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Modelling in initial teacher education (ITE) : reflections on the engagement of student teachers with cooperative learning in ITE.

McAlister, Clare (2012) Modelling in initial teacher education (ITE) : reflections on the engagement of student teachers with cooperative learning in ITE. Teacher Development, 16 (3). pp. 303-320. ISSN 1366-4530

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Abstract

This study focusses on a group of student teachers who were participants on the Post Graduate Diploma in Education at a Scottish university and assesses their engagement with cooperative learning as a result of their training. The participants were experientially trained in cooperative learning approaches through modelling by their tutor for the Pedagogy and Curriculum module of the course. The course tutor modelled cooperative learning activities and teams were established. Data were gathered in three phases: firstly from the student teachers through questionnaires following their first two placements; in phase two through focus groups and by questionnaires to school departments. The third phase gathered data when the student teachers had progressed to their probation year in schools. This study examines whether the participants felt confident implementing cooperative learning and if they thought this helped them deliver the new curriculum in Scotland, Curriculum for Excellence. It discusses modelling in ITE as a means of developing practice and the partnership between schools and universities.