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Title: Professional development of teacher educators : challenges and opportunities
Author: Qureshi, Naima
ISNI:       0000 0004 5922 4914
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2016
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This study examines the challenges and opportunities for the professional development of teacher educators in a leading teacher education university in Pakistan. It underpins the participatory and sociocultural perspectives of learning to gain insight into teacher educators’ learning. This research deployed a sequential explanatory mixed methods approach, using questionnaires followed by semi-structured interviews. Interviews were conducted with teacher educators, heads of the departments, campus principals and higher management personnel. The study highlights the fact that the teacher educators do not have any formal permanent system of professional development. The findings further reveal the diverse professional characteristics of teacher educators in terms of experience in teaching, research and professional qualifications, which lead to varied learning experiences and professional challenges to teacher educators in their respective roles. Beginner teacher educators with no professional qualification and inadequate teaching and research experience face more challenges in meeting the demands of the higher education settings. Teaching appears to be the major professional role of teacher educators in comparisons to curriculum design, mentoring or engagement in research. This study raises a number of issues regarding professional adequacy and entry requirements of teacher educators, as well as the status of the field of teacher education in Pakistan. A key finding of this study is the contested context of the University as a workplace, which inhibited the professional relationship of teacher educators. This resulted in a balkanized culture, which challenged the learning of teacher educators. In addition, inequitable and insufficient access to resources, lack of professional support from management and excessive workloads limited the opportunities for learning. The study also highlights the fact that teacher educators are relying more on peer and self-learning. However, peer-learning was not evenly observed across all campuses. This research improves our understanding of Community of Practice showing that the concept needs to consider power, culture and disentangle the relationship between working conditions and learning. It also gives insight to the conceptualization of workplace affordances by seeing that such affordances are both personal and institutional. In terms of looking at Eraut’s ideas of informal learning, this research adds to our understanding that it is not just learning and contextual factors (institutional factors) which affect the learning of the individuals but also their professional context. In this research, professional context includes professional experiences (teacher educators’ repertoires in teaching and research), qualifications, their differentiated roles and positions. By doing so the research has added to the discourse of informal learning and provides an empirical study in the field of teacher education. In addition, this research provides deeper insight of teacher educators’ learning, and can assist in designing and strengthening the professional development opportunities for teacher educators in Pakistan.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Education (Lahore ; Pakistan)
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB Theory and practice of education