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postgraduate thesis: Student teachers' professional learning in teaching practicum

TitleStudent teachers' professional learning in teaching practicum
Authors
Issue Date2012
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Ma, X. [马秀丽]. (2012). Student teachers' professional learning in teaching practicum. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b4832941
AbstractThis thesis reports on an ethnographic inquiry into student teachers’ professional learning and development in a four-month practicum, during which no mentor is present. The subject background is Teaching Chinese as a Second Language (TCSL) in mainland China. This study draws on a variety of theories, such as Wenger’s social learning theory, Brookfield’s significant personal learning theory, Fuller’s teacher concern theory and Ghaye’s reflection hierarchy model, to conceptualize a theoretical framework to interpret collected data. The research involves two phases, i.e., the pilot and main study, each of which includes three participants. This thesis mainly reports the three cases in the main phase, with a brief account of the pilot phase. The methodological orientation of this research is naturalistic inquiry, which involves multiple data collection methods, such as student teachers’ reflective journals, individual and group interviews, lesson observations, documentary analysis, field notes and email correspondence, of which reflective journals are the main data source. The findings suggest that the student teachers are highly self-reliant in undertaking professional learning when no mentors are present. Very little participation in the professional community has been identified in all of the six cases, which is presumably attributed to the no mentorship context. Student teachers who possess a strong passion for teaching make attempts to expand their professional communities at the initial stage of the practicum; however, they are demotivated when their attempts fail. They thereafter have to rely on their own initiative by drawing on their prior teaching experiences or other resources available in their personal communities. Those who are not passionate about teaching do not take the initiative to widen their professional communities and make no changes throughout the practicum. The results also indicate that the student teachers suffer extreme anxiety, often for the whole practicum period. They are tormented by self-doubt and panic about the uncertainties and emergencies in teaching. They show great concern for “self” throughout the practicum and rarely demonstrate concern for “tasks”, “teaching performance” or “learners”. Their concern for survival predominates the whole practicum. The student teachers’ reflections as revealed in their teaching journals are basically at the descriptive and perceptive level. Little higher-level reflection has been identified. This is also likely to be associated with the no mentorship context. Recommendations for the TCSL teacher preparation programmes and the student teachers are highlighted. For the programmes, providing a more structured and supportive environment is suggested. The student teachers are advised to take more initiative to widen their professional communities and to have more peer learning and self-directed learning. A good combination of formal and informal learning can enable them to achieve the maximum professional growth in the practicum.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectStudent teaching - China.
Lesson planning - China.
Dept/ProgramEducation
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/188726

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorMa, Xiuli-
dc.contributor.author马秀丽-
dc.date.accessioned2013-09-05T07:53:05Z-
dc.date.available2013-09-05T07:53:05Z-
dc.date.issued2012-
dc.identifier.citationMa, X. [马秀丽]. (2012). Student teachers' professional learning in teaching practicum. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b4832941-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/188726-
dc.description.abstractThis thesis reports on an ethnographic inquiry into student teachers’ professional learning and development in a four-month practicum, during which no mentor is present. The subject background is Teaching Chinese as a Second Language (TCSL) in mainland China. This study draws on a variety of theories, such as Wenger’s social learning theory, Brookfield’s significant personal learning theory, Fuller’s teacher concern theory and Ghaye’s reflection hierarchy model, to conceptualize a theoretical framework to interpret collected data. The research involves two phases, i.e., the pilot and main study, each of which includes three participants. This thesis mainly reports the three cases in the main phase, with a brief account of the pilot phase. The methodological orientation of this research is naturalistic inquiry, which involves multiple data collection methods, such as student teachers’ reflective journals, individual and group interviews, lesson observations, documentary analysis, field notes and email correspondence, of which reflective journals are the main data source. The findings suggest that the student teachers are highly self-reliant in undertaking professional learning when no mentors are present. Very little participation in the professional community has been identified in all of the six cases, which is presumably attributed to the no mentorship context. Student teachers who possess a strong passion for teaching make attempts to expand their professional communities at the initial stage of the practicum; however, they are demotivated when their attempts fail. They thereafter have to rely on their own initiative by drawing on their prior teaching experiences or other resources available in their personal communities. Those who are not passionate about teaching do not take the initiative to widen their professional communities and make no changes throughout the practicum. The results also indicate that the student teachers suffer extreme anxiety, often for the whole practicum period. They are tormented by self-doubt and panic about the uncertainties and emergencies in teaching. They show great concern for “self” throughout the practicum and rarely demonstrate concern for “tasks”, “teaching performance” or “learners”. Their concern for survival predominates the whole practicum. The student teachers’ reflections as revealed in their teaching journals are basically at the descriptive and perceptive level. Little higher-level reflection has been identified. This is also likely to be associated with the no mentorship context. Recommendations for the TCSL teacher preparation programmes and the student teachers are highlighted. For the programmes, providing a more structured and supportive environment is suggested. The student teachers are advised to take more initiative to widen their professional communities and to have more peer learning and self-directed learning. A good combination of formal and informal learning can enable them to achieve the maximum professional growth in the practicum.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.source.urihttp://hub.hku.hk/bib/B48329411-
dc.subject.lcshStudent teaching - China.-
dc.subject.lcshLesson planning - China.-
dc.titleStudent teachers' professional learning in teaching practicum-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb4832941-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineEducation-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b4832941-
dc.date.hkucongregation2012-

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