Aiming higher: how will universities respond to changes in initial teacher training for the post-compulsory sector in England?

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Abstract

Initial teacher training for post-compulsory education in England is currently undergoing profound change in terms of central direction of curricula and the provision of financial support for trainees. Within a discourse of the 'professionalisation' of teaching in the sector, unprecedented control of the detailed structure and content of training courses has been established and is increasing in extent. At the same time, principles of free access to Cert. Ed. and PGCE courses are being set aside, so that those universities which provide training are simultaneously contending with imposed curriculum change and with a serious threat to student recruitment. This article examines the origins and nature of these developments, considers the political and economic background from which they stem, and discusses in detail some features of the characteristic discourse of the reforms instituted by central government. It goes on to consider the likely effects of the recent and on-going changes in university-led training and suggests that the outcome of the reforms might be to undermine the government's own aspirations for professionalisation of the teaching workforce in post-compulsory education.
LanguageEnglish
Pages171-182
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Further and Higher Education
Volume31
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2007

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compulsory education
professionalization
teacher training
course of training
curriculum
reform
university
discourse
Teaching
trainee
threat
economics
student

Cite this

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title = "Aiming higher: how will universities respond to changes in initial teacher training for the post-compulsory sector in England?",
abstract = "Initial teacher training for post-compulsory education in England is currently undergoing profound change in terms of central direction of curricula and the provision of financial support for trainees. Within a discourse of the 'professionalisation' of teaching in the sector, unprecedented control of the detailed structure and content of training courses has been established and is increasing in extent. At the same time, principles of free access to Cert. Ed. and PGCE courses are being set aside, so that those universities which provide training are simultaneously contending with imposed curriculum change and with a serious threat to student recruitment. This article examines the origins and nature of these developments, considers the political and economic background from which they stem, and discusses in detail some features of the characteristic discourse of the reforms instituted by central government. It goes on to consider the likely effects of the recent and on-going changes in university-led training and suggests that the outcome of the reforms might be to undermine the government's own aspirations for professionalisation of the teaching workforce in post-compulsory education.",
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