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New Pedagogies and the Training of Teachers and Trainers (part 2)

September 30th, 2010 by Graham Attwell

Here is part 2 of my series on new pedagogies and the training of teachers and trainers. Each day this week I am reporting on a number of ‘high lighted issues; from a report I am in the progress of writing. Today’s highlighted issues come from the section on ‘pedagogic theories and the use of technologies for learning and their implications.’

Highlighted issues

Definitions of competence

Definitions of learning and competence are central to the development and implementation of new pedagogies of the use of technology for learning. Yet despite broad debates around definitions and understanding in the research community and in different countries, in vocational education and training the UK has tended to adopt a more restricted definition, albeit one rooted in cultural traditions of vocational education in the UK. How can we promote a wider debate around these issues and especially an understanding of their implications for pedagogy and practice?

How can we support teachers in exploring new pedagogic approaches?

New pedagogic approaches are merging as new technologies are used in different ways for learning, for instance through the use of Web 2.0 and social software. Yet the adoption of new pedagogic approaches and indeed their emergence requires space and time for experimentation. How can we ensure that teachers have the spaces and time for such experimentation and how can we ensure the results of that experimentation are disseminated to a wider audience?

The research, policy, practice gap

There would appear, at different levels, to be some considerable gaps between policy, research and practice, especially in the use of new pedagogic approaches to using technology for teaching and learning. The answer is not probably a linear process of dissemination but rather encouraging a closer dialogue between different actors within the system. How can such dialogue be organised and sustained?

Changing roles of teachers and trainers

There is considerable evidence that the use of new technologies and particularly new pedagogic approaches to the use of technologies of teaching and learning are leading to new roles for teachers. How can those new roles be reflected in Initial Teacher Training and Continuing Professional Development and how can the organisation and management of institutions evolve to reflect such changing roles?

Bringing Initial Teacher Training and Continuing  Professional Development in line with espoused pedagogies

If we are introducing new pedagogic approaches to teaching and learning, it would appear apposite that these pedagogies are reflected int he practice of training teachers. This may suggest the need for greater flexibility in Initial Teacher Training curriculum. More importantly, it also implies that the trainers of teachers themselves have to adopt new pedagogic approaches. How can this process be facilitated?

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