Academic preparation of teachers-to-be for research-based learning in everyday professional work

Stefanie van Ophuysen, Lars Behrmann, Bea Bloh, Martina Homt, Jennifer Schmidt

Abstract


As a result of a stronger focus on practical elements in academic teacher education, students are expected to engage in research-based learning. However, the meaning of this term is manifold. A well-founded conception of this learning process and also a critical discussion of its relation to empirical research are missing yet. We explicate why the use of empirical research methods can support the gain of insight from individual professional experiences. Accordingly we define research-based learning as a cyclical learning process in which certain elements of scientific, empirical research are applied in combination with theoretical knowledge and individual experiences in order to find answers on questions and problems of everyday school life. Taken all together, research-based learning is expected to foster the development of professional competence. Based on this definition we introduce a concept for academic teacher education, which serves to prepare pre-service teachers to practice research-based learning during the Praxissemester. First results from the evaluation of corresponding lectures with n = 89 and n = 60 students reveal an increase in knowledge about research methods and self-rated abilities, but not in expected benefits of conducting research-based learning. We discuss the results focusing on the conditions of the implementation of our learning concept at the university. Ideas for further research in this area are presented.

Keywords


Research-based learning; Experiential learning; Academic teacher education

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Journal for Educational Research Online/Journal für Bildungsforschung Online (ISSN 1866-6671)