Academic journal article International Journal of Education

Evaluation of Student Teachers Grouped According to Teaching Subjects: Students' Perception

Academic journal article International Journal of Education

Evaluation of Student Teachers Grouped According to Teaching Subjects: Students' Perception

Article excerpt

Abstract

The purpose of this paper was to test if there was a significant difference between students' evaluation of their student teachers grouped according to teaching subjects. It also tested if there was a significant difference between evaluation of student teachers grouped according to teaching subjects in the following areas: preparation, supervision, teaching environment, and teaching practice experience. To test the hypotheses, Pearson's product measurement correlation coefficient and t-test were applied. The results indicate that the mean in the student evaluation of arts and sciences student teachers are significantly different. The results also suggest that there was no statistical significant difference between evaluation of the student teachers grouped according to teaching subjects (arts and sciences) on all the areas of teaching practice. Both groups have a high evaluation of preparation, teaching environment and teaching practice experience and have average evaluation on supervision.

Keywords: evaluation; student teachers; teaching subjects; teaching practice; supervision; preparation; Kenya

1. Introduction

This study was conducted between January and March 2012. Its purpose was to test if there was a significant difference between students' evaluation of their University of Eastern Africa, Baraton (UEAB) student teachers grouped according to teaching subjects. It also tested if there was a significant difference between evaluation of student teachers grouped according to teaching subjects in the following areas: preparation, supervision, teaching environment, and teaching practice experience.

Teaching practice occupies a key position in the program of teacher education. It is a culminating experience in teacher preparation. It provides opportunity to beginning teachers to become socialized into the profession. Performance during teaching practice provides some basis for predicting the future success of the teacher. Outgoing popularity and centrality of teaching practice is an important contributing factor towards the quality of teacher education program. During teaching practice, working with students in schools provides a high degree of emotional involvement of a mostly positive nature. Student teachers grow through experience and they begin to link to a culture of teaching. During teaching practice, they feel engaged, challenged and empowered (Furlong et al, 1988). Approximately 1500 research papers dealing with different aspects of teacher education are published and indexed in ERIC (the Educational Resource Information Center) each year (Krull, 2005). These scholarly papers extend from international comparative studies of teacher preparation traditions and qualification requirements in the light of students' achievements ( Losito and Mintrop 2001), to the studies of teacher personal learning and development of professional characteristics (e.g. Berliner 1994, Bond et al 2000, etc).

Different countries have over the years developed their teaching practice programs to suit their divergent needs. Teaching practicum is a central element in most pre- service teacher education programs in New Zealand. After completing a degree in relevant content areas, prospective high school teachers in New Zealand typically enroll in a one year diploma at a college of Education. The year is intensive and a critical component is supervised teaching within selected high schools. The student teacher is attached to an experienced teacher, an associate teacher, who accepts responsibility for the day to day supervision of the student teacher's teaching experience. During each attachment, a visiting lecturer for the college of Education also observes the student teaching. However, the assessment of students' competence during practicum remains problematic (Liddicoat, et.al, 2003). In Australia, all teacher education programs at the University of Sydney require an internship of at least ten weeks. …

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