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Teacher Education Curriculum for Reflective Practitioner

Author: WangYanLing
Tutor: ZhongQiQuan
School: East China Normal University
Course: Comparative Education
Keywords: teacher education curriculum teacher as technician technical rationality teacher as reflective practitioner reflective practice
CLC: G652.3
Type: PhD thesis
Year: 2008
Downloads: 2105
Quote: 21
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Abstract


For solving the problem of theory and practice separation in teacher education curriculum, this paper researches its reform from the perspective of teacher ’s professional image transformation, and tries to construct a kind of teacher education curriculum that intertwines theory with practice.This paper argues against the teacher education curriculum that educates teachers as technician. At present, the idea of educating teaching technician dominates teacher education curriculum, and its epistemology is technical rationality. The technical rationality epistemology claims that educational theory and educational technology have universal effect, educational practice is application and examination of educational theory. The practitioners are instrumental problem solvers. The course work and field work of learners are kept separateThe paper tries to defend and advocate for the view of teachers as reflective practitioner and its educational curriculum. Reflective practice is the dominant epistemology of the new professional image of teachers and their educational curriculum. Based on Donald A. Schon’s contribution, this paper analyzes the practical epistemology of reflective practice. Schon’s epistemology of "reflection-in-action" and "knowing-in-action" expresses a basic attitude to understand educational practice beyond the dichotomous thinking in education, emphasizes teachers as subject of educational action, and believes that teachers themselves can integrate theory into practice. The paper enriches Schon’s epistemology of reflective practice through respective concept analysis of practice and reflection. It also elaborates the rationality and inevitability of teachers as reflective practitioner from three aspects, including philosophy, psychology and education.Whereas some scholars have misunderstanding on Schon’s concept of reflective practitioner, this paper analyzes the original connotation of its concept, and makes some clarifications and responses. This paper also extends Schon’s theory of reflective practitioner and puts forward that Schon’s professionals are only active problem solvers who keeps developing their practical knowledge. But teacher’s practical knowledge is not always beneficial to the practice or has any social value, which means that teachers should be critical about the presuppositions and predilections they bring to the classroom. At the same time, educational practice of teachers must comply with common moral and ethic principles which can be regarded as caring for human beings and their survival. It is the caring that urges teachers oppugn actively the rationality of aim, means, contents, etc. in their practice so as to link them to social harmony and moral commitment.So, this paper takes the three basic elements of teacher education curriculum, i.e. learners, knowledge and society, and their dynamic connection, as scaffold, and constructs the new teacher’s professional image of reflective practitioner. Teachers as reflective practitioner mean that teachers can reflect their action and its context in make rational decisions, can be conscious and criticize their presupposition and predilection, and can reflect and adjust their educational action in time, so as to continuously develop their practical knowledge and improve their practice. Concretely, a reflective practitioner is an conscious, active, critical inquirer, and is the creator of his/her practical knowledge; is the promoter and cultivator of students’ development, and is critic and reformer of irrational educational idea and system. The paper also generalizes the characteristics of reflective practitioner.According to the connotation of reflective practitioner, this paper outlines the new teacher education curriculum for educating reflective practitioner. The new curriculum holds an integral view of teacher’s knowledge and educational theory and educational practice, its design aiming to develop teacher’s practical knowledge, and its implementation focusing on inquiry approaches, at the same time, the new curriculum relies on the practical univeristy-school partnership community .As far as the content of the chapters, the first chapter is basic ,which constructs the new professional image, i.e. reflective practitioner ,and describes the outline of his/her educational curriculum. The second and third chapter discusses the design and implementation of new teacher education curriculum respectively. The last chapter focuses on constructing the practical community.

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