Page 56 - Empowering pre-service teachers through inquiry - Lidewij van Katwijk
P. 56

                                Chapter 3
 Kowalczuk- Walędziak, Lopes, Underwood, Daniela, & Clipa, 2019). However, authors also identify costs, such as time invested, difficulties with sustainability, continual need to nurture partnerships with schools, and added demands on already crowded curricula (e.g., Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 2009; Kowalczuk-Walędziak et al., 2019; Ulvik, 2014). A document analysis of policy documents and program descriptions of Dutch primary teacher education showed that intended learning outcomes of pre- service teacher research are not aligned fully with described teaching activities and assessments (Van Katwijk et al., 2019b). This lack of alignment may be leading to disappointing results in learning outcomes (Biggs & Tang, 2011). Accordingly, the aim of our study is to gain insight into the purpose and value of pre-service teacher research in primary teacher education, assess its implementation in teaching activities, and identify its learning outcomes, as perceived by students and teacher educators.
2 Theoretical framework
Purpose of pre-service teacher research and inquiry
To gain insight into the purpose and value of pre-service teacher inquiry for primary teacher education, we must distinguish between research and inquiry, though many descriptions of teacher education programs use the terms interchangeably (Munthe & Rogne, 2015). We consider pre-service teacher research a form of practitioner inquiry (e.g., Borko, Liston, & Whitcomb, 2007; Cochran-Smith et al., 2009; Munthe & Rogne, 2015; Zeichner & Noffke, 2001); a conceptual umbrella which “refers to a variety of educational research modes [...], including action research, teacher research, narrative inquiry, [...]and the use of teaching as a context for research”, and is conducted by practitioners (Cochran-Smith et al., 2009, p.18). We prefer to use the term ‘inquiry’ rather than ‘research’, though no such distinction exists in the Dutch language. According to Reid (2004, p. 4), “Inquiry is a process of systematic, rigorous and critical reflection about professional practice, and the contexts in which it occurs, in ways that question taken-for-granted assumptions. Its purpose is to inform decision-making for action.” Inquiry involves educators pursuing their ‘wonderings’, using insights from previous research about practices, and exploring alternatives systematically using basic research knowledge and skills. However, the use of more complicated quantitative and qualitative research methods and scientific, international literature, as well as the construction of knowledge applicable to other researchers‒which is essential to research‒are optional for inquiry (Munthe & Rogne, 2015; Reid, 2004).

   54   55   56   57   58