Do different models of teacher preparation produce different outcomes?
There is a major policy debate nationally – and indeed internationally – about the efficacy of different approaches to teacher education in the light of the challenges of preparing teachers for twenty-first century schools. The sector in England now embraces a wide range of routes through initial teacher education (ITE). The multiplication of options has been led by various policy agendas, one of which is to shift the location of teacher preparation into schools.
The range of possibilities from which to choose has been becoming bewildering for potential applicants to ITE. Often the choices are explained simplistically, for example, as school-based or not-school based. As a result, the terminology and the general complexity in the field present a real problem.
Our objective under the DiTE project was to unpack the complex range of routes, and look at outcomes for each.
Core questions for the DiTE study
- What are the new routes to Qualified Teacher Status?
- How do these contemporary routes differ from earlier ones, and how are pre-service teachers distributed across them?
- What are we learning about the different modes of teacher preparation in contemporary contexts, and what can we conclude about the current state of ITE?
A focus on macro datasets allows us to approach our central question about the diversity of routes from a fresh angle. Under this work strand we explored the extent to which and how robustly could the routes through ITE be captured by statistical data.
A topography of the routes to qualified teacher status (QTS) for the year 2016/17 was developed and published in the Review of Education.
Whiting, C, Whitty, G, Menter, I, Black, P, Hordern, J, Parfitt, A, Reynolds, K and Sorensen, N (2018) 'Diversity and complexity: becoming a teacher in England in 2015-16.' Review of Education, 6 (1). pp. 69-96. ISSN 2049-6613
For our qualitative fieldwork, we investigated the nature of the current models of initial teacher education with a particular focus on the outcomes of each. Several publications were disseminated.
Parfitt, A (2020) 'Can the concept of the protean career help us to understand millennial pre-service teacher retention challenges? A study of two pre-service teachers’ career pathways in England.' Journal of Education for Teaching. DOI: 10.1080/02607476.2020.1733403
Sorensen, N, ed. (2019) 'Diversity in Teacher Education: perspectives on a school-led system.' UCL IOE Press, London, pp. 29-59. ISBN 9781782772521
Parfitt, A (2016) Poster explaining the DiTE study.