it seems to us that future discussions of professional improvisation in teacher education must be more coloured by the paradigmatic specificity of education, such as educational structures and motivational designs. The dialogic, open-scripted, interactive and responsive aspects of improvisation are common features for all the traditions we examined in our article from 2016 (Holdhus et al, 2016).
Findings from our suggested review project could provide a theoretical reservoir for the discussion and implementation of improvisation as a key curricular concept in teaching and teacher education.
Dezutter, S. (2011). Professional improvisation and teacher education: Opening the conversation. In R. K. Sawyer (Ed.), Structure and improvisation in creative teaching (pp. 27–50). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Dochy, F. (2006). A guide for writing scholarly articles or reviews for the Educational Research Review. Educational Research Review, 4, 1-2. Greene, M. (1995). Releasing the imagination: Essays on education, the arts, and social change. San Francisco, CA: Joey-Bass. Holdhus, K., Høisæter, S., Mæland, K., Vangsnes, V., Engelsen, K. S., Espeland, M., & Espeland, Å. (2016). Improvisation in teacher education – roots and implications: A review of relevant literature. Published: 4 July 2016, Cogent Education, Teacher Education & Develpoment https://doi.org/10.1080/2331186X.2016.1204142 IMTE, (2012-2016). Improvisation in Teacher Education, Retrieved from: http://prosjektsider.hsh.no/imte/ Montuori, A. (2005). Literature review as creative inquiry reframing scholarship as a creative process. Journal of Transformative Education, 3, 374–393. Montuori, A. (2003). The complexity of improvisation and the improvisation of complexity: Social science, art and creativity. Human Relations, 56, 237–255. Sarason, S. B. (1999). Teaching as a performing art. New York, NY: Teachers College Press. Sawyer, R. K. (2011). Structure and improvisation in creative teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Sfard, A. (2008). Thinking as communicating: Human development, the growth of discourses, and mathematizing. Cambridge University Press. Sorensen, N. (2016). Improvisation and teacher expertise: implications for the professional development of outstanding teachers. Professional Development in Education, 1-17.
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