ERG SES C 03, Parallel Session C 03
After obtaining the "catastrophic PISA-study results" (Gudjons 2007: 8) in 2001 Germany was shocked like in "Sputnik-times" (Terhart 2002: 17). In contrast, Finland was always among the PISA-winners.
Two explanations for the Finnish success are the individual support it provides for each pupil (see Reich 2008: 233) and the teacher education for which only 10% of all classroom-teacher-applicants are chosen (see Hakala 2009: 193). Teaching is one of the most wanted professions in Finland and the applicant's motivation, didactical potential and educational abilities are tested (see Hakala 2009:200). Matti Meri (2007 in Sußebach) describes this system as follows: "For having the best pupils, you need to educate the best teachers". The one-phase teacher education is based on interlocking of theoretical inputs during study at university and practical experiences at university based practice schools. Educational topics makes 4/5 of the whole university education, the subject orientated contingent is about 1/5 (see Reich 2009:29). The Finnish teacher education is based on constructivist views (see Reich 2008:233). Teacher students are supported to develop a research attitude (Hakala 2009:197), and to learn to reflect their own growth through portfolio-works.
In Germany, the A-level or the N.C. is often the only limitation to start a teacher education program (see Reich 2009:29), although the A-level-average is not reasonable for the later quality of teachers (see Terhart 2011: 340). Competences, like social or communications skills - which are needed for the later profession - are not tested. With about 4/5 of the whole study program the subject orientated focus is strong throughout the studies. 1/5 makes the input of educational topics (see Reich 2009:29). Teaching is not a high standing profession, and teacher students are often seen as "second class sudents" (see Merzyn 2005). Another fact about German teacher education is the separation of theory and practice: Most of the practical experiences (in most of the 16 federal states), future teachers obtain during the 1,5 year trainee program after finishing university.
This short overview demonstrates the differences of German and Finnish teacher education. But what is the opinion of (future) teachers about their own education?
This study tries to systematically assess how teacher students and teachers are evaluating their own education and prepare themselves for their later professions as a teacher in order to better understand differences/similarities of the German and Finnish teacher education programs. According to Meuser and Nagel (1991), teachers are experts in everyday school life. They can assess the outcome of their own education. Teacher students and trainees can be regarded as experts of everyday university life and their own education which is related to their later profession.
The following questions guided the research:
What are the motives for becoming a teacher in Finland and Germany (with regard to pedagogical attitudes)? How do teacher students/trainees evaluate their education (positive elements/change requests)? How do teacher students evaluate the school system they will work in (identification with later work)? Do teacher students feel as a part of the university (relationship to lectures, course offer from interests, learning-groups, reflection, etc.)?
Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K. (2007): Research Methods in Education, 6th edition, London and New York: Routledge. Gudjons, H. (2007): ´Beruf: Lehrerin - Wandlungen - Widersprüche - Wunschbilder´; Pädagogik: vol 9, 2007, pp. 6-10. Hakala, J.H. (2009): Die Ausbildung der Klassenlehrer für die neunjährige Grundschule. In: Matthies, A.-L.; Skiera, E. (ed.): Das Bildungswesen in Finnland. Bad Heilbrunn: Klinkhardt. Mayring, P. (2008): Qualitative Inhaltsanalyse. Grundlagen und Techniken, 10th edition, Weinheim und Basel: Beltz. Merzyn, G. (2005): Lehrerbildung - ein Stiefkind der Universitäten. Niederes Ansehen, Interessen im Hintergrund, ungünstige Folgen. In: Die Deutsche Schule, 97, 2005, vol. 3, pp. 342-350. Meuser, M. and Nagel, U. (1991): ´Experteninterviews - vielfach erprobt, wenig bedacht. Ein Beitrag zur qualitativen Methodendiskussion´, in: Garz, D. and Kraimer, K. (ed.): Qualitativ-empirische Sozialforschung, Opladen. Reich, K. (2008): Konstruktivistische Didaktik. Lehr- und Studienbuch mit Methodenpool, 4th edition, Weinheim und Basel: Beltz. Reich (2009): Lehrerbildung konstruktivistisch gestalten. Wege in der Praxis für Referendare und Berufseinsteiger. Weinheim und Basel: Beltz. Sußebach, H. (2007): Ist im Norden alles besser? (II): Wo die Lehrer sitzenbleiben. In: DIE ZEIT, 19.04.2007 vol. 17. Terhart, E. (2002): Nach PISA. Bildungsqualität entwickeln. Hamburg: Europäische Verfassungsanstalt (eva). Terhart, E. (2011): Forschung zu Biographien von Lehrerinnen und Lehrern. In: Terhart, E., Bennerwitz, H.; Rothland, M. (ed.): Handbuch der Forschung zum Lehrerberuf. Münster: Waxmann.
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