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Title: Partnership in initial teacher education: a first evaluation.
Author: Smith, Mary Elizabeth.
Awarding Body: University of Manchester : University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 1999
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A radical review of initial teacher training in England and Wales was brought about by the implementation of Circular 9/92, 'Initial Teacher Training (Secondary Phase)' (DES, 1992). The Circular laid out criteria and procedures for accreditation of courses. This virtually removed the traditional autonomy that the universities had had in the training of initial teachers for over one hundred years. The roles and responsibilities of tutors and teachers were drastically changed, with teachers becoming 'mentors' and taking almost total control of the extensive school-based elements, including the assessment of students. Tutors had to prepare students for their extended school experiences, train mentors and carry out a quality control function to ensure the students were adequately trained in the schools. Courses were to be based on the achievement by students of competences which were for the most part concerned with the acquisition of classroom skills. Thus theory was to be subordinate to practice. It followed logically from this that the schools' contribution was to become more vital than that of the Higher Education Institutions (REls). The REls were to form partnerships with schools and the teachers empowered to train new teachers in a way not before envisaged. This posed the questions: Would it work? Could it work? This thesis examines the development of one such Partnership. It traces the thinking behind the philosophy of the Partnership and the influence that philosophy had on Course development. It highlights the innovative features of the Course and identifies the structural and procedural difficulties that arose from the developmental processes. It attempts to evaluate the success of the first year of the Partnership by examiningthe provision for student training in the schools and in the University, and to provide guidelines for the development of the programme. The evaluation of provision was carried out by using questionnaires which identified every element of training provided by the Partnership. Three questionnaires were developed with students, mentors and tutors identifying the elements received or provided. The responses made by the different parties were then compared. The results of the study demonstrated that the Partnership is generally working successfully in the training of students on the secondary Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) Course which is an example of good Initial Teacher Education (ITE). The Course has many strengths and some weaknesses. The greatest strength is the provision made for the students so they may develop the skills required to be excellent classroom practitioners. Both mentors and tutors have adopted the role of student trainers successfully and most mentors have worked through the competency model of ITE. The weaknesses lie in the following areas: the consistency of provision for students; the variety of activities experienced by students; the appropriate use of the competency model of training by some tutors and; the integration of theory and practice by the majority of both mentors and tutors. As the Partnership evolves all the weaknesses have been, or are being addressed, with the exception of the integration of theory and practice which still remains a thorny issue.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available