10 SES 13 B, Preparing Pre-School Teachers for Family School Partnerships: International perspectives
Educational systems are, on one side, shaped by global processes of an increased interconnectedness and migration and, on the other side, bound to meet local requirements. Accordingly, teacher education needs to find meaningful ways of dealing with these challenges (Leutwyler, Mantel & Tremp, 2011). In the case of the Teacher Education University Zug (PH Zug), these challenges are being addressed in an organisational development process that has taken place over the past decade. This process is driven by the fact that the PH Zug has a research & development unit (IZB) with long term experience in North-South partnerships and cooperation, providing robust knowledge in the field of the global dimension of transnational learning, as well as the local dimension of dealing with migration related diversity. One of the areas, in which innovative approaches are pursued, is the area of student mobility and its embedding into the curriculum. Student mobility programmes have become a prominent and popular part of internationalisation processes in teacher education (Hahn, 2004; Knight, 2012). However, research has shown that the benefit from studies abroad for the teaching profession cannot be taken for granted. A quantitative investigation conducted by IZB, generating data from a longitudinal assessment, has revealed that mobility stays do provide a great potential for learning, particularly in dealing with diversity. However, this potential is rarely fully exploited (Leutwyler, 2014; Leutwyler & Meierhans, 2016). Accordingly, we need to know more about the quality of the mobility experience. Therefore, we aim at exploring student teachers’ general learning experiences while studying and teaching abroad. The research questions are as follows: How do primary school student teachers perceive their learning during an international practicum? Which «revenues» do student exchange programmes – including an international practicum – provide on an institutional level? For this purpose, group discussions will be conducted with approximately 10 students who have returned from a four-week international practicum. Some of these students will have done this practicum completely voluntarily, others will have spent their time abroad within a provided mobility programme. The data will be analysed according to hermeneutical research methodology (Bohnsack, 2013). We expect that the responding student teachers make experiences that challenge their ‘normality beliefs’ (Leutwyler & Petrović, 2011). These normality beliefs may refer to worldviews and ways of living in general, and they may also refer to different notions of educational quality and teaching practice.
Bohnsack, R. (2013). Die dokumentarische Methode und ihre Forschungspraxis. Grundlagen qualitativer Sozialforschung. Wiesbaden: Springer VS. Hahn, K. (2004). Die Internationalisierung der deutschen Hochschulen. Kontext, Kernprozesse, Konzepte und Strategien. Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften. Knight, J. (2012). Student Mobility and Internationalization: Trends and Tribulations. Research in Comparative and International Education, 7(1), 20–33. Leutwyler, B., Mantel, C. & Tremp, P. (2011). Lokale Ausrichtung – internationaler Anspruch: Lehrerinnen- und Lehrerbildung an pädagogischen Hochschulen. Beiträge zur Lehrerbildung, 29(1), 5–19. Leutwyler, B. (2014). Between Myths and Facts: The Contribution of Exchange Experiences to the Professional Development of Teachers. Journal of Curriculum and Teaching, 3(2), 106–117. Leutwyler, B., & Meierhans, C. (2016). Effects of international student exchange on student teachers: a quasi-experimental study. Intercultural Education, 27(2), 117-136. Leutwyler, B. & Petrović, D. (2011). Normality Reflection Scale: Verification of Cross-Cultural and Concurrent Validity. In C. Popov, C. Wolhuter, B. Leutwyler, M. Mihova & J. Ogunleye (Eds.), Comparative education, teacher training, education policy, social inclusion, history of education (pp. 49-56). Sofia: Bureau for Educational Services.
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