Manchester Metropolitan University's Research Repository

Teacher educator changing perceptions of theory

Smith, Kim and Hodson, Elaine and Brown, Tony (2013) Teacher educator changing perceptions of theory. Educational action research, 21 (2). pp. 237-252. ISSN 0965-0792


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An alternative formulation of actor in educational action research is shown to refresh notions of theory within initial teacher education. Methodologically, the actor is depicted as identifying with on-going cultural adjustments through reflective data. Specifically, the paper considers the experience of mature trainee teachers in the UK, who participated in employment-based models of training. Initially, trainees were drawn to meeting the immediate demands of practice in specific locations. Capacity in practice more generally accrued through later exposure to analytical approaches. The paper documents collaborative action research by teacher educators focusing on the changing demands of their development work with the trainees. The resultant struggle of professional identity for tutors is seen as productive, adjusting educative processes to new circumstances. The actor of action research so equipped mobilises a conception of theory supportive of more responsive subjective modes within wider professional functionality.

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