10 SES 10 C, Dialogue and Reflection in Classrooms and Teacher Education: Narratives from the United States, Pakistan, and Spain
Many teacher education programs have worked to prepare reflective teachers through written journals and more recently, ePortfolios. There is a need to analyze the content and quality of prospective teachers’ ePortfolio reflections (Zeichner and Wray, 2001). This study responds to the need. The primary question of inquiry is: what do prospective teachers reflect about? To what extent their reflections are related to the classroom realities? Guided by a framework proposed by the author (2011), the author used ePortfolios as a dialogic and non-evaluative space to facilitate prospective teachers to reflect on their student teaching experience in a teacher education program in the United States. Data was collected from four prospective teachers’ ePortfolio reflections in one academic year, triangulated with classroom observations and interviews. Results show that by nurturing a non-evaluative culture, prospective teachers were able to share the stories of their teaching with an emerging pattern of critical analysis of their work in order to improve their future practices. Not only did they highlight their successes but more importantly, the challenges they encountered and how they dealt with those challenges. This research highlights the potential of ePortfolio in creating a dialogic space for preparing reflective teachers.
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