Page 85 - Empowering pre-service teachers through inquiry - Lidewij van Katwijk
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                                Pre-service teacher inquiry; an international comparison
 3 Framework of the study
We examine pre-service teacher research in two country contexts, the Netherlands
and Australia, chosen because of their similarities in qualification level (i.e., Australian
Qualifications Framework 2013, p. 51; European Union, 2016; Vereniging Hogescholen,
2016), standards for teacher education (Australian Institute for Teaching and School
Leadership, 2011; Onderwijscoöperatie, 2014), curricula, and learning outcomes for
pre-service teacher research (as reflected in handbooks and programme descriptions
of the participating institutes that we reviewed in 2016). The participating institutes 4 in the Netherlands list the following goals for pre-service teacher research: an inquiry
habit of mind, knowledge about and use of educational research, and skills to conduct research. Similarly, knowledge and skills to understand and conduct educational research are the main objectives of the pre-service teacher research projects in the Australian institutes. In all cases, the pre-service teachers must write a literature review and a research proposal, before collecting data and writing a report. In both countries, the research projects also are connected to practice.
On the basis of prior literature (e.g., Aspfors & Eklund, 2017; Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 2009; Munthe & Rogne, 2015) and the aforementioned goals and knowledge areas for pre-service teacher research, we distinguish four main aspects of pre-service teacher research:
1. Research knowledge, or a broad understanding of a body of knowledge about education and research, as well as underlying theoretical concepts (e.g., Dana & Yendol-Hoppey, 2014; Jacobs et al., 2015; Munthe & Rogne, 2015; Sachs, 2016). Aspfors and Eklund (2017) describe this aspect as an element of research competence.
2. An inquiry habit of mind, defined by Earl and Katz (2006) as a way of thinking to gain profound understanding, being reluctant to conclude, tolerating contradictions, looking from different perspectives, and continuously asking questions. Cochran-Smith and Lytle (2009) refer to it as “inquiry as stance,” which includes being open to learn from one’s own professional environment, as well as a fundamentally critical attitude. Van der Rijst (2009), whose work is regularly cited in Dutch higher education policy, articulates six characteristics of an inquiry habit of mind: a tendency to be critical as well as wanting to understand, to share, to innovate, to know, and to achieve.

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