Supervision in Teacher Education: A Counselling and Pedagogical Approach

Supervision in Teacher Education: A Counselling and Pedagogical Approach

Supervision in Teacher Education: A Counselling and Pedagogical Approach

Supervision in Teacher Education: A Counselling and Pedagogical Approach

Excerpt

The supervision of student teachers is a much understudied subject in Britain. This may be because teaching itself has, until recent years, received little attention from researchers in education. Preoccupations such as the study of individual and group differences may well have deflected attention from the study of how to help people to learn (Stones 1978a). The recent upsurge of interest in classroom studies, however, is not showing much evidence of being influenced by, or making a contribution to, theories relating to human learning or teaching. Given this context it is perhaps not surprising that many teacher educators still implement methods of supervision that have been characterized as atheoretical, idiosyncratic, poorly conceptualized, of doubtful efficacy and in some cases probably harmful (MacAleese 1976, Greenfield 1977, Stones and Morris 1972b).

Strong words, perhaps, and ones that many teacher educators would probably wish to contest. But there is no denying that in many institutions concerned with teacher preparation there is no awareness that problems exist in the field of supervision. This lack of awareness is manifest in the fact that supervisors of practical teaching in Britain, for example (but also in the USA, Brodbelt 1980), are frequently recruited from staff who have not made a study of any of the foundation disciplines of education, apart from a limited exposure during their own teacher training, and even those that have studied further in the field of education are extremely unlikely to have given thought to the theory and practice of supervision. It is also unlikely that they will be inducted into methods of

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