NAFOL profile: Annette Hessen Bjerke

Annette Hessen BjerkeTo better explain why my PhD-project has turned out the way it has, I will start with a few historical facts. In 2006, an external evaluation of Norwegian teacher education programmes claimed that pre-service teachers experienced a lack of coherence in the relationship between University Colleges and practice schools (NOKUT,2005). In 2010 national guidelines were developed for two new teacher education programmes, which included improved school placement. KD stated that all involved communities; the teacher education institution; the practice schools; and the students should cooperate. The cooperation was formalized as a tripartite cooperation.

This is the starting point for my PhD-project. I have engaged in making this tripartite cooperation work, and experienced challenges. While third-year students taking further studies in mathematics acknowledge the consistency of ideas between University College and schools, first-year students complain about the lack of coherence.

To thoroughly theorize, analyze and understand the challenges pre-service teachers face when repeatedly crossing the boundaries of different and intersecting communities of practices as they switch between university college and school placement during their teacher training, it is important to understand the nature of pre-service teachers’ development. By following the pre-service teachers through their two years of mathematics education courses and school placements, focusing on what I call critical points (the repeated moments they are crossing boundaries), I will try to identify and understand the negotiation needed to participate in the intersecting and conflicting communities of practice of university college and school.

Abstract (doc file)