10 SES 07 B, Parallel Paper Session
Parallel Paper Session
Teaching can be seen as a helping profession insofar as it is an activity involving complex, multidimensional interaction processes in which professional knowledge is formed and used to foster the development of people and societies (Hugman, 2005). ‘Helping’ is taken here not only in the clinical sense assigned to it by Rogers (1976), but also in the psychosocial sense that sees intervention within certain professions as a work produced in human relationships (Hawkins and Shohet, 2006).
It can be argued that the ‘helping’ aspect is as an integral part of teaching professionalism and an essential factor in the teacher educator´s identities. Dubet (2002) says that teaching, alongside with health and social work, is ‘work about the “other”’, that is, work that explicitly aims to change the ‘other’. According to the same author (Dubet, 2002) teaching as an occupation was constituted by reference to a “modern institutional programme” – a social process within which values and principles were turned into action and subjectivity via specific and organised professional work. Teacher education was accomplished in an extremely complex social-historical process full of tensions and contradictions of a varied nature (cf. Nóvoa, 2009). It was the “institutional programme” that made possible in the past to coordinate and give meaning to the three levels of professional action of these professionals – the social control, the service and the relation (Dubet, 2002).
Currently, these professionals are confronted by contradictory exigencies (Derouet, 2010). The context of ‘school crisis’ (within the crisis of modern institutions in the late modernity) is taking teaching profession to face challenges that are forcing community to rethink initial training conditions. Looking for new institutional and individual identities, pre service teacher education has changed profoundly in recent decades, in terms of the academic degrees it confers, the curriculum, the training context and its relations with working contexts (cf. Lopes and Pereira, 2012; Korthagen, 2004).
According to Dubar (2002), the process of constructing professional identities is characterised by a dual biographical and relational transaction. As a secondary socialisation process, pre service teacher education is responsible for creating the conditions to access the specialised field of education knowledge and teacher educators are nuclear in this process.
This is why it is important to find out and to understand the situated identities of teachers educators, that is, the organisation of various personal and social identities of an individual in a certain context, such as the pre service teacher education one (Hewitt, 1991).
This paper presents exploratory data about teacher educators’ identities, collected as part of a larger research project on initial education of helping professionals (teachers and nurses) and the educators’ identities. This project aims at: acquiring knowledge about teacher educators’ identities as situated identities; building knowledge about teaching as a helping profession; making proposal of training modalities and organisation. The aim of this exploratory study is to identify relevant aspect about teacher educators in their training context in order to inform further deeper data collection.
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