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Title: Teaching Assistants' experiences of the mediational language approach and peer supervision in their professional practice : an exploratory study
Author: Grazziotin Cardoso De Freitas, E.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8502 0069
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis explored the experiences of Teaching Assistants (TAs) in relation to the training on mediational language approach and group discussions as an event in their lives. TAs' job expectations have changed in the recent years, with a focus on their pedagogical role, however, literature available suggests limited support in terms of training and supervision for this group of practitioners. Additionally, there is also research available (Blatchford, Basset, Brown and Webster, 2009) that proposes that TAs' in-class support may produce a negative effect on children's outcomes. Recent literature (Radford, Bosanquet, Webster, Blatchford and Rubie-Davies, 2014) emphasizes the need to improve the quality of interactions between TAs and children. Six participants took part in the current research and narrative analysis was used as a method to explore their stories about their experiences of accessing a training and subsequent group discussions. Analysis revealed that engagement with the training materials and interests on the links between theory and practice, reassured their value within the school. Information sharing generated discussions about peer support, which was regarded as a valuable aspect of their practice. Changes in practice appeared to be linked to belief systems about children's abilities, which were displayed by changes in patterns of classroom approaches or reflections about practice. The researcher suggests further research exploration around the application of the mediational language approach, as an alternative method of TA-child interaction to support children's independent learning skills. Possible implications for the use of structured models of peer supervision for TAs in schools for the practice of Educational Psychologists (EPs) are discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Ch.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: teaching assistants ; independent learning skills ; supervision