Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education: Revisiting Research, Policy and Practice in Twin Scholarship Fields 1350339946, 9781350339941

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Table of contents :
List of Illustrations
List of Tables
Land Acknowledgment Statements
Part 1 Introduction
1 Teacher Education in an Evolving and Shifting Balance with Comparative and International Education Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules, and Charl C. Wolhuter
Part 2 Reframing and Reconceptualizing Teacher Education Scholarship in
Comparative and International Education
2 Developing a Critical Realist Analytical Approach to Trace Teacher Educators’ Agency in Comparative and International Education Yenny Hinostroza-Paredes
3 Political Theater in Russia and the United States: A Novel Analytical Lens for Teacher Education Reform in Comparative and International Education Elena Aydarova
4 Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice: Critical Discourse Analysis in Comparative International Teacher Education Research Crystal Green
5 Rethinking School–University–Community Partnerships toward a Third Space Framework in Comparative Research on Teacher Preparation Yiting Chu
6 Comparative Tensions and Possibilities in the European Teacher Education Assemblage(s) Florin D. Salajan
Part 3 Internationalization and Global Currents in Teacher Education
7 Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education: The Role of Comparative and International Education Roger Y. Chao Jr. and Lorraine Pe Symaco
8 Internationalization of Inclusive Education: How Have Social Justice and Equity Movements Impacted Teacher Education? Keita Rone Wilson and Jacqueline Lubin
9 Teaching in a Global Era: Two Cases of Teacher Professional Learning Programs for Global Citizenship Education in the United States and South Korea Yuqing Hou and Deborah Shin
10 Regional Educational Politics: Navigating a Neoliberal Construction of Teacher Education in the Caribbean tavis d. jules and Richard Arnold
11 A Case Study on Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction during the Education Practicum in a Normal University in China Jingxin Cheng, Xiaodi Li, and Ming Yi
Part 4 Social Issues in Teacher Education in Global Times of Crisis
12 Social Issues Are the Syllabus: Worldwide Teacher Education in Changing Times Jordi Castellví, Gustavo A. González-Valencia, and Antoni Santisteban
13 Tunisian Teacher Education and COVID-19: Expecting the Unexpected Richard Arnold, tavis d jules, Imen Hentati, and Donia Smaali Bouhlila
14 Teacher Education in Argentina and Other Latin American Countries in the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Comparative Study of State and Corporations’ Policies on Digital Technologies Mónica Pini and Claudia Terzian
15 Shaping Comparative Education Inquiry Amidst Protracted Emergency: Learning from Teacher Education Designed for Disruption Greg Tyrosvoutis and W. Gray Rinehart
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Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Also Available from Bloomsbury Comparative and International Education (Re)Assembled, edited by Florin D. Salajan and tavis d. jules Content Knowledge in English Language Teacher Education, edited by Darío Luis Banegas Pedagogy, Politics and Philosophy of Peace, edited by Carmel Borg and Michael Grech Transnational Perspectives on Democracy, Citizenship, Human Rights and Peace Education, edited by Mary Drinkwater, Fazal Rizvi and Karen Edge Critical Education in International Perspective, Peter Mayo and Paolo Vittoria The Promise and Practice of University Teacher Education, Alexandra C. Gunn, Mary F. Hill, David A.G. Berg and Mavis Haigh Preparation and Development of School Leaders in Africa, edited by Pontso Moorosi and Tony Bush Knowledge, Policy and Practice in Teacher Education, edited by Maria Teresa Tatto and Ian Menter Academics’ International Teaching Journeys, edited by Anesa Hosein, Namrata Rao, Chloe Shu-Hua Yeh and Ian M. Kinchin

Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education Revisiting Research, Policy and Practice in Twin Scholarship Fields edited by Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules and Charl Wolhuter

BLOOMSBURY ACADEMIC Bloomsbury Publishing Plc 50 Bedford Square, London, WC1B 3DP, UK 1385 Broadway, New York, NY 10018, USA 29 Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2, Ireland BLOOMSBURY, BLOOMSBURY ACADEMIC and the Diana logo are trademarks of Bloomsbury Publishing Plc First published in Great Britain 2023 Copyright © Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules and Charl Wolhuter and contributors, 2023 Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules and Charl Wolhuter and contributors have asserted their right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, to be identified as Author of this work. For legal purposes the Acknowledgment on p. xii constitute an extension of this copyright page. Cover design: GRace Ridge Cover image © zonadearte/ Getty Images All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the publishers. Bloomsbury Publishing Plc does not have any control over, or responsibility for, any third-party websites referred to or in this book. All internet addresses given in this book were correct at the time of going to press. The author and publisher regret any inconvenience caused if addresses have changed or sites have ceased to exist, but can accept no responsibility for any such changes. A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. A catalog record for this book is available from the Library of Congress. ISBN: HB: 978-1-3503-3994-1 ePDF: 978-1-3503-3995-8 eBook: 978-1-3503-3996-5 Typeset by Integra Software Services Pvt. Ltd. To find out more about our authors and books visit www.bloomsbury.com and sign up for our newsletters.

Contents List of Illustrations List of Tables Foreword Land Acknowledgment Statements

vii viii ix xii

Part 1  Introduction 1

Teacher Education in an Evolving and Shifting Balance with Comparative and International Education  Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules, and Charl C. Wolhuter


Part 2 Reframing and Reconceptualizing Teacher Education Scholarship in Comparative and International Education 2





Developing a Critical Realist Analytical Approach to Trace Teacher Educators’ Agency in Comparative and International Education  Yenny Hinostroza-Paredes Political Theater in Russia and the United States: A Novel Analytical Lens for Teacher Education Reform in Comparative and International Education  Elena Aydarova Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice: Critical Discourse Analysis in Comparative International Teacher Education Research  Crystal Green Rethinking School–University–Community Partnerships toward a Third Space Framework in Comparative Research on Teacher Preparation  Yiting Chu Comparative Tensions and Possibilities in the European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)  Florin D. Salajan




69 85

Part 3  Internationalization and Global Currents in Teacher Education 7

Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education: The Role of Comparative and International Education  Roger Y. Chao Jr. and Lorraine Pe Symaco





Internationalization of Inclusive Education: How Have Social Justice and Equity Movements Impacted Teacher Education?  Keita Rone Wilson and Jacqueline Lubin 9 Teaching in a Global Era: Two Cases of Teacher Professional Learning Programs for Global Citizenship Education in the United States and South Korea  Yuqing Hou and Deborah Shin 10 Regional Educational Politics: Navigating a Neoliberal Construction of Teacher Education in the Caribbean  tavis d. jules and Richard Arnold 11 A Case Study on Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction during the Education Practicum in a Normal University in China  Jingxin Cheng, Xiaodi Li, and Ming Yi


141 157


Part 4  Social Issues in Teacher Education in Global Times of Crisis 12 Social Issues Are the Syllabus: Worldwide Teacher Education in Changing Times  Jordi Castellví, Gustavo A. González-Valencia, and Antoni Santisteban 13 Tunisian Teacher Education and COVID-19: Expecting the Unexpected  Richard Arnold, tavis d jules, Imen Hentati, and Donia Smaali Bouhlila 14 Teacher Education in Argentina and Other Latin American Countries in the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Comparative Study of State and Corporations’ Policies on Digital Technologies  Mónica Pini and Claudia Terzian 15 Shaping Comparative Education Inquiry Amidst Protracted Emergency: Learning from Teacher Education Designed for Disruption  Greg Tyrosvoutis and W. Gray Rinehart Contributors Index




253 267 272

List of Illustrations   3.1   3.2   7.1 13.1 13.2

The framework of political theater Overlap in the agendas of policy initiatives NEAP and teacher continuing professional development Possession of a Computer for school work according to wealth quintiles Link to internet connection in your home according to wealth quintiles

39 42 116 226 227

List of Tables   2.1 Example of deductive yet flexible coding   7.1 The role of education in ASEAN community-building (Cha-Am Hua Hin Declaration)   7.2 Key studies influencing Philippine teacher education and development   7.3 Domains and strands of Philippine professional standards for teachers   7.4 Sample Philippine teacher stages and indicators   7.5 Sample Philippine teacher stages and indicators 11.1 Data sources 12.1 Comparison of the different proposals for working with social problems in teacher training. 13.1 Tunisia at a glance 13.2 Kindergarten staff qualifications 2014–15 13.3 Public training enrollment and certification

27 108 110 112 114 115 184 209 219 221 222

Foreword As discussed eloquently in this volume, there is a long and complex history of interactions between the fields of teacher education and comparative and international education (CIE). To be sure, both have existed informally for millennia. Learning to teach and learning from comparisons, broadly conceived, are certainly not new phenomena; they are established educational and social processes that almost certainly transcend place, time, and culture. To this extent, then, they have always co-occurred, even as the nature of their relationships vary considerably depending on one’s point of reference. These relational notions bear resemblance with more recent conceptualizations of teacher education and CIE as formal “academic fields,” too. In the United States, for example, a conference on comparative education in 1954 focused on “The Role of Comparative Education in the Education of Teachers,” and later conferences were held alongside prominent teacher education conferences (e.g., American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education, National Society of College Teachers of Education, Association of Student Teaching; see Swing 2016: 11–12). Early issues of Comparative Education Review likewise included many articles related to the teaching of comparative education. Some even explicitly articulated the perceived benefits of comparative perspectives for future teachers: Comparative insights and perspectives should be an every-day equipment of every teacher. Educators should first of all be prepared to cope with the growing international responsibilities of education. Secondly, it is increasingly realized that comparative insights clarify and refine also the understanding of one’s own education and culture. Comparative education has immediate pragmatic value. It certainly should be offered to every prospective teacher, if not required of him. (Bereday 1958: 4)

Gendered language notwithstanding, these emphases clearly illustrate how the fields of CIE and teacher education were in dialogue together even as the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) was becoming formalized in the United States in the 1960s. As outlined in Chapter 1 and elsewhere in the volume, however, this relationship has been neither stable over time nor particularly straightforward. Implicit in Bereday’s (1958) quote above is a call for CIE to be more integral to teacher education, suggesting an undesirable status quo at the time. Moreover, the complexity of this relationship is highlighted further in acknowledging that the development and manifestation of CIE in the United States should not be perceived as nomothetic. Global constructions of academic fields, including CIE, are



diverse and influenced by a range of historical and sociocultural factors in and across a range of countries and contexts. Indeed, other academic societies associated with CIE—such as the British Association of International and Comparative Education (BAICE), Oceania Comparative and International Education Society (OCIES), Southern African Comparative and History of Education Society (SACHES), and World Congress of Comparative Education Societies (WCCES), among others— have engaged variously with teacher education in recent decades and are positioned alongside (or against) it in unique ways. And of course, much scholarship is produced beyond the formal “boundaries” of academic societies and programs, too. Again, considering one’s perspective and point of reference is essential. Teacher education is no different, though arguably as both a field of academic study and a series of educational programs, it maintains closer connections to national, state/provincial/community concerns and policies. The purpose of preparing teachers is often organized and shaped by these (more) local forces, resulting in an academic field of teacher education with parochial tendencies. At the same time, the increasing ability of global governance regimes, non-state actors, corporations, and other entities to influence educational processes—including teacher education—has highlighted the significant need for teacher education researchers to engage with more globalized, comparative, and international issues. This book is therefore immensely timely in exploring the nature of extant connections, tensions, and fissures between the fields of teacher education and CIE. It is a call for teacher education researchers—particularly those who engage in comparative and international work—to acknowledge and draw on the depth and breadth of epistemological, theoretical, axiological, and methodological resources available in the field of CIE. It also encourages academics working in the field of CIE, or adjacent to it, to recognize, reconsider, and research the crucial role(s) that teacher education plays in influencing and shaping cadres of future teachers, who then impact generations of future citizens. Lastly, the book serves as a powerful reminder that these fields have always co-existed, even if their interactions have been understudied and arguably undervalued in recent decades. One of the central strengths of this volume is indeed how the authors write from varied perspectives. From foci on policies and politics to programs and professional learning, the authors direct their scholarly attention to a range of pertinent issues and mechanisms while considering the unique factors and influences (re)shaping articulations of teacher education—and CIE—within their scopes. The analyses also draw on diverse methodological, conceptual, and theoretical frames to help explain the phenomena understudy, and particularly how CIE can impress upon teacher education, and vice versa. Finally, the text highlights the benefits of approaching teacher education through comparative and international perspectives, whether considering Russia and the United States, Finland and California, Argentina and Latin America, or other levels and units of analysis. These and other aspects in the book again highlight the dynamic nature of relations between teacher education and CIE, and foreground the substantial need for their critical reconsideration, particularly as global, regional, national, and “local” contexts continue to change. In sum, this book



contributes significantly to the literature by advancing these conversations and asking new questions about how the interactions between teacher education and CIE—and the resultant implications—might be examined in the years to come. Matthew A.M. Thomas University of Glasgow

References Bereday, G.Z.F. (1958). “Some Methods of Teaching Comparative Education.” Comparative Education Review, 1 (3): 4–9. Swing, E.S. (2016). “Setting the Foundation.” In E. Epstein (Ed.), Crafting a Global Field, 10–35. CERC Studies in Comparative Education (Vol. 33). Cham: Springer.

Land Acknowledgment Statements We collectively acknowledge that we gather at North Dakota State University, a land grant institution, on the traditional lands of the Oceti Sakowin (Dakota, Lakota, Nakoda) and Anishinaabe Peoples in addition to many diverse Indigenous Peoples still connected to these lands. We honor with gratitude Mother Earth and the Indigenous Peoples who have walked with her throughout generations. We will continue to learn how to live in unity with Mother Earth and build strong, mutually beneficial, trusting relationships with Indigenous Peoples of our region. The Loyola University Chicago community acknowledges its location on the ancestral homelands of the Council of the Three Fires (the Ojibwa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi tribes) and a place of trade with other tribes, including the Ho-Chunk, Miami, Menominee, Sauk, and Meskwaki. We recognize that descendants of these and other North American tribes continue to live and work on this land with us. We recognize the tragic legacy of colonization, genocide, and oppression that still impacts Native American lives today. As a Jesuit university, we affirm our commitment to issues of social responsibility and justice. We further recognize our responsibility to understand, teach, and respect the past and present realities of local Native Americans and their continued connection to this land.

Part One




Teacher Education in an Evolving and Shifting Balance with Comparative and International Education Florin D. Salajan, tavis d. jules, and Charl C. Wolhuter

A Brief Overview of Teacher Education in the CIE Literature Interest in teacher education examined from comparative and international perspectives has gradually increased over the past two to three decades, with literature in this domain expanding rapidly in recent years. Hence, a series of high-profile manuscripts have provided extensive descriptive accounts of teacher education systems around the globe. For instance, the two iterations of the multivolume International Handbook of Teacher Education Worldwide (Karras and Wolhuter 2010, 2019) combined cover virtually every country’s teacher education system, complete with contextual, historical, and social developments, as well as geographic and demographic details about the countries involved. More importantly, these works contextualize the description of national teacher education systems in policy frameworks, curricular structures, degree programs, in-service professional development opportunities, financing of teacher education, access to university-based teacher preparation programs, or the challenges facing teacher education in the individual countries presented. A similar undertaking is that offered by Loughran and Hamilton (2016), whose handbook presents a more restricted, but no less important, survey of teacher education in various national contexts, compartmentalized in thematic units ranging from history and structure to pedagogy, reform efforts, policy and curriculum in teacher education. Similarly, in Darling-Hammond and Lieberman’s (2012) shorter examination of teacher education around the world, a number of authors showcase evolving policies and practices in teacher education in a select group of countries. In parallel, the contributors offer contrasting descriptions of teacher education in national contexts on such varied themes as curriculum development, practicum redesign, or professional development. More recently, Tatto and Menter (2019) compiled a convincing cross-national study on teacher education policy and practice, in an edited volume drawing on theoretical and empirical evidence underlining the historical evolution, institutional change, and knowledge traditions related to the preparation of


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

teachers in twelve countries spanning four continents. Offering insight into alternative teacher preparation approaches, Thomas, Rauschenberger and Crawford-Garrett (2020) have contributed to the growing interest on international perspectives in teacher education with a compelling collection of chapters on the rise and application of Teach For All models in various national settings. Inevitably, teacher education cannot easily be dissociated from studying the teaching profession in itself. Therefore, bridging the worlds of teacher education and teaching as a profession in comparative and international perspective has been the focus of a number of select publications in recent years. In two editions of their book titled Comparative and International Education: Issues for Teachers, Mundy et al. (2008) and Bickmore et al. (2017) explore aspects of teaching, including cross-cultural pedagogy, assessment, school improvement, gender issues, indigenous ways of knowing, or global citizenship examined in cross-national or cross-regional settings. These themes are elegantly framed within the historical, theoretical, and philosophical development of comparative and international education (CIE). Similarly, Kubow and Fossum (2007) proceed with their international exploration of issues in education by constructing a thorough explanatory framework binding the multitude of theories informing comparative education, then carefully applying it to examine those issues in comparative perspective. In this endeavor, they approach matters ranging from the purposes of schooling, educational access, and educational accountability to teacher professionalism and the impact of globalization in education, devoting significant attention to teacher education in different regions of the world. Finally, in his edited volume, Ginsburg (2012) brings together a variety of scholars examining the policies informing professional development and professionalization of teachers, as well as the extensions of these demands into teacher education through both single-country case studies and comparative cross-national studies. The scholarship briefly showcased above underscores the critical role teaching, in general, and teacher education, in particular, have played in comparative studies of education over time. Moreover, they underline the necessity to reinforce teacher education as one of the pillars of research in CIE, as new and unpredictable challenges to education driven by multiple human and nonhuman vectors arise around the world, which require the development of “global consciousness” (Takayama et al. 2021: 143) in teacher education programming. Against this background, this volume seeks to offer novel examinations of teacher education around the globe, rooted in and informing evolving epistemological and methodological conceptions of CIE. In this sense, the thematic diversity in teacher education offers a solid foundation for comparative and international analyses that examine the conventional act of comparison and delves into critical questions on the intersection between these (sub)fields of education. The fundamental focus of the volume is to interrogate the place of teacher education or preparation, broadly defined, within CIE and the ways in which the former both shapes and is shaped by conceptualizations of the latter, particularly in an era of sociocultural upheavals, politicoeconomic transformations, and climate or health crises affecting the human and natural world, a theme to which we return below.

Teacher Education in an Evolving Balance with CIE


An Uneasy Tension between CIE and Teacher Education: Trends and Patterns The considerable attention given to teacher education in comparative and international contexts, as evidenced by the selection of works described above, would suggest an enduring natural scholarly synergy between teacher education and CIE. To some extent it may be argued that this is an accurate assertion, although it is useful to note here that arguments against and for the inclusion of teacher education in CIE have been formulated over time. For example, Borrowman (1975) maintained that teacher education represented an intellectual liability for CIE and, therefore, argued against its inclusion in the latter out of concern that doing so would dilute the creativity, imagination, rigor, and appeal of CIE as a scholarly field of inquiry. In their immediate rebuttal of Borrowman’s premise, Kazamias (1975) and Noah (1975) vigorously defended the contribution and enrichment teacher education brings to CIE. Similarly, by way of an illustrative curricular example, Altbach (1991) later highlighted the success of a teacher education project at Teachers College, Columbia University to reinvigorate the CIE program at that institution and the promise this held for the field at large. Conversely, in the initial decades of CIE’s development as a field, comparative education constituted an integral part of teacher education programs and curricula in various national contexts (Kubow and Fossum 2007; Mingyuan and Qin 2008). However, by the 1970s and 1980s, along with a gradual contraction of comparative education programs in schools of education, particularly in North America and parts of Europe, comparative education courses were being eliminated from teacher education programs (O’Sullivan 2008). This coincided with the “practical turn” in teacher education (Crossley and Watson 2009) in the context of contested policy and political approaches to defining teaching quality and pressures exerted on performativity in teaching and teacher education. Thus, given an increased emphasis on inculcating practical skills and knowledge in pre- and in-service teachers, as well as the move toward a narrower focus on teaching accountability, learning assessment, and outcomes-based performance, comparative education courses were deemed non-essential to the pedagogical and content knowledge skills a teacher should possess. Intriguingly, the drift away from CIE in teacher education occurred in the context of the intense scrutiny of teacher qualifications, teacher and teaching quality, teaching effectiveness, and learning assessment received in an international context, as policy makers developed a fixation with successful teacher education models in other countries (Steiner-Khamsi 2015). Consequently, there was a surge in demand and interest for research attempting to explain what factors distinguished highly performing national teacher education systems, such as the now-notorious Finnish or Singaporean approaches, from those that seemed to struggle. This interest continues unabated to this day, as policy makers seek to implement teaching and teacher education reforms in a context of global competition and recognition of excellence.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

However, the apparent mutual curricular exclusion, juxtaposed on the rather prolific comparative research in teacher education, yields an uneasy tension between teacher education and CIE. This tension persists to this day and manifests itself not only on the scholarly terrain, but especially in the formal professional and organizational interactions between the two fields. As an example, among the 45 members of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies, only two explicitly highlight teacher education as a permanent theme. Only one member, the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES), has in its organizational structure a special interest group devoted exclusively to teacher education and the teaching profession. Certainly, this limited professional representation of teacher education within CIE does not preclude scholars from pursuing comparative research in teacher education, but it can be presumed that a closer strategic reengagement between the two fields may galvanize initiatives in reinvigorating the presence of CIE in teacher education. In fact, a recent shift in teacher education aimed at instilling in teachers-to-be an acknowledgment of interconnections in and an awareness of a globalized world may be propitious for reenergizing an interest for CIE in teacher education. Notwithstanding the, often, declarative interest in infusing teacher education programs with a global citizenship education component, progress remains tentative at the moment. Nonetheless, this renewed interest in embedding global competences in teacher education presents an opening for a closer reconsideration and reworking of CIE courses into teacher education (Aydarova and Marquardt 2016; Kubow and Blosser 2016). In an era marked by profound social convulsions, inequalities and inequities, demographic shifts, economic migration, population dislocation and displacement, a rise in ethno-nationalism, and a resurgence of autocratic regimes, the educational needs of individuals become indubitably more complex and urgent. It is teachers and  teachers-to-be who will be in the front lines addressing these educational needs and, therefore, their contextual and comparative understanding of learners in a global context will be paramount. Given these considerations at the intersection of CIE and teacher education, one core question that frames the volume is to what extent are teaching and teacher education in its many forms (e.g., pre-service, inservice, alternative models) influenced by current transformations and how does CIE respond to the necessity of developing better understandings of teacher education at the nexus of policy, practice, and research? In what ways can CIE support a rethinking of teacher education in the wake of the social movements for equity, justice, and civil liberties with ramifications for the teaching profession around the world? Furthermore, how can teacher education studies generate creative pathways for a more genuine integration of comparative and international perspectives in pre-service and in-service teaching? In what authentic ways can teacher education draw on comparative studies to redress systemic institutional racism and decolonize curricula in teacher preparation programs? What is the role of contemporary teacher education as a device for educative solutions in times of unparalleled global natural and human crises? These are just some of the driving questions that seek to open a broader conversation of the twin roles of teacher education and CIE in our manifestly uncertain age.

Teacher Education in an Evolving Balance with CIE


Comparative Research Trends in Teacher Education In this context, the research literature on teacher education from comparative perspective finds its vibrancy primarily in cross-national comparisons of teacher education, albeit typically involving small-scale studies on a limited number of countries (Mayer and Oancea 2021), published in referenced journals. Nonetheless, the proliferation of studies in this regard is underscored by the increasing number of studies in CIE publication outlets. As an illustration, our recent general search for teacher education in the three premier scholarly journals in CIE elicited 3,548 results in the Comparative Education Review, 1,723 results in Comparative Education, and 1,681 results in Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education. However, comparative studies in teacher education are not limited to these venues, and numerous other articles have appeared in reputable journals specializing in teacher education, such as the Journal of Teacher Education, European Journal of Teacher Education, AsiaPacific Journal of Teacher Education, or the African Journal of Teacher Education. Some of the more recent comparative studies examined a range of issues in teacher education including: overall curricular structures (Salajan et al. 2017); professional development needs (Czerniawski et al. 2017); policy convergence on the relationship between the tacit and scientific knowledge of pre-service teachers (Beach and Bagley 2013); closer linkages between teacher preparation and practice (Jense, Klette and Hammerness 2018); the role of ethics education in teacher training (Maxwell et al. 2016); and, again, the rise of Teach for All approaches to teacher training (Straubhaar 2020). Notwithstanding this ascending trend in international comparative studies on teacher education, their scope has been scrutinized and critiqued over time, primarily on their deficiencies in theoretical and methodological approaches (Tatto and Menter 2019; Tatto 2021), their frequent attempts to generalize findings, and the superficial consideration given to sociocultural or historical contexts in drawing inferences from the comparative analyses of the cross-country settings involved (Adamson 2012; Afdal 2019). Teacher education shares with CIE a rather eclectic approach to theoretical foundations and conceptualizations. However, where the two fields part ways is the dominant focus in teacher education on, among others, teacher quality, accountability, learning assessment, teacher education program effectiveness, or the professionalization of teacher education. This constrains teacher education research to a narrower scope than CIE at large, given that the theoretical frameworks informing teacher education studies understandably draw primarily on educational psychology, cognitive and constructivist learning theories, organizational or institutional theories (Grossman and McDonald 2008), as well as more utilitarian conceptual frameworks rooted in reflective practice (Schön 1992; Thorsen and DeVore 2013). In turn, these epistemological orientations are further extended to some degree into comparative research approaches to teacher education in international, cross-national, or cross-cultural contexts. Yet, the increasing pressures and challenges of globalization, as a socioeconomic phenomenon and conceptual framework, drive policy formulation and the organization of teacher education (Apple 2011), as global comparisons and league tables increasingly


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

inform policy makers’ choices on structuring teacher education requirements. These trends continue to channel comparativist researchers’ attention in teacher education to commonalities and differences in curricular structures among teacher education programs (Vong et al. 2015), to the theory–practice divide in initial teacher education, and its ramification for curricular design, policy, and practice embedded in sociocultural contexts (Flores 2017), or to the contrasts in the pedagogical content knowledge teacher candidates receive across national settings (König et al. 2011). It is plausible that comparative research in teacher education along these theoretical and epistemological lines will continue, particularly as the interconnected global transformations and crises alluded to above gather pace. Nonetheless, it is worth contemplating theoretical paradigms making inroads into CIE to inform comparative teacher education research that go beyond determining linear causalities within and among teacher education systems. For example, Cochran-Smith et al. (2014) postulated that complexity theory may offer more nuanced explications of interactions and connectedness among various individual, institutional and structural components of teacher education systems. As such, these tend to be complex in nature and in a constant state of disequilibrium, precluding reductionist approaches to identifying discrete, unidimensional explanatory factors in contrasting teacher education systems. This premise can be transposed to comparative examinations of teacher education in international perspective, particularly as the complexity of these systems is magnified at that level. Similarly, Stylianou and Zembylas (2019) have argued for the use of critical realism in explaining the interrelations between individual and institutional actors in teacher education, viewing it as a mechanism divided into ontological and scalar “laminated systems” (422), each hierarchically embedded in “various levels of reality” (423). Applying this lens to comparative teacher education research may reveal the co-dependencies among structural components of teacher education systems, particularly visualized and contextualized in international or cross-national environments. Beyond these paradigms, the field of comparative and international education is currently a hive of novel and innovative theoretical and conceptual frameworks. The rise of the Global South in an emerging multipolar world, and in increasingly multicultural societies in both the Global North and the Global South, with the move toward peaceful coexistence running regularly into obstacles (e.g., political populism, xenophobia, interracial conflict), postcolonialism, decolonialism, and critical race theories have made a forceful surge to prominence in the social sciences in general, and also in CIE in particular. Evidence of this include Cortina’s (2019) CIES Presidential Address on “Contesting coloniality: Rethinking knowledge production and circulation in comparative and international education,” Walker et al.’s (2021) proposed special issue in the same journal on “Black Lives Matter: Global struggles for racial justice,” and Vickers’s (2020) recent article taking a critical look at calls for decolonialization. Similarly, world culture theory and neo-institutionalism have been prominent in the field for quite some time, with scholars such as Stanford comparativists John Meyer, F. O. Ramirez, and John Boli being some of their most prominent promoters

Teacher Education in an Evolving Balance with CIE


and protagonists. These theories argue that the worldwide education expansion project, which has taken the Global South by force over the past sixty years, and the global isomorphism in education, have been the result not of the education needs of the Global South, but of its global legitimization and popularity emanating from the power of the Global North (see Meyer et al. 1985). The neoliberal economic revolution has made its effect felt in education practice over the past thirty years, in the form of the profit-motive, efficiency, quality control, performativity, and performance appraisal, undercutting the professional status and discretion of the teacher. In addition, International Large Scale Assessments (ILSA)and global university ranking movements (both of which themselves are a result of the neoliberal economic revolution) have resulted in what Sahlberg (2016) calls and criticizes as the Global Education Reform Movement (GERM), a school-effectiveness and evidence-based policy movement. Critiques of these movements are popular among scholars in CIE and have been the subject of numerous publications in recent years. One of the discontents with the neoliberal economic revolution, despite its impressive achievements in terms of global economic growth in the aggregate, has been the widening of inequalities (Piketty 2020). This trend has lent more urgency and credibility to the narrative of social justice in the field, which connects to one of its fountain-heads, Marc-Antoinne Jullien’s vision of the ameliorative potential of the field, namely, education for a better world (Wolhuter 2017). Moreover, the creed of human rights has become the moral code of the new global order. Education for human rights is the education flipside of the moral compass. The United Nations declared the ten-year period from 1995 to 2004 as the United Nations Decade for Human Rights Education and, at the end of the decade, in December 2004, the General Assembly of the United Nations launched the World Program for Human Rights Education “as a global initiative.” CIE, at least in its organized form, with forty-five societies constituting the WCCES, is strongly attached to the United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO). For this reason, among many others, human rights education, in its many facets, has come to the fore in the field as well. Finally, in an age of a continuously evolving knowledge economy, in which education is increasingly called upon to equip nations for global competitiveness in a “flat world” (to use Thomas Friedman’s term), capability theory (as defined by Sen 1999 and Nussbaum 2000) has gained traction in CIE (see Grigorenko 2019; Sakata 2021; Algraini 2021). Thus, the field of CIE is vibrant with a multitude of thought-provoking theoretical frameworks. These have implications for teacher education (both as a field of study and for the practice of teacher education). The well-known Heyneman-Loxley effect (law may be too strong a term to use), countering the defeatist frameworks of socioeconomic reproduction, contends that in lower-income countries, the effect of schooling in the achievement and life-chances of students are greater than the effect of family background (Heyneman 2016), thus reversing the pattern in higher-income regions and countries. One of the constituent factors of school quality is the level and quality of teacher education. In the rising Global South this lends new value to teacher education.


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Structure and Content of This Volume This volume is divided into four parts. The introductory part consists of the current chapter providing the broader framing narrative informing the chapters included in the volume. Part II ventures into relatively new territory in comparative research on teacher education, with contributors opening discussions on the relevance of heretofore underutilized or underrepresented theoretical or conceptual frameworks that can reshape understandings of teacher education in comparative perspective. These also open new vistas for a reconsideration of the connective role these epistemological positions play in more closely binding CIE and teacher education research. Part III is dedicated to investigations of global trends and issues in teacher education from a comparative perspective, ranging from internationalization efforts and global citizenship education to regional teacher education politics, or professional identity formation in various geographical settings. Finally, in Part IV, the collection of contributions focuses on current global challenges related to pressing issues impinging on teaching and teacher education. Placing their investigation at the nexus of CIE and teacher education, the contributors in this section problematize the critical role the provision of social justice education and teacher education during disruptive events, such as worldwide pandemics or protracted conflicts, play in reshaping our understanding of the impact these global phenomena have on the interconnectedness between CIE and teacher education. In the opening chapter of Part II, Yenny Hinostroza-Paredes employs a critical realist approach to interrogate the way in which global scripts codifying prescriptive norms for teacher educators’ career development are diffused at local levels. Using abduction and retroduction as analytical tools under this still emerging paradigm in CIE, Hinostroza-Paredes examines the agency teacher educators develop in navigating and translating these normative expectations informed by new managerialism, academic capitalism, and education marketization in a comparative context setting involving Chilean and Finnish higher education institutions. She then applies a glonacal agency heuristics lens to delve into the avenues by which global agendas infiltrate local ideologies for teacher education in these two higher education systems. Hinostroza-Paredes concludes by drawing attention to the possibilities a critical realist paradigm opens in CIE for placing the “causal power of human agency” in comparative research on teacher education. In the following chapter, Elena Aydarova compares recent teacher education policy reforms in Russia and the United States of America. While research in CIE has largely followed rationalist frames, rarely departing from (post)positivist assumptions of linearity, causality, and visibility of observable effects, Aydarova focuses on the connection between teacher education reforms, participation of external actors in reform processes, and a broader political project of conservative cultural change. Drawing on ten years’ worth of anthropological research (ethnographic research cum textual analysis), she highlights the role of actors outside the education sector, i.e., from international organizations, government posts, as well as academic jobs (mainly professors of economics) in formulating teacher education policy, arguing that their putative pursuit of quality education has contributed to inequality in education.

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Using data from a comparative study of the dialogues between teacher educators and pre-service teachers in social justice-oriented teacher education programs in Finland and California, in Chapter 4, Crystal Green explores the possibilities and limitations for developing CIE research on teacher education using methodologies and analytical frameworks which foreground dialogue and discursive practice using sociocultural and constructivist interpretations of human social interaction identified as localized discourses about equality and social justice. The chapter maps these discourses onto local discussions about what education means in society and the role of teachers in promoting social justice. Teachers in both California and Finland expressed a desire to learn practical tools for their profession, teachers in both jurisdictions discussed the role of education in reproducing socioeconomic stratifications, and teachers in both settings discussed whiteness. However, their construction of whiteness as privilege differed between the two contexts. In Chapter 5, Yiting Chu employs a “third space” analytical framework to develop a better understanding of and to elide a reductive approach to exploring university– school–community partnerships in teacher education. He claims that embedding pre-service teacher education and teacher educators in a hybrid third space allows for bridging the disconnect between rigid conceptualizations of school and universities as exclusive stewards of practice and theory, respectively. In that regard, the interests of multiple stakeholders in and around such hybrid spaces, such as schools, school districts, university teacher preparation programs, and community partners coalesce and intersect in institutional border crossings that are otherwise neglected in the literature. Using a US teacher residency program, Chu illuminates the collaboration and negotiation among these stakeholders in a hybrid third space, and then draws inferences for programs in other international locales to emphasize the role of CIE utilizing this analytical approach in teacher education. The final chapter in this section uses an assemblage theory or assemblage thinking paradigm to examine the emerging contours of a European teacher education space. In adopting Deleuzoguattarian principles of rhizomatic structures, Florin Salajan conceives of European teacher education as a complex educational assemblage. This is illustrated via two scenarios: (a) collaboration among spatially dispersed teams of teachers and teacher educators bound by the desire to advance teaching practice within and across European teaching and teacher education forming collaborative assemblages, and (b) the provision of teacher education programming for national ethnic minorities forming diasporic communities outside their ancestral national spaces, identified here as extraterritorial teacher education assemblages. These arrangements reveal both the power and resilience of the relationships formed in the territorialization of these assemblages stemming from the desire of their actors to weave the connective fabric of the European teacher education enterprise. Salajan embeds a comparative perspective throughout the scenarios, with the intent to illuminate the possibilities of deploying assemblage as an analytical device for the examination of teacher education in the context of CIE. Part III opens with Roger Y. Chao Jr.’s and Lorraine Pe Symaco’s chapter exploring the case of teacher education in the Philippines, in which they embark on a demonstration of the significance of CIE in internationalizing teacher education. This significance lies


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in infusing international dimensions in the curriculum, practices, and standards in Philippine teacher education and teacher-related practices. These include international benchmarking, thee utilization of international standards, and localizing international practices related to teacher education and the teaching profession. A long-standing central tenet in CIE studies is borrowing or learning, from best policies, ideas, and practices in education systems abroad. This strand is also evident in teacher education policy documents in the Philippines. In Chapter 8, Keita Rone Wilson and Jacqueline Lubin address inclusive education in teacher preparation also in the context of internationalization efforts in this area advocated by intergovernmental organizations such as UNESCO. Rone Wilson and Lubin offer as a comparative example the development of inclusive education in teacher education programs in St. Lucia and the United States, contextualizing their discussion in the broader existing conversation in the CIE research literature related to international practices supporting students with disabilities, as well as to school leaders’ and educators’ perceptions of inclusion in teacher preparation programs. They contend that their comparative inquiry reveals that the level of inclusive practices in teacher education in different international contexts depends on the policy frameworks, institutional infrastructures, and cultural understandings of inclusion in those settings. In an era marked by globalization and the denudation of the power of the nationstate, the goal of Global Citizenship Education (GCE) has become the creation of a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world. Existing literature, however, devotes little attention to how in-service teachers could be trained to teach this important educational agenda. Drawing on two teacher professional learning programs in the United States and South Korea, Yuqing Hou and Deborah Shin explore in Chapter 9 approaches to preparing teachers for GCE in these two countries. Findings are presented as a twocase study through a qualitative content analysis of program descriptions. Informed by a comparative inquiry method derived from CIE, the authors argue that the two programs show distinct theoretical and practical possibilities to incorporate GCE frameworks, topics, and pedagogies into teacher professional development. To further promote the nexus of teacher education and CIE, the chapter highlights that GCE concepts could be a mediator between the two scholarly fields by reinvigorating the integration of CIE into teacher education and professional development. In the next chapter, tavis jules and Richard Arnold highlight the forces of globalization and regionalism that shape the construction of teacher education in the small, Anglophone countries of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Apart from their current status as small island nations with open economies, jules and Arnold highlight the CARICOM countries’ shared legacies of European colonial domination, to contextualize the current expectations for a responsive and modern teacher education system with the historical nature of the dependencies created through colonialism and the adverse conditions it imposed on the emergence of their educational systems. They further interrogate the neoliberal global agendas for educational reforms rooted in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that impact on the trajectories of CARICOM countries’ regional needs for teacher education provision. Situating teaching and teacher education in the conceptual notion of

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the Caribbean Educational Policy Space (CEPS), jules and Arnold underscore the promises and challenges the neoliberal constructs they critically analyze hold for teacher education development in the CARICOM. Wrapping up Part III, Jingxin Cheng’s, Xiaodi Li’s, and Ming Yi’s chapter broaches the theme of teacher professional identity formation among student teachers conducting their clinical experience at a normal university in China. Using data from their study, involving focus group interviews with teacher candidates having completed their student teaching placement, the authors conclude that the process of teacher identity formation from a Chinese teacher preparation perspective relies on the relational dynamics and the teacher knowledge the candidates derived from working with others during their school placements. The first chapter in Part IV engages with social issues or relevant social problems by comparing traditions defining these themes and their implications for their implementation in teacher education programs in the anglophone world, France, Italy, and Spain, as well as in Ibero-America. Surveying and contrasting the various proposed approaches emerging from these settings, Jordi Castellví Mata, González Valencia, and Antoni Santisteban Fernández suggest that, while these traditions may be informed by different critical theories or cultural visions of what counts as relevant social issues inclusion in teacher education programs, they influence each other in various ways. They contend that some national or regional settings adopt precepts of social issues education from others, as is the case with the Ibero-American context which the authors contend has been influenced to a sensible extent by anglophone concepts of social issues definition. Comparing these traditions, the authors contend that, though they have their particularities, they have shared objectives in seeking to develop teachers who are socially engaged critical citizens advocating for universal human rights and democratic principles through their role as educators. Chapter 13 offers an in-depth look at the reforms the Tunisian educational system and, in this context, teaching and teacher education have undergone both since Tunisia’s independence from French colonialism and, more recently, in the aftermath of the 2011 Jasmine Revolution. Richard Arnold, tavis jules, Imen Hentati, and Donia Smaali Bouhlila particularly examine how these reforms have equipped educational institutions, teachers and teacher education programs in responding to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this regard, they emphasize the successes and failures of the professional development offered both through international organizations and through the Tunisian Ministry of Education for Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) training, specifically its use by teachers and in pre-service teacher education programs. They conclude that the ICT training provided to teachers in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns produced mixed results, leaving teachers and schools unable to prevent the loss of learning students experienced, and raising questions about the efficiency of such training in the absence of a robust ICT infrastructure and support for teachers and teacher education programs. In Chapter 14 Mónica Pini and Claudia Terzian describe the situation of teacher education in Argentina and the challenges it went through in 2020, then compare it with other Latin American countries in a context traversed by the pandemic as the common denominator. It focuses on the analysis of the policies and strategies that


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circulate from the different spheres of society regarding the possibilities, limitations, and challenges digital technologies generate in education. Based on the existence of powerful private interests, the focus spans across both official bodies and other actors—corporations—that carry out actions and set the agenda in education through proposals to teachers. Comparative education is relevant to set the education systems, and teacher education in particular, within their social context. The authors discuss the new scenarios elicited by the demands of the pandemic and analyze the challenges for teacher education framed by the definition of education as a right. The final part of this volume concludes with Greg Tyrosvoutis’s and W. Gray Reinhart’s compelling chapter on education in emergencies and, in particular, with teacher education systems “designed for disruption.” Using a vertical case study from Myanmar and its borderlands with Thailand, Tyrosvoutis, and Reinhart unveil the remarkable resilience and adaptability of Myanmar’s teacher education system to function in the context of the protracted conflict, political volatility, structural instability, and multidimensional oppression that has impeded its development, but it has equipped it to respond to the challenges of the current COVID-19 pandemic in unexpected ways from a western perspective. Consequently, the authors highlight the strengths of the collective enterprise in Myanmar and caution against the application of a utilitarian perspective informed by neoliberal conceptions of accountability, standardization and corporate management practices to understand its decentralized, flexible, and adaptive nature. They particularly emphasize the valuable lessons CIE research can draw from this case for the subsequent study of teacher education in emergencies or conflicts. The editors of this volume hope that this rich and varied mosaic of contributions from authors hailing from different global locales on topics and issues of critical importance for both teacher education and CIE will generate further intellectual explorations, discussions, conversation, and examinations of the connection between these two intertwined fields of inquiry.

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Part Two

Reframing and Reconceptualizing Teacher Education Scholarship in Comparative and International Education



Developing a Critical Realist Analytical Approach to Trace Teacher Educators’ Agency in Comparative and International Education Yenny Hinostroza-Paredes

Introduction Although national and local boundaries become porous without being dissolved by global models and discourses of education, the comparative and international education (CIE) literature on teacher education policies and practices in globalization is still developing (Molinari 2017; Paine, Aydorova, and Syahril 2017; Afdal 2019; Hollier 2018). There is wide recognition of the need for teacher education research to fully account for the impact of global trends while explaining social, political, and cultural contexts and processes (Tatto 2007; Conroy et al. 2013; Cochran-Smith et al. 2014). When teacher education aims to meet national/local needs for a high-quality teaching force in both industrialized and developing countries, the influence of international agents (i.e., OECD, the World Bank, and the IMF) inevitably brings globalization in its configuration. While these global agents impact national teacher education policies and practices with a “what works” agenda based on international surveys, assessments, and research, a more nuanced approach to “what works, for whom, and under what circumstances” is downplayed (Tikly 2015: 237). These questions get subsumed by globalizing claims about education reforms and models that, under the logic of science and the myth of progress, become normative (i.e., world culture theory) but overlook the knowledgeable agent accepting, confronting, and transforming the structuring forces of the social. Thus, it is unsurprising that, while teacher educators are pivotal for teacher education, knowledge about who they are, how they are prepared, and how they relate to educational policy and reform is still scarce (Schleicher 2014). CIE pays little attention to university-based teacher educators (hereafter “teacher educators”), the impact of global trends on their work, identities, and career development (Murray, Swennen, and Shagrir 2009; Lunenberg et al. 2014; Martínez 2017). Against this background, it is not a leap too far to focus on their lived, oftencontested professional and academic realities, on how the interplay of structural contexts and their agency affects how meanings are negotiated and interpreted, decisions made,


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

and academic and occupational careers constructed. Understanding teacher educators’ complex beings and doings in local, national, and global contexts, under continuous neoliberal shifts in educational policies and governance, is as critical as their role in preparing future teachers. This is further a challenge when CIE literature on teacher educators has a dominant single/Global North-country bias hindering the possibility of including teacher educators’ voices and perspectives from the Global South. To address such a challenge, I propose using a critical realist theoretical and analytical approach (consisting of coding for demi-regularities, abduction, and retroduction). As Tikly asserts, “there has been limited attention to the potential of critical realism for international and comparative education” (2015: 243), notwithstanding Archer’s (1984) seminal comparative work on the origins of education systems. Critical realism is a unique approach to understanding the causal mechanisms, key agents, and processes configuring the structures and practices of teacher education. Indeed, critical realism can be fruitful in CIE since its systemic and holistic concepts—i.e., emergence, open systems, stratification—facilitate moving beyond the binaries of local/national or national/global to assume that global forces do not override national policies and local practices. Instead, they branch out into local cleavages, which also become embedded globally, where local agents—i.e., teachers and teacher educators— cannot be downplayed as they reinforce, sustain, and resist educational change. This chapter then aims to illustrate the analytical value of a critical realist approach for CIE research, drawing on a comparative case study of teacher educators’ agency for career development at Chilean and Finnish public research-oriented universities. By building on the methodological decisions regarding a sub-project of my Ph.D. research, the chapter elaborates on how demi-regularities, abduction, and retroduction help identify new managerialism, academic capitalism, and education marketization as causal mechanisms creating the conditions for teacher educators’ agency for academic career development. Specifically, the chapter highlights three critical realist principles for CIE research. First, structure, culture, and agency have independent powers and properties (Archer 1995, 2003). Second, social agents have reflexivity and (ultimate) concerns, on which they act, and define personal identities and social roles (Archer 2003). Third, demi-regularities, abduction, and retroduction are key analytical components of the critical realist explanatory endeavor (Fletcher 2017). Thus, when sociological accounts tend to emphasize the powers of structure and ignore individual and collective agents’ powers (Clegg and Rowland 2010), a critical realist approach allows engagement with the notion of agency embodied by teacher educators without overlooking the fluid glonacal1 structural and cultural conditions of their working contexts. Here, the concept of glonacal (Marginson and Rhoades 2002) helps situate the dynamics between such conditions and teacher educators’ agency in an international and comparative context. The chapter presents core critical realist principles and Archer’s approach to structure, culture, agency, and reflexivity as theoretical tenets. Next, the chapter introduces the analytical tools of coding for demi-regularities, abduction, and retroduction. Then, I present the context of the comparative case study, method, and data analysis to exemplify the use of critical realist analytical tools in CIE research on teacher education. Finally, concluding remarks are outlined.

Critical Realism in Tracing Teacher Educators’ Agency


Core Principles of Critical Realism A relative newcomer in social science research, critical realism has been adopted in disciplines such as nursing studies (Mahon and McPherson 2014), water studies (Mollinga 2020), childhood studies (Mendizabal-Espinosa 2017), public health studies (Costa and Magalhães 2020), sociology of education (Guzmán-Valenzuela and Barnett 2013), musicology (Kvarnhall 2017), and social entrepreneurship (Hu et al. 2020). In critical realist terms, an objective world exists independently of human consciousness, accessible through the socially constructed knowledge of reality that is “always partial and local” (Robertson 2016: 87). Critical realist stratified ontology distinguishes three distinct yet interconnected layers of reality: the real, actual, and empirical. The real domain relates to underlying causal powers and structures independent of human knowledge, which can generate observable or unobservable events in the actual domain. These causal mechanisms exist in the real domain and produce effects in the natural and social world (Bhaskar 1998). In the actual domain, events occur, whether humans experience their effects (Alderson 2013; Bhaskar 2013). Finally, the realm of the empirical refers to the surface appearance of the social world (Bhaskar 2013). Humans can only inhabit the empirical domain, and as such, their claims to knowledge are fallible—what we know about the phenomenon may not entirely correspond with what the phenomenon is. Since reality is stratified, complex, and emergent (Bhaskar 2013), social phenomena can be described individually or as manifestations of general social structures (Danermark et al. 2002). However, unlike individual events, social structures are not directly observable, so we need theories and concepts to acquire knowledge about them. Thus, when studying social phenomena, analytical attention is given to explaining their causal mechanisms. Critical realist ontology is emergent as it considers causality through the underlying causal mechanisms of the real, interacting with each other in unique ways at several levels and individual events of the social world, so they are responsible for event patterns that are discernible through analysis (Elder-Vass 2010, 2022). As social reality cannot be fully apprehended but approached through multiple interpretations—knowledge claims likely to be compared (Easton 2010)—critical realism can strengthen CIE research as comparativists must balance respect for individual meaning-making while providing contextual features of the phenomenon under study through evidence-based analysis for comparisons (Bergene 2007; Oliver 2012). Critical realism provides the nuanced understanding the comparativist seeks, rather than generalizable laws (positivism) or exploring individuals’ lived experiences or beliefs (interpretivism). Hence, since it aims to explain the manysided social world, it strives to develop a bird’s-eye view of the phenomenon of interest instead of the god’s-eye view pursued by positivists. Furthermore, it helps examine complex, unpredictable open social systems such as education (Tikly 2015), offering a humanistic understanding of human agency as essential for the existence of social reality and its structural forces (Ackroyd and Fleetwood 2000). That is, critical realist ontology brings to the front the power of agency to reproduce, resist, or transform structures impinging on agents’ capacity for choice (Bhaskar 1998; Lopez and Potter 2001; Cobb 2018).


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Structure, Culture, and Social Agents’ Causal Powers and Ultimate Concerns Drawing from Bhaskar’s critical realism, Archer (1995) maintains in her social realist morphogenetic approach the stratified nature of social reality, where social structures and human agents have independent powers and properties, and provides a model of the interaction between them. By adding a temporal dimension to the analysis of structure and agency, she argues that social structures generate the constraints and enablements influencing individuals’ agency. Social structures predate reflexive agents, who potentially reproduce or transform them over time as “intended and unintended consequences of their activities” (Archer 1995: 3), which will inevitably constrain and enable future agents. Archer also differentiates structure from culture. They and agency form the overlapping and distinct emergent layers of reality with their own causal powers conditioning social life. Structure is the material resources (human and physical) shaping society and the relations among individuals’ social positions. Culture is the ideational realm of social life (knowledge, values, and beliefs), sourcing social action and the range of possible action. Finally, agency is people’s causal power to mobilize these resources, conceiving and executing life projects, and reflexively deliberating upon them (2003: 119). Archer (1995, 2003) distinguishes two types of agency contingent on resource allocation—primary and corporate—each resulting in the maintenance (morphostasis) or transformation (morphogenesis) of social and cultural structures. Although they are often referred to in the singular, in social realist terms agents are “collectivities sharing the same life chances” (Archer 2003: 260). Every person is a primary agent, as they are involuntarily placed into social positions (i.e., women born into patriarchal societies) that constrain and enable their agency. However, primary agents can react to their conditions and organize into collectivities to influence existing structural and cultural circumstances (i.e., women teacher educators organized for gender equality and equity at their workplace). Thus, they become corporate agents, exercising corporate agency that brings about social transformation (morphogenesis). Archer’s (2003, 2007) conceptualization of human agency is both active and reflexive. Neither entirely free nor entirely determined by structure and culture, people monitor, rank, and accommodate personal concerns against constraints and enablements through reflexivity (Archer 2003: 120). Reflexivity or the internal conversation is individuals’ capacity to evaluate their circumstances and decide how to act. Thus, they undertake life projects, each a constellation of concerns, to “make our way through the world” (Archer 2007: 5). In the interaction with structure and culture, reflexivity (assisted by emotions) grounds agency by defining what people care about most at a particular time, so they can accomplish a modus vivendi—a life worth living—and craft personal identities and social roles. Archer (2003) recognizes four reflexivity modes, reflecting agents’ stances toward their enablements and constraints: communicative, autonomous, meta-reflexivity, and fractured reflexivity. Neither immutable nor mutually exclusive traits, these modes are decision-making approaches people adopt under diverse conditions and change

Critical Realism in Tracing Teacher Educators’ Agency


across time and place (Archer 2007). Those with dominant communicative reflexivity require confirmation and communication with others before they act. They prioritize belonging to a group of familiars and similars. Autonomous reflexivity is characterized by internal conversation that requires no confirmation from others. These agents are goal-oriented, and act decisively, tending to prioritize performativity to create opportunities and counteract social constraints. Individuals with dominant metareflexivity are critical of their own deliberations and what constitutes effective action in society. Their internal conversations are driven by values and social ideals. Individuals with prevalent fractured reflexivity have a dysfunctional internal conversation, intensifying disorientation, distress, and inaction. Depending on dominant reflexivity modes, agents weigh concerns differently and exercise diverse forms of agency.

Abduction and Retroduction In CIE, the critical realist analytical approach through inductively coding for demiregularities, abduction, and retroduction has the potential to explain observed phenomena across diverse teacher education systems. Together, they allow the identification of connections, structures, and causal mechanisms that are not directly apparent in the empirical domain (Danermark et al. 2002). The critical realist notion of open complex social systems prevents predicting events in the social world, emerging from the change in structural and cultural conditions. Nevertheless, this does not preclude the occurrence of patterned events or “demi-regularities” that can uncover the causal mechanism behind them (Lawson 1989; Sayer 1992a). The analytical process starts with coding to identify demi-regularities through the most dominant codes in the empirical data (Fletcher 2017). Abduction or theoretical re-description then follows to interpret observed phenomena. It involves discerning relations and connections not apparent at first and making inferences regarding a general, more universal context or structure (Danermark et al. 2002: 88–93; Meyer and Lunnay 2013). Retroduction is the final stage of critical realist analysis. It is a “backwardlooking mode of inference” in which events are explained by “postulating and identifying mechanisms which are capable of producing them” (Mackay 2013: 1, citing Sayer 1992). Thus, we move from a description and analysis of concrete phenomena to reconstruct the causal mechanisms, resulting in patterns or demi-regularities observed in the empirical data (Fletcher 2017). Retroduction makes it possible to move from “the manifest phenomena of social life, as conceptualized in the experience of the social agents concerned, to the essential relations that necessitate them” (Bhaskar 1979: 32). The critical analytical approach of critical realism can be crucial for the emancipatory project of CIE and teacher education since “the identification of generative mechanisms offers the prospect of introducing changes that can transform the status quo” (Bryman 2012: 29). By foregrounding causal mechanisms that are always contingent on time and location, it is possible to overcome limitations in CIE resulting from framing comparisons of teacher education practices and policies without sufficiently addressing context specificities. A critical realist multi-layered analysis allows the researcher


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

to uncover agents’ perspectives, experiences, and practices of teacher education as much as the broader educational context—the impact upon them of local and national teacher education policies and programs, and international policy agendas. Further, approaching agency as a causal mechanism implies adequately addressing the significance of agents’ actions—such as teacher educators—to create, sustain, and change their educational environments (Archer 1995; Biesta and Tedder 2006).

The Context of the Study With diverging historical backgrounds (a subsidiary, market regulator state in Chile, and welfare state Finland), both university-based initial teacher education systems under study here have different orientations (practice-based and research-based, respectively). They are also embedded into different higher education systems (mixed public–private in Chile and public in Finland). Despite these contrasts, both systems show convergent patterns under isomorphic pressures (i.e., performancebased evaluation and rankings linked to tenure and career promotion for teacher educators) (Pietilä and Pinheiro 2021; Véliz and Marshall 2021). In addition, because of their integration into universities, initial teacher education programs converge to a certain extent in their positioning in core–periphery higher education relations. In the Global South, Chilean universities occupy the semi-periphery of knowledge production and circulation, albeit with significant internationalization efforts (Koch and Vanderstraeten 2019). Part of the core, the geographical location of Finland at the edge of Europe lends force to a symbolic peripheral positioning (Ivancheva and Syndicus 2019). This comparative case study examines how and why Chilean and Finnish teacher educators forge agentically unique career trajectories out of their contextual circumstances and personal concerns. Here, the notion of academic career development refers to an ongoing process that influences professional identity and self-esteem, where scholars in academia engage in varied tasks (research, teaching, and service), experiences, and behaviors within and across jobs and organizations over time (Zacher et al. 2019). Accordingly, drawing from Archer’s (1995, 2003, 2007) approach to structure/culture, agency, and reflexivity, the study explores teacher educators’ perceptions of their agency and career development. It also considers the structural and cultural causal mechanisms behind their decisions and the vulnerability of teacher education careers within universities’ managerial cultures (Ellis et al. 2014).

Case Study, Empirical Data, Coding for Demi-regularities Although critical realism “has a highly ecumenical approach to data collection” (Vincent and O’Mahoney 2018), explanatory idiographic studies, such as case studies, are epistemologically appropriate as they fit with the critical realist goal

Critical Realism in Tracing Teacher Educators’ Agency


of developing explicit causal explanations of complex social phenomena (Wynn and Williams 2008). A case study involves researching one or a small number of social entities or situations, focusing on process, taking interest in complexity, and being flexible to rely on multiple data sources (Easton 2010). As Merriam stated, “By concentrating on a single phenomenon or entity (the case), the researcher aims to uncover the interaction of significant factors characteristic of the phenomenon” (1998: 29). While single case studies offer unique, within-case points for comparison, a critical realist case study examines the interaction of structures, events, contexts, and human agency, allowing interpretation and explanation. This examination can illuminate causal connections and individuals’ experiences of agency and enable the exploration and comparison of generative mechanisms at each level of reality (Sayer 1992b; Steinmetz 2004; Tsang 2014). Empirical data were drawn from semi‐structured in-depth interviews with twelve early/mid and senior-career participants (6 for each country case). They represented Chilean and Finnish teacher educators’ positions throughout their academic journeys in public research-oriented universities in both countries. Analysis followed Fletcher’s (2017) methodological guidelines for data coding, abduction, and retroduction. Coding helped identify “demi-regularities”—patterns or trends revealing possible operations of generative mechanisms (Danemark et al. 2002)—through the most dominant codes (the most coded) in the Chilean and Finnish datasets (Fletcher 2017). This process yielded five demi-regularities: (1) collaboration, (2) collegial community, (3) autonomy, (4) institutional support for career development and promotion, and (5) professional identity and roles. Additionally, categories were developed from provisional codes based on the study’s theoretical framework (see Table 2.1). This deductive, yet flexible coding process (Fletcher 2017), including emotive and versus coding to highlight emotions or conflicts (Saldaña 2013), resulted in fifty-three and fifty-eight codes for the Chilean and Finnish datasets.

Table 2.1  Example of deductive yet flexible coding. Quotation



I have this feeling of being a bit an outsider.

Community outsider [emotive]


I like international connections, so I might still go somewhere, just to broaden my perspectives.

Academic career projects [theory-driven]


We have project funds, that’s why the short work periods for staff.

Material working conditions [theory-driven]


I’m convinced we’ll do anything to achieve what we want so badly.

Autonomous [theory-driven]



Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Data Analysis Abduction The identified five demi-regularities account for the cultural and structural conditions and professional concerns impacting participants’ academic career development. In the abduction process, they are recontextualized, while codes and categories are distilled out and linked together for new interpretations through the lens of Archer’s social realist theory and the literature review. Collaboration is constitutive of academic culture, connecting teacher educators with their communities and institutional support structures. While Chilean participants stress the engagement in pedagogical projects and long accreditation processes, their Finnish counterparts highlight their collaboration for research. This is expected since teaching programs in each country emphasize teaching and research differently. However, there are contradictory perceptions of collaboration and collegial community in both cases. Chilean participants’ strong collegiality may stem from teaching-oriented departmental cultures, where they prevalently vest themselves in interpersonal relations (communicative reflexivity) or see their profession as crucial in creating reflective teachers able to change society (meta-reflexivity) (Hinostroza-Paredes 2021). Still, they express concern for their departments’ lack of interdisciplinary work, describing collaboration practices for self-regarding interest. In the Finnish case, teacher educators highlight how time and space for intellectual openness and sharing with colleagues have decreased. This shows an eroded sense of connectedness, trust, and collegiality because of workload, time demands, and increasing competition (Fung and Liang 2021). It also suggests departmental “balkanization”—or “collaboration that divides” (un)consciously, insulating teacher educators into “competing sub-groups” (Hargreaves 1994: 213). In managerial environments, what matters is contrived collegiality, with observable and controllable collaboration originating from management instead of difficult-to-control and spontaneous teacher initiatives (Hargreaves 1994: 196). All participants expressed a strong sense of autonomy but also the operation of control mechanisms. Institutional structures combine a culture of academic freedom proper of traditional universities and logics of accountability, efficiency, and metrics distinctive of performance-based managerial universities. For Finnish teacher educators, autonomy is not jeopardized in research or teaching although some recognize increasing pressure for research productivity and funding. Likewise, Chilean teacher educators co-opt disciplinary and pedagogical standards, align to regulatory steering over curriculum, and embrace performance appraisal systems while preserving a sense of academic freedom. Its resilience shows how a positive perception of autonomy is critical to grant participants’ agency the necessary “autonomous properties in order to play this role” (Archer 2003: 38). Their compliant and pragmatic agency toward control and regulation safeguards their professionalism from the public deficit discourse on teacher education (Fernández 2018; Hinostroza-Paredes 2020). It also helps dissipate any perceived threat to job security, especially when they compare themselves with colleagues under precarious work conditions at private universities. Results also echo Domecka and Mrozowicki’s (2013: 209) claim that reflexivity and agency in career development are influenced but “might also” impact institutional

Critical Realism in Tracing Teacher Educators’ Agency


structural and cultural conditions. As teacher educators shape careers in managerialist and performative working environments, a new professional hierarchy emerges— precarious professionals, de-professionalized, and professionals (Clarke and McFlynn 2019). This seems to be the case of the Finnish tenure system, based on performance control, competitive evaluation, and selection, constructing successful academics as highly oriented researchers, publishing in high-impact international journals, and leading large-scale research projects (Pietilä 2019). That Finnish teacher educators exercising autonomous reflexivity accept such construction, seeming to benefit the most from the career ladder—as opposed to those with dominant communicative reflexivity, criticizing competition, and the perceived overemphasis on research detrimental to teaching—is not unexpected. If managerial policies and practices for career development enhance competitive behavior and controlled autonomy, then work-oriented and upward-mobile teacher educators with a strong sense of selfresponsibility and independence will thrive. However, those lacking such characteristics (attributable to autonomous reflexivity) may be left behind. Meanwhile, secure in their tenured civil servant status, Chilean teacher educators’ career development is strongly related to collegial relationship building. The need for a close network of colleagues may compensate for limited institutional support for career development in pedagogy or research and deficient formalized induction to university-based teacher education, especially for early-career teacher educators (Fuentealba Jara and Montenegro Maggio 2016; Hinostroza-Paredes 2021; Sepulveda-Escobar 2022). Participants agentically construct identity repertoires for themselves as teachers and researchers, becoming deeply committed to who they are and their professional purpose. Whereas none of the participants exhibited any evidence of fractured reflexivity, all express meta-reflexivity, not unexpected for academic careers vocationally oriented toward teaching—intrinsically a moral and caring profession (Campbell 2008; Archer 2012). And although Finnish teacher educators perceive the fracture between research and teaching within their institutions, they merge both identities into one, solidly grounded in an institutional and departmental research-based culture. Few teacher educators (with dominant autonomous reflexivity) combine academic work with leadership roles at institutional and national levels. They are corporate agents with a strong sense of professional fulfillment and social vocation. They become “academic artisans” in leadership positions, facilitating institutional advancement (Brew et al. 2018). Meanwhile, Chilean teacher educators embrace their dual identities; like the Finnish participants, some self-identify more as educators or researchers. However, for all of them, professional identities are rooted in their awareness of teacher education for quality education that benefits society.

Retroduction As the final analytical phase, retroduction aims to move from a description and analysis of concrete teacher educators’ academic careers to reconstruct the conditions for them to be what they are. To retroduce the causal mechanisms by which structural and cultural conditions (demi-regularities) emerge to interplay with teacher educators’


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

reflexivity-guided agency for career development, the study uses Archer’s (1995) morphogenetic approach to provide a robust analytical framework. In this process, insights from literature draw further context-sensitive comparisons by acknowledging the dynamic and complex interdependencies between global ideological and economic forces, and both countries’ historical and idiosyncratic aspects of their higher education and initial teacher education systems (Schriewer 2000; Steiner-Khamsi 2004). The retroductive analysis situates Chilean and Finnish teacher educators’ agency at the center of two complex university-based teacher education systems, heterogeneous yet interconnected by the causal mechanisms of new managerialism, academic capitalism, and education commodification. Like their colleagues in many traditional and public institutions elsewhere, they occupy a borderland between global educational trends and pressures to fulfill teacher education standards, achieve educational outcomes, and satisfy universities’ demands for internationalization, massification, and excellence. In both countries, demands for national and international competitiveness, accountability, and performativity in higher education—combined with those from initial teacher education policies—lead to reconfiguring education departments and teacher educators’ academic practices. They must serve the teaching profession but also respond to hegemonic quality assurance and monitoring regimes (dominant in Chile) and ever-expanding demands for research outputs and competing funding (prevalent in Finland). Therefore, in both cases, the contextual factors influencing participants’ agency and academic career development are comparable in the blurring of boundaries between collaboration and competition, autonomy and control, the market, and the public. Thus, Chilean participants’ collaboration, collegial community, and academic freedom are underpinned by compliance with new managerialism. Compliance keeps societal trust in universities and teaching programs’ processes and status. It is vital in an academic capitalist marketplace, where all universities compete for public funding and student enrolment, fueling education commodification. Meanwhile, their strong collegiality may stem from the collectivist, feminine nature of the national culture, which stresses more relational goods (trust, care, reliance) than success and competition (Hofstede 2014). Finnish institutions’ embrace of academic capitalism imbues traditional cultures of collegial collaboration with a heightened competitive edge for funding, positions, and prestige. Like the rest of their academic peers, teacher educators “must master the language of the market in order to be heard” (Brunila and Hannukainen 2017: 917). Their competitive edge is likely to emerge, not from job insecurity since they are permanently employed, but from a need to ensure research is done and they keep enhancing their professional as much as institutional prestige. All participants adapt to dominant institutional structural and cultural contingencies to the point that naturalized managerial values blend with collegial decision-making, trust, and autonomy. By exercising reflexivity-guided agency (people’s causal mechanism in critical realist research) to develop careers that fulfill their modus vivendi, teacher educators strive to become the academics they want to be. Nonetheless, in such a process, they turn into the nuts and bolts of increasingly more hierarchical and less egalitarian higher education institutions, even if preserving an idealistic commitment to their student teachers and the teaching profession. The contribution

Critical Realism in Tracing Teacher Educators’ Agency


of this critical realist study lies in unmasking the glonacal paradigm shift produced by managerial modes of university-based teacher education governance and their potential for social wrongs.

Concluding Remarks Critical realist analytical tools can advance CIE research on teacher education by examining how global educational trends interact with national and local institutional structures/cultures and (individual and collective) agents’ capacity to affect change, as is the case of the participants in this study. Specifically, regarding university-based teacher education, critical realism’s explanatory power allows comparative researchers to connect open, complex, and interconnected higher education and teacher education systems and uncover how glonacal transformations create conditions for agents (teacher educators, students, academic leaders) to shape personal and structural change. Thus, critical realist research helps CIE move from being overconcerned with policy to being more focused on providing evidence of that policy in action, offering a more solid ground to analyze, assess, and propose differentiated national policy prescriptions or institutional strategies, while acknowledging the causal mechanisms and structures contributing to the diversity and convergence of educational outcomes and contexts. Since critical realist knowledge claims cannot be considered generalizable but rather causal explanations, illuminating the multilayered, stratified and complex nature of an empirical phenomenon, critical realist CIE research is suited to the study of the shifting geographical, temporal, and contextual dimensions of teacher education systems and its agents. Hence, I suggest that critical realism can open up CIE in teacher education to the multiple voices in and from the Global South by emphasizing the plurality of realities. Bringing on the broad spectrum of such voices has the potential to move CIE beyond its persisting “hegemonic nature” (Wijetunga 2021). Lastly, using critical realism in CIE research on teacher education makes a case for not losing sight of the causal power of human agency. This is because agency is essential to comprehend how people’s practices and identities are threaded across different contexts and the kind of support they need for developing and sustaining academic careers. Overall, such a critical realist approach could be a fruitful attempt to revert comparativists being “behind the larger social science game, where the relationship between social structure, culture, and human agency [is] ‘at the heart of sociological theorizing’” (Archer 2003, cited in Alexander 2009: 925).

Note 1 The glonacal derives from glonacal agency heuristics, a framework designed to analyze how global agendas and ideologies intersect with national and local dimensions of HE systems. “The local dimension is the day-to-day institution and its communities inside and outside the campus gate. The national dimension is about national culture and polity and policies, and the laws and regulations shaping higher education and research” (Marginson 2011: 12–13).


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Political Theater in Russia and the United States: A Novel Analytical Lens for Teacher Education Reform in Comparative and International Education Elena Aydarova

Introduction In many countries around the world, reformers seek to increase the quality of K-12 education by making teacher education more practice-oriented, school-based, and market-driven. Globally, performance assessments for teachers and teacher candidates, teacher accountability policies, as well as diversification of routes into teaching are promoted as a means of improving K-12 students’ academic achievement (Paine, Blömeke, and Aydarova 2016; Paine, Aydarova and Syahril 2017; Goodwin 2020). While reform processes associated with these agendas vary across contexts, there are certain similarities that remain consistent: university-based teacher education is often undermined and teacher educators’ contributions to reform processes are minimized. There have been several attempts to explore these changes through the lenses of proletarization of teacher education (Ellis and McNicholl 2015), marginalization of education as a discipline (Furlong 2013), and deprofessionalization of the teaching profession (Evetts 2008). Yet what has received less attention is the connection between teacher education reforms, participation of external actors in reform processes, and a broader political project of a conservative cultural change (Apple 2012). At the same time, research in comparative and international education (CIE) has largely followed rationalist frames, rarely departing from (post)positivist assumptions of linearity, causality, and visibility of observable effects. While critical perspectives on policy processes and educational practices have received some attention, such studies have often remained on the periphery of CIE scholarship. This omission is rather unfortunate, given the fact that rapid social transformations observed around the world require a more complex and nuanced approach to analyzing social realities. This chapter addresses these gaps and omissions by offering the conceptual framework of political theater as a new lens for demystifying policy processes as well as for problematizing some of the claims and assumptions of globally circulated


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teacher education reforms. Applied to the analysis of recent teacher education policy changes in Russia and the United States, this framework demonstrates the theatricality of policy transformations and connects those processes with the broader trends of reinscribing social inequality through educational reforms. In what follows, I first describe the theoretical framework of political theater and methodological approach of anthropology of policy. I then apply this framework to the analysis of teacher education reforms in the United States and Russia by exploring which policy actors have become influential in the last decade, what globally circulated scripts have been used to inform policy discourses, how international assessments have been used as props in constructing crisis narratives, how timelines of policy development have been used to create the illusion of democratic deliberation, and finally how policy masks have obscured actual agendas introduced by the reforms.

Political Theater as a Theoretical Framework The interdisciplinary framework of political theater has been developed through several studies of teacher education reforms in Russia and the United States. Rooted in the theories of political spectacle in political science (Edelman 1988), theatrical frames in sociology (Goffman 1959, 1974), as well as political theater in performance studies (Willett 1964; Conquergood and Johnson 2013), this framework sheds light on the theatricality of policy processes and their connections to broader patterns of social reproduction (Aydarova 2019). In particular, the framework of political theater captures how reformers create imaginary worlds on stage to convince the public of the need for reform and how they draw on various dramaturgical techniques to convince the audience that only their technical solutions will address intractable social problems. Their constructions of problems and technical solutions, however, represent fabrications (Edelman 1988) that distract observers from the ways in which these reforms maintain unequal and unjust educational systems instead of disrupting them. As Giridharadas (2019) explains: In an age defined by a chasm between those who have power and those who don’t, elites have spread the idea that people must be helped, but only in market-friendly ways that do not upset fundamental power equations … The broad fidelity to this law helps make sense of what we observe all around: the powerful fighting to “change the world” in ways that essentially keep it the same, and “giving back” in ways that sustain an indefensible distribution of influence, resources, and tools. (pp. 8–9)

The framework of political theater examines elements of policy-making processes and policy actors’ strategies through the lens of dramaturgical techniques (Figure 3.1). In this chapter I will focus on four aspects of theater—scripts, props, production sequence, and masks—to demystify policy-making processes that underlie teacher education reforms in the United States and in Russia. More specifically, I explore how global scripts inform policy changes, how international assessments work as props to

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Figure 3.1  The framework of political theater.

manufacture crises in teacher education, how different policy-making timelines shatter assumptions about who is responsible for reform proposals, and how the use of masks obscures intentions of teacher education reforms. Engaging with teacher education reforms as theater offers “potential emancipatory paths out of the deadlock of global neoliberal transformations in education” (Aydarova 2019: xxii).

Anthropology of Policy as a Methodological Approach This research is situated within anthropology of policy (Shore, Wright and Però 2011). It combines studying up (Nader 1974) and studying through (Wedel et al. 2005) teacher education policies as they are conceptualized and directed by various policy actors in Russia and the United States. Anthropology of policy attends to the messy and contingent nature of policies that work as instruments of governing and power. Moving away from the realist rationalist frames, this tradition treats policy as “contested narratives which define the problems of the present in such a way as to either condemn or condone the past, and project only one viable pathway to its resolution” (Shore, Wright and Però 2011: 13). Anthropology of policy recognizes that even if site research may not be accessible, rich insights into policy processes can be gained through various texts and artifacts that capture different aspects of policy activities. The analysis presented here is based on ethnographic and textual data collected over the last ten years. Multi-sited critical ethnographies of teacher education reforms in the Russian Federation (Aydarova 2019, 2021a, 2022) and in the United States (Aydarova 2020b, 2021b) shed light on the processes of restructuring teacher preparation based on global scripts. For example, the works of Michael Barber first


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for McKinsey and Company and later for Pearson fostered a global conversation on outcomes, data, and accountability in teacher preparation. Priorities identified in those texts informed policy scripts, research reports, grant program announcements, as well as policy makers’ presentations in both the United States and Russia. As I analyzed those policy artifacts and interviewed policy actors about their reform priorities, I traced connections between various policy processes and identified commonalities in how teacher education reforms were orchestrated across different contexts. My positionality as an academic external to policy communities that I studied and committed to issues of equity and justice shaped the study design and interpretation of the data (Aydarova 2017, 2020b).

Russia and the United States: Policy Contexts Russia and the United States represent two distinct contexts. In Russia, most policy changes are centralized at the level of the federal Ministry of Education that sets standards for teacher education programs, evaluates curriculum documents created at the institutional level, conducts monitoring of higher education institutions at large (which in the past resulted in the closure of a number of pedagogical universities that prepared teachers [Aydarova 2021a]), and oversees the agencies that grant accreditation to higher education institutions. In the United States, teacher education policies are often diffused, with most policy decisions made at the state level. The federal government plays largely a monitoring role, requiring states to submit reports on the quality of their teacher preparation programs based on Title II of the Higher Education Act of 1998. Program accreditation is carried out by independent professional organizations, such as the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP). While these distinctions reflect how the systems are organized, there is a similarity between Russia and the United States in terms of their orientations toward international influences. American exceptionalism often operates as a driver that reduces transfers of educational policies to “silent reform” (Anderson-Levitt 2021) or to localized mutations that erase the onto-epistemological assumptions behind the borrowed practices (Rappleye and Komatsu 2017). Russia, similarly, has long had a history of an ambivalent relationship with the West that has morphed in the last decade into discursive animosity toward global models or international influences on education (Aydarova 2015a, 2015b, 2019).

Political Theater of Teacher Education Reforms 2010–2020 Actors and Policies In both Russia and the United States, many policy initiatives are influenced by actors outside of communities traditionally believed to be involved in policymaking. The wave of modernization reforms that reshaped educational systems in Russia was generated

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by a network of experts outside of the Ministry of Education who garnered significant influence by moving through positions in international organizations, government posts, as well as academic jobs (Aydarova 2019). Affiliated mostly with an economics university, reformers relied on the scripts available to them through their participation in transnational policy networks to generate a reform that echoed many of the globally circulated ideologies. In the United States experts who have a significant impact on teacher education reforms similarly straddle the divides between the nonprofit, for-profit, and state sectors (Aydarova 2020b). One of the actors whose policy influence has grown over time, for example, is Dr. Ed Crowe. In the 1990s, Dr. Crowe served in the federal department of education overseeing Title 2 reporting for teacher education programs. He was a Senior Advisor for the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, supporting alternative routes into the teaching profession. In the 2010s, his reports for the Center for American Progress instigated conversations about outcomesbased accountability for teacher education at the federal level. He moved on to create two private companies involved in teacher education reforms: Teacher Preparation Analytics provided research and technical support to states and institutions seeking to overhaul how they prepare teachers, whereas Teacher Preparation Inspectorate-US provides evaluations of teacher preparation program performance for state approval or accreditation purposes. Kate Walsh of the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) has influenced teacher education reforms through consulting and evaluation reports her nonprofit organization provides. James Cibulka—a former education dean and former president of the main accrediting body for teacher preparation— remained connected to the reformers’ networks through his service on NCTQ’s board of directors. Benjamin Riley moved from the New Schools Venture Fund to a nonprofit Deans for Impact to steer reform efforts by enlisting deans of colleges of education as partners in technocratic transformations of teacher education. Experts like these have regular access to legislators and policy makers through policy events organized by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO)—a nonprofit organization that works with state authorities on educational issues, or by ExcelInEd—a reform-oriented think tank started by the former governor of Florida Jeb Bush.

Transnational Policy Scripts This chapter explores different policies operating in these contexts. In Russia, the Concept of Support for the Development of Pedagogical Education, informally known as the Concept of Teacher Education Modernization, became an influential reform even though it was never signed into law. Developed in 2012–2013 and implemented over the span of the next five years, this policy comprised many elements of political theater. In the US case, however, there have been several initiatives that sought to dramatically reorient teacher education. Among them was the introduction of new outcomesbased accreditation standards that came from the merger of two accrediting agencies (the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education [NCATE] and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council [TEAC]) into a new one (the Council for the


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Accreditation of Educator Preparation [CAEP]) as well as a failed attempt to introduce federal regulations for teacher preparation. Even though these policy initiatives have some elements that are unique for each context, there is a significant overlap in the agendas they pursue (Figure 3.2). What these policies have in common is that they are driven by a claim that “the quality of an educational system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers” from the report by Sir Michael Barber and Mona Mourshed (2007) How the World’s Best Performing Systems Come Out on Top published by McKinsey & Company. Russian teacher education reforms were conceptualized and implemented under significant influence from this report. Michael Barber himself visited policy-making hubs in Russia and consulted with the reformers while they were working on their proposals. In the United States the Secretary of Education during the Obama era, Arne Duncan, was also influenced by this work. In his remarks at Teachers College, Columbia University in 2009, he pointed out: “It’s no surprise that studies repeatedly document that the single biggest influence on student academic growth is the quality of the teacher standing in front of the classroom. Not socioeconomic status, not family background, but the quality of the teacher in front of that class” (Duncan 2009: n.p.). One of the ways in which this claim about the centrality of “teacher quality” influenced teacher education policy both in Russia and the United States was through the push for selectivity. Barber and Mourshed’s (2007) report praised successful educational systems for “making entry to teacher training highly selective” (p. 19) and argued that making teaching a selective profession with higher standards for entry improved students’ classroom performance. This argument shaped how teacher education reforms became conceptualized in both contexts. In Russia, one of the key reformers who designed the reform coined the phrase “double-negative selection” to describe the crisis of the “worst of the worst”

Figure 3.2  Overlap in the agendas of policy initiatives.

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(Aydarova  2019) entering first teacher education institutions, then the teaching profession. The claim was that teacher education universities admitted students with low scores on high school graduation tests and then graduates with the lowest grades entered teaching. The concept that reformers designed called for setting a high bar for entry into teacher preparation to ensure that only “the best” students could become teachers. Hidden beneath this call was an effort to decrease funding allocated to teacher education from the federal government. If only the “best” with “top scores” were admitted into teacher education programs, the number of teacher candidates would drastically decrease thus allowing the state to save money on teacher preparation (Aydarova 2019). In the United States Barber and Mourshed’s (2007) report aligned with the discourses of selectivity originally promoted by conservative think tanks, such as the Fordham Foundation and the Hoover Institution. These organizations long advocated for the deregulation of the teaching profession and used the calls to select “the best and the brightest” for teaching to support the spread of Teach for America. The underlying assumption of this argument was that any smart person could become a good teacher, regardless of the prior training they received. Subsequently, the National Council on Teacher Quality argued that only applicants who scored well on standardized assessments, such as American College Testing (ACT) or Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), should be allowed to enter teacher preparation programs. The McKinsey report (2010) Closing the Talent Gap—informed by “McKinsey’s work with school systems in over 50 countries” (p. 5)—advocated for encouraging the top-third of candidates based on “a combination of SAT, ACT, and GPA scores” (p. 10) to be selected for teaching. These proposals for benchmarks and percentiles informed CAEP’s accreditation standards, which in a marked departure from previous standards began to evaluate teacher education programs based on their candidates’ scores on standardized assessments. The introduction of selectivity discourses in both Russia and the United States was met with tremendous opposition from the teacher education community. Russian teacher educators lamented the fact that the negative labels used to construct crisis around teacher preparation was likely to deter talented students from pursuing teaching as a career (Aydarova 2016). American teacher educators, on the other hand, expressed concerns that using standardized assessments as a sole marker of candidates’ quality could further decrease diversity among teacher candidates (Beare et al. 2019). In both cases, however, their voices were drowned out by reformers’ claims that the importance of candidates’ high scores on standardized tests is a matter of consensus in the research community. Viewed through the lens of political theater, these transformations are important not only because they appear to be based on similar policy scripts but also because they point to a reframing of the teacher’s role in the society. By focusing on the cognitive attributes of teachers as measured by their performance on standardized assessments, reformers in both countries depoliticized teachers’ work and decreased their role to molding students into predetermined social roles (Aydarova 2021b, 2022). Social Darwinist notions of selecting “the best and the brightest” into teaching in order to increase K-12 students’ standardized assessment scores divert educators’ and the public’s attention away from social problems that contribute to disparities


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in educational achievement among different social groups in the first place. Thus, teachers are not expected to prepare students who will transform the world but to adapt students to the unjust world and accept their position in the social hierarchy (Aydarova 2019, 2022).

International Assessments as Props In framing discussions about the need for dramatic change, reformers in both Russia and the United States evoked their students’ performance on international assessments. References to international assessments, however, largely served the function of theatrical props. Even though both countries have relatively good results on Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) or Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS)—assessments that evaluate the learning of the actual curriculum, only poor PISA results were used to construct a crisis around public schooling and the teaching profession. References to both countries’ low performance on PISA were used to forge a narrative of low-quality education and low-quality educators. Those problems could only be addressed through the introduction of new K-12 standards and new standards for teachers. In Russia, early references to international assessments were oblique and used to frame the problem of low quality of K-12 education. For example, the Federal Program of Educational Development (Government of the Russian Federation 2011) stated that “the results of research studies (including international comparative studies) reveal problems in the quality of general and informal education” (p. 5). At the same time, reformers who orchestrated the modernization of teacher education acknowledged that neither the public nor state officials cared about Russian students’ performance on international assessments. They nevertheless managed to strategically use those references to mobilize support for their reforms. In the United States, American students’ performance on international assessments was similarly emphasized only by those who advocated for large-scale educational reforms. For example, in the United States, Obama-era proposals for reforming teacher preparation called for changes: [E]ducators know that their students are confronting unprecedented challenges and heightened competition in an increasingly knowledge-based, global job market. At the same time, on international assessments of student achievement, U.S. performance has been mediocre. According to the 2009 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), an instrument comparing the performance of 15-yearolds in 34 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) member countries, American students rank 14th in reading, 17th in science, and 25th in math. (USDE 2013: 1)

This construction of crisis is accompanied by claims that performance on international assessments demonstrates low quality of education in K-12 schools. To ensure students’

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“competitiveness in the knowledge economy,” new school standards were introduced in both countries. In Russia, working groups comprising many academics in reformers’ networks created new school standards that were introduced by the Ministry of Education in 2011 (Aydarova 2021a). In the United States Common Core Standards were developed by the Council of Chief State School Officers and the nonprofit reform organization Achieve, with considerable support from the Gates Foundation (Owens 2015; Schneider 2015). Yet, the introduction of new standards came to be seen as an insufficient measure for improving K-12 students’ academic performance—reformers soon stated that teachers are not prepared to teach according to these new standards. In Russia, the focus shifted to creating new standards for the teaching profession issued in 2013 and then initiating a reform of teacher education in 2014. In the United States efforts to reform the teaching profession to align it with the Common Core standards were supported by the adoption of Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) standards: Model Core Teaching Standards … outline what teachers should know and be able to do to ensure every PK-12 student reaches the goal of being ready to enter college or the workforce in today’s world. This “common core” outlines the principles and foundations of teaching practice that cut across all subject areas and grade levels and that all teachers share. (CCSSO 2013: 3)

InTASC standards informed the framing of CAEP’s accreditation standards as well as teacher evaluation systems at the state level. The wave of teacher effectiveness reforms that sought to hold teachers accountable for their students’ academic performance solidified the use of InTASC standards in teacher evaluation across the United States. Observation rubrics of classroom teaching tied to overall teacher evaluation systems were based on InTASC standards in many states. In these constructions of crisis, globally circulated texts continued to play a major role. On the subject of international assessments, for example, Barber, Chijioke and Mourshed (2010) suggested that reformers should use crisis moments around international assessments to introduce reform. While the public in general both in Russia and in the United States remained fairly indifferent toward results on international assessments, reformers continued to emphasize the importance of what international assessments revealed in order to advance their reform agendas.

Timelines An important element in theater is production sequence—or the order of events leading up to the theatrical performance. Production sequence starts with the analysis of the script, moves through initial readings of the script and preliminary rehearsals, leads up to dress rehearsals, and results in the first performance of the play onstage for an audience. The concept of production sequence serves as a useful foundation for


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analyzing timelines of policy formation. It can reveal ways in which different actors are led to believe that they are contributing to policy formation when in fact they might not be. In the Russian case, the policy of teacher education modernization was allegedly developed by a group of twenty-five experts that the Ministry of Education brought together as a working group in February 2013. But these experts only met three times at national conferences focused on economic or social development. The format of the sessions followed the standard format of conference presentations with questions and answers. In other words, those were not meetings where participants worked on developing policy drafts or responded to suggestions for policy proposals. When I interviewed some of the members of the working group in the fall of 2013 and spring 2014, it became clear that they were not fully aware of what the policy actually proposed. However, during my interviews with the reformers, I learned that they began developing the script for this policy in October 2012—months before the Ministry issued the decree to bring together the large working group. By the time the Ministry of Education created the working group, the draft of the policy was already prepared. This policy was presented as a product of a wide-scale dialogue but on closer look it turned out to be an illusion. According to the official sources, the policy text emerged “out of consultation with a wide variety of about 3000 stakeholders.” Based on official accounts, the consultations happened during roundtables at four national conferences. Yet, these conferences focused on social and economic development; they were not educational conferences that teacher educators and educational researchers traditionally attended. Roundtables were standard conference sessions where audience members could only listen and ask questions. After these conferences, the policy underwent only minimal changes. This means that official sources touted consultations at national conferences as spaces of dialogue for different stakeholders, when in reality dialogue was largely impossible. Even though different stakeholders thought they could still influence the direction in which this policy would go, the measures proposed by the policy remained consistent until its final release. In other words, events presented to the public as spaces of dialogue for shaping, developing, and creating a policy ended up being spaces of dress rehearsals for the final release of the policy in October 2013. A similar production sequence can be observed in the United States. In 2012 the Department of Education formed the Teacher Preparation Programs Negotiating Committee, which included representatives from universities, a national teachers’ union, the president of CAEP, as well as nonprofit organizations, such as Teach for America and the Education Trust. The committee met three times between January and April 2012. As a result of the committee’s work, a draft text of regulations emerged. The committee could not fully agree on the regulations and was disbanded. The draft in a modified form reappeared again in 2014 and moved to public comment and eventual ratification by the Department of Education (DOE). This publicly constructed timeline, however, obscured ways in which these regulations were informed by other policy actors. In 2010 when Ed Crowe presented his proposal for outcomes-based teacher preparation accountability for the Center for American Progress, DOE staff were in the audience and engaged in a conversation about the measures he proposed (Aydarova, in progress). In 2011, DOE staff reached out to

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the Education Sector policy analysts asking them to put together a proposal for what teacher preparation accountability should look like. A Measured Approach to Improving Teacher Preparation that Education Sector (2011) issued in response to this request introduced the focus on using outcomes data to close underperforming programs, aligning the production of new teachers with the state’s labor market needs, and eliminating TEACH Grants awarded to teacher candidates who commit to working with students in historically underserved communities. The final regulations released in the fall of 2014 incorporated these ideas to varying degrees, but the influences of these organizations remained palpable. The regulations focused on holding teacher education programs accountable for outcomes—how K-12 students of their graduates perform on standardized assessments. Based on these measures, low-performing or at-risk programs were supposed to lose financial support from the federal government, such as TEACH Grants, and eventually close down. Similar to the Russian case, public discussion of the regulations resembled an illusion of dialogue. The regulations proposal was posted on the portal of the federal government and was open for discussion for about three months. During that time, over 4500 comments were submitted in response to the proposal. Even though some comments expressed support for the new measures, the overwhelming majority of them were vehemently opposed to the new regulations. These comments came from teacher educators, teacher education students, teachers, and administrators. In their comments, responders argued that such measures would penalize programs that focus on sending their graduates to struggling schools and that these regulations would undermine the programs’ focus on issues of equity, diversity, and social justice. Responses came not only from individuals who were posting responses on the federal portal, but also from a variety of organizations through open letters and statements. The American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education submitted comments on behalf of 800 programs (AACTE 2015). Other organizations also expressed opposition to the new regulations. For example, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities raised concerns over the economic impact of these regulations. According to their comments, the cost of rolling out evaluation systems needed for this accountability reform would far exceed 100 million dollars, which is at least two times higher than the Department of Education’s estimate of 42 million over ten years. After the comment period was over, there was hope that the proposed legislation would be rescinded. Yet in October of 2016, the federal government announced that the new federal regulations would go into effect. The document announcing this shift was over 600 pages long. While it engaged with many of the comments that were submitted for review and suggested that some of them were indeed used to alter final regulations, it often repudiated them and moved forward with the same measures that were originally proposed. The comment period created the illusion of dialogue, but substantively the script stayed the same. Тhe federal government created the illusion of dialogue by suggesting that the educational community was participating in forming a policy, when in reality they were invited to see dress rehearsals for the final release of the policy. What precluded teacher preparation regulations from going into effect were not the voices of the professional community, but the change in presidential administration.


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Masks Masks in theater raise the question of where the boundaries between reality and fiction lie. This perspective is important for considering how masks are deployed in policy-making processes. In particular, analysis of the discrepancies between the stated promises of the policy and its obscured agendas can help elucidate its potential consequences. In Russia, teacher education modernization policy was officially titled the Concept of Support for the Development of Teacher Education in the Russian Federation. The language deployed in the title sends a promise that teacher education programs will receive support from the state for their further development. Educators assumed that this support would take the form of extra funding for their programs, additional resources for capacity building, or positive publicity to improve their standing in the higher education community and in the society at large. Yet reformers who introduced this policy indicated that it was intended to create “a radical change” or “deeprooted reform” (Aydarova 2019), completely transforming how teacher education is conceptualized. In particular, they focused on its role in breaking up the monopoly of pedagogical universities in teacher preparation. In interviews, they discussed how funding formulas for teacher education institutions should be changed, so that state provision for their operations would decrease. The policy, on the other hand, created opportunities for alternative providers to enter the market. Apart from the measures that clearly set out to break these institutions down, reformers also spoke in ways that delegitimized the knowledge and the scholarship produced in education, referring to the research produced by the field as useless and calling pedagogy “snot in sugar” (Aydarova 2019). At the same time, however, reform measures included outcomes-based assessments—the introduction of a professional competence-based test that teacher candidates would have to pass in order to receive a teaching license. Traditional forms of assessment required that teacher candidates demonstrate the knowledge they acquired by studying academic disciplines; new assessment tools sought to elucidate teacher candidates’ professional competencies and their ability to solve practical problems (Margolis et al. 2018). When the Concept was implemented as a reform initiative, about twenty-five institutions were included in the experiment that was supposed to develop new models of teacher preparation. While many among them were institutions that traditionally prepared teachers, there were also those that were never involved in this process, such as the National University of Science and Technology, known under the Russian acronym “MISIS.” Similar to many other higher education institutions in the Russian Federation that offer narrow specializations, MISIS serves the metallurgical industry preparing specialists for the fields of metal extraction and melting materials. Such an institution might provide strong preparation for STEM fields, but is unlikely to provide a teacher with strong pedagogical preparation beyond subject area knowledge. Beyond including nontraditional institutions in teacher preparation, reformers also facilitated the creation of Teacher for Russia (New Teacher, n.d.)—an offshoot

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of Teach for America and Teach for All in the Russian Federation. Similar to its US counterpart, Teacher for Russia markets itself as an organization for graduates from elite colleges who can allegedly “change the society in which they live” by working at a school for two years. This service is presented on the organization’s website as a response to the imperative to provide “professional teachers” to ensure “quality education for every child in the country.” There is little evidence to support the claim that TFA in the United States or globally improves the quality of education but much has been written to show how it deprofessionalizes teaching (Kumashiro 2010; Labaree 2010). These changes were introduced under the mask of increasing quality of education and providing support for teacher education to obscure the agenda of defunding teacher education and deprofessionalizing teaching. In the US context there has been much policy activity surrounding teacher education in the last twelve years. This policy activity involved reports that shamed teacher education for being an “industry of mediocrity” (Greenberg, McKee and Walsh 2013: 1) and provided guidance for how new policies should be conceptualized. As a corollary to these accusations, new routes into teaching emerged. Independent programs, such as the Relay Graduate School of Education, the Sposato Graduate School of Education, as well as the High Tech High Graduate School of Education— not affiliated with any universities but rather with charter school networks—have entered the market. They claim that they provide high-quality professional training because K-12 students’ test scores improve when their graduates teach them. Along similar lines, through the advocacy of venture philanthropies such as the New Schools Venture Fund, one-year academies focused on preparing teachers to raise students’ scores on standardized tests emerged. TEACH-NOW—a fully online for-profit program that recently rebranded itself as Moreland University—offers abbreviated degrees that lead to a license or a credential for teaching in the United States or abroad (Carney 2021). The growing influence of these independent programs has been in large part facilitated by CAEP. When CAEP as a sole accreditor of teacher education was formed in 2013, it picked up the agenda of philanthropic (such as the Measures of Effective Teaching Project run by the Gates Foundation) and nonprofit organizations (Greenberg, McKee and Walsh 2013), and shifted evaluation processes toward outcomes measures. For example, CAEP Standard 4 focused on evaluating teacher education programs based on their impact, using program graduates, value-added or growth scores. This measure was based primarily on K-12 students’ performance on standardized tests. While CAEP standards sought to make high-quality education accessible for all children by increasing the quality of teacher education programs, these promises masked other agendas that the standards pursued. Unlike previous standards that focused on academic units, CAEP standards evaluated “Educator Preparation Providers,” which included traditional university-based programs, alternative providers, independent graduate schools, and online programs described above. By focusing on “Educator Preparation Providers,” the standards normalized the diversification of routes into


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the teaching profession and guaranteed market expansion for non-university teacher education providers. As the first CAEP president explained: A shift to a focus on measuring outcomes will open the licensure process to highquality alternative pathways into teaching and encourage innovation among higher education providers who wish to compete on cost and quality rather than on traditional curriculum and seat-time requirements. (Chard and Cibulka 2013: 55)

So, even though the overt agenda of the new standards was to improve the quality of K-12 education, their covert purpose became privatization and deprofessionalization of teacher education.

Conclusion Positioned at the intersections of comparative education research and teacher education studies, this chapter applied the framework of political theater to the analysis of US and Russian teacher education reforms. Despite the differences in policy contexts and historical trajectories, in both countries teacher education policy evolved in similar ways. Drawing on globally circulated policy scripts of the McKinsey reports, both Russia and the United States pursued measures of increasing selectivity in teacher education programs. In both cases, students’ performance on international assessments was used as theatrical props to manufacture crisis and paved the way for the introduction of new school standards and new standards for the teaching profession. Discrepancies between official and unofficial policy conceptualization timelines revealed that many of the reform measures were developed prior to the establishment of working groups that included representatives of teacher education programs. Finally, the focus on teacher quality in both sets of reforms obscured ways in which these policies facilitated diversification of routes into the teaching profession and the deprofessionalization of the teaching force. This chapter contributes to CIE research by offering a new theoretical approach and expanding onto-epistemological assumptions of policy analysis. In particular, the framework of political theater disrupts assumptions about the rationality and linearity of policy processes taken for granted in the field of comparative education. On the one hand, concepts of scripts, props, production sequence, and masks illuminate how what reformers present to the public might not reflect their actual agendas. On the other hand, shaping public perceptions in ways that distract attention away from issues of social inequality and injustice allows reformers to introduce measures that largely maintain the status quo and increase inequities in educational systems. Diversification of routes into teaching, for instance, brings no meaningful improvement in student achievement but leaves intact a system of schooling that offers qualitatively different educational experiences for children from different socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds. This way reformers’ promise of greater quality conceals the maintenance of the educational and social status quo. The significance of this

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chapter lies in offering a new lens to examine global teacher education reforms and to problematize how the alleged pursuit of quality education often results in reinscribing social inequality around the world.

References Aldeman, C., K. Carey, E. Dillon, B. Miller and E. Silva (2011). A Measured Approach to Improving Teacher Preparation. Education Sector. American Association of Colleges of Education (2015). AACTE—on Behalf of 800 Teacher Prep Programs—Submits Comments on Proposed Federal Regulations. https://aacte. org/2015/02/aacte-on-behalf-of-800-teacher-prep-programs-submits-comments-onproposed-federal-regulations/. Anderson-Levitt, K. (2021). “21st Century Skills in the United States: A Late, Partial and Silent Reform.” Comparative Education, 57 (1): 99–114. Apple, M.W. (2012). Can Education Change Society? New York, NY: Routledge. Auguste, B., P. Kihn and M. Miller (2010). Closing the Talent Gap: Attracting and Retaining Top Third Graduates to a Career in Teaching. An International and Market‐Based Perspective. McKinsey & Company. Aydarova, E. (2016). “Teachers’ Plight and Trainees’ Flight: Perceived, Lived, and Conceived Spaces of Schools.” Educational Studies, 2: 183–207. Aydarova, E. (2017). “Pedagogical Peep Show: The Challenges of Ethnographic Fieldwork in a Post-Socialist Context.” In I. Silova, N. Sobe, A. Korzh and S. Kovalchuk (Eds.), Reimagining Utopias: Theory and Method for Educational Research in Post-socialist Contexts 65–81. Dordrecht: Sense. Aydarova, E. (2019). Teacher Education Reform as Political Theater: Russian Policy Dramas. Albany: State University of New York Press. Aydarova, E. (2020a). “Jokers’ Pursuit of Truth: Critical Policy Analysis in the Age of Spectacle and Post-truth Politics.” Critical Studies in Education, 63 (4): 1–16. Aydarova, E. (2020b). “Shadow Elite of Teacher Education Reforms: Intermediary Organizations’ Construction of Accountability Regimes.” Educational Policy, 36 (5): 1188–221. Aydarova, E. (2021a). “Knowledge for the Elites, Competencies for the Masses: Political Theatre of Educational Reforms in the Russian Federation.” Comparative Education, 57 (1): 51–66. Aydarova, E. (2021b). “Building a One-Dimensional Teacher: Technocratic Transformations in Teacher Education Policy Discourses.” Educational Studies, 57 (6): 670–89. Aydarova, E. (2022). “Transform the World or Adapt the Student: Discursive Shifts in the Constructions of Teachers’ Roles and Pedagogy in the Russian Federation.” Paedagogica Historica, 1–20. Aydarova, E. (in progress). Intermediary Organizations, Technocratic Discourses, and the Rise of Accountability Regimes in Teacher Education. Aydarova, O. (2015a) “Global Discourses and Local Responses: A Dialogic Perspective on Educational Reforms in the Russian Federation.” European Education, 47 (4): 331–45. Aydarova, O. (2015b). “Glories of the Soviet Past or Dim Visions of the Future: Russian Teacher Education as the Site of Historical Becoming.” Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 46 (2): 147–66.


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Barber, M. and M. Mourshed (2007). How the World’s Best-Performing Systems Come Out on Top. McKinsey & Company. http://www.mckinseyonsociety.com/downloads/ reports/Education/Worlds_School_Systems_Final.pdf. Barber, M., C. Chijioke and M. Mourshed (2010). How the Worlds Most Improved School Systems Keep Getting Better. McKinsey & Company. https://www.mckinsey.com/ industries/education/our-insights/how-the-worlds-most-improved-school-systemskeep-getting-better. Beare, P., C. Torgerson, S. Tracz and C. Grutzik (2019). “The CAEP Selectivity Standard and Principal Evaluation of Educator Preparation.” Teacher Education Quarterly, 46 (2): 142–71. Carney, M.C. (2021). “Designed for the Digital Age: Teacher Preparation at TEACHNOW Graduate School of Education.” The New Educator, 17 (1): 21–38. Chard, D. and J.G. Cibulka (2013). “The Quest for Better Educators: Education Next Talks with David Chard and James G. Cibulka.” Education Next, 13 (4): 50–7. Conquergood, D. and E. P. Johnson (Eds.) (2013). Cultural Struggles: Performance, Ethnography, Praxis. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press. Council of Chief State School Officers (2013). Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) Model Core Teaching Standards and Learning Progressions for Teachers 1.0: A Resource for Ongoing Teacher Development. Council of Chief State School Officers. Duncan, A. (2009). “Secretary of Education Policy Address on Teacher Preparation.” Teachers College, Columbia University. https://www.tc.columbia.edu/articles/2009/ october/arne-duncan-full-transcript/. Edelman, M. (1988). Constructing the Political Spectacle. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Ellis, V. and J. McNicholl (2015). Transforming Teacher Education: Reconfiguring the Academic Work. London: Bloomsbury. Evetts, J. (2008). “The Management of Professionalism: A Contemporary Paradox.” In S. Gewirtz, P. Mahony, I. Hextall and A. Cribb (Eds.), Changing Teacher Professionalism: International Trends, Challenges and Ways Forward, 19–30. New York, NY: Routledge. Furlong, J. (2013). Education—An Anatomy of the Discipline: Rescuing the University Project? New York, NY: Routledge. Giridharadas, A. (2019). Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World. Vintage. Goffman, E. (1959). The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. New York, NY: Anchor Books. Goffman, E. (1974). Frame Analysis: An Essay on the Organization of Experience. Lebanon, NH: Northeastern University Press. Goodwin, A.L. (2020). “Globalization, Global Mindsets, and Teacher Education.” Action in Teacher Education, 42 (1): 6–18. Government of the Russian Federation (2011). Federal Program of Educational Development 2011–2015. Government of the Russian Federation. Greenberg, J., A. McKee and K. Walsh (2013). Teacher Prep Review. NCTQ. https://www. nctq.org/publications/Teacher-Prep-Review-2013-Report. Kumashiro, K.K. (2010). “Seeing the Bigger Picture: Troubling Movements to End Teacher Education.” Journal of Teacher Education, 61 (1–2): 56–65. Labaree, D. (2010). “Teach for America and Teacher ed: Heads They Win, Tails We Lose.” Journal of Teacher Education, 61 (1–2): 48–55.

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Margolis, A.A., M.A. Safronova, A.S. Panfilova and L.M. Shishlyannikova (2018). “Results of the Independent Evaluation of the General Professional Competencies of Future Teachers.” Psychological Science and Education, 23 (1): 64–81. Nader, L. (1972). “Up the Anthropologist: Perspectives Gained from Studying Up.” In D. Hymes (Ed.), Reinventing Anthropology, 284–311. New York, NY: Pantheon Books. New Teacher (n.d.). Teacher for Russia. New Teacher. https://uchitel.ru/. Owens, D. (2015). The Origins of the Common Core: How the Free Market Became Public Education Policy. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan. Paine, L., E. Aydarova and I. Syahril (2017). “Globalization and Teacher Education.” In D.J. Clandinin and J. Husu (Eds.), The SAGE Handbook of Research on Teacher Education, 1133–48. London: Sage. Paine, L., S. Blömeke, and O. Aydarova (2016). “Teachers and Teaching in the Context of Globalization.” In D. Gitomer and C. Bell (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Teaching. Fifth Edition, 717–86. AERA. Rappleye, J. and H. Komatsu (2017). “How to Make Lesson Study Work in America and Worldwide: A Japanese Perspective on the Onto-Cultural Basis of (teacher) Education.” Research in Comparative and International Education, 12 (4): 398–430. Schneider, M.K. (2015). Common Core Dilemma—Who Owns Our Schools?. Teachers College Press. Shore, C., S. Wright and D. Però (2011). Policy Worlds: Anthropology and the Analysis of Contemporary Power. Oxford, NY: Berghahn Books. U.S. Department of Education (2013). A Blueprint for R.E.S.P.E.C.T: Recognizing Educational Success, Professional Excellence, and Collaborative Teaching. U.S. Department of Education. https://www2.ed.gov/documents/respect/blueprint-forrespect.pdf. Wedel, J.R., C. Shore, G. Feldman and S. Lathrop (2005). “Toward an Anthropology of Public Policy.” The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 600 (1): 30–51. Willett, J. (1964). Brecht on Theatre: The Development of an Aesthetic. New York, NY: Hill and Wang.



Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice: Critical Discourse Analysis in Comparative International Teacher Education Research Crystal Green

Introduction This chapter explores possibilities and limitations of developing comparative international education (CIE) research on teacher education using methodologies and analytical frameworks which foreground dialogue and discursive practice using sociocultural and critical constructivist interpretations of social interaction. Traditionally, teacher education research in CIE has focused on teacher education policies, curricula, and practice (Afdal 2019). Following these lines, much of the current CIE research on teacher education can be distinguished in two strands: the first dealing with sociological perspectives on teacher education as a function of the organization of education systems and policies within nation-states; the second with psychological, behavioral, or psycho-linguistic perspectives research on teaching and learning as a phenomenon of human beings across cultures. These sociological and psychological approaches to the study of teacher education in CIE typically follow realist and interpretivist ontological frameworks to describe, explore, explain, and evaluate processes and outcomes in teacher education across contexts. Recently, scholars using the constructivist paradigm and discursive methods have made in-roads in comparative research in teacher education. Perhaps the most successful of these entrances has been made in CIE policy studies, where critical discourse analysis (CDA) has been used to make textual analysis related to, for example, disability discourses in education policy documents. In this chapter, I consider social justice in teacher education in Finland and California using CDA.

Discursive Production in Context As Afdal (2019) suggests, naming the ontological basis of teacher education research in CIE is important to situate the research. In this study, I have adopted a constructivist ontology, which foregrounds the social and discursive production of reality. However,


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the constructivist ontology which underlies sociocultural theory and the paradigmatic understanding of the role of the social in mediating the individual can be interpreted without a critical reading of power and the differential possibilities that people and groups have in negotiating meanings, taking action, and making decisions. Therefore, I find it useful to take a critical constructivist approach (Kincheloe 2005), which is concerned with the processes by which knowledge is produced, in this case the discursive processes by which knowledge about social justice is produced in teacher education. Meanings of social justice as a concept are mediated by local contexts and the available discourses. Yet how that mediation occurs in context, at the level of the dialogic interaction between the teacher education and the pre-service teacher, has only recently come into focus in CIE research in teacher education. I understand context to mean a geographic location and a relational production (Green 2019). In addition, Afdal (2019) suggests that context is an interpretive construction of the researcher. Because the focus of this chapter is on discourse in context, I am most interested in the discursive movements, ideoscapes, and collective imaginaries of what social justice, equality, and education can mean in teacher education programs in different education systems. In this way, context is not a container, but a limiting juncture; a time from which to listen to how these concepts are inflected in local discourse, in the discursive and dialogic construction of teacher education, and the contexts and concepts relevant to the elaboration of teacher education.

Social Justice Teacher Education in Two Contexts: Finland and California Finland’s commitment to equity and equality is well established in Finnish policy and in the international education discourse. The Equality Act of 1986 provided a legal foundation for promoting gender equality and, in 2014, the Non-Discrimination Act expanded legal equity protections with a mandate for educational institutions, including schools and institutions providing teacher education, to develop strategic planning for equity promotion and inclusion. The 2014 Act includes protections for gender identity and explicitly prohibits discrimination based on age, nationality, language, religion, sexual orientation, or trade union activity. The Finnish government has provided a legal framework and resource documents to assist educational institutions’ equity planning and implementation. Finland has been lauded in many places, including the United States, for consistently equitable student outcomes. However, in comparison to their Finnish counterparts, a greater proportion of US teachers report that pre-service preparation included training for multiculturalism and diversity (Wiksten and Green 2021). Recent research in Finland has also shown that even in schools where the student population has been diverse for many years, teachers’ levels of knowledge and awareness are relatively low, and teachers themselves express a need for more information about meeting their students’ needs (Acquah, Tandon and Lempinen 2016). This points to a continuing

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need for teacher education in Finland to prepare teachers who have the capacity to provide an equitable education to all students. In the United States, teacher education programs have worked independently to develop programs for pre-service teacher education with a focus on social justice and equity. California teacher training schools have been on the cutting edge of this movement since the 1990s. In the present political climate in the United States, gender equality and social justice are urgent concerns. In light of the #MeToo movement, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the ongoing crisis in US immigrant detention, teacher education has a role in preparing teachers to respond to increasing public acts of discrimination based on race, gender, and immigration status. In both of these contexts, the language of social justice is increasingly used to describe the purposes and aims of specialized teacher education programs. These programs articulate an explicitly social and political focus on ethics and justice, and recruit teacher education candidates whose views are in line with the programs’ aims. Yet while there is an international discourse around social justice education, the particular discursive practices are inflected by the national education discourse. This is particularly the case in relation to the concept of justice, which has legal implications for the role of the state as the guarantor of public education. The comparative approach adopted in this research provides a methodology for contextualizing discourse related to equity and social justice.

Critical Discourse Analysis CDA is a method of textual analysis, including social interactions, which focuses on the language used in practice (Fairclough 2001). CDA begins with a social or political question. In the case of the present research, the political question is of social justice and the ways that pre-service teachers and teacher educators understand social justice as an issue of relevance to teacher preparation and teaching. Teacher education is a social practice, in the sense that it is a relatively stable form of social activity, and within teacher education are articulated diverse social elements. Texts and interactions are understood to be one part of the material production of social life, which are dialectically connected with other aspects of life (Fairclough 2001). Discourse is itself political action, but it is also a justification for political action as social practice. “Critical discourse analysis is ‘critical’ in the sense that it aims to reveal the role of discursive practice in the maintenance of the social world, including those social relations that involve unequal relations of power” (Jørgensen and Phillips 2002). Vavrus and Seghers (2010) describe CDA as “grounded in critical theory, which examines the ideological nature of discourse in order to redress inequality in society.” And while Vavrus and Seghers (2010) observe that CIE research has basically done well with the policy analyses at the macro level, and less well at the micro level, it is also the case that in education, researchers have typically done well with analyzing the classroom interaction, and less well with connecting classroom practice to the macro level. CDA helps to fill this gap.


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Paulston (2000) and Ninnes (2004) have suggested that comparative education should engage with turns in the theory and methodology in the social sciences more broadly, including linguistic and spatial turns. In particular, Ninnes (2004) points to the possibility for comparative CDA to address social justice and the movement of educational ideas across national borders; the global circulation and local manifestation of educational ideas. Popkewitz (2000) explores how narratives are perceived as universal cross-national boundaries and become embedded and naturalized in local contexts. Teacher education is a particular form of social practice. The language, or semiosis, of teacher education as it relates to social justice is mediated by the particular discourses which are available in a particular context. This chapter seeks to illuminate these discourses in two pre-service teacher education programs.

Research Questions The analysis was guided by the following questions: i)

What are the localized discourses about equity and social justice in Finland and California? ii) What discourses are common to both contexts?

Methods This chapter uses data from a comparative study of teacher educators and pre-service teachers in social justice-oriented teacher education programs in Finland in California to identify localized discourses about equality and social justice. Two teacher education programs with a focus on social justice and equity were selected for the research, one in Finland and one in California. Data was collected in 2020. Video and audio recordings included recordings of online classes and focus-group discussions with pre-service teachers and teacher educators. Individual interviews were conducted with the teacher educators and recorded via videoconferencing. In addition, written reflections about social justice and equity, which were assigned as part of their coursework in both programs in coordination with the researcher, were collected in both contexts. Both of these programs have been operating within an established university infrastructure since the 1990s, and have an explicit orientation toward social justice. In both programs, pre-service teachers are admitted to the program selectively based on their ability to articulate their commitment to social justice, equity, and equality. In California, the pre-service teachers enter the program having already completed their bachelors, and receive a master’s degree upon completion of the program. In Finland, the program is a five-year degree program, during which time the pre-service teachers earn a bachelor’s and a master’s degree. Data was analyzed using CDA (Fairclough 2001, 2003). The analysis is focused on three levels: the text, the discursive practice, and the social practice.

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Jørgensen and Phillips (2002) explain the distinction between the three levels: text analysis concentrates on the formal features of the language (such as vocabulary, grammar, syntax, and sentence coherence). Discursive practice is how authors of texts draw on already existing discourses and genres to create a text. Social practice is the use of external discourses, and an analysis of the purposes the discourses were mobilized to serve. The findings from each context are presented via insights at each of these three levels of analysis. The data from each context are analyzed as a body of text that gives a portrait of  the discourse in each program. Possibilities for the co-construction of meaning are therefore multivocal. The discursive production between the teacher educator and the pre-service teachers, and among the pre-service teachers, is fluid. In this way, the present analysis differs from, for example, CDA of policy texts, in which the text typically draws on a particular set of unified discourses. In class discussions and dialogues, the participants drew on various and often-conflicting discourses to engage with one another. Names or identifying features of the participants are not included in this chapter. However, contributions from each participant are referred to, for example, PF1 for Pre-service teacher 1 in Finland and PC1 for Pre-service teacher 1 in California; TF1 for Teacher educator 1 in Finland, and TC1 for teacher educator 1 in California.

Finland Text In the Finnish pre-service teacher program, social justice was often evoked in terms of students’ rights with specific examples of the legal mandate for equal treatment, in terms of language rights, the right to religious education in one’s own faith or ethics, and the right to publicly financed school meals meeting students’ dietary requirements. Students’ rights were connected to teachers’ responsibility as a representative of the state to ensure equal education. “Teachers are in between the students and the state and you have to be conscious of your responsibilities toward the state because you are a public authority figure … as a holder of the public power you have certain obligations (PF19).” In this discussion of responsibility, an interaction emerged between one of the teacher educators and a pre-service teacher around “managing our differences” and the normative value of support. A pre-service teacher noted that the logic of difference can be used as a reason to validate each person managing their own needs, and went on to describe a situation with a special needs student, in which the teacher wanted additional support but, “there was perhaps a shortage of funding and a lack of professionals who could be there providing extra assistance in that school … that’s something I’ve heard of quite a bit in Finland, that there are not enough resources to provide extra support (TF1).” TF1: “Your stories were related to support and the exclusion/inclusion thematic, which I think are both important when thinking of social justice issues … I think


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education your first analysis was very interesting that we are all different and therefore we all need to manage our differences ourselves somehow …” PF16: “Just for clarification, that’s not my own ideology, but that’s just something that I’ve come across or an analysis that I’ve made when considering why people might think differently for providing support for students, extra support for students, for example.” TF1: “Yeah, that is a bit of a scary way to think, that we just have to manage, without any extra support from others.” PF16: “Yeah, it’s helped me personally in discussions, knowing that that’s where someone is coming from, in order to also explain my point of view.” TF1: “Yeah. Thank you, [name] for sharing these interesting aspects. I think [name] and [name] you haven’t shared your reflections yet, would you like to share?”

The pre-service teachers expected infrastructures of student support, including support staff and time for discussions: “if the teacher sat down, had a chat with the student and if needed, with the special ed. teacher, guidance counsellor, parents or social worker (PF6).” In this way, social justice in education was also connected to the public financing of education. “Finnish schools are publicly funded so there’s almost no segregation of the ‘bigger and better, expensive private schools’ and ‘poor, public education,’ rather everyone is given the same basic education for ‘free,’ that is, ‘funded by taxes, but there’s no tuition fees (PF3).’” Social justice was described as occurring on the structural level, as “removing the barriers for equal participation and practice (PF16).” Participation was primarily described in terms of social participation in the life of the community and cultural activities: For example, if the student can’t afford to buy skis or skates, they have to borrow them from the school. However, this equipment isn’t necessarily in great condition, thus impacting the student’s experience and self-image. This doesn’t take away from the quality of education, which is ensured by teacher education. However, it is something that means that not all students are getting the same equal opportunities and experiences. (PF6)

Social justice was talked about in terms of “middle class values (PF10),” as something “not dramatic (PF1)” and “completely common sense.” The pre-service teachers also described a commitment to a secular ethic, “In the end, there are many things the teacher can do in order to promote equity and social justice. It can be something small, like changing a prayer to a rhyme (PF6).” However, the tension between a secular ethic and a Christian ethic manifest in the pre-service teachers’ exchanges with one another: PF1: “[E]quality is a place that we should aim for but I do not believe that the world can ever be equal, totally equal for everybody. It’s like an aim for things, and a good aim. But we are human beings and humans are selfish and stuff like that, so I find it like, it’s a mission impossible.”

Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice


PF2: “It’s interesting because on the other hand—I agree with a lot of what you said, but on the other hand I really hear the very Christian echo in the idea of humans being selfish and we, like humans being unable to reach that kind of good. Mmm …” PF1: “And it’s not the correct way, but that’s like what thoughts come and that’s one of the reasons I do not like discussing about this because I know people have different opinions. And because I don’t have all the knowledge about it so I don’t think I have the power or I am allowed to speak of it because my perspective and my thoughts may not be the correct ones.” This tension about how to define the terms was evident, “I don’t want to ruin [these big ideas] by saying something not definite or not finished about them, but at the same time I think talking about the unfinished ideas, we just need to do it for the process. It feels unpleasant. It feels like I can’t just poke at this issue (PF1).” The teacher educator spoke in a way that she held the various views about equity, equality, and social justice together, while affirming their normative value: So I think that we agree that there is not just one way to define what these terms are, but also that they play an important role in education … Hopefully, we have an idea and we can also recognize issues that may promote or hinder, but we can talk more about our roles as educators. (TF1)

Discursive Practice The pre-service teachers drew on a number of discourses. Notable among these was the rights-based discourse relating not only to education, but also to healthcare and language rights. The pre-service teachers expressed a normative value of making demands of the state for the provision of equity and social justice for the individual student. Within this is expressed a general expectation in the capacity of the system to achieve justice to the extent that teachers fulfill their obligations. The welfare state discourse also manifested in a policy-referential, common-sense orientation toward the value of social justice, even when the pre-service teachers expressed a sense of uncertainty about the concept. Pre-service teachers recognized a difficulty in accessing a coherent counter-discourse. “[S]omehow, at least in my ideas of social justice, there is this idea of it being something very non-dramatic, very self-evident. Of course, we want good for others, for ourselves, for everybody … But then I think that limits the discourses that we can have, that we can take part in. Because it doesn’t leave much room for the discussion of what is good. And I think once you decline a definition of good you might, I don’t know, get the feedback that, ‘oh well you don’t want the social justice that we are trying to offer you.’ And at that point it gets really complicated.” (PF1)

Another pre-service teacher noted a lack of some teachers’ ability to even recognize a resistance discourse as such, describing one of their pre-service training courses in


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which a teacher educator introduced a caricature of Sami language and culture as a legitimate teaching tool, a week after they had discussed the oppression of the Sami people in another course. When the pre-service teachers tried to engage the teacher educator in dialogue about the use of this content, the teacher educator was unable to understand the critique. “The oppression of [Sami] culture runs so deep that when it’s being questioned, we don’t even realize it’s being questioned (PF19).”

Social Practice It is important to consider not only the words that are used to articulate a discourse, and the external discourses that are employed in the text, but also the ways in which the actors engage with each other to create the discourse as a social practice. In the Finnish case, the primary method was dialogic practice, which included silence, solicitation of comments, and questioning. The teacher educators asked, “do we now have some kind of an idea of these concepts and what they can mean? Can we move on or would you like to say something more about these concepts? (TF1)” “I would love to hear more about what you think (TF2).” in a very calm and soliciting manner, allowing ample time in silence for the discussion to emerge. “What would that be? Could that be social justice? (TF1)” Peer interactions were similarly evocative, “I also wanted to ask [classmate], what kind of experiences did you have that made you think there is more of an issue with racism in Finland?” In their writing the pre-service teachers wrote open-ended questions to guide future reflections on their practice. The teacher educators also used a questioning posture to facilitate dialogue: “Do you want to ask something of [your classmate]? Or did you have some similar experiences? (TF2)” “Do you think that this [discrimination] was something the staff was aware of?” This dialogic social practice functions to make dialogue normative in social justice work: Solidarity is the core of my understanding of social justice: I cannot and I should not try to do this work alone. We need to be able to share and hear each others’ stories—and stories from those that are not “us”. And when I act as a teacher I need to find a balance between being led by my own ideals and thoughts (to stay engaged and honest to myself) and others’ ideals and thoughts (to have solidarity and consideration). (PF20)

A second social practice was hedging. The participants in Finland allowed for a wide distance between themselves and the discourse, and an articulation of any commitment to a particular stance, “you must also to some extent believe in it (PF5).” There was also a practice of refraining from pinning down definitions, and hedging what social justice “can mean (TF1).” They engaged in a deliberative way of organizing the discussion, both in the sense of being deliberate in their choice of vocabulary, “I want to be really careful with my words not to make it sound differently than what I mean (PF3),” and also in the sense of hedging and questioning the possible meanings and their implications, “That’s my sense of it, but I feel like there are other dimensions that I’m not seeing right now (PF1).”

Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice


These social practices function in complex ways. On the one hand, they allow the possibility for continued dialogue about social justice teaching, and the potential for a wide range of possible consensuses in different situations. These practices avoid a dogmatic demand for the individual to make a particular commitment to a codified definition of social justice as such. On the other hand, the practice of hedging leaves little room for the articulation of a coherent dissent, and the focus is turned to the legal responsibility of the institution and the teachers’ treatment of individual students.

California Text In the Californian context, discourse around teaching for social justice was brought forth in the vocabulary of “foundational beliefs,” “commitment,” and “core teaching principles.” As one pre-service teacher wrote, “each social justice educator holds different values and beliefs while working towards a central goal of equity.” (PC1) At times, tensions were articulated around aligning their own beliefs with emergent understandings of social justice developed during pre-service teacher education. “I was having a difficult time negotiating some of my core educational beliefs with an allencompassing definition of social justice education that does not exist.” (PC1) In this example, the pre-service teachers saw her own need to find a comprehensive definition of social justice as related to an anxiety to comply with an “approved set of criteria” for social justice teaching in order to “tick the boxes and be successful.” Commitments were connected to a strong articulation of the normative expectations of social justice educators and normative statements about what a social justice educator should(n’t) or must(n’t) do. Teachers should be well-versed in their content so that students can learn from an “expert” of sorts. Teachers should be reflective; we should normalize uncertainty and mistakes and model this for students. Teachers shouldn’t pretend to be perfect because they aren’t. Teachers should understand the historical oppressive content of education and the unique challenges that their students face, not so that they can pity their students but so that they can react to nuanced behaviors and trends. Teachers should be grounded and invested in the community, not outsiders swooping in to save students from their environment but rather participants in the environment–investors in the environment. We shouldn’t be teaching students to “get out” or “make something of themselves”. We should be employing them and their families with the tools to invest in their community. (PC5)

Part of this normative expectation was in providing “academic rigor” while maintaining a disposition of care toward the students. “Being compassionate as a social justice educator means being understanding of each individual student’s situation and indeed making accommodations accordingly, but the bar of excellence should not be lowered in a way that will be a detriment to students in the long run as they work towards


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their goals (PC3).” Maintaining high expectations of the students was connected to the assertion that “the teacher must avoid deficit thinking towards the students and genuinely try to get to know each student, and their students as a collective whole, based on who they are, not based on stereotypes the teacher might believe (PC3).” This connection between social justice and care for the students was affirmed as a in the language of social justice as love, “Love is the root of all social justice work and love is what drives us to fight for equity and resist injustice against ourselves and our students (PC1)” and “When you strip everything away, it’s a relational process. You have to get kids to trust you (TE1).”

Discursive Practice The discursive practice is a set of logics used to make sense of how social justice in teacher education is related to the wider logics of society. The first discourse was that of resistance, activism, and the need to “anchor yourself as an ally (TC1)” through explicit resistance and allyship. This discourse gives a reading of the systems and institutions in the United States as fundamentally unjust. To do justice, teachers have to stand between the student and the structures to mitigate the deleterious effects of a system that is built on the logics of white supremacy. Teachers’ failure to stand with the student against a punitive educational system is a moral failure on the part of the teacher. Worse, the teacher can end up reproducing injustice. The tension is that this discourse leaves very little room for a discussion of the production of the teacher as a teacher within the educational system. That is to say, the implication of the focus on a foundational ideological commitment of the teacher prior to entering the teaching profession seeks to form the teacher outside of, but in relation to, the context of the educational system which the teacher will ultimately serve and which will validate the teacher as teacher. This tension is articulated by the pre-service teachers, who questioned their own capacity for continual resistance, “Overwhelmingly, we interact with teachers who uphold white supremacy … Some of these teachers may even agree with these themes in theory but do not implement them in practice. Who am I to think that I will end up differently? (PC5)” A second discursive practice that was present in the text was the invocation of one’s identity as something to “establish (PC3)” to “stay grounded in (PC1),” and to “strengthen (PC1).” The identity discourse was framed as individual, in terms of recognizing one’s own positionality, for example “my social class identity (TC1),” “my own heritage (PC2),” and “my teacher identity (PC5),” but also as collective identities, for example in discussing “intergroup relationships (PC5)” and “queer folk, people of color, and other marginalized groups of people (PC3).”

Social Practice One of the primary social practices used in the California case was the use of personal narrative and reflective practice. In multiple classes, the teacher educator shared their personal experience and biographical narratives as a way to connect with the

Constructing Meanings of Equity and Social Justice


pre-service teachers, and as an example of the connection between biography and one’s own personal commitments. The indication was that these narratives would also serve as a model for teachers to be able to contextualize their own lives within the history of social justice in California. Reflection also played an important role as social practice in teacher education. Teacher education was aimed at helping pre-service teachers do the “hard work of looking internally (PC1)” and of “examining their schooling to reconstruct it from a sense of possibility (PC4).” Reflection was tied to humility and a sense of unfinishedness: “Social justice pedagogy positions you as a learner, not just of pedagogy, but to get to know the students in front of you, the larger history and their ancestral homelands (TC1).” However, the use of narrative also manifested in a tendency toward the monologic, expressed by the teacher educator in a reflection about his previous experience as a school teacher and his mistaken sense that the students “are just going to be sitting in their rows, and they are going to be eating up my thought-provoking lecture (TC1).” There was also a social practice of using statistical data to inform the conversation, relating social justice as an ideological commitment to the material and historical conditions in California and nationally. In a lecture on the development of social justice education in California, the pre-service teachers were presented with information about the “hyper economic and educational inequality.” Just so that we have some very concrete numbers so that we can think about this context. So, this is data that’s coming off from the Department of Health … last year, 80% of students and families in [the school district] were living at or below poverty level. How does the federal government define the poverty level for a family of four? That means that they’re making a yearly salary of $25,750. 80% of families are making that income, right? … What does that mean? (TC1)

Shared Discourses One of the more compelling points of analysis in comparative education research in teacher education is at the level of shared discourse. These discourses (e.g., human rights, identity politics) travel across borders and are employed in a variety of ways to a variety of ends. Here, I focus briefly on some of the shared discourses about the production of teacher education for social justice in Finland and California.

Selectivity In both programs, the teacher educators made note of the selection process into the teacher education program. The selectivity of the admissions process emerged in the text in both cases as an important aspect of the teacher educators’ experiences and the teacher educators’ sense of agency and harmonization with the aims of the teacher education program. In both cases there also emerged a related discourse about other teacher education programs locally and nationally that did not have a social justice


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orientation, and postulations about what those programs covered, or how well those programs prepared teachers in terms of social justice.

Desire for Practical Tools Pre-service teachers in both programs articulated their desire to learn more tools and techniques, tips and tricks of the trade to be teachers. In both contexts, the teacher educators made an effort to mediate that desire for ready-made teaching techniques with an emphasis on reflective practice. The pre-service teachers articulated an appreciation for the value of reflective practice, but also an eagerness to be more confident in their practical skills of doing social justice work in the classroom.

Systemic Analysis In both contexts, there was a discussion about the role of systems in reproducing structures, especially class structures. This was evident in talk about the material conditions in which the students live, the legal structures of the educational system, obligations, and entitlements. Social justice is about a system analysis of how the educational system produces equity and equality.

Whiteness In both contexts, discussion of whiteness and privilege were present in the texts. In Finland, whiteness was related to the discourse of Finnish exceptionalism. In California, whiteness was related to the discourse of white supremacy.

Discussion Fairclough (2001) asks us to consider the extent to which a context “needs” a particular problem. We can also ask how a particular problem (such as social justice) is interpreted as needful in a particular context. This chapter suggests that comparative discourse analysis offers possibilities to analyze how concepts are (re) interpreted, figure the social imaginaries into which concepts are articulated and gain deeper insights into the local inflections of terms with global relevance, such as social justice. For the field of CIE, discourse analysis opens up deeper cultural insights toward the interactional. The socio-linguistic turn can be applied to CIE as an analytical frame in which education is seen as a social process, beyond psycho-social measures of student and teacher behavior. To the extent that CIE is positioned to redress systematic educational inequalities, discourse analysis provides a framework for revealing how the normative is construed. Studies of similarity and difference in CIE have often relied on the lens of cultural analysis, which often take the cultural normative as granted or neutralized by historical predetermination, leaving aside questions of power—and its dynamicity—in the construction of normative

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productions of education. The linguistic turn complicates cultural interpretations and conversations in CIE, asking not only what is said in the classroom, but how these discursive practices function to reproduce and contest locally normative understandings of globally used concepts. For teacher educators and researchers of teacher education, a critical linguistic turn can add to the psychological, behavioral, and economic viewpoints that tend to dominate the field. This perspective, drawing on questions from the sociology of education, can open inquiry into how we understand the social function of teacher education curricula, how teacher educators constitute and analyze their practice, and how classroom interactions constitute various forms of social practice in teacher education. Studies which assemble these various domains can highlight how power is produced as an embodied and linguistic practice in comparative education contexts. Discourse analysis at the level of classroom interactions can also go some way toward explaining how it is that dramatically different outcomes arise from what has been described as ostensibly remarkably similar systems and increasing homogeneity of the institutional infrastructure of globalized education. The discursive reproduction of power and the social practice constitute nuanced differences which manifest different social practices that delimit how conversations regarding social justice are reproduced.

References Acquah, E.O., M. Tandon and S. Lempinen (2016). “Teacher Diversity Awareness in the Context of Changing Demographics.” European Educational Research Journal, 15 (2): 218–35. Afdal, H.W. (2019). “The Promises and Limitations of International Comparative Research on Teacher Education.” European Journal of Teacher Education, 42 (2): 258–75. Afdal, H.W. and G. Afdal (2010). “The Hidden Context: The Dilemma of Context in Social and Educational Research.” Textsorten Und Kulturelle Kompetenz: Interdisziplinare Beitrage Zur Textwissenschaft, 51–70. Fairclough, N. (2001). “Critical Discourse Analysis.” In M. Rapley (Ed.), How to Analyse Talk in Institutional Settings: A Casebook of Methods, 25–38. London: Bloomsbury. Fairclough, N. (2003). Analysing Discourse: Textual Analysis for Social Research. London: Psychology Press. Green, C. (2019). Professional Learning of English Language Teacher Educators in Finland and Japan. Jyväskylä, Finland: JYU dissertations. Jørgensen, M. and L.J. Phillips (2002). “Critical Discourse Analysis.” In Discourse Analysis as Theory and Method, 60–95. Sage, https://www.doi.org/10.4135/9781849208871). Kincheloe, J.L. (2005). Critical Constructivism Primer. Vol. 2. Lausanne, Switzerland: Peter Lang. Ninnes, P. (2004). “Critical Discourse Analysis and Comparative Education. Re-imagining Comparative Education.” Postfoundational Ideas and Applications for Critical Times, 43–62.


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Paulston, R. (2000). “Imagining Comparative Education: Past, Present, Future.” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 30 (3): 353–67. Pini, M.E. and J.M. Gorostiaga (2008). “Teacher Education and Development Policies: Critical Discourse Analysis from a Comparative Perspective.” International Review of Education, 54 (3): 427–43. Popkewitz, T.S. (Ed.) (2000). Educational Knowledge: Changing Relationships between the State, Civil Society, and the Educational Community. Albany, NY: SUNY Press. Vavrus, F. and M. Seghers (2010). Critical Discourse Analysis in Comparative Education: A Discursive Study of “Partnership” in Tanzania’s Poverty Reduction Policies. Comparative Education Review, 54 (1): 77–103. Wiksten, S. and C. Green (2021). “Expectations to Teachers’ Role in Advancing Society and Equity in Finland, Japan and the United States: Findings from TALIS 2018.” In S. Wiksten (Ed.), Enactments of Global Citizenship Education: Social Justice in Public Spheres of Education. New York, NY: Routledge.


Rethinking School–University–Community Partnerships toward a Third Space Framework in Comparative Research on Teacher Preparation Yiting Chu

Introduction While teacher quality is often considered the most important factor influencing student learning by policy makers worldwide, how to better prepare effective teachers and improve teacher education practices and programs remain two of the most debated and divided questions in the international literature on teacher education. International assessment programs, such as the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and The Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development [OECD] 2019), further place teacher quality and the quality of teacher education programs under scrutiny at the global level. These measurements and international rankings have prompted governments around the world to adopt reform efforts aiming to improve teacher quality in order to produce the kind of citizens and labor workforce they desire (Tatto 2006) and to maintain their competitiveness in the global economy (Salajan, jules and Wolhuter 2023). In the United States, while the majority of teachers has been historically prepared through university- and college-based teacher education programs (Fraser 2007), alternative, early entry pathways to teaching have increasingly gained policy and funding support (Zeichner and Bier 2015) amid the calls to break the university’s alleged monopoly on the professional preparation of teachers (Hess 2009). Some policy makers and school leaders have introduced market-based strategies and highstakes accountability measures, such as the value-added model, to directly link teacher effectiveness measured by student standardized test scores and the quality of the programs that prepare them (Tatto 2015; Cochran-Smith 2021). In addition, some educational reformers have called for minimizing what they consider overly theoretical university coursework and advocated for more clinical learning and on-the-job training about teaching (Zeichner and Bier 2015). This latter position reflects the prevalent belief among teacher education stakeholders around the world that more time spent at school practicing teaching would lead to more effective teachers (Tatto and Furlong 2015).


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

While extending the field experience has potential learning benefits for pre-service teachers, teacher education researchers across national contexts have persistently cautioned that more attention should be given to the nature and quality of field-based learning by closely collaborating with school partners and supporting mentor teachers (Trent and Lim 2010; Darling-Hammond 2014; Zeichner et al. 2015; Morrison 2016; Jackson and Burch 2018). However, building such collaborative partnerships among schools, university programs, and communities remains a challenge for many teacher education programs and teacher educators (Zeichner 2021). As a result, numerous efforts and programs, many of which are supported by governmental initiatives and funding, have been developed to strengthen the school–university partnerships and the collaboration between university- and school-based educators in teacher preparation. One of such approaches in the United States is the teacher residency model that features year-long, mentored classroom teaching and integrated curriculum connecting coursework and fieldwork, anchored to a closer partnership among schools and school districts, university programs, and/or community partners (Berry et al. 2008; Guha et al. 2016). Similar partnerships that leverage the expertise of both university- and school-based teacher educators exist around the world, such as the School Centres for Teaching Excellence and the Science Teacher Education Partnerships with Schools in Australia; the university–school partnership in Israel; the Collaborative University School Partnership in New Zealand; and the Oxford Internship Scheme and its later iteration, the Oxford Education Deanery in the United Kingdom. These partnerships represent a reconceptualization of teacher preparation theories and practices and have the potential to create transformative opportunities for novice teacher learning and development. This chapter aims to outline the international landscape surrounding school-university partnerships in teacher preparation and delineate implications of a “third space” framework for comparative and international research on teacher education. The chapter will start with an explanation of the “third space” framework and its relevance to teacher preparation, followed by a review of examples of school–university teacher preparation partnerships around the world, before describing a teacher residency program in the United States, drawing on data collected from an ongoing, longitudinal study. The chapter will conclude with a discussion of how a third space partnership in teacher preparation might shed light on comparative inquiry on teacher learning and contribute to international collaboration toward more transformative teacher education policies and practices in an increasingly diverse world.

A “Third Space” Approach to Teacher Education The notion of a “third space” was developed by the postcolonial literary critic Bhabha (1994), who uses this concept to describe a nonbinary, nonbinding understanding of identities that are always hybrid and in-between different cultures. The third space rejects the reductive “either or” perspective and bears opportunities for innovation and collaboration across multiple domains (Bhabha 1994; Soja 1996). The concept

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of “third space” is introduced to the study of teacher education by Zeichner (2010), who contends that a hybrid, intersecting “third space” can help bridge the so-called theory–practice divide—the disconnect between what pre-service teachers learn from university coursework and the knowledge and practices expected at school—that has been haunting the field of teacher education (Flores 2017). Rejecting a dichotomous “either or” approach—privileging either university- or school-based learning in teacher education while marginalizing the other—Zeichner (2010) contends that both academic and practitioner knowledge, as well as community expertise, are essential for novice teachers to learn. The third space between school and university contexts thus allows teacher educators across institutions to participate in teacher preparation as equal partners who can collaboratively mobilize their knowledge and expertise and negotiate their shared responsibilities for novice teacher learning and professional development (Zeichner et al. 2015; Beck 2020). This conception of third space in teacher education also encourages university faculty, school teachers, and community partners to become hybrid teacher educators (Zeichner 2010) who can broker knowledge across institutional boundaries and co-construct new opportunities in supporting pre-service teacher learning (Anagnostopoulos et al. 2007; Lillejord and Børte 2016). The hybrid teacher educators are similar to what other scholars call “dual-role professionals” (White et al. 2015) who are responsible for the learning of both students and student teachers. Therefore, a third space approach to teacher education requires a reimagination and reconceptualization of who is in charge of and whose knowledge is valued in teacher learning (Zeichner et al. 2015). The hybridity and boundary crossing are essential because the third space aims to connect the school and university spaces that are often separate in many teacher education programs. In traditional, university-based programs, the roles of school educators are often marginalized, while in the alternative, school-based programs, theory and university learning are given peripheral attention (Beck 2020). Instead, a third space teacher education advocates a “both and” approach that fosters an inter-organizational, collaborative partnership among schools and school districts, university teacher education programs, and community partners in order to collapse the institutional and epistemological hierarchies in teacher education and empower school and community partners’ democratic participation in teacher learning (Zeichner et al. 2015), so that theoretical, practitioner, and community knowledge can be collectively leveraged to create expanded, boundary-crossing learning for preservice teachers (Beck 2020; Jackson and Burch 2018). Notably, creating a third space in teacher education is more than moving educators from universities and schools together. The development of an in-between, hybrid third space requires teacher educators to cross their institutional boundaries and to deliberately collaborate in knowledge construction in order to establish and foster transformative partnerships conducive to pre-service teacher learning (Anagnostopoulos et al. 2007; Klein et al. 2013; Williams 2013). For example, Klein and colleagues describe their journey of creating a third space, urban teacher residency and recognize that a third space is “utopian” and “improvisational” in the sense that there are no predetermined roles and tools; instead, it requires stakeholders to constantly carve out new pathways, negotiate hybrid identities, and collaboratively


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construct new tools and knowledge (Klein et al. 2015; Klein et al. 2013, 2016). The third space in their studies is created by university faculty moving to school spaces to facilitate action research projects in collaboration with mentor teachers to help student teachers develop as critically reflective educators of inquiry (Klein et al. 2016) and mentors as teacher educators and teacher leaders (Klein et al. 2015). Similarly, Gardiner and Salmon (2014) report initiatives to strengthen the school–university coherence in teacher education by situating university faculty as liaisons and research residents in partner schools to observe, evaluate, and provide feedback to teacher candidates and, in collaboration with their mentors, to help them connect university coursework with classroom teaching (Gardiner and Lorch 2015). Faculty members also benefit from deepening their knowledge about the school expectations and redesign their courses for greater theory–practice integration (Gardiner and Salmon 2014). Anagnostopoulos et al. (2007) further illuminate how university faculty and school teachers in their study collaboratively construct what they call “horizontal expertise” that transcends institutional boundaries and benefits both school educators and university faculty. Outside the US context, a growing body of literature has documented the value of “third space” as a theoretical and analytical framework to reconceptualize teacher preparation and a useful tool to restructure school–university partnerships in teacher learning (Daza et al. 2021). For instance, Grudnoff et al. (2016) report the development of a third space practicum in New Zealand as a result of a transformative university–school partnership and the collaborative practices that emerge from both scholarly knowledge and professional expertise. Passy et al. (2018) examine the collaboration between one university in southwest England and several partner schools and analyze how a nonhierarchical, third space partnership is constructed. The research-in-residence approach reported in this study is similar to that in Gardiner and Salmon’s (2014) study. Also situated in England, Jackson and Burch (2018) report challenges facing school- and university-based teacher educators and highlight the importance of boundary brokering in fostering a third space teacher education partnership. Chan (2019) documents how English as a second language teacher candidates in Hong Kong move between campus and school spaces and the roles mentor teachers play in transferring knowledge across institutional boundaries to facilitate the creation of a third space. In a related study, Chan and Clarke (2014) explain how university teacher educators support school teachers’ action research projects as part of a school–university partnership. These teacher educators dynamically negotiate their identities in the process as they move between different institutional spaces. Adopting a self-study approach, Williams (2013) reflects on her experiences as a teacher educator in both school and university contexts in Australia and the dynamic identity (re)construction process as a third space teacher educator. Similar challenges have been reported by educators from the UK and the Netherlands when negotiating the dual roles and responsibilities as school teachers and teacher educators (Williams 2014). This body of growing international literature collectively shows that a third space teacher education approach has the potential to reconceptualize teacher education toward a closer school–university partnership that engages a broader range of teacher

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educators to collaboratively create transformative learning opportunities for preservice teachers. The intersecting third space also empowers university faculty and school educators to cross institutional boundaries and develop expanded roles and identities as hybrid teacher educators. They constantly navigate the constructed third space and jointly negotiate their shared responsibilities in teacher learning. Despite its promises in bridging the theory–practice divide in teacher education, researchers have also identified tensions due to the variety of stakeholders involved in the third space partnership and the multitude of professional beliefs and institutional priorities they bring in implementing the partnership (Chan 2019; Daza et al. 2021) and challenges associated with negotiating hybrid roles and identities in the third space (Klein et al. 2013; Williams 2014). The opportunities afforded by the third space framework and lingering challenges urge teacher educators and researchers to rethink the professional preparation of teachers and call for a new agenda for teacher education research (Beck 2020).

School–University Partnerships in Teacher Education As teacher quality and the effectiveness of teacher preparation remain the concerns of governments worldwide, many countries have been looking for new approaches to preparing teachers, with the ultimate goal of educating the kind of citizens they envision (Tatto 2006). Many of these innovative models and government-initiated or -funded programs focus on fostering stronger school–university partnerships and integrating the research-based teaching and learning theory gained from university coursework with practitioner expertise and practical knowledge and skills needed in schools (Flores 2017). Partnership in teacher education is not a new idea: Korthagen et al. (2006) identify seven principles for teacher education programs from their comparative analysis of teacher education programs across three continents and advocate specifically for meaningful relationships between schools and universities in teacher education. Darling-Hammond (2006) similarly identifies intensive clinical work and its close connection and integration with coursework as critical components of effective teacher education programs. Numerous types of partnerships have been proposed and experimented across national contexts, and several of these programs reported in the literature are discussed in this section. One of the earliest efforts to strengthen the collaboration between school districts and university teacher education programs in the United States is The Holmes Group (1986). In addition to increasing content knowledge learning and student teaching experiences in schools, it advocates for closer ties between university coursework and school-based learning. The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) programs, initially funded by the US federal government, also feature a greater connection to and mentoring support from school districts in teacher preparation (Guha et al. 2016). Professional development school (PDS) is another type of school–university partnership designed to improve the coherence between university learning and field experiences where pre-service teachers are placed in partner schools that demonstrate


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high-quality pedagogical practices. University and school educators also work together to improve the curriculum and instruction in these PDSs for pre-service teachers to observe and learn (Darling-Hammond 2014). In Victoria, Australia, the School Centre for Teaching Excellence (SCTE) is an Australian government-funded initiative that supports pre-service teachers to connect courses and clinical experiences through strengthened partnerships between universities and schools and extensive classroom teaching (Burridge et al. 2016). Preservice teachers are placed as a pair to spend a year teaching in a school and learning about teaching with a mentor teacher. University faculty members in SCTE collaborate with pre-service teachers and their mentors to co-design curriculum and conduct research to improve preparation. The Science Teacher Education Partnerships with Schools in Australia also aim to strengthen theory and practice in science teacher education through stronger school–university partnerships (Jones et al. 2016; Kenny et al. 2014). Two aspects of the program pre-service teachers find most beneficial are the practical teaching experiences in authentic settings connecting theory and practice and the opportunities to experiment with new ideas with the support of mentor teachers (Kenny et al. 2014). Maskit and Orland-Barak (2015) describe a university–school partnership model in Israel that focuses on fostering connections between pre-service teachers “academic learning at the university and their lived experiences at school … and pedagogical relationships between the involved partners” (289). A program coordinator from the university serves as the liaison at school to facilitate daily schedules and weekly meetings with student teachers. This research indicates that the university coordinators play the role of brokers between the university and school spaces. They are fluent in both academic/research and professional/practitioner discourses and are able to negotiate conflicting interests and priorities in the partnership. This program is noteworthy because, according to the authors, this is the only teacher education partnership model in Israeli research universities. In the UK, the Oxford Internship Scheme was first developed 1987 for similar reasons to deepen Oxford University’s partnership with local schools in teacher training. This program helped pre-service teachers to integrate knowledge learned from multiple sources in their professional learning (McIntyre and Hagger 1992). The partnership was expanded in 2013 as the Oxford Education Deanery to incorporate continuing professional development (Fancourt et al. 2015). Other initiatives in England are discussed in the previous section (Jackson and Burch 2018; Passy et al. 2018). The Welsh government has adopted similar reform efforts to encourage universities to work more closely with schools for greater curriculum integration and mentoring support for pre-service teachers (Furlong et al. 2021). Finally, in New Zealand, the Collaborative University School Partnerships aim to bring together teacher education stakeholders from different communities of practice to negotiate shared goals and responsibilities and co-construct practices to support student teacher learning. Like the SCTE approach, student teachers are placed in a classroom in pairs for two semesters to experience what being a teacher entails and start building relationships in schools (Harlow and Cobb 2014). School teachers

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also value the sense of greater partnership and shared commitment gained from collaborating with university partners to support novice teacher learning, which helps them to construct identities as teacher educators (Cobb et al. 2018).

The Teacher Residency Model The teacher residency model in the United States is built on earlier efforts to strengthen the partnerships among schools, universities, and communities in teacher learning, such as The Holmes Group, the PDSs, and the MAT programs (Guha et al. 2016). Compared with traditional university-based programs and alternative pathways to teaching, the residency approach features a year-long, mentored classroom teaching accompanied with a curriculum integrating university coursework and field experiences. Similar to the Oxford Education Deanery in the UK, the residency approach is borrowed from the medical residency model. Pre-service teachers, called residents, are prepared to teach for specific school districts and spend a year teaching in the schools under the tutelage of experienced teachers as their mentors. This context-specific preparation allows the residents to better understand the schools and districts in which they are to teach, the students they serve, and community cultures (Hammerness et al. 2016). Most of the earliest residency programs in the United States were developed in urban areas, such as Boston, Chicago, and New York City, with high percentages of students from culturally diverse backgrounds and students impacted by poverty. School districts in these cities typically experience challenges in hiring teachers and face higher teacher attrition rates. It has been posited that teacher residencies can help to recruit, prepare, and sustain a high-quality teacher workforce to meet the needs of urban schools (Berry et al. 2008). The Urban Teacher Residency United (UTRU) was a national network formed by some of the earliest residencies. UTRU was renamed as the National Center for Teacher Residencies (NCTR) in 2015, and it now includes nearly thirty residency programs in its network (NCTR, n.d.). Similar to some government-funded initiatives mentioned in the previous section, the residency model has received policy and funding support. The then US Senator Barack Obama co-sponsored the Teacher Residency Act and the Preparing Excellent Teachers Act that deemed the residency model the “next big thing” in teacher preparation (Gatti 2019). The Teacher Quality Partnership Grant Program through the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 has also provided multiple rounds of funds for universities to establish and expand teacher residency programs in collaboration with school districts and/or nonprofit organizations (Gatti 2019; Guha et al. 2016). Most recently, the Biden administration called for increased investment in teacher residency programs in the American Families Plan proposal, as a way to combat teacher shortage and improve the preparation of teachers of color. While teacher residencies vary in their partnership types and specific programmatic components, they share some common characteristics and core practices. In addition to the year-long apprenticeship alongside a mentor teacher and an integrated curriculum connecting university coursework and clinical experiences, residents go through a


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rigorous application process to meet specific district needs and are expected to take teaching positions in the partner districts for a minimum amount of time, usually three years, in exchange for a tuition waiver and living stipend (Guha et al. 2016). They also receive continuous induction and professional development support after they are hired as teachers of record (Berry et al. 2008). School and district partners participate in-depth in the resident selection and education process, including curriculum design, course instruction, and field supervision, and provide ongoing mentoring support to the residents throughout the program (Guha et al. 2016). As such, the residency model represents a “third space” partnership in teacher education (Beck 2020) because it transcends institutional boundaries and collectively leverages university coursework, practitioner knowledge, and community resources for resident learning. It also constitutes an in-between space for teacher educators across institutions to collaboratively participate in the professional preparation of teachers.

Teacher Residency: A Case Study In 2018, the US state of Louisiana initiated a policy reform requiring all teacher education programs in the state to include a year-long residency in place of traditional student teaching. This approach is unique because it is a state-wide policy mandate from the State Department of Education, as opposed to other residencies that are often the result of partnerships spontaneously developed between schools and university programs. The empirical data reported in this section are drawn from an ongoing, longitudinal examination of how this state policy mandate is understood and implemented among local teacher education stakeholders. Overall, this project aims to answer the question: how do university and district stakeholders interpret and implement a state-mandated teacher education reform? The sub-questions that are most relevant to this chapter are: how do teacher education stakeholders describe their experiences implementing the residency and what aspects of the residency do stakeholders find most influential on pre-service teacher learning?

Research Context This study took place at a public university in northeast Louisiana. The university partners with three school districts to send undergraduate teacher residents to complete the year-long residency requirements. Each resident is paired with an experienced classroom teacher in the school as their mentor. The mentors are recommended by the districts and receive mentor training from the state and the university. Residents begin the first semester by observing and assisting their mentor teachers, gradually taking additional instruction, assessment, and classroom management responsibilities as co-teachers. They start transitioning to leading and eventually solo teacher roles toward the end of the second semester. Residents have designated mentoring sessions with their mentors, where they co-plan for lessons and reflect on their teaching practices. In addition, the mentor teachers conduct informal and formal observations

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of the residents, the latter of which is done in collaboration with university faculty and supervisors. Residents spend three to four days at school each week while completing remaining courses at the university during the first semester and stay full time during the second semester.

Methods Qualitative data were collected via a variety of methods, including: classroom observations of resident co-teaching and co-planning with their mentors; semistructured individual interviews with residents, mentor teachers, and university faculty and supervisors; and analysis of documents and artifacts, such as the state residency policy, university curriculum, mentor training materials, and resident observation and evaluation notes. Data collected from multiple sources and various stakeholders were compared and triangulated to improve the credibility of the findings (Merriam and Tisdell 2016). Data were analyzed using MAXQDA, a qualitative data analysis software. A list of open codes and in vivo codes was developed during the initial coding and marked for possible categories. These preliminary codes were used to inform ongoing data collection and were iteratively revised and refined throughout the data collection and analysis process, following qualitative research conventions (Merriam and Tisdell 2016). Codes were compared across participants and across data sources to search for connections and emerging themes, adopting the constant comparative strategy (Corbin and Strauss 2015). These identified patterns and themes were similarly revised in an iterative process as new data were collected and coded. Observation notes, interview transcripts, and draft analysis were shared with participants for member checking and their feedback helped ensure accuracy of the data and interpretations (Merriam and Tisdell 2016). A panel of experts, including current and former school teachers, university professors, and doctoral students who were not directly involved in this project, was consulted as auditors (Miles et al. 2019). They critically reviewed the research design and data analysis procedures to help refine the claims and enhance the trustworthiness of the results (Merriam and Tisdell 2016).

Researcher Positionality At the time of this study, the author was employed at the university where the residency was housed, but was not directly involved in the residency program. While the author taught courses in the teacher education program, he did not teach residents who participated in this study or evaluate them in any capacity. Nor did he have any preexisting relationships with the partner districts prior to the research. The author maintained awareness of the possible impact his positionality and perceived roles in the university might have on the data collection and analysis (Corbin and Strauss 2015), and kept reflective notes in a journal throughout the research process in order to document his analytic decision-making process (Miles et al. 2019).


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Findings Teacher residents who participated in this study reported that the residency constituted an in-between “third space:” while they were still in the process of learning about teaching, they were simultaneously taking responsibilities as teachers in the school space, especially during the second semester when they assumed solo-teaching roles. In so doing, they had opportunities to interconnect knowledge learned from university coursework and from school practices and experiment with innovative ideas and strategies in collaboration with their mentors, reducing the theory–practice gap in teacher learning (Flores 2017; Zeichner 2010). The year-long classroom teaching also allowed them to experience what it meant to be a teacher in authentic school settings and to gain a sense of legitimacy and recognition as teachers and junior colleagues by their mentors and other members at school—including the students, parents, and school administrators (Chu 2021). The residency as a third space thus created a relatively safe environment for these novice teachers to explore their emerging professional identities as teachers and facilitated their transition from (teacher education) students to (student) teachers (Chu 2021). The residency as a hybrid “third space” similarly allowed mentor teachers to take additional roles as school-based teacher educators. Mentor teachers who participated in the study explicitly recognized the unique roles they played as mentors and senior colleagues in helping the residents learn about teaching in authentic classroom and school settings. Meanwhile, they still firmly identified as classroom teachers and mentors, and distinguished their roles from those of university faculty and supervisors. Like the residents, mentors also developed hybrid identities as both teachers and school-based teacher educators in the third space and came to new understandings of their expanded responsibilities in teacher education (Chu 2019). This emerging teacher educator identity also contributed to their strong willingness and in-depth collaboration with university partners in teacher learning. In particular, mentor teachers noted the important roles played by the residency coordinator, who served as a broker among university and district partners to facilitate cross-institutional collaboration for the benefit of resident learning in the third space residency (Maskit and Orland-Barak 2015; Jackson and Burch 2018). While the residency was conceptualized as a transformative, third space between school and university that allowed for new learning opportunities and practices, mentor teachers, university faculty, and supervisors all reported the need for more collaborative learning opportunities to negotiate the changed expectations and their expanded, hybrid roles in the residency (Chu 2022). Such joint inquiry is essential for residency stakeholders to look beyond their institutional settings and reexamine and unlearn the status quo in their respective practices, so that new structures and collective enterprises can be generated in the third space (Lillejord and Børte 2016; Daza et al. 2021). Another challenge of developing a transformative third space residency was that the teacher education program was bounded by a host of state teacher certification regulations, district policies, and accreditation requirements. Redesigning the teacher education curriculum and field experiences also faced logistical challenges in navigating institutional hierarchies related to credit hours, course scheduling, faculty workload,

Rethinking School–University–Community Partnerships


and assessment and graduation requirements. Expanding the participation of district and community stakeholders additionally introduced new challenges for program coherence and power negotiation within and across institutions (Klein et al. 2013; Beck 2020). The program reported here was still in its early stage of implementation and further examination would help illustrate how stakeholders collaboratively manage these challenges and sustain the residency partnership in ways that would maximize its advantages.

Implications for Comparative and International Education This chapter proposed to better understand school–university partnerships in teacher preparation around the world and explore “third space” as a theoretical framework to reconceptualize the roles and responsibilities of diverse stakeholders in teacher learning and development. As researchers across the world have examined the “third space” approach (Grudnoff et al. 2016; Beck 2020; Daza et al. 2021), this expanded way to reimagine partnerships in teacher education offers opportunities for future comparative examinations of teacher education partnerships across national contexts (Afdal 2019). A review of school–university partnerships in teacher education around the world shows a shared interest among governments and an international policy convergence (Jakobi and Teltemann 2011) in strengthening the collaboration between schools and universities, and integration between theory and practice in teacher learning (Flores 2017). The similarities in the adopted approaches, many of which are supported by federal and local policies, also underline the common beliefs among policy makers about what constitutes good teaching and adequate preparation of teachers. Tatto (2006) maintains that teacher education—and education in general—has implications for what knowledge and skills are essential for nation-states and for their success in the international competition. This observed global policy interest in teacher quality and teacher education thus reflects the increasingly stricter scrutiny teachers and teacher education programs worldwide receive in the accountability era (Cochran-Smith 2021; Salajan, jules and Wolhuter 2023). The multitude of programs and initiatives that have been developed offers a solid foundation for comparative analysis and international, collaborative inquiry into the ways in which teacher education partnerships are conceptualized and implemented across national contexts. In particular, most of the partnership initiatives reported in the literature are still in their infancy and the questions to what extent these initiatives will fulfill their goals of strengthening school–university partnerships in teacher learning and how such partnerships will be sustainable after initial governmental policy and funding support remain unclear. Perhaps of more interest to the CIE community are the questions of what elements and characteristics of these partnerships are most effective for improving novice teacher learning and the learning of their students, and what potentially transnational knowledge and tools can be extracted and policy implications proposed from these efforts (Tatto 2015). Definite answers to these questions will not be easy to determine but are worth continuous investigation in order


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

to make CIE research more relevant to teacher education policy making during a time of global knowledge transfer and policy exchange (Tatto 2011). Another area that deserves more attention from the CIE community is how teacher education partnerships contribute to educational equity by improving the learning of students from minoritized and marginalized backgrounds. Many of the residency programs in the United States have an explicit focus on preparing culturally diverse teachers for students of color and students living in poverty (Guha et al. 2016; Hammerness et al. 2016). This emphasis, however, seems to be absent from programs in other national contexts as reported in the literature. The third space framework can be a powerful tool for teacher education programs to strengthen their partnerships with school educators and community advocates to promote diversity, equity, and social justice. For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic starting in late 2019 has forced (teacher) educators across the world to foreground anti-Asian racism and discrimination in their curriculum and instruction and work more closely with schools and community organizations serving Asian students and their families. The Black Lives Matter protests in the United States and around the world also offer rich opportunities for teacher educators to challenge the pervasive Whiteness in teacher education and anti-Black racism in schools and societies. At a time when the global pandemics of racism, xenophobia, and misogyny continue to impact students from marginalized communities in many countries around the world (Elias et al. 2021), it is imperative for the CIE research community to respond to this urgent need by contributing better understandings of what teacher education partnerships informed by the third space framework might offer to the fight against institutionalized oppression on the basis of race, class, national origin, gender, and sexual orientation, among others. A third space approach to teacher education not only requires a more democratic and equitable partnership among teacher educators across organizational contexts (Zeichner et al. 2015), but also invites educators and researchers to cross national boundaries to reimagine partnerships in teacher education at the local, national, and global levels. The ongoing global pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022 further challenge educators and policy makers worldwide to rethink such concepts as global economy, global citizenship, and globalization. In an era increasingly characterized by uncertainties and conflicts, the fields of comparative and international education and teacher education must work together toward a more comparative research agenda and innovative policy strategies to support the kind of transformative teacher learning needed for a critically conscious and globally competent citizenry.

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Fancourt, N., A. Edwards and I. Menter (2015). “Reimagining a School–University Partnership: The Development of the Oxford Education Deanery Narrative.” Education Inquiry, 6 (3): 27724. https://doi.org/10.3402/edui.v6.27724. Flores, M.A. (2017). “Practice, Theory and Research in Initial Teacher Education: International Perspectives.” European Journal of Teacher Education, 40 (3): 287–90. https://doi.org/10.1080/02619768.2017.1331518. Fraser, J. (2007). Preparing America’s Teachers: A History. New York, NY: Teachers College Press. Furlong, J., J. Griffiths, C. Hannigan-Davies, A. Harris and M. Jones (2021). “The Reform of Initial Teacher Education in Wales: From Vision to Reality.” Oxford Review of Education, 47 (1): 61–78. https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2020.1842180. Gardiner, W. and D. Salmon (2014). “Bridging the Theory-Practice Gap in an Urban Teacher Residency: Two Interventions and a Cautionary Note.” Journal of Urban Learning, Teaching, and Research, 10: 87–100. Gardiner, W. and J. Lorch (2015). “From “Outsider” to “Bridge”: The Changing Role of University Supervision in an Urban Teacher Residency Program.” Action in Teacher Education, 37 (2): 172–89. https://doi.org/10.1080/01626620.2015.1004601. Gatti, L. (2019). Learning to Teach in an Urban Teacher Residency.” Urban Education, 54 (9): 1233–61. https://doi.org/10.1177/0042085916641171. Grudnoff, L., M. Haigh and V. Mackisack (2016). “Re-envisaging and Reinvigorating School–University Practicum Partnerships.” Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 45 (2): 180–93. https://doi.org/10.1080/1359866x.2016.1201043. Guha, R., M.E. Hyler and L. Darling-Hammond (2016). The Teacher Residency: An Innovative Model for Preparing Teachers. https://learningpolicyinstitute.org/product/ teacher-residency. Hammerness, K., P. Williamson and C. Kosnick (2016). “Introduction to the Special Issue on Urban Teacher Residencies: The Trouble with “Generic” Teacher Education.” Urban Education, 51 (10): 1155–69. https://doi.org/10.1177/0042085915618723. Harlow, A. and D.J. Cobb (2014). “Planting the Seed of Teacher Identity: Nurturing Early Growth through a Collaborative Learning Community.” Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 39 (7): 70–88. Hess, F.M. (2009). “Revitalizing Teacher Education by Revisiting Our Assumptions about Teaching.” Journal of Teacher Education, 60 (5): 450–7. https://doi. org/10.1177/0022487109348595. The Holmes Group. (1986). Tomorrow’s Teachers: A Report of The Holmes Group. Jackson, A. and J. Burch (2018). “New Directions for Teacher Education: Investigating School– University Partnership in an Increasingly School-Based Context.” Professional Development in Education, 45 (1): 138–50. https://doi.org/10.1080/19415257.2018.1449002. Jakobi, A.P. and J. Teltemann (2011). “Convergence in Education Policy? A Quantitative Analysis of Policy Change and Stability in OECD Countries.” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 41 (5): 579–95. https://doi.org/10.1080/0305 7925.2011.566442. Jones, M., L. Hobbs, J. Kenny, C. Campbell, G. Chittleborough, A. Gilbert, S. Herbert and C. Redman (2016). “Successful University-School Partnerships: An Interpretive Framework to Inform Partnership Practice.” Teaching and Teacher Education, 60: 108–20. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tate.2016.08.006. Kenny, J.D., L. Hobbs, S. Herbert, M. Jones, G. Chittleborough, C. Campbell, A. Gilbert and C. Redman (2014). “Science Teacher Education Partnerships with Schools (Steps): Partnerships in Science Teacher Education.” Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 39 (12): 43–65.

Rethinking School–University–Community Partnerships


Klein, E.J., M. Taylor, C. Onore, K. Strom and L. Abrams (2013). “Finding a Third Space in Teacher Education: Creating an Urban Teacher Residency.” Teaching Education, 24 (1): 27–57. https://doi.org/10.1080/10476210.2012.711305. Klein, E.J., M. Taylor, K. Monteiro, W. Romney, M. Scipio, A. Diaz, B. Dunn and S. Poole (2015). “Making the Leap to Teacher: Pre-Service Residents, Faculty, and School Mentors Taking on Action Research Together in an Urban Teacher Residency Program.” Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research, 17 (1): 547–7. https://doi. org/10.4148/2470-6353.1034. Klein, E.J., M. Taylor, C. Onore, K. Strom and L. Abrams (2016). “Exploring Inquiry in the Third Space: Case Studies of a Year in an Urban Teacher-Residency Program.” The New Educator, 12 (3): 243–68. https://doi.org/10.1080/1547688x.2016.1187980. Korthagen, F., J. Loughran and T. Russell (2006). “Developing Fundamental Principles for Teacher Education Programs and Practices.” Teaching and Teacher Education, 22 (8): 1020–41. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tate.2006.04.022. Lillejord, S. and K. Børte (2016). “Partnership in Teacher Education—A Research Mapping.” European Journal of Teacher Education, 39 (5): 550–63. https://doi.org/10.10 80/02619768.2016.1252911. Maskit, D. and L. Orland-Barak (2015). “University–School Partnerships: Student Teachers’ Evaluations across Nine Partnerships in Israel.” Journal of Education for Teaching, 41 (3): 285–306. https://doi.org/10.1080/02607476.2015.1046265. McIntyre, D. and H. Hagger (1992). “Professional Development through the Oxford Internship Model.” British Journal of Educational Studies, 40 (3): 264–83. https://doi.or g/10.1080/00071005.1992.9973930. Merriam, S.B. and E.J. Tisdell (2016). Qualitative Research: A Guide to Design and Implementation. Fourth Edition. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Miles, M.B., A.M. Huberman and J. Saldaña (2019). Qualitative Data Analysis: A Methods Sourcebook. Fourth Edition. Sage. Morrison, C.M. (2016). “Purpose, Practice and Theory: Teacher Educators’ Beliefs about Professional Experience.” Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 41 (3): 105–25. https://doi.org/http://dx.doi.org/10.14221/ajte.2016v41n3.7. National Center for Teacher Residencies (n.d.). Our Partners. http://nctresidencies.org/ join-our-teacher-residency-network/our-partners/. OECD. (2019). TALIS 2018 Results. OECD Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1787/1d0bc92aen. Passy, R., J. Georgeson and B. Gompertz (2018). “Building Learning Partnerships between Schools and Universities: An Example from South-West England.” Journal of Education for Teaching, 44 (5): 539–55. https://doi.org/10.1080/02607476.2018.1516346. Salajan, F.D., t.d. jules and C. Wolhuter (2023). “Teacher Education in an Evolving and Shifting Balance with Comparative and International Education.” In F.D. Salajan, t.d. jules and C. Wolhuter (Eds.), Teacher Education Shaped by and Shaping New Conceptualizations of Comparative and International Education in An Uncertain Era, 3–17. London: Bloomsbury. Soja, E. (1996). Thirdspace: Journeys to Los Angeles and Other Real-and-Imagined Places. Blackwell. Tatto, M.T. (2006). “Education Reform and the Global Regulation of Teachers’ Education, Development and Work: A Cross-Cultural Analysis.” International Journal of Educational Research, 45 (4–5): 231–41. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijer.2007.02.003. Tatto, M.T. (2011). “Reimagining the Education of Teachers: The Role of Comparative and International Research.” Comparative Education Review, 55 (4): 495–516. https://doi. org/10.1086/661769.


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Tatto, M.T. (2015). “The Role of Research in the Policy and Practice of Quality Teacher Education: An International Review.” Oxford Review of Education, 41 (2): 171–201. https://doi.org/10.1080/03054985.2015.1017405. Tatto, M.T. and J. Furlong (2015). “Research and Teacher Education: Papers from the Bera-Rsa Inquiry.” Oxford Review of Education, 41 (2): 145–53. https://doi.org/10.1080/ 03054985.2015.1017404. Trent, J. and J. Lim (2010). “Teacher Identity Construction in School–University Partnerships: Discourse and Practice.” Teaching and Teacher Education, 26 (8): 1609–18. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tate.2010.06.012. White, E., C. Dickerson and K. Weston (2015). “Developing an Appreciation of What It Means to Be a School-Based Teacher Educator.” European Journal of Teacher Education, 38 (4): 445–59. https://doi.org/10.1080/02619768.2015.1077514. Williams, J. (2013). “Boundary Crossing and Working in the Third Space: Implications for a Teacher Educator’s Identity and Practice.” Studying Teacher Education, 9 (2): 118–29. https://doi.org/10.1080/17425964.2013.808046. Williams, J. (2014). “Teacher Educator Professional Learning in the Third Space.” Journal of Teacher Education, 65 (4): 315–26. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487114533128. Zeichner, K.M. (2010). “Rethinking the Connections between Campus Courses and Field Experiences in College- and University-Based Teacher Education.” Journal of Teacher Education, 61 (1–2): 89–99. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487109347671. Zeichner, K.M. (2021). “Critical Unresolved and Understudied Issues in Clinical Teacher Education.” Peabody Journal of Education, 96 (1): 1–7. https://doi.org/10.1080/016195 6x.2020.1864241. Zeichner, K.M. and M.L. Bier (2015). “Opportunities and Pitfalls in the Turn Toward Clinical Experience in U.S. Teacher Education.” In E.R. Hollins (Ed.), Rethinking Field Experiences in Preservice Teacher Preparation: Meeting New Challenges for Accountability, 20–46. New York, NY: Routledge. Zeichner, K.M., K.A. Payne and K. Brayko (2015). “Democratizing Teacher Education.” Journal of Teacher Education, 66 (2): 122–35. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487114560908.


Comparative Tensions and Possibilities in the European Teacher Education Assemblage(s) Florin D. Salajan

Comparative Teacher Education Re-Envisioned Conventional wisdom, common assumptions, and general expectations circumscribe teacher education systems (known by alternative terms such as teacher preparation or teacher training, whether pre- or in-service, depending on the site of investigation) to the finite and distinct realm of the nation-state (Wiksten 2019). A vast segment of comparative research in teacher education uses national teacher education as the fundamental and intrinsically valid “unit of analysis” to examine convergences and divergences, similarities and differences, homogeneities and heterogeneities, congruencies and incongruencies, compatibilities and incompatibilities, and other contrasting binaries presumably detectable in the confined, bordered, and bounded container of the nation-state. Certainly, the use of the nation-state, as the ubiquitous site of investigation for teacher education research, policy, and practice has been attractive due to the role teacher education has traditionally served in the preparation of primary and secondary education practitioners throughout most of contemporary history all the way to current times. As devices and vehicles for the enculturation of the youngest members of society in national values, traditions, languages, customs, and social norms, national educational systems serve an essential role in creating the sociocultural imaginary of a national conscience and identity, instilled from an early age in members of their societies. Teacher education contributes to this perpetuation of a national ethos by preparing cadres of competent educators who, beyond being equipped with pedagogical content knowledge and specialized content knowledge, represent the avant-garde agents in the transmission and reinforcement of the cultural and social attributes expected of the students they educate, so the latter may become loyal citizens of the nation-state that has nurtured them. The predominance of research approaches emphasizing national teacher education settings or (eco)systems tends to gloss over the fact that teacher education systems in various locations, particularly in federal or quasi-federal polities, are comprised of a mosaic of locally and regionally contextualized and defined arrangements, sometimes more closely, other times more loosely controlled at the nation-state level. The


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limitations of a narrow focus on comparing teacher education systems or frameworks have been widely examined and problematized in the extant literature, particularly as a substantial part of comparative scholarship in teacher education relies on positivist paradigms that seek to uncover or discover attributes of teacher education in various locales via quantitative, statistical models, or methods (Adamson 2012; Blömeke, Suhl, Kaiser and Döhrmann 2012). Although contextual, interpretive, or relativist methods have been employed in comparative teacher education research, these generally constitute a more limited proportion of the corpus of research literature in this domain (Tatto and Menter 2019). This state of affairs should not be surprising, as comparative and international education (CIE) research has long been enthralled by the allure of the nation-state as a convenient, and the assumed, unit of analysis in most comparative research (Bray, Adamson and Mason 2014). Acting in intersected fields and, to a certain extent, peer fields of educational research, teacher education scholars driven by a genuine interest in comparing teaching and teacher education across national borders, have largely emulated, perhaps not always deliberately, their CIE peers in the act of comparison with the nation-state as the most natural or relevant site of investigation. With the advent of globalizing forces and currents in education brought about by the broader cultural, political, or economic globalization phenomena of the post-Cold War era, interest in teacher education research recognizing the imperatives of globalization in its various guises has witnessed an ascendant trend over the past two-three decades (see Clandinin and Husu 2017; Pushpanadham 2020). Global competences, global citizenship, curriculum internationalization, international exchanges of practice or the development of policy and practice networks in teaching and teacher education (see Quezada 2010; Dolan 2012; Aydarova and Marquardt 2016; Parmigiani, Jones, Kunnari and Nicchia 2022) have opened new spaces for conceptualizing teacher education as less constrained to the confines of the nation-state and have led to more nuanced or universal understandings of teaching and teacher education, particularly in emerging regions of the world seeking closer integration among nations, such as the European Union (EU) or the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), for instance. While these emergent and complex political arrangements continue to morph, shift, and mutate, they allow not only for direct comparisons of national teacher education systems within and across their realms (depending on the level at which the unit of comparison is set), but also for a comparison of the mutual relationships, extensions, or co-dependencies formed in the myriad deliberate or contingent interactions between the teacher education settings they encapsulate. In this conceptual chapter, I adopt an assemblage thinking or assemblage theory lens to examine these internal and external dynamics in teacher education arrangements with the intent to provide new comparative analytical perspectives premised on principles of assemblage. In this regard, I employ the term complex educational assemblage Salajan and jules (2021, 2022) defined in their previous work to reconsider CIE as a scholarly field and to conceive of the contingent nature of educational arrangements (i.e., systems, networks, architectures, structures, schemas, constructions, etc.) in comparative perspective. Similarly, and immediately relevant in this discussion, I previously used this term as an explanatory device for European

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


educational assemblages (Salajan 2022). With this in mind, this chapter is structured as follows: the next section offers a succinct overview of the recent crystallization of an immanent space for European teacher education; the subsequent section revisits assemblage theory and reviews some of the emerging research literature in teacher education applying it; the following section recasts European teacher education as a complex educational assemblage; the penultimate section provides an illustration of the intricate relationships in the European teacher education assemblage that transcend nation-state borders and paves the way for comparative approaches unrestrained from the confines of national structures; and in the final section I offer some reflections and conclusions on the avenues this application of assemblage thinking opens for rethinking CIE approaches in teacher education.

European Teacher Education: An Emerging Terrain More than two decades have elapsed since the momentous occasion that established the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) as an ambitious target for the convergence of the continent’s disparate and diverse higher education systems, a process that would be replicated to various degrees, transversally and horizontally, in other areas of education. Ever since ministers of education from 29 European countries put their signatures on what came to be known as the Bologna Declaration in 1999, that put into motion the eponymously termed Bologna Process, research literature analyzing the emergence, then expansion of a European education space from a wide range of perspectives has witnessed spectacular growth (Curaj, Deca and Pricopie 2018; Klemenčič 2019). This has been especially the case as the process came to be aligned with the EU’s priorities in education and, therefore, coordinated progressively through the European Commission’s increasingly influential and well-resourced steering competences in this domain still largely under the purview of the EU member states. This gradual process of convergence, alignment, or compatibilization in European education has led to the ideation of other sectoral spaces in education, such as the European Digital Education Area (EDEA) conceived around the purposeful, pervasive, and consistent integration of information and communication technologies (ICT) in European education (Salajan 2019) or the European Education Area (EEA) presumably arising as the next stage in the evolution of the EHEA, but on a larger scale (Kushnir 2021). Over the past decade, a similar concept was coined in examining broader European and EU efforts in defining and carving, via policy development and practice, an integrative space for teacher education with a European dimension. As such, policy debates and discussions on the definition of the “European teacher” (Schratz 2014) by exploring common notions of teacher/teaching quality, competences, qualifications, professionalism, and even accountability in European teacher education have led to the emergence of a conceptual framework referred to as the European Teacher Education Area (ETEA), given the attention teachers, teaching, and teacher education have garnered at EU/European policymaking level (Iucu 2010). As an outgrowth of the EHEA and regarded as operating within its realm, the ETEA represents a “new governance space for teacher education in Europe” (Symeonidis 2018: 28), that


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is, a policy space premised on mechanisms and instruments aimed at engendering Europeanization or European integration processes in teacher education (Symeonidis 2018, 2021). The empirical impetus for the conceptualization of the ETEA is rooted in EU’s agency which, through its executive arm, the European Commission, has outlined and spearheaded initiatives to address common issues in European teacher education. As Iucu (2010) noted, “European documents have started to explicitly highlight the importance of the role played by the systems of teacher education within educational reforms.” In this sense, in one of its Communications, cited by the Council of the European Union and the representatives of the governments of the Member States, the Commission “identifies the quality of teaching and teacher education as key factors in raising educational attainment levels and achieving the Lisbon goals, and accordingly sets out proposals aimed at maintaining and improving these” (European Union 2007:  7). Consequently, although recognizing the member states’ exclusive prerogative for organizing their national educational systems, rights upheld through the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality enshrined in the EU treaties, the Council nonetheless further stated that “European cooperation has a useful role to play in helping the Member States to meet common challenges, particularly by means of the open method of coordination, which involves the development of common principles and goals, as well as joint initiatives such as peer learning activities, the exchange of experience and good practice and mutual monitoring” (European Union 2007: 7). Subsequently, the Council consistently reinforced these desiderata by focusing on the “promotion of a European dimension of teaching” through, among others, “the participation of pupils and teachers in the e-Twinning network, in cross-border mobility, and transnational projects, especially for schools” (European Union 2018: 4).

Assemblage Thinking in Teacher Education In order to better underpin an examination of European teacher education through an assemblage thinking prism, it is necessary to briefly return to Deleuze and Guattari’s (1987) seminal work on assemblage. This is all the more important as the expansion of assemblage thinking in social science and educational research has produced a vibrant scholarship terrain with a multitude of approaches and applications of the term. Notwithstanding this effervescent interest in parsing educational phenomena and processes through assemblage thinking, the overreliance on secondary literature in this area has led to deviations from the initial meaning, scope, and purpose of assemblage thinking (Buchanan 2015, 2021). Hence, an overview of Deleuze and Guattari’s (1987) articulation of their principles undergirding the rhizomatic nature of assemblages is essential in understanding how these inform the foundation and substance of European teacher education as a representation of an assemblage, not only as a “mere apparatus” (Buchanan 2021: 7), but also as a manifestation of its “potentializaing directionality” (Manning 2016: 123). In their epistemological tinkering and reflection on assemblage, Deleuze and Guattari (1987) offered several core principles on the rhizomatic nature and properties

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of assemblages. Connectivity and heterogeneity are part of the first principle, through which assemblages exhibit the capacity to form countless connections among assorted elements gravitating toward one another by virtue of their compatibilities, affinities, and reciprocally nurturing features. Second, standing in contrast to singularity, multiplicity confers the assemblage its countless dimensions that provide the auspicious conditions for such connections to materialize. Third, asignifying rupture is a critical principle in envisaging the rhizome, as this distinguishes between the lines of flight and the lines of segmentarity along which the forces of (re)territorialization and deterritorialization, through coding and stratification, (re)configure the assemblage. Finally, cartography represents a culminating principle lending the assemblage the ability to expand its configuration on polymorphic coterminous planes of representation. In Deleuze and Guattari’s own characterization: On a first, horizontal, axis, an assemblage comprises two segments, one of content, the other of expression. On the one hand it is a machinic assemblage of bodies, of actions and passions, an intermingling of bodies reacting to one another; on the other hand it is a collective assemblage of enunciation, of acts and statements, of incorporeal transformations attributed to bodies. Then on a vertical axis, the assemblage has both territorial sides, or reterritorialized sides, which stabilize it, and cutting edges of deterritorialization, which carry it away. (1987: 88)

If in this conceptualization, the assemblage seems to exhibit agency, this is hardly a coincidental attribute. In selecting the term assemblage to translate the French noun agencement in Deleuze and Guattari’s work, Brian Massumi altered the original meaning of the term as expressed in English. That is, to a certain extent, an element of agency is inherent to what has become to be understood as assemblage (Buchanan 2021) or, as Frohmann (2012) suggests, “design, but no designer, because design is immanent or emergent” (181). At its core, Deleuzoguattarian thinking attributes the flux, flows, and movements intra- and inter-assemblages in the emergence of assemblages to a pure state of desire that “is the source of all creativity and at the same time it threatens all forms with dissolution” (Buchanan 2021: 14). A variety of interpretations of assemblage thinking, surrounding its principles, and ontological assumptions have elicited an intense interest in assemblage, whether as a conceptual framework, analytical instrument, or explanatory device in educational research (Savage 2019). While this overall attention assemblage has received in educational research is salutary in expanding the scholarship repertoire in education by pushing its boundaries and opening its horizons with new epistemological approaches, this trend has yet to gather more momentum in teacher education research. Although currently rather limited, the research literature applying assemblage thinking to examine various aspects of and re-envision teaching or teacher education in all their complexity, though modestly, has been on the rise in recent years. An early, prime example of the inroads assemblage has been making into teacher education is that offered by Beighton (2013), who uses an assemblage paradigm to interrogate what he considers as the interaction among dispersive, collaborative, and performative


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convergence in teacher education. In this regard, he questions the coherence and utility of an expectation that developing teachers inducted into the profession via formal teacher preparation programs are expected to conform to an idealized version of what a teaching practitioner should be, rather than nurturing the heterogeneity inherent in individuals engaged in this preparative process, therefore arguing for a dispersive convergence of practice. In this assemblage, the teacher candidates develop reinforcing connections with one another and with their practice through their study meetings as they prepare in a type of collaborative convergence that relies on their potential to apply their knowledge for collective results that may translate into individual successes as well. As Beighton (2013) indicates, “the meeting itself is therefore not a sign of convergence but of an expression of the existing links which made the assemblage recognisable as such” (1300). Finally, through the assemblage metaphor, Beighton (2013) questions the ingrained practice of learning assessment in the context of teacher preparation, given the contingent nature of assignments as both forms of expression and forms of content, which contradicts the performative aspect typically embedded in learning outcomes. He, thus, concludes that “what the learner does is not a representation of something but a material feature of the assemblage immanent to the learning programme in question” (Beighton 2013: 1301). Another instance of an application of assemblage thinking is Strom’s (2015) use of a Deleuzoguattarian rhizomatic approach to understand the connections between heterogeneous human and nonhuman elements that enter the teaching environment, a concept she refers to as a teaching-assemblage. In this sense, Strom (2015) considers the connections among the teacher, student and contextual factors as an intricate assemblage that brings together elements related to teaching, classroom environment, and school context. Furthermore, the teaching competences the teacher deploys in this contingent and continuously shifting arrangement illuminate the nature of the teacher preparation one undergoes. That is, the constellation of factors entering into the teaching environment assembled through these elements compels the teacher to constantly reassess what knowledge and/or skills gained through formal teacher preparation are relevant in the fluid environment of the classroom characterized by myriad fleeting interconnections. As such, Strom (2015) argues that an assemblage approach to scrutinizing teaching can “highlight the multiple, collectively produced nature of teaching” and that “ideas such as this can assist the research community to push beyond linear, simplistic ways of studying teaching practice, and instead advocate for a shift toward conceptualizing teacher learning and the enactment of instruction in more complex ways” (331). Lanas and Huuki (2017) employed an affect lens inherent in assemblage thinking to examine the complicated emotional reactions elicited by discussions or conversations around sensitive topics in teacher education. In their posthuman analysis of violence and power relations in peer cultures as part of a didactics course in teacher education, they identified three modalities that blend together to trigger discomfort and pain, namely content, discourse, and objects. Through reflection on an empirical situation around such sensitive issues, Lanas and Huuki (2017) conceive of teacher education as an assemblage formed of discursive context (e.g., professionalism, knowledge,

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


competences) and material surroundings (e.g., lecture room setting, class member seating) that induce emotional responses contingent on the relationships and connections arising from discussions on sensitive topics. In their own words, they state that “as teacher education is an affective context, all emotions are an essential part of it” (Lanas and Huuki 2017: 444). Exploring yet another facet of assemblage, Adams (2021) focused on the notion of becoming, as the state of flux and continuous change that assemblages exhibit. An assemblage never finds itself in a final stage, as it constantly evolves, whether it territorializes or deterritorializes, and thus it is in a perennial stage of becoming. In this vein, teachers, Adams (2021) argues, are always in a state of becomingteachers, regardless of the temporal stages they traverse during their development as practitioners, be it as teacher candidates, student teachers or in-/pre-service teachers. This fluidity and plasticity of teaching identity allows for “interesting and potentially freeing subjectivities to emerge that innovate rather than replicate the practice of teaching and teacher education” and “provides a way to speak about teaching that embraces the non-arrival as a space of opportunity” (Adams 2021: 403). For these reasons, teaching or teacher education is never a finite process, as unanticipated and unknown consequences are inherent in the constellation of factors that create the conditions for a teacher to become a teacher. Finally, Sundström Sjödin and Wahlström (2022) offered a creative and innovative conceptualization of didactics embedded in assemblage thinking, delivering a compelling illustration of the contingency and fluidity of teaching and learning across encapsulated relational spaces in which these processes occur. They eloquently problematized, then challenged assumptions inherent in the didactic triangle consisting of the teacher, the student, and the content, unpacking them iteratively into evolving and shifting didactic assemblages. They convincingly argued that these assemblages, once established, do not conform to conventional or axiomatic thinking about didactics, as the actors entering the assemblage, whether human or nonhuman are endowed with agency that shape the relationships within the assemblage in unpredictable ways. More precisely, they argue that didactic assemblages show “we can never know beforehand what actors will become important to constitute the critical in teaching and learning moments” (Sundström Sjödin and Wahlström 2022: 195). This brief survey of current thinking on and application of assemblage illustrates the still nascent trend to push the boundaries of theorization in teacher education in creative and innovative ways, to move beyond linear, static, deterministic, or sequential thinking in teacher education research. While the work summarized here may, prima facie, seem disconnected from the CIE literature, it nonetheless serves as an entry point for assemblage thinking as an analytical framework for comparative research in teacher education. In this respect, assemblage may bridge teacher education and CIE in myriad ways, only limited by the imagination of those who embark on novel explorations of what becoming(s) and relationship(s) assemblage may foster between the two fields. A conceptualization of that provocative idea is the subject of the next section examining European teacher education as a complex assemblage.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

The European Teacher Education Complex Assemblage The vast academic literature on the crystallization of a European educational space has been examined through various epistemological and theoretical lenses, including, among others, policy or political agency, institutionalism, constructivism, European integration, Europeanization, regionalism or regionalization, globalization, and other paradigms (i.e., see Amaral et al. 2009; Dale and Robertson 2009; Gornitzka and Metz 2013; Lawn and Grek 2012; Lawn and Normand 2015). More recently, European teacher education, expressed in the form of the ETEA alluded to above, has entered the nomenclature of European educational spaces as the location for the consolidation of policy, practice, and institutional architectures across the European teacher education landscape. This concept has been contextualized in the Europeanization of education literature, and articulated from the perspective of policy enactment, as a process premised on negotiation and contestation among different policy actors who interact both with one another and with material policy artifacts in arriving to consensus on policy actions. In this sense, Symeonidis (2021) argues that “both the policy actors and the materials existing within the ecosystem of teacher education are operating in networks which brought together and linked through different processes of translation are performing a particular enactment” (24). While this perspective expands on conventional thinking of European teacher education by recognizing the intricate and interrelated nature of this landscape, at its core it remains reliant on comparisons of teacher education at the level of the national systems in which the policy formulation and implementation unfold. Such examinations remain essential and instrumental in understanding policy enactment in teacher education at national levels in the context of wider European movements to shape common approaches to teacher education, whether for policy formulation, exchange of practices or compatibilization of teacher competences across the European continent. However, in contrast, European teacher education cast in an assemblage light need not be constrained by the focus on the identities of the patchwork of self-contained units that form the foundation of current thinking on “European” or “Europeanized” teacher education, such as distinct national systems. In an assemblage view of European teacher education, the power of the relationships developed through affinities among the elements entering a multitude of arrangements transcend the unidimensional, myopic, and finite space of the national system of teacher education. Although in an assemblage paradigm it is still conceivable to construct an understanding of European teacher education taking into account national systems, the forces of attraction, the contingent arrangements they create for mutually rewarding purposes, the desire to forge closer alignments and coalitions to territorialize the European teacher education space supersede considerations of mere policy initiation. Nonetheless, even policy initiation, enactment, and implementation can be parsed through an assemblage lens as these result from and create new alliances among actors in the European assemblage, without a predetermined outcome, hence continuing to morph as the mutually reinforcing interests among its actors shift.

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


Before envisioning any comparative enterprise involving European teacher education or ETEA, the immediate and principal scope here is to embed and explain it through an assemblage paradigm. Hence, I revisit, repurpose, and expand upon an approach proposed by Salajan and jules (2021) in this regard that elucidated broader educational conglomerate structures, intersecting along policy, systemic, and institutional lines to form self-reinforcing networks of normative and behavioral patterns of action. More specifically, Salajan and jules (2021) “define such constructions as complex educational assemblages, that is, polymorphic and multiscalar arrangements of educational polities, systems, and mechanisms, bound together by symbiotic and synergistic relationships, driven by shared purposes, mutual interests, and common responsibilities” (150). As Deleuze and Guattari allow for the concurrent existence of multiple interconnected assemblages, and “themselves treat the assemblage as a provisional concept for which ‘much working out remained to be done’” (Buchanan 2021: 6), complex educational assemblages are envisioned here as comprising emerging assemblages and elements or units that gravitate toward one another based on their affinities and motivations to engage in joint functional endeavors, relationships, and alliances for their mutual benefit in steering collective educational processes. Used in this particular constructionist-educational mode, this is a related variant of the notion of an “assemblage of assemblages” derived from Deleuzoguattarian logic employed, for example, in studies of political assemblages or places (Kortelainen and Koeppen 2018), urban or human geography (Kanai and Kutz 2013), or international relations (Acuto and Curtis 2014). Following Deleuze’s pondering that “theory is exactly like a box of tools … It must be useful. It must function” (Deleuze and Guattari 1987, as cited in Buchanan 2021: 7) and that “it should be used to see something outside and beyond its point of origin in a specific work” (Buchanan 2021: 7), it is fitting to place European teacher education or the ETEA directly at the center of this ideational representation of complex educational assemblages, given its multilayered, heterogeneous, rhizomatic appearance sustained by intricate co-dependent and co-functional relationships. In this sense, the characteristics of assemblage scrutinized by Salajan and jules (2021; 2022) uphold and apply to the ETEA, particularly as nonhuman actors—in the form of mutually agreed-to conventions, policies, mechanisms, and instruments of convergence in higher education—and human actors—the individuals both steering the process and those enjoying the results of educational mobility in this space—in this sprawling assemblage create and consolidate new informal and formal pathways of bureaucratic and sociohuman interconnectivity among the intermeshed higher education apparatuses. This aligns with, expands on and gives explicit manifestation to the notion that “assemblages are not defined by their components; they are defined, rather, by what they produce, and what they produce, ultimately, are the complex forms and objects that populate contemporary society” (Buchanan 2021: 47). It does so, particularly as the ETEA, as a compound structure of disparate educational actors, represents an ideation and embodiment of a long-standing aspiration, at least in the mind of its initiators, that is weightier and more expansive than the mere sum of its parts.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Illustrations of European Teacher Education Assemblages Given the interrelated nature of teacher education arrangements across the continent within the broader ETEA, an incursion into the interrelational aspects emerging from their interaction requires an interrogation not only of the systemic interactions per se, but of what happens at this architecture’s interstices, boundaries, and lines of flight or segmentarity among the myriad elements coalescing within the assemblage. Here, I will present an instantiation of assemblage via two scenarios that reveal the micro-connections, primarily among the human actors in the European teacher education assemblage driven by the affect inherent in the assemblage, that sustain this arrangement both in the plane of immanence and in the plane of consistency, that is, in its abstract and actual manifestations.

The Comenius Collaborative Assemblage A cornerstone of European teacher education and training, emerging as a result of concerted efforts at European level to foster closer human connections between teachers and teacher educators, is the EU’s Comenius project, as the EU, through its European Commission, began taking bolder initiatives to promote and support a European dimension in education writ large. This is a European sectoral action line launched in 1995 and aimed at school education, initially as part of the larger Community-integrated educational program Socrates. In its first iteration, the project was comprised of three actions reflecting the desire of the European Community to encourage partnerships between schools, ensure the education of socially marginalized and vulnerable student populations, emphasize intercultural education, and support professional development opportunities for teaching staff in the program’s participating countries. To accomplish these desiderata, the program’s framers underscored the importance of “Community cooperation in education, including pilot projects undertaken in the areas of primary and secondary education  … and the exchange of teachers” (European Communities 1995: 18) and provided budgetary allocations to member states by virtue of the total number of students, teachers, and schools. In addition, to emphasize the collective nature of this endeavor, the framers insisted that “The Commission, in cooperation with Member States, will take any measures necessary to encourage balanced participation by schools at Community, national and regional level” (European Communities 1995: 19). Subsequently, the Comenius action line was embedded in the EU’s most recent integrated educational program, Erasmus+, retaining, but also expanding on the initial goals from nearly two decades prior. As such, the desire expressed in the Erasmus+ program drew on the necessity “to strengthen the intensity and extent of European cooperation between schools, and of the mobility of school staff and learners … to improve the quality of school education in the Union … as well as to reinforce and provide support for the teaching profession and school leadership” (European Union 2013: 52). In this regard, the framers expressed the need to formulate “targets reinforcing the professional competences of school teachers and school leaders” (European Union 2013: 52). It is important to note here that the Comenius action line followed the

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


approach customary to European programs involving projects comprising at least three partners from different participating countries (EU member states and associated or program countries), precisely in an expressed desire to promote the European dimension in school education in which teachers play a fundamental role. It is evident from this discourse that the programs’ framers sought to stimulate a multiplicity of interactions among teachers, through a form of in-service training across various geographical settings. The experiences and interactions teachers engaged in during these exchanges allowed teachers to become familiar with the curricula, institutional settings, practices, professional competences, and overall systems of education of the locations they were temporarily visiting during the course of the projects, essential aspects of their professional development (Gatt, Pereira Cunha and Costa 2009). However, of greater import was the opportunity to immerse themselves in local cultures, social norms, languages, and other impalpable features of the lived human experience from which they could learn, but also to compare habits, ways of thinking, assumptions, or expectations about those settings with those from their own milieus. As Gordon (2001) noted in a relatively early post-assessment of the Comenius action line, teachers and teacher educators considered that such teamwork across fixed boundaries, helped in “raising awareness of cultural differences, initiating discussion on racism in education or democracy, encouraging mutual understanding and increasing people’s understanding of minority groups enhanced the perception of a European dimension” (412). The heterogeneous actors taking part in these projects with the aspirations and motivation to share their collective teaching expertise for the common good of all its members emerge as collaborative assemblages, territorializing them with the content of their erudition they impart on one another. The partnerships formed in these assemblages also elicit comparisons of school cultures, practices, professional behaviors, teaching performance expectations in the variegated settings from which the participants hail. In this process, they form seamless connections among one another, but unwittingly they are also part of an assemblage of assemblages, that is, a pan-European assemblage of expertise-sharing amalgamating around the intent of the Comenius action line. In another evocative appraisal of Comenius, Montané (2002) observed that “these educational projects have helped to change our European representations” (7), and elaborated on by asserting that through the engagement in this intermeshed territory, the schools and universities become European institutions and the European dimension is introduced into the activities that they develop. Europe becomes a tangible reality in a real context of reference and destination. A new educational culture focused on international understanding appears. Teamwork and the adaptation of the school to a European context are promoted. A European culture which stresses equality, integration, inclusion, interculturality, interdisciplinarity, plurality and diversity gradually takes shape.


An implication of these collaborative assemblages for CIE is that an assemblage view allows for comparisons of teaching practice or teacher education/training


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

in a collective setting among the co-members of the assemblage. Furthermore, the assemblages giving rise to the Comenius complex educational assemblage frees the comparative enterprise from a focus on the geographically defined spaces of teaching or teacher education practice. Instead, it supplants it with a more elastic perspective of contrasting, juxtaposing, and connecting relationalities and co-dependencies created within and between these assemblages that elide the geographic and methodological limitations inherent in the emphasis on the nation-state as the unit of comparison.

The Extraterritorial Teacher Education Assemblage A less profiled phenomenon in the international, and virtually absent in the comparative teacher education research literature is the attention given by European national governments to the advancement and protection of the rights of ethnic minorities living in diasporic communities in their states’ neighboring or extraterritorial spaces, and to teaching and teacher education suited to the preservation of their cultural heritage. Although national governments in Europe typically devote considerable attention and resources to ensuring the educational needs of their states’ majority populations, they are also expected to make provisions for the education of ethnic minorities, the members of which are entitled to education tailored to their cultures and languages, as citizens of the states in which they reside and over which national governments have jurisdiction. Various arrangements for teacher training for national minorities exist in Europe, in which national governments sometimes agree to or dispute demands from national minorities and from the governments that assume a protective role for their conationals living in the diaspora. Given the intricate, context-sensitive, and crossborder nature of these arrangements, they can be viewed as extraterritorial teacher education assemblages. That is, they not only straddle territorial boundaries, but form an imagined territorialization of the national and cultural ethos, aimed at both ensuring the preservation of the national minority communities that act as extensions of their motherlands into the neighboring countries. In turn, these assemblages contribute to the diversification and enrichment of the social, cultural, and political life of the countries in which they exist. Thus, this is an amorphous and messy web of relationships codified and stratified over time at the nexus of disputed historical and cultural claims, but also as a result of centuries-old coexistence in coterminous and shifting geographic spaces. The contingence of these extraterritorial assemblages becomes evident as the ever-changing physical borders of the nation-states have given rise to interspersed communities desiring to both coexist and thrive alongside the predominant populations in a given territory and preserve their distinct identities connected to their ancestral imagined nationhood. The extent of national governments’ provision for national minorities varies from country to country, but the majority enshrine such rights in their legal frameworks related to the education sector. However, the interests of the national governments and those of ethnic minorities in the provision of educational services often align, but sometimes they may also clash. Consequently, depending on the collective mindset of the places of minorities in different societies, the development of institutional

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


architectures in teacher education for national minorities may be the result of a harmonious consensus or of a fiercely contested negotiation process. For instance, in mature democracies, such as Spain, the provision of teacher education in Catalonia is devolved to the local Catalan government, by virtue of the recognition in the Spanish constitution of a Catalan nation with its specific language and culture within Spain (Petherbridge-Hernandez and Latiner Raby 1993). In democracies emerging in the eastern part of Europe after the fall of the Iron Curtain, the provision of teacher education structures for ethnic minorities has been fraught with difficulties, given the competing interests of national governments and ethnic minorities (Kalimullin and Valeeva 2022). For example, in advocating for the establishment of state-sponsored teacher education institutes in the language of the Hungarian ethnic minority spread around Hungary’s neighboring countries, such as Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, or Ukraine, both the Hungarian ethnic minority representatives and the Hungarian government were initially met with resistance by the governments of those states. The eventual outcome of that contested process differed slightly in those countries, with Slovakia agreeing to set up the J. Selye University sponsored by the Slovak government and providing teacher education exclusively for the Hungarian minority (Raud and Orehhova 2022). In contrast, efforts to establish a similar university in Romania were unsuccessful, with the Romanian government ultimately agreeing, instead, to the creation of a private university providing teacher education programming for the Hungarian minority (Flóra 2015). Interestingly, this institution, Partium Christian University, sponsored by the Hungarian government and recognized by the Romanian government, continues to provide teacher education as specialized programs in faculties at Romanian state-sponsored universities. On the other hand, in Serbia (particularly in Vojvodina, where the Hungarian minority is concentrated) and Ukraine, the respective governments have so far declined demands to establish either state-sponsored or private universities providing teacher education programs in the exclusive service of the Hungarian minorities, only agreeing to the existence of such programs alongside programs for the majority Serbian and Ukrainian populations in state-sponsored institutions (Gábrity and Molnár 2105; Orosz 2015). In yet another instance of actions and dynamics evoking extraterritorial teacher education assemblages, the Romanian government has provided teacher training in its state-institutions for students from the Republic of Moldova, which has historical and cultural ties with Romania as a former part of the historical province of Moldavia (an integral component part of the modern state of greater Romania established in the nineteenth century). Once the Republic of Moldova became independent after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, both Romania and Moldova sought to reestablish closer ties, including through educational collaborations at institutional levels. Consequently, reciprocal arrangements were developed via which Moldovan students could study in Romania, many with Romanian government-sponsored scholarships, while Romanian students could study tuition-free in Moldova (Tanase 2008). In the context of these arrangements, provisions extended to teacher education in both countries, as a vehicle for the Romanian government to support the preparation of Romanian-language teachers


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

in Moldova and for the Moldovan government to facilitate Romanian students’ closer understanding of Moldova’s post-Soviet renascent identity as an independent state with deep ties to Romania. Many other examples from across the European teacher education landscape could be brought to bear on the significance of such mixed arrangements driven by the affective nature of preserving cultural and community identity across state borders. In this kind of extraterritorial assemblage, relationships are perennially emergent, as they mutate with the negotiated interests of the actors entering them, evoking the potential of the assemblage to (re)create countless asymmetrical and atemporal connections enmeshing the teaching and teacher education enterprise. These attributes nurture a rich terrain for relational comparisons of the unique types of arrangements for teacher education stemming from the interaction between extended, diasporic aterritorial communities and the often shifting, ephemeral, and fragile, physical territories in which they exist.

European Teacher Education Assemblage(s) for CIE I have attempted to illustrate here the possible avenues by which assemblage thinking may decenter comparative approaches to teacher education, particularly in the European context, from the conventional focus on the national system(s) of education. I argued that assemblage thinking makes it possible to conceive of comparing teacher education arrangements in a different mode than the side-by-side comparison of teacher education containers to glean their finite convergences and divergences. Employing an assemblage metaphor, in which heterogeneity, multiplicity, contingency, morphing cartographies, and desire inform the examination of the relational aspects of teacher education, produces richer and more nuanced interpretations of the latent forces that bind seemingly disparate actors across bounded spaces. The collaborative and extraterritorial assemblages explored above expound and reveal the associations that run through the European teacher education assemblage(s), lending itself to comparisons of practices, norms, cultures, behaviors, or even policy enactments in a fluid environment characterized by the contingent nature of the arrangements among the actors enlivening them. Comparing the relations forged in the communities of teaching practice in the Comenius collaborative assemblage or the communities of diasporic identities in the extraterritorial teacher education assemblage transcending national boundaries are illustrations of the various possibilities of comparative approaches eliciting both tensions and opportunities for the comparativist scholar. Namely, the lines or units of comparison may be blurred by the elastic, shapeless, and unstructured elements constituting the assemblage that do not conform neatly to a predetermined and preselected set of equivalent features, attributes, or variables across settings to be compared. Yet, it is this unformed and diffuse character of the teacher education assemblage that compels the comparativist to cast aside a priori assumptions about what is and what is not comparable in teacher education.

The European Teacher Education Assemblage(s)


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Lawn, M. and R. Normand (2015). Shaping of European Education: Interdisciplinary Approaches. New York: Routledge. Lawn, M. and S. Grek (2012). Europeanizing Education: Governing a New Policy Space. Oxford: Symposium Books. Manning, E. (2016). “The Minor Gesture.” Durham: Duke University Press. Montané, M. (2002). “Education and Culture in Teacher Training Education in Europe: A Dialogue among European Educators to Share Knowledge.” European Journal of Teacher Education, 25 (1): 7–9. https://doi.org/10.1080/0261976022000012813. Orosz, I. (2015). “Hungarian-Language Teacher Education in Ukraine.” In G. Pusztai, Á. Engler and I. Revák Markóczi (Eds.), Development of Teacher Calling in Higher Education, 36–48. Nagyvárad-Budapest: Partium Press. Parmigiani, D., S.L. Jones, I. Kunnari and E. Nicchia (2022). “Global Competence and Teacher Education Programmes. A European Perspective.” Cogent Education, 9 (1). https://doi.org/10.1080/2331186X.2021.2022996. Petherbridge-Hernandez, P. and R. Latiner Raby (1993). “Twentieth-Century Transformations in Catalonia and the Ukraine: Ethnic Implications in Education.” Comparative Education Review, 37 (1): 31–49. https://doi.org/10.1086/447163. Pushpanadham, K. (2020). Teacher Education in the Global Era. Singapore: Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-15-4008-0. Quezada, R.L. (2010). “Internationalization of Teacher Education: Creating Global Competent Teachers and Teacher Educators for the Twenty‐First Century.” Teaching Education, 21 (1): 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1080/10476210903466885. Raud, N. and O. Orehhova (2022). “Training Teachers for Multilingual Primary Schools in Europe: Key Components of Teacher Education Curricula.” International Journal of Multilingualism, 19 (1): 50–62. https://doi.org/10.1080/14790718.2020.171867. Salajan, F.D. (2019). “Building a Policy Space via Mainstreaming ICT in European Education: The European Digital Education Area (Re)Visited.” European Journal of Education, 54 (4): 591–604. https://doi.org/10.1111/ejed.12362. Salajan, F.D. (2021). “A Reflexive Exploration of Transposing Comparative Paradigms into Scholarly and Practical Approaches in Teacher Education.” Educația 21 Journal, 21, 4–12. https://doi.org/10.24193/ed21.2021.21.01. Salajan, F.D. (2022). “The European Area of Higher Education as a Complex Educational Assemblage: Prospects for Comparative Approaches.” In F.D. Salajan and t. jules (Eds.), Comparative and International Education (Re)Assembled: Examining a Scholarly Field through an Assemblage Theory Lens, 127–44. London: Bloomsbury. Salajan, F.D. and t.d. jules (2021). “Regulated and Unregulated Big Data Analytics as (Re)Makers of Complex Educational Assemblages in the EU and the CARICOM.” In A. Wiseman (Eds.), Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2020, 149–70. Bingley: Emerald Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479367920210000040010. Salajan, F.D. and t.d. jules (2022). “(Re)Assembling Comparative and International Education: New Frontiers and Directions in an Interdisciplinary Field.” In F.D. Salajan and t. jules (Eds.), Comparative and International Education (Re)Assembled: Examining a Scholarly Field through an Assemblage Theory Lens, 3–20. London: Bloomsbury. Savage, G.C. (2019). “What Is Policy Assemblage?.” Territory, Politics, Governance, 8 (3): 319–35. https://doi.org/10.1080/21622671.2018.1559760. Schratz, M. (2014). “The European Teacher: Transnational Perspectives in Teacher Education Policy and Practice.” CEPS Journal, 4 (4): 11–27. https://doi. org/10.25656/01:10057.


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Strom, K.J. (2015). “Teaching as Assemblage: Negotiating Learning and Practice in the First Year of Teaching.” Journal of Teacher Education, 66 (4): 321–33. https://doi. org/10.1177/0022487115589990. Sundström Sjödin, E. and N. Wahlström (2022). “Assembled Teaching: A Sensitized Conceptualization of Didactics.” In F.D. Salajan and t. jules (Eds.), Comparative and International Education (Re)Assembled: Examining a Scholarly Field through an Assemblage Theory Lens, 183–98. London: Bloomsbury. Symeonidis, V. (2018). “Revisiting the European Teacher Education Area: The Transformation of Teacher Education Policies and Practices in Europe.” CEPS Journal, 8 (3): 13–34. Symeonidis, V. (2021). Europeanisation in Teacher Education: A Comparative Case Study of Teacher Education Policies and Practices. London: Routledge. Tanase, E. (2008). “Tinerii din Republica Moldova Vis-à-Vis de Studiile din Străinătate: Cazul României (În Baza Sondajului Sociologic).” Moldoscopie (Probleme de Analiză Politică), 3 (XLII): 129–42. Tatto, M.T. and I. Menter (2019). Knowledge, Policy and Practice in Teacher Education: A Cross-National Study. Bingley: Bloomsbury. Wiksten, S. (2019). “Teacher Education and the Ghost of the Nation State: How Comparative and International Education Matters for Teacher Development.” In A.W. Wiseman (Ed.), Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2018 (International Perspectives on Education and Society, Vol. 37), 51–7. Bingley: Emerald Publishing Limited. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1479367920190000037005.

Part Three

Internationalization and Global Currents in Teacher Education



Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education: The Role of Comparative and International Education Roger Y. Chao Jr. and Lorraine Pe Symaco

Introduction Philippine teacher education is influenced by the changing global economy, the skills and competencies required to engage in the global labor market, and the increasing internationalization of education. Furthermore, the ongoing Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) community-building project has also contributed to the continuing focus on the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. These influences are seen in the changing mission statements, policy directions, changes in the teacher education curriculum, and various initiatives relevant to Philippine teacher education. Such influences are also seen in the shift to learner-centered competency standards, the development of teacher competency standards, and changes in teacher continuing professional education. Although there has been no consensus on the definition of comparative and international education (CIE) (Epstein 1983; Little 2010; Elfert and Monaghan 2018; Turner 2018), the focus on education as content (e.g., individuals, curriculums, institutions or systems [national, regional or global]) and use of a comparative methodology (e.g., Bray, Adamson and Mason 2014) are evident in the field. The field of CIE has also been evolving as identified by Noah and Eckstein (1969 cited in Epstein 1983) from (1) traveler’s tales, (2) educational borrowing, and increasingly on (3) international educational cooperation, (4) identification of the forces and factors shaping nation educational systems, and (5) social science explanation. Furthermore, with the growth of the global education market and increasing globalization and regionalization of education, there has been an increased focus on the analysis of (1) other education systems, policies, practices, and philosophies, (2)  educational borrowing and lending, (3) the contribution of education to development, (4)  education, dependency, and globalization, (5) international education practices and organizations, and (6) international education comparisons (Little 2010). How then does CIE contribute to developing national education policies, particularly the internationalization of Philippine teacher education? Internationalization of


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Philippine teacher education is the process of embedding international dimensions including curriculum, practices, and standards into Philippine teacher education and teacher-related practices. These include international benchmarking, utilization of international standards, and localizing international practices related to teacher education and the teaching profession. Chao (2012) argues that the value of CIE lies in its influence on educational policies and generating knowledge, empirical support/databases, and discourses. All of these contribute to a holistic understanding of education and its relationship to the education puzzle’s three dimensions, that is, culture, politics, and economics. Considering the limited literature on Philippine teacher education, this chapter attempts to analyze the various factors influencing the ongoing internationalization of Philippine teacher education. This chapter aims to investigate: (1) the influence of globalization and regionalization in Philippine teacher education; (2) what factors influence the internationalization of Philippine teacher education; and (3) which organizations and agencies contributed to the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. The chapter is organized by initially presenting the relevant literature, including policy borrowing, globalization and regionalization, its impact/influence on education, and the role of international organizations in education development. This section is followed by an overview of the Philippine education system, including teacher education, and discussions on the various factors that influenced the internationalization of Philippine teacher education.

Policy Borrowing in the Era of Globalization and Regionalization To understand CIE’s contribution to teacher education in the country, it is best to understand the historical contexts leading to initiatives on the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. Wiksten (2018) argued that CIE matters for the preparation of teachers are best understood in relation to political agendas. The globalization and regionalization projects, including education, are political agendas that influence the development of national education, including teacher education systems. The global education discourse, which eventually manifested into regional education, focused on the knowledge-based economy and human capital theory (Chao 2016). Along these lines, skills and competencies required with the needs of the knowledge economy have reshaped the focus on national education systems and the growing demand for human capital migration, particularly to greying economies and societies worldwide. These global and regional education discourses are negotiated with individual nation-states. The resulting policy borrowing or translation into local contexts influences the aims, mission, values, and education policies within their respective national development agendas. It is necessary to understand the notion of policy borrowing (Phillips and Ochs 2003; Steiner-Khamsi and Waldow 2012), the impact of globalization and regionalization,

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and the roles of international organizations in the development of education systems, policies, and practices. Although education falls typically within the jurisdiction of nation-states, the world order (including nation-states and their education systems) can be seen in terms of center, periphery, and semi-periphery (Wallerstein 1975). Advanced by Huntington (2007) concerning international relations, the concept of hegemonic power can also be applied in the education sector. Various international education assessment exercises (e.g., TIMMS and PISA) also facilitated rankings and typologies among national education systems, giving rise to new core systems such as Finland and Singapore. In some instances, best practices from the core education systems are introduced and advocated in the development of education policies and procedures in peripheral education systems through international organizations in terms of technical assistance and capacity building projects (Dang 2009, 2013; Moutsios 2009, 2010; Yang 2009; Chao and Horta 2018). However, scholars have seen the challenges of education policy borrowing, particularly with some policies promoted by international organizations. Such issues include the capacity and fit for individual developing countries, and the difference between policy transformation and actual implementation (Brook Napier 2005; Heyneman 2005; Dang 2009). International organizations, including the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), have also utilized global data and country case studies to understand how to enhance teacher quality and pedagogy, among others (UNESCO 2015, 2016a, 2016b; OECD 2018, 2019). Policy recommendations include a mandatory a teaching practicum as part of pre-service education, in-service continuing professional development, selective entry, attractive teaching career, and performance-based teacher career assessment and progression. Furthermore, there are initiatives to develop teacher competency frameworks such as the UNESCO ICT Competency Framework for Teachers, Global Teachers Key Competency Framework, and the Southeast Asia Teacher Competency Framework (TKCOM 2018). These teacher competency frameworks usually incorporate content and pedagogical knowledge, learning environment, diversity of learners, curriculum, assessment, community linkages and engagement, and personal and professional development as crucial domains. At the regional level, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), of which the Philippines is a member state, located the importance and role of education in the regional community-building project. The ASEAN community-building project officially set the ASEAN Vision 2020 and the Declaration of ASEAN Concord II adopted in 1997 and 2003, respectively (ASEAN 1997, 2003; Chao 2017). The ASEAN Community, with its three pillars—the ASEAN Political-Security Community, the ASEAN Economic Community, and the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community—was officially established by the Kuala Lumpur Declaration, while the role of education in ASEAN community-building was concretized by the 2009 Cha-Am Hua Hin Declaration on Strengthening Cooperation in Education (ASEAN 2009) to Achieve an ASEAN Caring and Sharing Community (refer to Table 7.1). This link between education and ASEAN community-building is translated into the ASEAN Work Plans


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Table 7.1  The role of education in ASEAN community-building (Cha-Am Hua Hin Declaration). ASEAN Political-Security Community

ASEAN Economic Community

ASEAN Sociocultural Community

Promote better understanding/ appreciation of the ASEAN Charter, through school curriculum on ASEAN

Develop national skills framework

Common content on ASEAN for schools as reference for teacher training and teaching

Give greater emphasis on the principles of democracy, respect for human rights, and peaceoriented values in the school curriculum

Promote greater Intra-ASEAN student mobility

Promote regional outreach programs to raise ASEAN awareness among the youth

Promote better understanding and appreciation of different cultures, customs, and faiths in the region among teachers through training and exchange programs

Support greater intra-ASEAN skilled workers mobility

Support wider access of rural communities to quality education

toward an ASEAN skills recognition framework

Conduct regular school leaders’ Develop ASEAN Competencyforum as platform for exchanging based occupational standard views on various regional issues in ASEAN, building capacity and networking Promote common competency standard for vocational and secondary education to promote mutual recognition

Promote life-long learning in ASEAN Member States in support of Education for All (EFA) Establish an ASEAN educational research convention to promote collaborative research and development Promote better understanding and awareness of environmental issues and concerns in ASEAN region

Source: Adapted from Cha-Am Hua Hin Declaration (ASEAN 2009)

on Education, starting from the ASEAN Work Plan on Education (2011–2015) and the subsequent Work Plans on Education (2016–2020 and 2021–2025). ASEAN awareness, through a more ASEAN-centric community and engagement, has been placed as a key priority, including developing teacher capacity to promote such awareness in their schools’ respective curricula. Teacher training and professional development of teachers, and promoting regional teacher accreditation and mobility have also been prominent in the Work Plans mentioned above. In the 2016–2020 and 2021–2025 Work Plans, teachers’ capacity building is linked to the promotion of twenty-first-century skills, digital transformation, and teacher competency framework (ASEAN WP on ED 2011–2015, 2016–2020, and 2021–2025). There is a clear indication of ASEAN priorities toward

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enhancing the quality of teachers in the region, and their capacity to facilitate twentyfirst-century skills learning, the use of digital technologies and learning environments, especially with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced the migration of education to the digital or hybrid learning environments.

Philippine Teacher Education Philippine teacher education is an essential part of the education sector. It contributes to the provision of quality teaching and learning at all levels of education. It should be considered as a collaborative endeavor, with regulations and responsibilities shared among the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) (for higher education), the Department of Education (for basic education), and the Philippine Regulatory Commission (for career professionalization) (Symaco and Chao 2019). Graduates of teacher education institutions need to take and pass the Licensure Exam for Teachers (LET) before entry into the Philippine’s compulsory (primary and secondary) education sector. Teacher education-related issues, including developing the teacher education curriculum and policies, are coordinated by the Teacher Education Council (TEC), which was established through Republic Act No. 7784 in 1994. However, it should be noted that all Philippine higher education institutions, including teacher education institutions, are under the supervision and regulation of the CHED.

Brief History and Development of Philippine Teacher Education The Philippines’ colonial history (being a Spanish and then an American colony) influenced the development of Philippine teacher education. While the Spanish colonial times introduced formal training for teachers and established separate teacher training institutions for men and women, the American colonial period established a secularized and free public school system and the Philippine Normal School in 1901. It changed the medium of instruction from Spanish to English. Until the early 1960s, the College of Education of the University of the Philippines undertook preparation for secondary school teachers, while training for elementary school teachers was conducted by the Philippine Normal School and the regional teacher training schools. The undersupply of professionally qualified elementary school teachers (after the Director of Public Schools 1948–1949 school year report) resulted in the relaxation of opening teacher training schools and colleges, and a mushrooming of teacher education schools and colleges in the Philippines. To ensure the quality of teacher education, the government changed the two-year elementary teaching course to four years, and provided guidelines and basic principles for the development of the Philippine teacher education sub-sector (Department of Education Order No. 8 s. 1970), while also increasing the admissions requirement (from 50th to 60th percentile) of the then National College Entrance Examination for entry to teacher education programs. A professional board examination for teachers was established in 1978. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports (MECS) also promulgated the “Policies and Standards for Teacher Education” and established ten areas of specialization. In 1994, relevant


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developments to Philippine teacher education included the professionalization of Philippine teachers and the establishment of Centers of Excellence for teacher education, and the Teacher Education Council (TEC) through Republic Act (RA) legislation Nos. 7836 and 7784, respectively (Symaco and Chao 2019).

Key Studies and Reports That Shaped Philippine Teacher Education Development Several high-profile studies and reports framed the development policies of Philippine education, including that for teacher education and development. As presented in Table 7.2, the Congressional Committee on Education (EDCOM 1991), 1998 Philippine Education Sector Study (PESS), the 2000 Philippine Commission on Education Reform (PCER), and the 2007 Philippine Task Force on Education (PTFE) have undertaken studies and presented their recommendations to improve Philippine education. These recommendations include: the professionalization of teachers and teaching; creating clear teacher promotion career paths; strengthening teacher competencies through inservice training; the establishment of the National Educational Evaluation and Testing System; establishing common accreditation standards per discipline; and instituting the National Competency-based Teacher Standards. The recommendations of the reports mentioned above contributed to significant teacher education reforms, particularly in the professionalization of Philippine teacher education. In addition, the establishment of the Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers (based on the National Competency-based Teacher Standards) and the

Table 7.2  Key studies influencing Philippine teacher education and development. Key Studies

Teacher Development Policy Recommendations

Congressional Committee on Education (EDCOM 1991); 1998 Philippine Education Sector Study (PESS)

Professionalization of teachers and teaching through the creation of the National Teachers Board under the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC), which is tasked with giving periodic tests as prerequisite for licensing and certification of teaching competencies Creation of and clear career service paths for promotions

Presidential Commission on Education Reforms (PCER) 2000

Strengthen teacher competencies through in-service training Expanding options for medium of instruction in Grade 1 using regional lingua franca or the vernacular Establishment of the National Educational Evaluation and Testing System (NEETS) Establishing Common Standards for Accreditation Per Discipline

Presidential Task Force on Education, 2007

Improving teacher competencies at the basic education level Instituting the National Competency-based Teacher Standards Upgrading pre-service and in-service Teacher Training Programs

Sources: de Guzman (2003); WB (2004); PTFE (2007: 280–5)

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shift from teacher-centered to competency-based standards in Philippine education were also established. Furthermore, changes in Philippine teacher rank and the incorporation of required continuing professional development for promotions also evolved. Following the 1991 EDCOM report, the year 1994 saw several education reform programs that set the foundations and future advancement of Philippine teacher education. The tri-partite function of Philippine education decentralized the control of the education sector from the former Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports to three separate agencies, namely the Department of Education, Culture and Sports (now Department of Education), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED). The Philippine Teachers Professionalization Act (Republic Act [R.A.] No. 7836) of 1994 established the Professional Teachers Board (under the Philippine Regulation Commission [PRC]), which is empowered to supervise the registration, licensure, and practice of professional teachers in the Philippines. It also prescribes and adopts a code of ethical standards for the teaching profession, implements the Licensure Examinations for Teachers (LET), and adopts measures for the enhancement and maintenance of professional standards (Republic of the Philippines 1994b). Furthermore, Republic Act No. 7784 created the Teacher Education Council (TEC) and established teacher education Centers of Excellence to strengthen the country’s teacher education sector (Republic of the Philippines 1994a). The TEC comprises representatives from various stakeholders. The TEC is tasked with identifying Centers of Excellence and Centers of Development on teacher education, conducting capacity-building activities, collaboratively designing/ redesigning in-service and re-training programs for teacher development, and establishing and implementing the teacher induction program. In addition, in terms of curriculum development, the TEC works together with the technical panel for teacher education to align teacher education programs with the Enhanced Basic Education Program, which added two years to compulsory schooling in the country and incorporated new specializations in senior secondary education. Since 2020, efforts have been undertaken to amend RA No. 7784 and to strengthen the TEC’s powers by establishing the Council as a coordinating body for the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC), and the Department of Education (DepEd), and other institutions involved in teacher education. It is also intended to align pre-service with in-service teacher education to improve teacher quality. Under the proposed amendment, TEC is also authorized to “mandate the minimum requirements for teacher education programs and its compliance, establish policies to implement a system of recognition affirming the career stages achieved by basic education teachers and leaders based on professional standards” (Philippine National Research Center for Teacher Quality 2021). In the context of the Basic Education Sector Reform Agenda (BESRA) 2006–2010, which supported the country’s attainment of Education for All objectives by 2015, enabling teachers to further enhance their contribution to learning outcomes was one of its key reform thrusts. One of the initiatives was to adopt a national framework using teacher competencies as the basis of standards for assessing new teachers’ readiness for


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hiring and deployment. It also looked at teachers’ current performance and priority needs for professional development (DepEd 2005). Supported by the World Bank (2006), one of BESRA’s important achievements was the adoption of the National Competency-Based Teacher Standards (NCBTS) and the Teachers Strengths and Needs Assessment (TSNA) (WB 2016; Pa-alisbo 2017), which was adopted in 2009 (DepEd 2009) and which then changed the guidelines for hiring teachers (DepEd 2012). With the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 (Republic of the Philippines 2013), which added two more years into the former ten-year basic education curriculum (also known as K to 12) and specialization tracks in senior secondary levels, the NCBTS was reviewed, and the Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers (PPST) was adopted in 2017 (DepEd 2017). The PPST is designed to complement reform initiatives on teacher training with well-defined domains, strands, and indicators. The PPST domains (see Table 7.3), which have a total of thirty-seven strands, are Content Knowledge and Pedagogy; Learning Environment; Diversity of Learners; Curriculum and Planning; Assessment and Reporting; Community Linkages and Professional Engagement; and Personal Growth and Professional Development (DepEd 2017). In addition, the strands within each domain are also reflected in increasing order of proficiency within the various teacher career stages: beginning, proficient, highly proficient, and distinguished teachers (see Tables 7.4 and 7.5). Table 7.3  Domains and strands of Philippine professional standards for teachers. 1.  CONTENT KNOWLEDGE & PEDAGOGY 1.1 Content Knowledge & its application within & across curriculum areas 1.2 Research-based knowledge & principles of teaching & learning 1.3 Positive use of ICT 1.4 Strategies for promoting literacy & numeracy 1.5 Strategies for developing critical & creative thinking, as well as other higher-order thinking skills 1.6 Mother Tongue, Filipino & English in teaching & learning 1.7 Classroom communications strategies 2.  LEARNING ENVIRONMENT 2.1 Learning safety & security 2.2 Fair learning environment 2.3 Management of classroom structure & activities 2.4 Support for learner participation 2.5 Promotion for purposive learning 2.6 Management of learner behavior 3.  DIVERSITY OF LEARNERS 3.1 Learners’ gender, needs, strengths, interests & experiences 3.2 Learners’ linguistic, cultural, socioeconomic & religious backgrounds 3.3 Learners with disabilities, giftedness & talents 3.4 Learners with different circumstances 3.5 Learners from indigenous groups

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4.  CURRICULUM & PLANNING 4.1 Planning & management of teaching & learning process 4.2 Learning outcomes aligned with learning competencies 4.3 Relevance & responsiveness of learning programs 4.4 Professional collaboration to enrich teaching practice 4.5 Teaching & learning resources, including ICT 5.  ASSESSMENT & REPORTING 5.1 Design, selection, organization & utilization of assessment strategies 5.2 Monitoring & evaluation of learner progress & achievement 5.3 Feedback to improve learning 5.4 Communication of learner needs, progress & achievement to key stakeholders 5.5 Use of assessment data to enhance teaching & learning practices & programs 6.  COMMUNITY LINKAGES & PROFESSIONAL ENGAGEMENT 6.1 Establishment of learning environments that are responsive to community contexts 6.2 Engagement of parents & the wider community in the educative process 6.3 Professional ethics 6.4 School policies & procedures 7.  PERSONAL GROWTH & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 7.1 Philosophy of teaching 7.2 Diversity of teaching as a profession 7.3 Professional links with colleagues 7.4 Professional reflection & learning to improve practice 7.5 Professional development goals Source: Adapted from DepEd (2017) National Adoption of Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers

Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education The Philippine government undertook the abovementioned key studies in collaboration with international organizations (e.g., the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank), while comparative education data and practices were also incorporated into the analysis of the Philippine education sector. Data from national education assessment, Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS) and eventually Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), have been utilized in various reports as a basis for education quality. The studies consider national contexts and challenges in education performance concerning best practices from high-scoring education systems. The recommendations from these studies, particularly for teacher development (see Table 7.2), along with international and regional teacher education initiatives, also framed and directed the developments and the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. The internationalization of Philippine teacher education can be seen in its professionalization, the development of the Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers, the developments in teacher careers, and teacher continuing professional development.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Table 7.4  Sample Philippine teacher stages and indicators. Career Stages Career stage 1 Beginning Teachers

Career Stage 2 Career Stage 3 Proficient Teachers Highly Proficient Teachers

Career Stage 4 Distinguished Teachers

Beginning Teachers have gained the qualifications recognized for entry into the teaching profession.

Proficient Teachers are professionally independent in the application of skills vital to the teaching and learning process.

Highly Proficient Teachers consistently display a high level of performance in their teaching practice.

Distinguished Teachers embody the highest standard for teaching grounded in global best practices.

They have a strong understanding of the subjects/areas in which they are trained in terms of content knowledge and pedagogy.

They provide focused teaching programs that meet curriculum and assessment requirements.

They manifest an in-depth and sophisticated understanding of the teaching and learning process.

They exhibit exceptional capacity to improve their own teaching practice and that of others.

They possess the requisite knowledge, skills, and values that support the teaching and learning process.

They display skills in planning, implementing and managing learning programs.

They have high education-focused situation cognition, are more adept in problem solving and optimize opportunities gained from experience.

They are recognized as leaders in education, contributors to the profession, and initiators of collaborations and partnerships.

They manage learning programs and have strategies that promote learning based on the learning needs of their students.

They actively engage in collaborative learning with the professional community and other stakeholders for mutual growth and advancement.

They provide support and mentoring to colleagues in their professional development, as well as work collaboratively with them to enhance the learning and practice potential of their colleagues.

They create lifelong impact in the lives of colleagues, students and others.

They seek advice from experienced colleagues to consolidate their teaching practice.

They are reflective practitioners who continually consolidate the knowledge, skills and practices of Career Stage 1 teachers.

They continually seek to develop their professional knowledge and practice by reflecting on their own needs, and those of their colleagues and students.

They exhibit commitment to inspire the education community and stakeholders for the improvement of education provision in the Philippines.

They consistently seek professional advancement and relevance in pursuit of teaching quality and excellence.

Source: Adapted from DepEd (2017) National Adoption of Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers

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Table 7.5  Sample Philippine teacher stages and indicators. Domain 1. Content Knowledge and Pedagogy Domain 1 recognizes the importance of teachers’ mastery of content knowledge and its interconnectedness within and across curriculum areas, coupled with a sound and critical understanding of the application of theories and principles of teaching and learning. This Domain encompasses teachers’ ability to apply developmentally appropriate and meaningful pedagogy grounded on content knowledge and current research. It takes into account teachers’ proficiency in Mother Tongue, Filipino, and English in the teaching and learning process, as well as needed skills in the use of communication strategies, teaching strategies, and technologies to promote high-quality learning outcomes.


Beginning Teachers

Proficient Teachers

Highly Proficient Teachers

Distinguished Teachers

Strand 1.1 Content knowledge and its application within and across curriculum areas

1.1.1 Demonstrate content knowledge and its application within and/ or across curriculum teaching areas.

1.1.2 Apply knowledge of content within and across curriculum teaching areas.

1.1.3 Model effective applications of content knowledge within and across curriculum teaching areas.

1.1.4 Model exemplary practice to improve the applications of content knowledge within and across curriculum teaching areas.

Strand 1.2 Research-based knowledge and principles of teaching and learning

1.2.1 Demonstrate an understanding of research-based knowledge and principles of teaching and learning.

1.2.2 Use research-based knowledge and principles of teaching and learning to enhance professional practice.

1.2.3 Collaborate with colleagues in the conduct and application of research to enrich knowledge of content and pedagogy.

1.2.4 Lead colleagues in the advancement of the art and science of teaching based on their comprehensive knowledge of research and pedagogy.

Strand 1.3 Positive use of ICT

1.3.1 Show skills in the positive use of ICT to facilitate the teaching and learning process.

1.3.2 Ensure the positive use of ICT to facilitate the teaching and learning process.

1.3.3 Promote effective strategies in the positive use of ICT to facilitate the teaching and learning process.

1.3.4 Mentor colleagues in the implementation of policies to ensure the positive use of ICT within or beyond the school.

Source: Chao (2020) Developing Myanmar’s Teacher Promotion Criteria


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

The abovementioned domains and strands of the Philippine Professional Standards for Teachers take into consideration global and ASEAN member country developments as informed by several studies, including the one undertaken by SEAMEO Innotech about the development of the Southeast Asia Teacher Competency Standards (SEAMEO Innotech 2010). In 2015, before the national adoption of the PPST, the Department of Education established guidelines on the establishment and implementation of the Results-Based Performance Management System (DepEd 2015a) and on the hiring of teachers (DepEd 2015b) which follows global standards and practices of utilizing competencybased and performance management assessment in teacher hiring, assessment, and promotion practices. The abovementioned performance-based management and assessment systems are linked with the PPST, and further incorporated in the continuing professional development practice developed by the Department of Education. The National Education Academy of the Philippines (NEAP) was also transformed in 2019 to facilitate the operations of the PPST. Figure 7.1 highlights that the Philippine teacher promotion pathway is linked to the NEAP’s induction program and developed courses specifically targeted to the level of a teacher’s career progression. The development of Philippine teacher education, the shift to competency-based teaching and learning, the use of teacher competency standards, results-based performance management, and the implementation of continuing professional development for teachers mirror international best practices and, as such, show the internationalization of Philippine teacher education.

Figure 7.1  NEAP and teacher continuing professional development. Sources: Chao (2020) Developing Myanmar’s Teacher Promotion Criteria; DepEd (2019)

Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education


Comparative Education and the Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education This chapter has offered insights into global and regional developments that influence the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. These include the shift to competency-based teaching and learning, the utilization of competency-based standards for hiring, assessment, teacher promotion, and continuing professional development for teachers. Furthermore, the key research and studies utilized by the Philippine government that shaped the shift to a twelve-year basic education curriculum, the establishment of the TEC, and the establishment of the various Centers of Excellence on teacher education were also discussed. CIE utilizes a comparative approach in educational issues along different levels (international to local) and within varied economic, political, and cultural dimensions. Therefore, critical issues about the impact of CIE on the internationalization of Philippine teacher education include (1) the influence of globalization and regionalization in Philippine teacher education; (2) what factors influence the internationalization of Philippine teacher education; and (3) which organizations and agencies contributed to the internationalization of Philippine teacher education.

Globalization and Regionalization The increasing ascent of the human capital approach and twenty-first-century skills, alongside the growing awareness of the challenges of the fourth industrial revolution (Skilton and Hovsepian 2018), and the critical role of quality teachers in supporting socioeconomic development contributed to policy changes leading to the adoption of international best practices in teacher education. Various international education assessments (e.g., TIMMS, PISA), which showed the low rankings of students from the Philippines, emphasized the need to undertake studies and relevant policy changes to improve the Philippine education system. Studies on the best-performing education systems have been presented as exemplars of international best practices to be emulated by low-performing education systems such as the Philippines. Global best practices, including the utilization of competencybased teacher standards, such as the study undertaken by SEAMEO Innotech, and the promotion by international organizations, such as UNESCO and the OECD, on models for the improvement of teacher education and professionalization of the teaching profession have also contributed to the adoption of international practices in Philippine teacher education. Policy borrowing, lending, transfer, and even localization, have been prominent in various sectors, including that of the education and teacher education sectors. This is further heightened by global directives, such as Education for All, Millennium Development Goals, and the United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. The focus on access, equity, inclusion, relevance, and quality education for all have enhanced national government efforts to look into improving teacher education,


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

and enhancing the acquisition of relevant competencies of students to address the challenges of the changing world of work. Education has been incorporated as a key driver for regional integration and contributing to the region’s sustained socioeconomic development, mainly through the ASEAN community-building project. ASEAN education-related policies and Work Plans advocate for enhancing the quality of education and, in particular, increasing teachers’ competencies to ensure the acquisition of relevant skills and competencies of ASEAN students. The ASEAN Work Plan on Education (2016–2020; 2021–2025) has incorporated, among others, the enhancement of ASEAN Awareness and the improvement of learning effectiveness and inclusiveness in schools through the promotion of twenty-first-century skills, digital transformation, and teacher competencies.

Factors Influencing Philippine Teacher Education The internationalization of Philippine teacher education has been influenced by several factors including, but not limited to, the large-scale international comparative studies (e.g., PISA and TIMMS), the need to align and develop the basic education structure in the country, and the need to improve teacher education and training. In addition, benchmarking and localizing international best practices (e.g., teacher competency standards and continuing professional development) are manifested in the growth of Philippine teacher education. International practices related to the professionalization of teacher careers are also displayed in the NEAP’s continuing professional development programs as a requirement for teacher promotion. These international practices include the linking of teacher competency standards with teacher promotion criteria, and the inclusion of continuing professional development requirements for in-service teachers. The influence of the abovementioned education sector studies provided a foundation for the eventual internationalization of Philippine teacher education. Such internationalization efforts respond to the need to improve the quality of graduates in line with a rapidly changing socioeconomic environment.

International Organizations and Their Impact on Philippine Teacher Education Apart from supporting the various education sector studies, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), OECD, UNESCO, and the World Bank (WB) have influenced and contributed to the internationalization of teacher education in the country. The ADB and the WB have been providing technical assistance and loans for Philippine basic education, including teacher development. ADB’s support to Philippine education includes support in the shift to the new basic education system, curriculum development, and teacher recruitment and training (ADB 2014). The latter accounts for improved teaching methods and innovative use of technology, and the establishment of a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation system through a mix of technical assistance and capacity-building initiatives including international exchanges of expertise of teacher education policy makers and practitioners (ADB 2016).

Internationalization of Philippine Teacher Education


The WB’s 2016 report on “Developing a Proficient and Motivated Teacher Workforce in the Philippines” recommended the provision of quality professional development opportunities, particularly in strengthening teaching practice, the introduction of innovative instructional methods, and strengthening teachers’ subject knowledge (WB 2004, 2016). The WB has also been active in undertaking assessment studies in the Philippine basic education sector, which includes quality of teachers, teacher education, and quality of learning (Al-Samarrai 2016). UNESCO’s (2015, 2016) and the OECD’s (2018, 2019) work on teacher education, career progression, and continuing professional development additionally demonstrate the influence of international best practices and the effect of international organizations in promoting such practices. The impact of large-scale international comparative studies, such as PISA, undertaken by OECD, has been a driving force on the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. The low results of the Philippines in PISA and TIMMS served as a catalyst to engage in education reforms, including teacher education, and in the search for solutions to improve the quality of education in the country.

Closing Remarks This chapter has traced the development and internationalization of Philippine teacher education. Education assessments undertaken by the national government in collaboration with international organizations, critical initiatives undertaken to professionalize Philippine teacher education, teacher career and progression, and their continuing professional development were discussed. As a result, the implementation of international best practices, the shift to competency-based student-centered teaching and learning, and the utilization of teacher competency-based standards in teacher education and training, among others, have all been incorporated into the country’s teacher education sector. The influence of globalization, the human capital discourse, and the various initiatives of international organizations on education is manifest in the internationalization of Philippine teacher education. However, it is important to contextualize international best practices and policy borrowing and transfer to the diverse needs and challenges unique to national education systems. Although a significant focus on increasing ownership of international organizations’ projects has been seen over the past decade, the tendency to look at international best practices as the ultimate solution to a country’s educational challenges needs to be revisited. Global best practices should be tempered by local needs, capacity, and contexts. Overall, there is a clear link between teacher education and CIE that has been strengthened by the ongoing globalization and regionalization of the world order and the need for quality and relevant skills and competencies for the global labor market. The internationalization of Philippine teacher education has been informed by CIE through comparisons of teacher education curricula, pedagogies, and even hiring, promotion, and in-service learning practices. CIE has clearly been utilized to inform and internationally benchmark Philippine teacher education.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

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Internationalization of Inclusive Education: How Have Social Justice and Equity Movements Impacted Teacher Education? Keita Rone Wilson and Jacqueline Lubin

Introduction The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) report Towards Inclusion in Education: Status, Trends and Challenges-The UNESCO Salamanca Statement 25 Years On provides a comparative international context on the status of the inclusive education movement from a global perspective (UNESCO 2020). This comprehensive report highlights how an inclusive equitable quality education is one of the goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (United Nations 2015). Though the UNESCO report on inclusion suggests that persons with disabilities have made relative progress toward inclusion since the development of the Salamanca Act, the study of inclusive education remains to be a complex undertaking that requires comparing philosophical underpinnings and comparing programmatic implementation. For example, when addressing specific steps to shape the future of inclusive education, the report outlines specific actions but cautiously reminds us that each country has its own context of what defines inclusive education. As a result, it is proposed that nations consider specific actions when developing inclusive educational practices. These actions include the following: (1) Define inclusion and equity (2) Identify barriers to inclusion (3) Ensure teachers are equipped to support equity and inclusion (4) Redesign the curriculum to meet the needs of all learners (5) Restructure education systems (6) Include the community in the development of inclusive practices and policies. In addition to the recommended actions for all nations, UNESCO’s report on inclusion validates the need for international dialogue and inquiry on inclusive education models, initiatives, and the barriers that exist as scholars aim to provide comparative analyses of trends in the field.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Comparative International Education Trends in Inclusion The study of the inclusive education movement remains to be a global endeavor that has highlighted promising contributions to the field of comparative and international education (CIE) and has also identified systemic barriers. Using an international prism, we must examine how countries define the purpose and benefits of education, explore the resources available to support inclusive education strategic initiatives, and examine how countries respond to social cultural differences. Recent studies that examine international practices that support students with disabilities highlight that teacher preparation curriculum, school leaders’ and educators’ perceptions of inclusion are common themes and barriers that are prevalent in reviews of CIE literature. Ainscow (2020) recommends a whole system approach when exploring how the educational system can address and promote equity and inclusion. His framework is comprised of five interrelated factors including: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Inclusion and equity as principles Administration School development Community involvement Use of evidence-based practices

Ainscow (2020) recognizes the complexity of the study of international inclusive practices and notes that no international school model of inclusion is the same, and countries have conceptualized and developed policies that promote inclusion but the resources and professional development available for teachers and school leaders is often inconsistent (Ainscow 2005; Ainscow 2020). Lack of common conceptualizations of inclusion further limits the awareness of inclusive education as a civil right within the social justice construct (Soldatic and Grech 2014). A recent qualitative study on school leaders and effective inclusive education practices in Peru found that teachers had not received adequate training on serving students with disabilities (Valdivieso 2020). The lack of pedagogical knowledge of inclusive education training led to negative attitudes toward students with disabilities and teachers associated disability with a negative stereotype. This study led to school leaders seeking professional development embedded with nondiscriminatory practices aimed at increasing equitable education practices (Valdivieso 2020). This study highlighted that wellintended inclusive education practices are constantly subject to the funds of knowledge of the school leaders. Researchers have long recognized the gaps and controversies that are evident in comparative international education research that aims to recognize the advances of inclusive education while also critically evaluating theories that support inclusion, but lack empirical evidence (Nilholm 2020). Currently, inclusion as a human right and a tenet of social justice is being recognized as a developing area of inquiry in CIE. Domingo-Martos, Domingo-Segovia, and Perez-Garcia (2022) conducted an extensive review of CIE literature to determine if the field recognized social justice in their inclusive education research. The authors examined research from a variety

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of geographic locations between 2000 and 2020. This study noted that there was a vast number of empirical studies, mixed-methods studies, and qualitative research, and recognized the need to look at patterns in specific countries. More specifically, their work identified multiple studies that called for a need to better equip teachers for the professional practice of implementing inclusion and not just simply being familiar with inclusive education rhetoric. To that end, the review recognized gaps in political, social, and educational theories on inclusion as a form of social justice and highlighted the work of Zeichner (2016) that suggests that the capacity of teachers to support inclusive education relies heavily on their pre-service preparation. DomingoMartos et al. (2022) recommend continued comparative discourse related to inclusive education as it is evident that culture, professional teacher education practices, and educational policies impact the advancement of inclusive practices.

Framing Social Justice Inquiry This chapter reviews and compares the ideology of inclusive education within an international context by comparing the United States, a developed nation, and St. Lucia, a developing nation. In the United States, there is an extensive body of research on inclusive education that explores the history of inclusion (Osgood 2005; Kauffman and Badar 2014; Slee 2014), teacher and parent attitudes (Jordan and Stanovich 2003), and student outcomes (Dessemontet, Bless and Morin 2012; Cosier, Causton-Theoharis and Theoharis 2013). Developing nations like St. Lucia are among countries that have had limited scholarly inquiry in inclusive education. In an early study on globalization and comparative education Louisy (2001) identified that smaller Caribbean regions were underrepresented in CIE research and noted that case studies and comparative analyses in the region would greatly contribute to expanding globalization in Caribbean regions. Though there is a wide body of research on international inclusive practices and trends (Peters 2007; Messiou 2016; Artiles and Dyson 2005), Caribbean nations are often underrepresented in international research on inclusion and strive to contribute to the field (Cambridge-Johnson, Hunter-Johnson and Newton 2014; Hincape, Duryea and Hincape 2019). Though studies in smaller regions commonly examine special education systems and structures, parent and teacher attitudes, student participation and accessibility, CIE research finds that there is a correlation between higher education institutions and pre-service teacher preparation and attitudes toward inclusion and how teacher preparation shapes the political aspects of social justice (Hernadez-Torrano, Somerton and Helmer 2020; Rapp and Corral-Granados 2021). When exploring how social justice is positioned in teacher preparation programs globally, we must first identify the groups that have historically been supported by social justice efforts. Teacher preparation programs have systemically embedded elements of social justice that historically focus on educating students from various marginalized groups along race, gender, class, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. Persons with disabilities are also a marginalized group and should be viewed within the social justice framework as the outcomes of students with disabilities continue to lag behind other marginalized groups. Pugach, Matewos, and Gomez-Najarro (Pugach et al. 2019)


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sought to determine how disability is situated in teacher preparation programs that include social justice in the curriculum. Their study determined that there is not a specific conceptualization of social justice that consistently includes persons with disabilities. Additionally, the intersectionality of disability and other social markers of marginalized identities is not present in studies that explore social justice and teacher preparation curriculum (Pugach, Matewos and Gomez-Najarro 2019). This further suggests that the study of inclusive education and social justice is a complex undertaking and frames the comparative analysis of the history of inclusive practices and social justice in the two countries under examination here.

Background: Inclusive Education in St. Lucia St. Lucia’s education system is structured similarly to that of Great Britain’s system and is divided into four main levels: pre-school, primary, secondary, and tertiary education. Compulsory school age spans from age five to fifteen, which includes primary and secondary levels (Ministry of Education 1999, Education Act, Section 27.1). The Ministry of Education in St. Lucia has committed to providing education for all (Chitolie-Joseph 2015). On September 22, 2011, St. Lucia signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD 2006) Article 24, joining 164 nations, committing to educating students with disabilities in inclusive settings. The legislative push for inclusive practices can be first evidenced in the St. Lucia Education Act (1999) stating “subject to available resources, all persons are entitled to receive an educational programme appropriate to their needs” (Section 14). The Ministry of Education established a Special Education Unit in the year 2000 with the goal of providing educational support to students in the general education setting (Department of Education: Special Education Unit 2020). The mission of the Education Section Plan of 2015–2020 is to enable all learners to realize their full potential (Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development and Labour 2015). By signing the internationally binding treaty and establishing local legislation and policies, St. Lucia has committed to teaching students in inclusive settings.

Teacher Preparation in St. Lucia This part of the chapter focuses on how one becomes a teacher to children of compulsory school age in public primary and secondary settings in St. Lucia as, presently, a more intentional effort is being made to educate students in inclusive settings. In St. Lucia, students in special education programs in primary and secondary settings may not have been given a formal diagnosis, but display characteristics of students with high incidence disabilities (Bailey-Joseph et al. 2017). Special education classrooms in primary and secondary schools are usually in the format of resource rooms, but students spend most of the day in the general education classroom (Ministry of Education, Special Education Unit, n.d.). In 2005–2006, there were approximately

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1,500 (6.26 percent of the total school population) students being supported in the primary schools (Weekes 2007). No data could be found on the prevalence of students with disabilities being served in secondary settings. One factor that can contribute to students with disabilities reaching their full potential in St. Lucia is having teachers equipped with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to work in inclusive settings. There is no formal pathway to becoming a special education teacher in St. Lucia. However, there are formal pathways for general educators who teach in inclusive classrooms. The Teacher Training Division of the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College undertakes teacher training at the local level (Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development, Youth and Sports: The Corporate Planning Unit 1999). There are two pathways to becoming a general educator, including Primary Education and Secondary Education, and both pathways are two-year programs. The minimum requirements for the Primary Education Teacher Preparation Program include an A, B, or C in at least three high school subjects including mathematics and English (Sir Arthur Lewis Community College 2021). The minimum requirements for the Secondary Education Teacher Preparation Program include an A, B, or C in at least five high school subjects including mathematics and English, two Advanced—Levels or Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) units, and/or an Associate’s Degree in specialist subjects (Sir Arthur Lewis Community College 2021). After completing the two-year teacher education program offered by the Community college, one becomes a licensed educator to teach at the primary or secondary level. However, it must be noted that one may be hired as a primary and secondary educator directly from high school or after graduating from any division at Sir Arthur Lewis Community College. During their tenure in the Primary Education Program, teacher candidates are expected to complete 60 to 83 credits which cover topics such as foundational math and English, introduction to child and human development, strategies to teach reading, math, science and social studies, classroom management, and theories of education. In the years 1999–2003, there was no specific class on special education or inclusive education, but candidates were exposed to modules within courses that touch on these subjects. By 2016–2018, one special education course (Introduction to Exceptionalities) had been added to the curriculum. During the Secondary Education teacher preparation program, teacher candidates complete approximately 73 credits which include the majority of courses in specialist subjects with one course respectively on theories of education, classroom management, and human development. There are fewer pedagogical classes than in the primary education program and no classes on inclusive education. Upon being licensed as general educators, graduates may become special education teachers. In the primary and secondary setting, teachers may be assigned the role of “special educator” based on teacher interest and/or administrators’ perception of the general educator’s ability in instructing “slow learners” (Lubin 2020). There is no official pathway to becoming a special education teacher and so interested persons would have to pursue further education outside of St. Lucia. Maintaining professional development opportunities for those serving children with disabilities was also a goal as outlined in the 2015–2020 Education Sector Development Plan (Government of St. Lucia 2016). Currently, the minimum requirements to be a special education


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teacher include being a trained general educator with at least five years of experience who is collaborative, teaching evaluations of above 70 percent, interest in working and supporting students with challenges a background in special education or has an interest in attending in-service training, and positive dispositions (Department of Education: Special Education Unit, n.d.). There is little indication that the teacher preparation program intentionally prepares candidates to teach in inclusive settings.

The Impact of Social Justice Movements on Special Educators’ Practice in St. Lucia Internationally, some teacher education programs recognize that the impact of social and political factors shape pedagogy and should be more intentional about social justice issues (Landorf and Nevin 2007b). In St. Lucia, there has been little visible change to how teachers are prepared to teach in schools. When examining if societal factors impact teacher preparation, pre-and-post-COVID teacher preparation programs look similar. For example, the Ministry of Education developed a COVID-19 Action Plan and there is no mention of teacher preparation program changes or social justice issues, or discussions related to educational disparities (Department of Education, Innovation, Science, Technology and Vocational Training 2021). St. Lucia is a small, developing nation with many challenges, including financial dependence on the outside world (Chitolie-Joseph 2015). These vulnerabilities of low national capital place it in a precarious position, especially when it comes to educational reform (Chitolie-Joseph 2015). Its need for international financial funding may compel the government to embrace policies, such as providing inclusive education which they may not be equipped to execute. This is evident in the teacher education program which highlights that, although the program has embraced inclusive practices on the international level, very limited coursework prepares candidates to teach in inclusive settings. The social justice movement is new in St. Lucia, and the ripple effects may not have been felt by countries like St. Lucia, at least at the policy and administrative level. If history is an indication of how far St. Lucia is from the developed world, it may take decades before the social justice movement impacts the teacher preparation programs. For example, the legislative push for inclusion is evident in the United States, with Public Law 94–142 being enacted in 1975, whereas St. Lucia’s legal push can be observed as starting in 1999. St. Lucia may reevaluate its teacher preparation program to consider social justice issues after it has become an established way of life in developed countries like the United States. The Education Sector Development Plan (ESDP) 2015–2020 highlights social justice principles as a priority by stating that education must promote fairness, justice, and equality for all. Additionally, the ESDP boasts an education system that is flexible and agile providing continuous professional development to educators to enable them to keep abreast with changing educational trends (Ministry of Education, Human Resource Development and Labour 2015). However, practice does not align with rhetoric. Change comes with more than an

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enunciation of a new educational vision akin to international trends. Therefore, currently, social justice movements have minimal impact on the practice of educators in inclusive settings in St. Lucia.

Background: Inclusive Education in the United States The United States is a country rich in ethnic, cultural, and linguistic diversity, but has been historically challenged to uphold its promises of equity in the educational domain. The United States has been systemically driven by developing policies that aim to ensure that students are granted equitable opportunities in learning environments that prepare students to be productive citizens (Winzer 1993; Kaufmann and Hallahan 2005). Education is also deemed to be a civil right from a historical perspective, as the first legislation in the United States that addressed the rights of children with disabilities is Public Law 94–142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act (EAHCA). This groundbreaking legislation was the first protection for American students who were identified as having a disability. The EAHCA was renamed in 1990 and became known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 1990 with its most recent reauthorization in 2004. Other legislation written with efforts to support children with disabilities include the No Child Left Behind Act (2001) and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) of 2015 that held schools accountable to provide students with disabilities access to general education and aimed to improve student performance (Every Student Succeeds Act 2015). Though legislation in the United States was enacted to support students with disabilities and provide access to education, none of these exclusively use the word “inclusion.” To specifically address inclusion, IDEA states that education and services for students with disabilities should take place in an environment with nondisabled peers to the maximum extent possible (IDEA 2004). As we shape the discussion on inclusion as social justice, studies have shown that there is often a discrepancy in the interpretation of legislation supporting inclusion, how educators implement inclusive practices, and teachers’ general attitudes toward inclusive education (Artiles and Dyson 2005; Osgood 2005; Hunter-Johnson and Newton 2014). To that end, one must explore the trends and outcomes of teacher preparation programs to determine how various models and theories surrounding inclusion are embedded in the teacher preparation curriculum and, more importantly, whether this leads to equitable practices.

Teacher Preparation in the United States Teacher preparation for general and special educators typically take place at the postsecondary level, where candidates complete courses of study leading to a bachelor’s degree in an academic content area, disability category, and, in some cases, specific grade levels within these categories (Fuchs and Fuchs 1994). Each state’s department of education and higher education programs determine how many hours a teacher


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candidate must complete in their practicum or internship based on state and federal laws. Teacher candidates must also pass a culminating assessment, such as the Praxis or other state-mandated assessments, to meet the requirements for initial teacher licensure (Gitomer, Brown and Bonnett 2011). When we explore teacher preparation in the United States, we recognize that special education teachers and general education teachers are often taught a separate curriculum led by faculty specifically trained in either special education or general education, but not inclusive practices (Gregory and Noto 2011). Faculty often contribute to the development of teacher preparation programs and structure the course sequence. However, many programs in the United States have not historically offered integrated coursework for pre-service general education and special education teachers. Teacher preparation models in general education often impact teachers’ perceptions and attitudes regarding inclusion (Kim 2011). Teacher preparation programs in the United States serve as a model to some countries as it is one of the few countries where teachers can become certified exclusively in special education, while also addressing various domains such as behavior management, differentiated instruction, and the use of assistive technology (Jordan and Stanovich 2003). In the United States, special education teachers can teach children with disabilities prior to obtaining their certification thorough provisional licensure. Additionally, many general education teacher preparation programs offer pre-service teachers basic courses related to the foundations of inclusion, disability, and special education.

Impact of Social Justice Movements on Educational Practices in the United States Throughout the United States, many colleges of education have made a strategic effort to examine their mission statements and visions to include verbiage that highlights a commitment not only to diversity, but also to recognizing the need for establishing or broadening their social justice platform (Aronson et al. 2020). Universities strive to communicate their intent to prepare future educators to challenge schooling, policies, and practices that are not equitable or inclusive (Kofke and Morrison 2021). During the COVID-19 global pandemic, unprecedented events in the United States, such as the murder of George Floyd at the hands of the police, sparked global activism that further exposed the systemic inequality that has impacted marginalized groups. Though events in the United States ignited a global response to systemic racism and discrimination, this did not automatically create a global shift for teacher preparation programs to adjust their curriculum and recognize that persons with disabilities are also a part of the larger social justice movement. Within many teacher preparation programs, there is limited discourse on the issues of ability-based segregation in schools (Lavlani, Broderick, Fine, Jacobwitz and Mitchell 2015; Broderick and Lavlani 2017). Ability-based segregation forces teachers to label and sort students based on their impaired abilities. When these conversations are absent from culturally responsive

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pedagogy, there is a dysconciousness surrounding these issues. Dysconciousness, a term coined by diversity scholar Joyce King, suggests that teachers often have a distorted conceptualization about injustice and how it impacts education (King 1991). King (1991) further postulated that these distorted conceptualizations impact teachers’ ability to truly provide equitable education among students. Specifically, as we examine dysconciousness we can note that it inevitably leads to racism, sexism, classism, and ableism (Gordon and Rosenblum 2001; Lalvani and Broderick 2013).

Comparative International Education and Social Justice While exploring teacher preparation programs in the United States and St. Lucia to determine if social justice movements shape inclusive practices, there are several factors that impact teacher preparation programs in both countries and globally. The first factor involves how teacher preparation programs frame the construct of inclusion and disability. Though courses and practicum may provide a foundation to special education for pre-service teachers, studies show that many teachers exit their programs with only an understanding of the deficit model of disability, not the social models of disability as defined in the disability studies framework (Conchan-Smith and Dudley-Marlin 2012). The deficit or medical model of disability in education suggests that something is wrong with an individual who has a disability (Bunbury 2019), and in the context of education, teachers must fix the problem (Reindal 2008). Additionally, within an international context, teachers may have their own culturally based interpretation of the causes of disability. For example, in areas of rural Kenya, culture impacts the way in which the causes of disabilities are understood. Parents of children with disabilities may attribute a disability with the family being cursed or even being punished by God for wrongdoing (Stone-Macdonald and Butera 2012; Bunning, Gona, Newton, and Hartley 2017). This limited knowledge of the various models of disability, as well as the cultural interpretation of disability, can put teachers at a disadvantage when trying to meet the needs of students and implement inclusive equitable practices. Issues of inclusion and exclusion have long been a civil rights issue that impact students’ access to the least restrictive environment, and are indeed an issue of social justice and equity in education. These barriers are not unique to the United States and St. Lucia; in fact, comparative international research on inclusion suggests that many countries still have not prioritized the inclusion of students with disabilities despite the historical international conferences facilitated by UNESCO and the CRPD (Kiuppis 2014). In many countries, like St. Lucia, there seems to be no clear vision on what inclusion should look like (Lubin 2020). Educators face challenges of teaching in inclusive settings and incorporating social justice principles because of confusion between expectations and practicality. Though barriers to inclusion are evident on an international level, access to education for students with disabilities remains a social justice issue that can be addressed by examining the role teachers play in effective implementation.


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

Comparative and international education shapes the complex and constantly evolving discourse surrounding not only teaching, but the preparation of teachers. CIE provides an avenue for many countries to reevaluate the ways in which they prepare educators, educate students, and engage stakeholders while taking in account the unique sociopolitical trends that impact nations. The recent collective global focus on the issues of social justice allows us to reevaluate the role of international education in social justice movements (Wick and Willis 2020). As we examined both the United States and St. Lucia, Critical Disabilities Studies, and Disabilities Studies Education (DSE) were absent from the teacher preparation curricula (Meekosha, Shuttleworth, and Soldatic 2013). In a recent study of teachers in the United States and St. Lucia on their understanding of inclusion, Lubin and Fernal (2021) reported that the majority of educators’ perception of inclusion was limited to the physical placement of students with exceptionalities in the general education setting. If countries commit to include disabilities studies theories within the curriculum, they must also be willing to decolonize the framework of disability and understand the intersectionality of disability as it relates to social justice. Like queer studies, gender studies and other emerging areas of studies, particularly the ones related to marginalized sections of society, the need for an international discourse on disability studies was recognized, which led to the development of the Review of Disabilities Studies journal in 2003. By exploring ways to integrate disabilities studies education and inclusion as social justice courses in teacher preparation programs, one can move beyond the framework of culturally responsive pedagogy and move toward an anti-oppressive pedagogy (Angharard 2015). The privilege and notion of ableism as a social construct devalues and discriminates against persons with disabilities, suggests that those with disabilities privilege remains largely unexamined in the academy, and connections between inclusive education, democratic schooling, and equitable societies are rarely brought to the forefront. One way to address the shifts or lack of shifts in teacher preparation programs is to examine the extent to which programs are teaching courses on diversity and inclusive education. Teacher preparation programs must also become familiar with ideologies that have historically oppressed those with disabilities and gain an understanding about how ableist discourse in education leads to sociopolitical educational systems that perpetuate marginalization (Brucker and Helms 2017; Aronson et al. 2020).

Conclusion and Implications Although a global awareness of social justice and equity as a movement has emerged recently, it is evident that the fields of comparative and international education and teacher education can make significant contributions to this discourse. Social justice demands a shift in the social and political landscape of many countries. Inclusion cannot be viewed solely as a place where people with disabilities should go, but a framework for equity recognizing inclusion as a civil right (Shyman 2015). Without future inquiry that addresses attitudes, curriculum, disability studies, and disability justice, those with disabilities will be continuously marginalized. Aligning these

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frameworks globally, will allow teacher preparation programs to approach disability, inclusion, and social justice through multiple lenses that aim to dismantle the structures and beliefs that marginalize and oppress persons with disabilities (Polat 2011). The review of the two countries showed the following themes that should be explored in future research: (1) Teacher preparation programs, greatly influence teacher’s perceptions and implementation of inclusion in today’s schools; and (2) Social justice movements and expectations of inclusion are often determined by sociopolitical factors that may not be easily generalized in the education settings. Therefore, CIE and teacher education can merge to create a continued level of inquiry from an international perspective which could reveal factors that may be specific within certain international contexts, such as a countries’ policy infrastructure, as well as cultural factors that may impact the understanding of inclusion. While we recognize that social justice is a pillar of inclusive education, CIE would benefit from further inquiry that is not just limited to comparing programmatic structures of teacher preparation programs in diverse countries. To fully gain a clearer understanding of how research on inclusion and social justice impact the field, qualitative measures that employ cases studies and ethnographic data would greatly contribute to what we know about what informs teachers in their practice of fostering equitable education environments that serve marginalized populations.

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Proceedings of the International Conference on Education.” Available online: http:// www.hiceducation.org/proceedings_edu.htm. Osgood, R.L. (2005). The History of Inclusion in the United States. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press. Paulsrud, D. and C. Nilholm (2020). “Teaching for Inclusion – A Review of Research on the Cooperation between Regular Teachers and Special Educators in the Work with Students in Need of Special Support.” International Journal of Inclusive Education, https://doi.org/10.1080/13603116.2020.1846799. Peters, S. (2007). “Inclusion as a Strategy for Achieving Education for All.” In S. Peters, Inclusion as a Strategy for Achieving Education for All, 118–31. Sage, https://dx.doi. org/10.4135/9781848607989. Polat, F. (2011). “Inclusion in Education: A Step towards Social Justice.” International Journal of Educational Development, 31 (1): 50–8. Pugach, M., J. Gomez-Najarro and A. Matewos (2019). “A Review of Identity in Research on Social Justice in Teacher Education: What Role for Intersectionality?” Journal of Teacher Education, 70 (3): 206–18. Rapp, C. and A. Corral-Granados (2021). “Understanding Inclusive Education – A Theoretical Contribution From System Theory and The Constructionist Perspective.” International Journal of Inclusive Education, https://doi.org/10.1080/13603116.2021.19 46725. Reindal, S.M. (2008). “A Social Relational Model of Disability: A Theoretical Framework for Special Needs Education?.” European Journal of Special Needs Education, 23 (2): 135–46, https://doi.org/10.1080/08856250801947812. Schuelka, M.J. and K. Lapham (2019). “Comparative and International Inclusive Education: Trends, Dilemmas, and Future Directions.” In A.W. Wiseman (Ed.), Annual Review of Comparative and International Education, International Perspectives on Education and Society, Vol. 37. Bingley, UK: Emerald. Sharma, U., C. Forlin, T. Loreman and C. Earle (2006). “Pre-service Teachers’ Attitudes, Concerns, and Sentiments about Inclusive Education: An International Comparison of Novice Pre-service Teachers.” International Journal of Special Education, 21 (3): 80–92. Shyman, E. (2015). “Toward a Globally Sensitive Definition of Inclusive Education Based in Social Justice.” International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, 62 (4): 351–62, https://doi.org/10.1080/1034912X.2015.1025715. Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (SALCC) (2021). Teacher Education and Educational Leadership. Available online: https://salcc.edu.lc/teacher-education/index. php. Slee, R. (2014). “Discourses of Inclusion and Exclusion: Drawing Wider Margins.” Power and Education, 6 (1): 7–17. Soldatic, K. and S. Grech (2014). “Transnationalising Disability Studies: Rights, Justice and Impairment.” Disability Studies Quarterly, 34 (2): n.p., https://doi.org/10.18061/dsq. v34i2.4249. Sorkos, Georgios and Christina Hajisoteriou (2020). “Sustainable Intercultural and Inclusive Education: Teachers’ Efforts on Promoting a Combining Paradigm. Pedagogy Culture and Society,” 1–20. Available online: https://10.1080/14681366.2020.1765193. Stone-MacDonald, A. and G. Butera (2012). “Cultural Beliefs and Attitudes about Disability in Sub-Saharan Africa.” Review of Disability Studies, 8 (1): 62–77. UNESCO. 2020. Towards Inclusion in Education: Status, Trends and Challenges—The UNESCO Salamanca Statement 25 Years On. Paris: UNESCO.


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United Nations [UN]. 2015. Transforming our world: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Available online: https://documents-dds-ny.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/ N15/291/89/PDF/N1529_189.pdf?OpenElement (accessed November 4, 2022). UN General Assembly, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 13 December 2006, A/RES/61/106, Annex I. Available Online: https://www.refworld.org/ docid/4680cd212.html (accessed November 4, 2022). Valdivieso, P. (2020). “School Leaders and Inclusive Education in Peru: A Case Study of Principal Leadership in an Effective Inclusive School 2020.” International Journal of Innovative Business Strategies, 6 (2): 451–63. Weekes, C. (2007 Dec.). St. Lucia Country Report: Caribbean Symposium on Inclusive Education. Kingston, Jamaica: UNESCO: International Bureau for Education. Wick, D. and T. Willis (2020). “International Educations Potential for Advancing Social Justice.” In L. Burger (Ed.), Social Justice in International Education: Research, Practice, and Perspectives, 11–42. NAFSA: National Association of International Teachers. Winzer, M.A. (1993). The History of Special Education: From Isolation to Integration. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press. Zeichner, K., M. Bowman, L. Guillen and Napolitan K. Engaging (2016). “Working in Solidarity with Local Communities in Preparing the Teachers of Their Children.” Journal of Teacher Education, 67 (4): 277–90. doi:10.1177/0022487116660623.


Teaching in a Global Era: Two Cases of Teacher Professional Learning Programs for Global Citizenship Education in the United States and South Korea Yuqing Hou and Deborah Shin

Introduction Rapid globalization processes in economies, cultures, politics, and societies, along with unprecedented technological developments, made the world increasingly interconnected and yet unpredictable. The dissolution of physical national borders provokes a reconsideration of many aspects of citizenship, including identity formation, moral values, and fulfillment of rights and responsibilities. Such a shift exerts a significant impact on citizenship education and gives great prominence to the role of schools in fostering citizens for a globalized world. For this critical moment, an essential task for teachers and educational practitioners is to help learners grasp the complexities of global interconnectedness and take actions against pressing issues such as environmental degradation, sustainability, human rights abuses, xenophobia, and social inequalities that cut across different societies, cultures, or belief systems. The call for a more just, peaceful, and sustainable world resulted in the emergence of Global Citizenship Education (GCE), a transformative educational agenda seeking to expand the notion of citizenship conventionally associated with the development of nation-states and ethnic nationalism. Despite variance in the specific goals and implementations of GCE in different educational contexts (see, e.g., Goren and Yemini 2017), GCE is considered to be a key curricular component aiming for a sense of belonging transcending one’s immediate context, raising global consciousness, and carrying out thoughtful actions (UNESCO 2014; Gaudelli 2016). Teachers are standing at the frontline of GCE, since their daily teaching practices enormously influence the extent to which the goals of developing global-minded and engaged citizens would be attained. A growing body of research (see, e.g., Tarozzi and Mallon 2019; Yemini et al. 2019) has shown a variety of ways in which the concept of global citizenship could be incorporated into teacher preparation programs across countries. Intentionally designed coursework and teaching practica featured in these


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programs play a crucial role for pre-service teachers in understanding and teaching GCE. However, few existing studies examine how in-service professional development programs integrate GCE concepts. This chapter draws on two professional development programs, one from the United States, and the other from South Korea, and investigates how these two programs rationalize and implement in-service teacher training with a goal of teaching students as (future) global citizens. We highlight the contextual forces (at both national and program levels) in shaping GCE frameworks in the two programs and take a comparative perspective informed by comparative and international education (CIE) to analyze the possible points of convergence and divergence in their strategies related to GCE. Findings based on the analysis of the two programs offer new visions for stimulating the revival of CIE in teacher preparation and professional learning. This is because GCE could mediate CIE within teacher education via a contribution to teachers’ interests in the global commons (Torres and Bosio 2020), moral responsibility, civic virtues, and participation while they are teaching comparative or international perspectives, issues, and beliefs. Through a qualitative content analysis of program descriptions on websites and online documents, we ask (1) How do these two professional development programs prepare in-service teachers to teach global citizenship? (2) What are the similarities and differences in terms of the content and pedagogies for GCE covered in the two programs? Before transitioning to an overview of the chapter, we start with illustrating the dual nature of CIE (Wolhuter 2021: 12) and its academic positions. First of all, CIE embodies a multitude of research methods. In the case of teacher learning for GCE, a comparative inquiry has the explanatory power to learn from different countries and their educational systems, issues, and challenges, embedded in and reflecting a bigger social and cultural context (Wolhuter, 2021). A comparison of GCE topics and pedagogies enables educators to see GCE from new perspectives, and these widened perceptions could contribute to new policies for and assessments of GCE. In addition to offering a research method, CIE could also be seen as a subject matter in itself. In this regard, we employ the program findings to further promote the nexus of teacher education (for both pre-service or in-service) and CIE through an argument that GCE has the potential to mediate between the two scholarly fields (i.e., teacher education and CIE) by reinvigorating a commitment to international and global perspectives within teacher preparation and professional development programs. In this chapter, we first revisit the literature on the conceptualization of GCE and the important role teachers play in this realm, followed by a review of the trends and tensions regarding the inclusion of GCE components in teacher education. Then, we set the study background and discuss how GCE is contextualized in the United States and South Korea, respectively. Andreotti’s (2006) Critical GCE theoretically illuminates the study, and by virtue of this theoretical position, GCE must be geared toward challenging assumptions and mechanisms that perpetuate inequality. We present the findings as a two-case study through a qualitative content analysis of two programs: Strive for Future Teaching1 (SFT) and Capacity-Building on GCED for Teachers. The first program is nested within a teacher training organization affiliated with a West Coast US university, and the latter operates under the Asia Pacific Centre of Education for International Understanding (APCEIU), located in South Korea and

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sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The discussion section illustrates the similarities and differences in terms of the frameworks, topics, and pedagogies covered within the two programs. More importantly, the last section on implications for CIE highlights and explains a nexus that GCE can help build between the academic fields of teacher education and CIE.

Conceptualization of GCE and the Importance of Teacher Roles Multiple stakeholders in education, including international organizations, higher education institutions, policy makers, and school board members, have now made education for global citizenship an important focus of attention. For example, UNESCO incorporates GCE2 into its guidelines and defines global citizenship as “a sense of belonging to a broader community and common humanity” and “a way of understanding, acting and relating oneself to others and the environment in space and in time” (2014: 14). Globalization has strengthened the interconnectedness between the local and global, which transforms the notion of citizenship traditionally defined by the national territory and/or ethnicity. This change also challenges the aims and goals for teaching and learning citizenship. Education for global citizenship thus comes to the fore in the age of globalization, and its conceptualization emphasizes awareness and understanding of global issues. A range of knowledge, skills, and values (see UNESCO 2015a) are now identified by scholars and policy makers as vital agespecific GCE content to be taught in schools, and the goal is to foster learners’ ability to learn diversity, empathy, critical inquiry, and participation. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and especially Target 4.7 of Goal 4 for quality education acknowledges the importance of GCE for building a more inclusive world. Teachers are acknowledged as key enablers for making GCE theoretically and practically feasible in a class, as one indicator for Target 4.7 is to measure the extent to which GCE is mainstreamed in teacher education (UNESCO 2018). It is indisputable that teachers can strongly influence the ways in which GCE is introduced and taught in real settings and that GCE can bring about the desired transformative changes rather than continue to perpetuate inequalities. Moreover, teachers are receiving special attention in the implementation process of GCE because, unlike government administrators and policy makers, teachers are crucial stakeholders of the 20303 Education Agenda. Hence, their participation in these initiatives is paramount.

Trends and Tensions of Teacher Learning for GCE An increased interest in GCE in teacher preparation programs can be found in both practical work and research studies (Yemini et al. 2019; Schugurensky and Wolhuter 2020). A few empirical studies (see Harshman and Augustine 2013; Guo 2014; Larsen and Searle 2017) demonstrate diverse and innovative ways to incorporate GCE-related content into teacher education programs. However, Schugurensky and Wolhuter (2020) argue that GCE training still remains insufficient for pre-service as well as in-service teachers. A clearer theoretical explanation of what the notion of global citizenship


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really means, and its relationship with citizenship cultivation at the local or national level, is also imperatively needed for teachers to better grasp GCE (Rapoport 2009). Additionally, reflections on the larger landscape of teacher education are useful to uncover the hidden constraints imposed on teachers for GCE engagement. For example, without attending to the prevailing neoliberal context, structural inequalities, and other existing practical difficulties in the field of education, GCE discourses within teacher education could easily perpetuate a romanticized perspective that “frame(s) GCE as a redemptive educational solution to global problems” (Estellés and Fischman 2020: 9). The dominance of standardized testing, mainstream ways of preparing teachers, and concerns for certification and career pathways also make teachers less likely to have an interest in GCE (Gaudelli 2016).

Critical GCE Critical GCE (Andreotti 2006; Pashby and Andreotti 2015) theoretically informs this study. A critical approach is required since “without a critically reflexive grounding, GCE approaches can easily reproduce assumptions that reinforce rather than challenge mechanisms of inequality” (Pashby and Andreotti 2015: 9). In contrast to a soft approach, critical GCE views unequal power relations, rather than a lack of development, as the cause of problems (Andreotti 2006). Coupled with postcolonial theories, critical GCE interrogates the normative ideologies and assumptions about rationalism, modernity, and Eurocentrism, and unveils their liaison in constructing imaginary universalities and (re)creating social inequities (Pashby and Andreotti 2015). Pedagogies illuminated by critical GCE promote learners’ comprehension and engagement with the complexities of globalization and participation in making systemic changes (Pashby and Andreotti 2015). Critical GCE pedagogies also see the importance of de-centering oneself and exploring alternative possibilities without predefined scripts of humanity regarding being, knowing, thinking, and acting. In the US context, it means students should reflect on their privileged positionality4 and uphold ontological and epistemological pluralism so that they will not become “dispensers of charity, knowledge, education or human rights” (Pashby and Andreotti 2015: 13). For students in Korea, de-centering oneself and exploring alternative possibilities are also applicable. Korea, arguably positioned at the semi-periphery of the world system, de-centering is required in order to expand its ethnic identity and to relate to the global community.

GCE in the United States and South Korea The United States In the US educational context, GCE concepts are often embodied in the long-standing international education sectors at both K-12 and higher education levels. Some of the most common circumstances where the GCE component is infused include

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international schools, study abroad programs, international service-learning, and the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma programs. GCE is often introduced when students are learning global-related content in K-12 social studies or language classes, and it is less likely to be developed as a subject on its own. GCE can enrich the multiculturalism orientation in US society. Tarozzi and Torres (2016) theoretically argue that GCE can offer a solution to US multicultural education dilemmas because GCE’s social justice framework enables it to put a strong emphasis on equality and human rights issues (149). However, the historical, social, and cultural dynamics in the United States affect the attitude toward globally oriented education, including GCE. Research shows that curriculum standards demonstrate resistance to a global perspective (see Rapoport 2009), but favor national identity and patriotism because the United States “has not overcome the political and cultural stigma of globalism as anti-American” (Myers 2006: 389). Ameri-centric discourse is further aggravated by “descriptions of job losses because of offshoring, trade deficits, foreign terrorists, the rise of the developing countries” (Zhao 2010: 426). Practically speaking, however, GCE is still fragmented when it comes to implementation, and it is challenging to investigate to what degree GCE components are currently incorporated in the overall US education system, since a truly national curriculum does not exist (Rapoport 2009; Pashby and Engel 2020). A few studies in recent years began to theoretically or empirically demonstrate the importance of preparing US teachers for GCE (see Saperstein 2020). Despite research done with pre-service teachers (see Myers and Rivero 2020), in-service teachers, who constitute the largest number of the education workforce, are highly under-researched for GCE training. US teachers’ professional learning can take various forms including subject-matter networks, school–university partnerships, district in-service activities, professional organizations, or education reform projects (Wei et al. 2009). These venues create different possibilities for infusing GCE into teacher learning. The program in the study is attached to a state-level, university-affiliated teacher professional learning organization.

South Korea In 2010, the South Korean government declared to prepare South Korea for a multicultural society. The rapid increase of migrant workers, immigrant wives, North Korean refugees, and the ethnic Korean population from China, in addition to a decrease in fertility rates, have all contributed to the demographic change in South Korea. In 2017, the number of multicultural family students exceeded 100,000 for the first time (Statistics5 2018). Such a change in demographics in South Korea, especially that of children born in South Korea, urged the South Korean government to initiate multicultural education to integrate these children and mothers into South Korean society. The initiatives taken at the local level are no more than assimilation activities and support, featuring a celebration of diverse cultures. As the host country of the 2015 World Education Forum, where all UN member states gathered together to draft the Incheon Declaration to get the agenda for Education 2030, the South


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Korean government has put considerable effort into implementing GCE. However, global citizenship appeared as early as in South Korea’s social studies curriculum as the “striving model of humankind6” in the seventh national curriculum in 1997 (Park 2018; MoE 2019). The South Korean education system is highly praised in the international community, but South Korea that prestige is not reflected at the same level in the country’s political and economic clout in the global society. In South Korea, GCE is often interchangeably understood as multicultural education, education for international understanding, education for sustainable development, character education, peace/nonviolence education, human rights education, and/or democratic citizenship education (Kim et al. 2019). Although the military regime is a distant memory in South Korea, classrooms are still oppressive and are characterized by political neutrality and compliance to the government. Teachers in South Korea are obligated to stay politically neutral and are restricted from expressing or exhibiting their political views, not only in the classroom but in private settings like being a member of a political party. This restricts the teachers from having discussions over controversial issues or criticizing the government, as they are considered civil servants. Predicated on a belief that knowledge and education are apolitical and that they do not contribute to the reproduction of social power and privilege (Cochran-Smith 2010), such a political climate undermines the teaching for GCE that pursues societal change. Moreover, the elitism embedded in the South Korean culture could explain why GCE practices in South Korea can easily result in social reproduction by reinforcing class distinctions through the exclusion of children in the lower-resourced environments, while privileging students in higher-resourced contexts (Cho and Mossellon 2018). GCE could also easily become an oppressive top-down policy on part the government. In South Korea, GCE implementation is becoming more of a bureaucratic practice from the Ministry of Education, rather than an educational policy based on the teachers’ needs (Yu et al. 2017; APCEIU 2018). GCE training has now become a requirement for teachers in elementary schools, and the support of the regional/ provincial offices for GCE has also turned into a national policy. Mandating policies at the behest of a supranational organization always poses the threat of opposition and resistance at the local level. Thus, it is vital to leave room for each nation-state to implement GCE to fit its own local context, but GCE still needs to have a clear theoretical foundation to appropriately frame its applicability.

Research Design Given that only scarce research in teacher training for GCE focuses on professional development programs, we selected two programs in distinct national contexts to compare how GCE topics and pedagogies are covered in the programs, and the ways in which they facilitate teachers’ ability to teach GCE. This research is designed as a two-case study (Yin 2014; Merriam and Tisdell 2015), featuring two teacher professional learning programs for GCE. Case study research is an “empirical inquiry that investigates a contemporary phenomenon (the

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‘case’)” occurring in a bounded context (Yin 2014: 75), and it is an “intensive, holistic description and analysis” (Merriam and Tisdell 2015: 232). Through qualitative content analysis of program websites and online documents (e.g., program reports, flyers, pamphlets, booklets, sample lesson plans/activities) that are all publicly accessible, we discuss similarities and differences found in these two cases. Given the limited scope of the data collection, the study could not capture the whole picture of the two programs, especially regarding how GCE is delivered in reality as well as the training outcomes and teachers’ experiences in these programs. These research directions warrant future investigations.

Findings Case 1: Strive for Future Teaching (SFT) within a teacher professional development network on the West Coast of the United States Developed under a state-funded subject-matter teacher professional learning network (hereafter referred to as network), Strive for Future Teaching (SFT) is a year-long program designed for a US state’s K-12 teachers from all disciplines to learn about knowledge on sustainability, environmental literacy, and the United Nations SDG 11, i.e., Sustainable Cities and Communities. This network has the main headquarters office located within a state’s university and also establishes several regional sites built in sponsoring universities in different parts of the state. Teacher educators, directors, as well as administrators in the network are responsible for designing and implementing programs in their respective regions. This organizational structure aims to facilitate collaboration across the state. The network offers a series of on-site and virtual workshops, seminars/webinars, conferences, forums, and educational resources for K-12 teachers (of all disciplines and grade levels) in the state to learn and teach global competence, a key concept deeply built into the network’s framework and all its teacher professional learning programs. Adapted from Asia Society’s (2018) global competence framework, the network emphasizes four domains of learning: (1) investigate the world beyond the immediate environment, (2) recognize perspectives of others and one’s own, (3) communicate ideas effectively with diverse audiences, (4) take action to improve conditions. Building upon these four domains, the network in its theoretical framework proposes multiple indicators and benchmarks in each of the domains to highlight the following aspects of student learning, including (1) posing questions and conducting research to solve them, (2) interrogating previous assumptions, (3) respect for human rights and individual difference, (4) engaging in civil discourse, (5) promoting self-reflexivity to analyze power dynamics or privileges involved in actions or thoughts. The network believes that through global competence, teachers and educators can build global citizenship within all students, regardless of their backgrounds. In other words, all students will become global citizens by means of GCE. Teachers will also need to develop the same competencies and sense of global citizenship in themselves to be able to fully understand it and teach it to their students. Additionally, the


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network endorses multiple values in teaching global competence, and they include diversity, equity and equal access to global education, empowerment, engagement, and interdisciplinarity. The United Nations’ SDGs are taught as the key content in several teacher professional learning programs within the network because the network believes that students, as global competent citizens,7 need to understand these global issues covered in the SDGs. These global issues are complex and interdependent, so students need to see how they are shaped by historical, political, cultural, and economic forces. SFT is one of such programs, and it particularly focuses on Goal 11, which is Sustainable Cities and Communities.

Case 1 Analysis SFT is designed as a year-long teacher professional learning program for all K-12 teachers of all content areas in the state. It contains three parts: (1) five-day summer seminars, (2) three follow-up webinars/workshops in the fall and winter, (3) presenting projects done with students at schools or in communities in the spring (the following year). The year-long program design has two aims. The first is to increase teachers’ engagement in professional learning as they are supported throughout the year. The second is to build connections (especially with the same grade level or content area) and a sense of community among teachers. Teachers need to apply in order to enter the program (at no cost), and upon program completion, they receive a stipend and can apply for Continuing Education Units. Content knowledge covered includes sustainability, environmental literacy, UN SDGs 11, environmental justice, global competence, global citizenship, etc. Teachers are introduced to the importance of these concepts and their conceptual connections and differences. They also learn how these topics are infused into the state curriculum and how they can integrate these concepts into instructions or assignments in different content areas and for students of different grade levels. The end goal is to facilitate teachers’ ability to develop students’ global competence for global citizenship while learning this content. To reach this goal, teachers also learn how to make local connections to global issues, so they can promote students’ engagement with the environment or sustainability issues. Pedagogical approaches assisting the teaching environment and sustainability include student-centered, inquiry-based, culturally relevant, and agency-focused learning. These pedagogies make students feel empowered to find problems and take action. In addition to content knowledge and instructional skills, teachers benefit from enormous resources shared in the program on environmental teaching, such as climate change reports in the local area, new initiatives, or projects committed to environmental action. Moreover, networks are established between teachers and teacher leaders,8 as well as government officers, academic scholars, community organizers, activists, etc., who are invited in the program to share their experiences, insights, and reflection on work for sustainability and environmental justice. The program ends with a presentation on teachers’ capstone projects as a culmination of their learning in the program. The first part is an action plan which states what lesson plans, daily activities, events, curriculum changes, etc., they would make to integrate

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sustainability and environmental issues into teaching either in schools or other places. The second part is to implement the plan and demonstrate (through presentations) what and how students have learned in terms of environmental issues and SDGs in the lessons and whether students show agency in addressing these issues.

Case 2: Capacity-Building on GCED for Teachers Program within APCEIU The Asian-Pacific Center of Education for International Understanding (APCEIU) is an organization under the guidance of UNESCO that serves as the clearinghouse for GCED by providing several training sessions, workshops, conferences, seminars, and resources on GCED for the stakeholders in the international community. Although the organization has field experts with whom it consults, APCEIU serves as a link and a hub rather than the creator and provider of answers to GCED. This chapter looks specifically at the Capacity-Building Workshop program for South Korean GCED Lead Teachers. Specific activities under the program are (1) Training workshops for National GCED Lead Teachers, (2) Support for Delivery Training of Provincial GCED Lead Teachers, (3) Regional Seminars on GCED for South Korean Educators, and (4) Management of Teachers Study Association. The Ministry of Education (MoE) in South Korea appoints 50~70 school teachers from all over South Korea to serve as the National GCED Lead Teachers for a one-year appointment. A new group of Lead Teachers is selected at the beginning of the calendar year, receiving their appointment and their first training during winter break, while their second training takes the form of a mid-year report during summer break. Upon receiving the training workshops in January, the GCED Lead Teachers are expected to organize and train the provincial/ regional GCED Lead Teachers, as well as incorporate GCED into their own classrooms once the school begins in March. APCEIU is not authorized to command the regional educational offices but is a collaborator of the MoE and appointed as the official training organization of four city/provincial offices of education (Yu et al. 2017).

Case 2 Analysis Three learning domains of GCED are cognitive, socioemotional, and behavioral. Cognitive learning attributes are knowledge and critical thinking, such as examining migration history and circumstances for migrations. Socioemotional learning attributes are values, attitudes, and social skills. In this domain, the students examine issues of conflicts, stereotypes, marginalization, etc. The behavioral domain asks for action toward change. The learners must exhibit creative problem-solving skills that increase understanding, empathy, and compassion. The outcome document of the Technical Consultation on Global Citizenship Education: Global Citizenship Education—An Emerging Perspective states that “GCED aims to equip learners with the following core competencies: a) A deep knowledge of global issues and universal values such as justice, equality, dignity, and respect; b) cognitive skills to think critically, systemically and creatively, including adopting a multi-perspective approach that recognizes different dimension, perspectives, and angles of issues; c) non-cognitive skills including social skills such as empathy and conflict resolution, and communicative skills and aptitudes


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for networking and interacting with people of different backgrounds, origins, cultures and perspectives; and d) behavioral capacities to act collaboratively and responsibly, and to strive for collective good (UNESCO 2013: 49).” This can be compared to the pedagogical principles APCEIU provides for their teacher training as well as their online courses on GCED: (a) critical empowerment, (b) dialogue and participation, (c)  applicable and relevant, (d) values formation, (e) multimodal, and (f) holistic approach. The five key thematic areas of GCED identified for the GCED CapacityBuilding Workshop by APCEIU are (1) Human Rights, (2) Respect for Diversity, (3) Sustainable Development, (4) Peace and Conflict Resolution, and (5) Globalization and Social Justice. Upon learning the content of GCED, many teachers expressed that they had already been incorporating some of these concepts in their teaching practices without recognizing that they were doing so (APCEIU 2018). Recognizing these themes can overlap and intersect with one another; some teachers select some of these themes instead of covering all five key thematic areas in classroom practices. The main values emphasized by UNESCO are “Learning to Live Together” and “Teaching Respect for All” (Park 2018). According to UNESCO (2017), GCED has evolved and now includes Education for International Understanding, Human Rights Education, Intercultural/Multicultural Education, Citizenship Education, Education for Gender Equality, Global Education, and Education for Sustainable Development. As a transformative education approach, GCED seeks to teach skills and abilities that can develop students’ deep learning rather than superficial contact or understanding, and allows the brain to integrate and apply knowledge in various disciplines (Reimers 2009). In order to apply GCED in teaching, it is important for the teachers to translate the curriculum and content into actual learning, and, to complete this goal, it needs input from policy makers, curriculum designers, instructional designers, researchers, textbook authors, etc. (UNESCO 2017). Although the main principles laid out suggest a pedagogical approach to GCED, much of the actual implementation in classrooms requires teacher agency and capacity to interpret, develop, and apply the key thematic areas aligned with pedagogical principles.

Discussion Located in two distinct national contexts, SFT and Capacity-Building on GCED have shown various possibilities of incorporating teaching global citizenship frameworks, topics, and pedagogies into teacher professional learning. The two cases’ salient themes and patterns show important similarities and differences. First, STF and CapacityBuilding on GCED are attached to nonprofit organizations committed to addressing global issues, cross-cultural understanding, improving international and global education, etc. Also, these organizations form close partnerships with government’s education department. However, APCEIU is affiliated with UNESCO, with complex organizational structures and a strong international agenda for teaching and learning global citizenship. By contrast, SFT is a state-level organization that only focuses on teachers, students, school curriculum, and standards within the state. For example, case one analysis shows that SFT places more emphasis on making local connections to global issues in teaching. Relatedly, SFT and Capacity-Building on GCED are

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informed by different conceptual frameworks. While SFT stresses the importance for teachers to develop students’ global competence to build global citizenship, CapacityBuilding on GCED adheres to UNESCO’s framing on common humanity, collective goods, and social-emotional learning, such as empathy. It should be pointed out that the conceptualization of global competence in SFT does not imply a neoliberal approach to education linked with workforce development, increasing productivity, and national economic growth. Instead, the knowledge, dispositions, and informed actions within the SFT’s framework indicate an aspiration to better understand and improve the globalized world. Second, since education for global citizenship is now a part of the national curriculum in South Korea, relevant teacher training has become a mandatory requirement (so far at the elementary level) with centralized and hierarchical structures. In case two, we see national GCED Lead teachers, once completing training, organize and train regional GCED Lead teachers. Receiving such training or not also strongly influences teachers’ career pathways, resulting in either enthusiasm or a lack of genuine interest in teaching global citizenship. This nationally centralized teacher training intervention risks turning teaching global citizenship into a bureaucratic and superficial practice. In the United States, global citizenship training for teachers is much more optional, and it depends on the teachers’ or districts’ interests in whether to include global perspectives in education. After all, there are many professional learning options for the teachers/ school districts to choose from. However, it cannot bring about societal transformative change if teaching for global citizenship is only counting on a small group of teachers. How to help more teachers understand the importance of instilling global citizenship in students will be a challenging but essential task. Third, education for global citizenship topics covered in SFT and CapacityBuilding on GCED are convergent in that they both see the value of action, justice, collaboration, communication, recognizing different perspectives, and promoting diversity in the world. Regarding differences, peace and conflict resolution is a theme that has particular significance in Capacity-Building on GCED, given APCEIU and UNESCO’s commitment to international cooperation and humanitarianism around the globe. In contrast, promoting learners’ self-reflexivity on their positionality, thoughts, and actions has been brought to the special attention of SFT. Additionally, both SFT and Capacity-Building on GCED agree on student-centered, life-relevant, and agency-focused pedagogical approaches for education for global citizenship. Last but not least, both SFT and Capacity-Building on GCED provide year-long training, support, and networks for teachers, which sustains their training efforts. More research, therefore, is needed to examine if a long-term structure of professional learning could improve training outcomes.

Implications for CIE This study builds a strong nexus with CIE in two ways. First, we conducted a comparative inquiry to examine teacher professional learning for GCE. This comparative perspective is drawn from CIE as the latter offers a particular research design and methodology. The explanatory and interpretive power of comparative


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

analysis informs and allows researchers, educators, and policy makers to better grasp the programs in the two countries, especially regarding the trends and challenges in their development of GCE. The comparison can also reveal the hidden issues embedded in the educational context that may not be shown in a single-case study. Second, we see CIE as a subject matter to which GCE can add value, and in this way, CIE courses can have a stronger foothold in both teacher preparation and inservice learning. The dynamics of globalization processes underpins the rationale for attaining a sense of global citizenship. Grounded on globalization frameworks and continuously developed to achieve what it aims as a part of UN’s global education agenda, GCE can enable teachers to recognize the importance of shared educational agendas in the global realm such as the UN frameworks for SDGs, which were agreed by all UN member states to be achieved by 2030 (UNESCO 2015b). Furthermore, the key notions delivered in GCE such as global commons (Torres and Bosio, 2020) and a broader sense of belonging embody a new narrative in the field of education that prioritizes global ethics, moral responsibility, and civic participation. GCE will provide a helpful tool for teachers and educators to reflect on and examine the downside of globalization, such as fierce competition and marketization of education. This realization can build teachers’ further interests in taking a comparative and international perspective on education and encourage them to explore the profession and purpose of teaching in a globalized world. For this reason, GCE can play a mediating role between CIE and teacher education and counter the trend toward a drastic decline of CIE courses in teacher education programs (O’Sullivan 2008). GCE, in this regard, may genuinely contribute to the revival of CIE in teacher education.

Notes 1 In contrast to APCEIU where Capacity-Building on GCED for Teachers program is affiliated with, the program in the United States is located in a relatively small, locally focused teacher training organization. Considering future research will be conducted on teachers/administrators in the program, this chapter uses a program pseudonym (SFT) to protect privacy. 2 We use GCE in the chapter wherever it indicates a general concept of global citizenship education. However, it is worth noting that UNESCO (where APCEIU is affiliated with) uses GCED to state their committed goals and approaches to global citizenship education programs that its members offer. Therefore, analysis of case two (in the findings section) uses GCED to align with APCEIU’s frameworks and aims. 3 Education 2030 had been created to reach the 2030 SDGs related to education. 4 Privileged positionality especially speaks to the power relations the United States is leveraging in the world. 5 Translated from Korean. 6 The seventh curriculum referred to a Global Citizen as the model of all humankind that we all should strive for.

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7 The word used in some network documents to describe the desired goal of fostering students through a combination of global competence and global citizenship. 8 Teacher leaders are staff or faculty members from the sponsoring university, and they design the content and facilitate workshops and webinars.

References Andreotti, V. (2006). “Soft Versus Critical Global Citizenship Education.” Policy and Practice: A Development Education Review, 3 (Autumn): 40–51. APCEIU (2018). 세계시민교육 국내 이행현황 연구보고서: 유/초중등학교 교육과정을. Asia Society (2018). “Teaching for Global Competence in a Rapidly Changing World.” OECD Publishing. 중심으로 “GCED National Implementation Research Report: K-12 Curriculum.” Seoul: Cho, D.H. Cho, H.S. and J. Mosselson (2018). “Neoliberal Practices amidst Social Justice Orientations: Global Citizenship Education in South Korea.” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 48 (6): 861–78. Cochran-Smith, M. (2010). “Toward a Theory of Teacher Education for Social Justice.” In A. Hargreaves, A. Lieberman, M. Fullan and D. Hopkins (Eds.), Second International Handbook of Educational Change, 445–67. Dordrecht: Springer. Estellés, M. and G.E. Fischman (2020). “Who Needs Global Citizenship Education? A Review of the Literature on Teacher Education.” Journal of Teacher Education, 72 (2): 223–36. Gaudelli, W. (2016). Global Citizenship Education: Everyday Transcendence. New York: Routledge. Goren, H. and M. Yemini (2017). “Global Citizenship Education Redefined: A Systematic Review of Empirical Studies on Global Citizenship Education.” International Journal of Educational Research, 82: 170–83. Guo, L. (2014). “Preparing Teachers to Educate for 21st Century Global Citizenship: Envisioning and Enacting.” Journal of Global Citizenship & Equity Education, 4 (1): 1–23. Harshman, J.R. and T.A. Augustine (2013). “Fostering Global Citizenship Education for Teachers through Online Research.” The Educational Forum, 77 (4): 450–63. Korean National Statistics (2018). Youth Statistics. Korea and the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family 2018. Korean National Report. Kim, S.J., Y.L. Kim and Y.H. Kim (2019). 국제이해교육, 세계시민교육, 다문화교육의 개념적관계에 대한 질적 연구: 국제교육개발협력 측면을 중심으로. “Conceptual Relations between Education for International Understanding, Global Citizenship Education, and Intercultural Education: In Terms of Educational Development Cooperation.” Korean Journal of Educational Research, 56 (2): 133–59. Larsen, M.A. and M.J. Searle (2017). “International Service Learning and Critical Global Citizenship: A Cross-Case Study of a Canadian Teacher Education Alternative Practicum.” Teaching and Teacher Education, 63: 196–205. Merriam, S.B. and E.J. Tisdell (2015). Qualitative Research: A Guide to Design and Implementation. Fourth Edition. Hoboken NJ: John Wiley & Sons. MoE (Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea) (2019). https://Moe.go.kr.


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Myers, J.P. (2006). “Rethinking the Social Studies Curriculum in the Context of Globalization: Education for Global Citizenship in the U.S.” Theory & Research in Social Education, 34 (3): 370–94. Myers, J.P. and K. Rivero (2020). “Challenging Preservice Teachers’ Understandings of Globalization: Critical Knowledge for Global Citizenship Education.” The Journal of Social Studies Research, 44 (4): 383–96. O’Sullivan, M. (2008). “Comparative and International Education in Initial Teacher Education: An Irish Case Study.” Irish Educational Studies, 27 (3): 241–51. Park, J.H. (2018). SDG 4.7 세계시민교육 지표수립을 위한 기초연구 [Preliminary Research for SDG 4.7 GCED Indicator establishment]. Pashby, K. and V. Andreotti (2015). “Critical Global Citizenship in Theory and Practice.” In J. Harshman, T. Augustine and M. Merryfield (Eds.), Research in Global Citizenship Education, 9–33. Arlington, VA: Information Age Publishing, Inc. Pashby, K. and L.C. Engel (2020). “Global Citizenship Education in Teacher Education in Canada and the US: Trends, Barriers, and Possibilities.” In D. Schugurensky and C. Wolhuter (Eds.), Global Citizenship Education and Teacher Education: Theoretical and Practical Issues, 428–56. New York: Routledge. Rapoport, A. (2009). “A Forgotten Concept: Global Citizenship Education and State Social Studies Standards.” Journal of Social Studies Research, 33 (1): 91–112. Reimers, F. (2009). ““Global Competency” Is Imperative for Global Success.” Chronicle of Higher Education, 55 (21): A29. Saperstein, E. (2020). “Global Citizenship Education Starts with Teacher Training and Professional Development.” Journal of Global Education and Research, 4 (2): 125–39. Schugurensky, D. and C. Wolhuter (Eds.) (2020). Global Citizenship Education in Teacher Education: Theoretical and Practical Issues. New York: Routledge. Tarozzi, M. and B. Mallon (2019). “Educating Teachers towards Global Citizenship: A Comparative Study in Four European Countries.” London Review of Education, 17 (2): 112–25. Tarozzi, M. and C. Torres (2016). Global Citizenship Education and the Crises of Multiculturalism: Comparative Perspectives. London: Bloomsbury Academic. Torres, C.A. and E. Bosio (2020). “Global Citizenship Education at the Crossroads: Globalization, Global Commons, Common Good, and Critical Consciousness.” Prospects, 48 (3): 99–113. UNESCO (2013). Global Citizenship Education: An Emerging Perspective (Outcome Document of the Technical Consultation on Global Citizenship Education). Available online: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000224115. UNESCO (2014). Global Citizenship Education: Preparing Learners for the Challenges of the 21st Century. Available online: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/ pf0000227729. UNESCO (2015). Global Citizenship Education: Topics and Learning Objectives. Available online: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002329/232993e.pdf. UNESCO (2015). Incheon Declaration: Education 2030: Towards Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education and Lifelong Learning for All. Available online: https://unesdoc. unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000233813.locale=en. UNESCO (2017). www.unesco.org. UNESCO (2018). Preparing Teachers for Global Citizenship Education: A Template. Available online: https://bangkok.unesco.org/content/preparing-teachers-globalcitizenship-education-template.

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Wei, R.C., L. Darling-Hammond, A. Andree, N. Richardson and S. Orphanos (2009). Professional Learning in the Learning Profession: A Status Report on Teacher Development in the United States and Abroad. Dallas, TX: National Staff Development Council. Wolhuter (2021). Comparative and International Education: A Field of Scholarship Exploring Critical Issues in Contemporary Education. In Critical Issues in Education Systems: Comparative-international Perspectives. Yemini, M., F. Tibbitts and H. Goren (2019). “Trends and Caveats: Review of Literature on Global Citizenship Education in Teacher Training.” Teaching and Teacher Education, 77 (1): 77–89. Yin, R.K. (2014). Case Study Research: Design and Methods. Fifth Edition. Thousand Acres, CA: Sage. Yu, H.Y., N.S. Kim and H.B. Park (2017). 시·도교육청의 세계시민교육 정책 현황 분석. “An Analysis of Current State of Global Citizen Education Policies of Local Education Authority.”글로벌교육연구, 9 (4): 3–33. Zhao, Y. (2010). “Preparing Globally Competent Teachers: A New Imperative for Teacher Education.” Journal of Teacher Education, 61 (5): 422–31.



Regional Educational Politics: Navigating a Neoliberal Construction of Teacher Education in the Caribbean tavis d. jules and Richard Arnold

Introduction This chapter discusses how neoliberal constructs affect teacher education in the fifteen countries1 of the Caribbean Community (hereinafter CARICOM) and its five associate member states.2 Since a subset of CARICOM’s members and other Caribbean islands also belong to another regional integrative project, the Organization of Eastern Caribbean Countries (OECS),3 we also collectively consider these islands in this chapter. In comparative and international education (CIE), several studies have shown that neoliberal reforms are often touted as best practices stemming from “‘structural adjustment’ reforms: privatization, de-regulation, market reforms, trade liberalization, and flexible exchange rates” (Welch 2021: 204). First and foremost, these Caribbean Anglophone countries, with their small open economies, small population size, landmass, autonomous jurisdiction, and ecology are generally categorized as small (or micro) states or small island developing states (SIDS), which lends to their perceived vulnerability to “existential threats” (Girvan 2010). Perceived “threats” are often classified as the forces of neoliberal globalization and global capitalism that largely shape the national and regional teaching institutions, given that these countries have a shared history of colonial dependencies as slave plantation economies of European colonial empires. As neoliberal economic markets integrate within CARICOM, there is a broader focus on economic regionalism (first through open regionalism and now through mature regionalism) while still being guided by global governance mechanisms. In education, this creates an interesting mix of regional goals and aspirations with influences and benchmarks from global reform agendas, such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This creates a generation of teachers in the Caribbean who, while brought up in the shadow of the colonial legacy and bureaucratic structures of the Caribbean education system, are now being asked to prepare students for a twenty-first-century economy or the “educational intelligence economy” (Salajan and jules 2019) that would supposedly put that colonial legacy in the rearview. In what follows, we observe how the creation of the “Caribbean Educational Policy Space”


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(jules 2015 [hereafter CEPS]) has created a specific structure of teacher education within the Caribbean and how these same neoliberal constructs can both restrict and encourage teacher education in the Caribbean. In examining the Caribbean as a region, we operate with the understanding that most Caribbean states are classified as “small islands,” which are often understood as being exceptionally vulnerable to disease, climate change, and drugs in eras of rapid globalization (Louisy 2001), and often compelling them to unite in a regional economic coalition. A movement toward open regionalism within the Caribbean commenced in 1989 with the Grand Anse Declaration, when Caribbean leaders established the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) to widen the regional project (jules 2014a). Open regionalism allowed CARICOM member states to benefit from preferential rules of origin and regional content requirements in education. As such, education was positioned as essential to developing Caribbean human resources. CARICOM has since guided the development of a unified policy space within its borders. It is “this movement towards a wider economic integration—one not just based on economic cooperation but cultural, political, and societal levels—that created a common educational policy space at the regional level” (jules et al. 2022) that students and teachers operate within. In what follows, we break down the CEPS as it exists today. This chapter has four sections. First, we discuss CEPS’s development and how this has shaped teacher education across the region. Next, we talk about the impact of neoliberalism on shaping teacher education in the region. This is followed by a discussion of the effects of exogenous governance mechanisms and global reforms on teacher education in the region. We conclude by suggesting some directions for teacher education across the region.

Development of the Caribbean Educational Policy Space The Caribbean Educational Policy Space (CEPS) is a significant component of the Treaty of Chaguaramas (CARICOM 2001), which allows for the movement of service, goods, labor, capital, and the right to establishment—“i.e., CARICOM citizens may establish companies and business enterprises in any CARICOM nation and be treated as a local national” (jules 2015: 307). Such a regional educational space has been created “substantively” through regional educational benchmarks and indicators such as regional assessments; “functionally” through cooperation between educational institutions such as accreditation agreements; and “legally” through regional level open market acts such as allowing the free movement of persons holding a CARICOM Certificate of Recognition of Skills Qualification within the region (jules 2015). Such a space has arisen through “cooperative educational transfer” (jules 2015), which “describe[s] the functional processes through which educational reforms at the national level are based on non-cohesive pressures but defined as a collaborative mechanism to spur deeper economic integration” (206). In this way, cooperative educational transfer is a noneconomic mechanism that facilitates deeper economic integration through the development of the Ideal Caribbean Person (CARICOM 1997) or the “neo-Caribbean

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citizen” (jules 2014b), and the CARICOM Human Resource Development (HRD) 2030 Strategy (CARICOM 2017). These both serve as a roadmap for CARICOM’s regional educational and training agenda, creating a regional approach toward teacher education. At the heart of CEPS is the development of the Ideal Caribbean Person (CARICOM 1997), a regionally minded individual who respects human life; is psychologically secure; values differences based on gender, ethnicity, religion, and other forms of diversity; is environmentally astute; is responsible and accountable to family and community; has a strong work ethic; is ingenious and entrepreneurial; has a conversant respect for cultural heritage; exhibits multiple literacies by displaying independent and critical thinking; and embraces differences and similarities between females and males. The educational system across the CARICOM region consists of early childhood education, primary, secondary, and tertiary sectors. In most countries, preschool and early childhood education are formalized or semi-formalized, and education is a constitutional right up to secondary school. Upon completing secondary school, all students take the Caribbean Examination Council’s (CXC) Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examination,4 which allows them access to universities and the world of work. There are several national universities and one regional university, the University of the West Indies (UWI), which also has a virtual campus.5 Governments and religious organizations also operate schools, but teacher education remains a statist-led project linked to national and regional development trajectories and benchmarks. Great disparities in education budgets exist across the region, with OECS countries spending over 17 percent, or 5 to 7 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), of their national budget on education. The larger territories also suffer from a lack of resources to train teachers, and in many rural areas, there are underqualified teachers. UWI theoretically structures teacher colleges and training programs with national support and credentialization across the region. Teacher recruitment varies from country to country, depending on their size. Teachers are recruited into national training institutions, universities, and UWI based on their CXC scores. Across the region, private preparatory and kindergarten schools, public primary, high schools, and secondary schools are comprised of mostly female teachers. At the university level, teachers are predominantly male. Although the Ministry of Education is responsible for funding education, legal frameworks—denominational schools, school-based management, and teachers are all public servants—dictate the terms and conditions of teacher employment. As such, in some countries (e.g., Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Guyana, St. Kitts Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Turks and Caicos Islands), recruitment, employment, and retention of teachers fall under the responsibility of the Ministry of Education. In other territories (e.g., Aruba, Belize, the Netherlands Antilles, and St. Lucia), schools are controlled by the policies of religious groups. Lastly, some nations have a substantive degree of school-based management (Miller 1999). CEPS is a complex interaction of globalized economic and cultural forces, regional integration efforts, and existing domestic structures that have helped


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create the regional educational project. Furthermore, it is expected that investment in human capital will help achieve both the cultural norms being mandated by the global community (through efforts such as Education For All and the Millennium Development Goals, and now the SDGs) and the increasingly regional economic goals of labor mobility and strong workforce development. Couched in regional policy agendas and using the same language as global development benchmarks such as the SDGs, the focus became providing access to quality education at a basic level for all CARICOM nationals. Regional educational systems have aimed to train students for the regional marketplace to facilitate the seamless movement of labor within the CSME. In this way, the individual goals of the countries would be in service of this greater regional goal. To achieve this, several ministries of education across the region have reclassified the teaching service and emphasize “train[ing] teachers to employ team planning, co-operative learning strategies and multi-level teaching and child centred methods and collaborative approaches” (Miller 1999: 9). The Global Partnership for Education (2018) notes that 70 percent of teachers in Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines were rated “effective on classroom practices” and some 416 teachers were being monitored through the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS), which uses an observational instrument to assess classroom quality. In 2006, with a widespread teacher shortage in the region, teacher training emphasis was placed on “rapidly increasing the output of teachers, which puts pressures on the University system; researching and developing priority areas for teacher training; and needs assessments in particular areas such as [Technical and Vocational Education Training], technology, physical education and early childhood” to facilitate four broad priority areas including “[T]he CSME and the free movement of skills; improve the relevance and quality of educational output; improvement in healthy life styles and behaviours of the regional population; attainment of the [Millennium Development Goals] MDGs and protection of the marginalized parts of the population” (Hall 2012: 261). These new regional targets linked to teacher education programs were part of outlined priority policy interventions. While each country has different teacher training programs, such as in-service training  or courses leading to an associate degree, the entry qualification remains consistent. Teacher candidates need to have three, four, or five pass(es)6 at the CXC/ CSEC in the general proficiency from an accredited institution. Some countries, such as Belize, also have national examinations for teacher candidates who did not complete high school or failed to obtain the necessary passes at the CXC general proficiency examination. Some countries require that secondary school teachers must have pass(es) in the GCE A-Levels or CXC/CAPE (Caribbean Advance Proficiency Examination) subjects that they are responsible for teaching. While some countries offer a three-year secondary school training program, a university degree for teaching at the secondary level is preferred. Training requirements vary for teachers in the technical and vocational track and consider different needs. Each country has its quality assurance boards, teaching services commission, or teacher education board tasked with certification, standards, performance, licensure, monitoring, and evaluation for pre-service, in-service, and

Neoliberal Teacher Education in the Caribbean


college programs. Regional ministries establish national curriculum guidelines in collaboration with CXC to ensure adequate preparedness for the CSEC and the CAPE. While there are numerous commonalities across the system at the national levels, several countries have established alternative training streams. For example, in Trinidad and Tobago, the demand for early childhood education has led to nongovernmental organizations, such as the Servol Regional Training and Resource Centre, collaborating with the School of Continuing Studies (SOCS) and the School of Education at UWISt. Augustine, to offer training programs. In other countries, such as Dominica, early childhood education is not compulsory, and when provided, it is usually done without governmental oversight by nongovernmental organizations or private individuals.7 The teacher training courses typically last two years. Teachers can become subjectspecialized once they have completed an associate degree and can seek advanced placement. When a country is one of the seventeen8 contributing members providing a subvention to the university, ministries of education may opt to send teachers to one of the UWI’s four campuses for additional training. For example, in Guyana, teachers who have successfully completed the teacher training program at Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE), with two years of post-certification experience, can apply to the University of Guyana’s Faculty of Education for a Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.), specializing in nursery, primary, or secondary education (Cyril Potter College of Education 2015). Usually, teachers with university degrees function in some form of a supervisory capacity, such as the principal or headteacher. At the regional level, there have been numerous calls to upgrade in-service teacher training programs and a focus on the teacher serving as a “facilitator.” While university programs continue to expand across the region, students accessing the programs are still taught through rote memorization, and there are numerous barriers to accessing these programs. Today teacher education is embedded within national and regional projects, with many agreements linking them. Several countries continue to have training facilities at the national level while relying on the regional institution where possible. In fact, much of teacher training today focuses on boosting student outputs and learning outcomes through the use of pre-and in-service programs that emphasize the competencybased education method (e.g., the Caribbean Vocational Qualification [CVQ]9), lower teacher-to-student ratios, the use of information and communication technology (ICT), and exposure to a curriculum that is rigorous and relevant. Teachers were expected to know the necessary training, assessment, and certification that students needed to gain regional recognition at the national level. Given these changes, some of the biggest challenges to teacher education are the teacher’s workload that varies drastically between primary and secondary schools, the teacher-to-student ratio, absenteeism, supplemental education service or “lessons,” and brain drain. In addition to rural and urban disparities, several countries experience uneven delivery of their training programs as standards differ between government-run programs and those offered by private suppliers. To create higher quality teacher education, the CARICOM Task Force for Teacher Education (TFTE) established a draft set of teacher standards for the region in 2013. Though not formally adopted as a legal framework by any Caribbean countries, the document serves as a template for governments to create


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their own teaching standards. The framework suggested ranking teachers between levels I and IV in three domains: (1) Knowledge (basic content, curriculum content, etc.) (2) Skills (using assessment results to adapt teaching, promote critical thinking, etc.) (3) Attitudes (Reflect on competence, collaboration with professional community). (CARICOM 2013: 40–1) Teacher education is also completed through the USAID-funded Caribbean Centres for Excellence in Teacher Training (CETT). Though not able to license teachers, they can certify the teaching of reading and writing skills and provide resources such as diagnostic tools, teaching materials, and techniques. These centers have emerged as a regional barometer for teaching and learning reading at the primary level in eight countries (jules 2008).

A Regional Speak or a Global Speak: Neoliberal Influences on Caribbean Teacher Training When free-market forces help guide the development of educational goals within a space, the development of teacher education will naturally also be guided to meet those goals. Literature in comparative education has often pointed to the trend of “licensed appeals to the logic of competition” where the “key mechanisms of education has come to be governed by numbers” (Welch 2021: 206). Teacher education in the Caribbean has very much adapted to meet the same economic needs that drive other countries in an era of open economic borders, and often becomes a numbers game. So, as neoliberalism opens the Caribbean up to world markets, “the global free movement of services has engendered the push, by regional leaders, from an approach grounded in ‘open regionalism’ towards a more regulatory mechanism” (jules 2017: 3), and created a policy space that is globally informed, yet regionally focused. Neoliberalism entered the region through open regionalism, which called for new mechanisms to facilitate the development of the CSME through “a regional process to accommodate multilateralism and globalism while liberalising inter-regional trade in goods, services, and labour” (jules 2017: 8). In education, open regionalism came to be symbolized by the expansion of national educational reforms through cooperative educational transfer with the creation of the first regional educational policy, the Future of Education in Region (CARICOM 1993), and later the “Vision of the Ideal Caribbean Person” (CARICOM 1997). When open regionalism did not deliver the promises of a deeper economically aligned Caribbean, the regional integrative mechanisms shifted from wider economic integration (open regionalism) to deeper integration through mature regionalism. Mature regionalism, as structured through the “Rose Hall Declaration on Regional Governance and Integrated Development” (CARICOM 2003), calls for “improving governance for the purpose of deepening the integration process” (1) while promoting “human and social development through, inter-alia, appropriate education

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and training in order to improve the overall well being of the people of the Community and to establish the conditions for the creation of a knowledge-based society capable of competing effectively in the new global environment” (4). As such, mature regionalism came couched with the neoliberal recommendations of competition. Therefore, teacher education in the region has come to be defined by open regionalism and, more recently, mature regionalism as education, including teacher training, is determined within this space, which, while heavily influenced by the global marketplace, has created a regional arena wherein education operates. It can be argued that CEPS has been a creation and response to the advent of neoliberal open markets in the Caribbean. Previous literature makes reference to the rising “governance by data circulation” that are the result of neoliberal markets (Steiner-Khamsi 2021: 335). As such, an educational policy space where teachers are trained to balance regional needs with global skills has been created. By going through the CXC, which certifies students across the region in the same categories, both students and teachers are being trained with neoliberal skills for the educational intelligent economy. Affecting policy to align with the goals specified by international organizations such as UNESCO, or state actors, such as the United States, drives what teachers learn and experience in their training, as “through curriculum reform, the Region expresses in nearly every policy document the potential to more appropriately and effectively educate its citizens to compete and participate in both the regional and global economy” (jules et al. 2022: 19). As a regional entity being influenced by global marketplace forces, Caribbean teachers must balance the region’s needs with the needs of students entering an interconnected world. One part of this has been emphasizing twenty-first-century skills—creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication—within the region. One goal has been trying to train teachers to focus on critical thinking skills in their pedagogy rather than knowledge. Because the regional level is so entangled with the national level, CARICOM has been trying to imbue teachers with “the guidance of a curriculum which is integrated and centered around the experiences of the children [and] relevant to their culture” (CARICOM 1993: 9), such as relevant technology and language. CARICOM later specified it would train teachers in “teaching how to learn” in order to “shift from education seen as schooling to one of life-long learning” (CARICOM 1997: 30). Global forces affecting teacher education in the Caribbean are not new, with ample evidence within comparative literature of neoliberal market conditions affecting teacher education since the 1980s. Sutton (2006) notes that after the economic downturn of the 1980s, many Caribbean countries sought to reposition themselves in the global economy with structural reforms and adjustments or structural adjustment programs, which drastically restructured and opened educational systems. As countries shifted their positions, human capital approaches—education and development viewed as political pursuits and driven by the market approach—were implemented within the public education system to improve efficiency, quality, and accountability. The number of qualified and trained teachers declined, particularly since many institutions had difficulties attracting qualified candidates in critical areas such as mathematics, science, and English (Jennings 2001). In a regional study, the World Bank (1993) argued that while the teacher ratio was 30:1, drastic disparities existed across the Caribbean region


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regarding teacher preparedness. CARICOM (1993) identified challenges relating to the teacher shortage, stressful teaching situations, lack of transferability of skills to the classroom, proper training and retention, entry requirements, and lack of an appropriate training curriculum as factors affecting teacher training development. In fact, the regional educational policy recognizes: [T]he conditions under which teachers must work today have created the need for psychological counselling to help them cope with stressful situations caused not only by general indiscipline, violence and drug abuse but also by the burden of work falling on fewer teachers in a context of widespread teacher shortages. (CARICOM 1993: 56)

These struggles greatly limited teachers’ abilities to effectively teach and create a curriculum, which would affect how the region approached the rapid developments of the new century. When the new millennium began, advancements in teacher education programs in the Caribbean were still not keeping pace with advancements in education, and the standard teacher qualifications of Certificates and Diplomas were inadequate in preparing teacher candidates. For a long time across the region, teachers had been popularly following the outdated “banking model of education,” which views students as blank slates to be prepared for their primary and/or secondary school examinations. CARICOM (1993) cites the need to “develop regional programmes for the training of teachers” so as to develop children who are “independent thinkers” (10) at all levels of education. This heralded a shift toward viewing teachers as facilitators/guides to learning, a perspective where students are expected to participate in their learning actively. Previously, Joyce and Weil (1972) had described Caribbean teachers as the “mid-wife of educational change” since they are expected to serve as role models, educators, and moral compasses. But as regionalism deepened within CARICOM “Caribbean countries saw a shift in education that focused on tackling the challenges of a liberalized global environment, preferring innovation and competitiveness” (jules and Williams 2015: 287). With a great deal of financial support from international knowledge banks such as the IMF and the World Bank, CARICOM adopted reforms that helped unify its educational system through benchmarks, standards, and indicators; as this was still being assessment-measured, however, the “banking” teaching model has not really gone away, and teachers still teach to the test more often than not.

Global and Regional Governance and the Educational Mechanism of Teacher Education As Wolhuter et al. (2022) remind us, the comparative education literature shows how “privatisation of education, the ranking of universities, rates of return analyses, educational outcomes, and the determinants and correlates thereof ” (8) are sources of educational governance mechanisms. The goals, rankings, and methodologies set

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forth by international organizations have created regional governance mechanisms in the Caribbean region. The World Declaration on Education for All (EFA) outlined ambitious goals to be achieved by 2000, focusing on education as a basic human right (UNESCO 1990). While these goals were not achieved, global governance mechanisms, both public and private, have directly affected teacher education in the Caribbean. Reforms that accompany external funding from multilateral and bilateral donor agencies have drastically influenced teacher education development and methodologies. The United Nations (in addition to the World Bank and IMF) has been one of the most significant influences, first through its MDGs and the subsequent SDGs. In its own publication of proposed standards for teacher education, CARICOM (2013) referred to its inspiration from the MDGs: Through the Millennium Development Goals (MDG’S) and the Education For All initiatives developing countries in particular have been seeking to enhance quality in their education systems as the means to poverty alleviation and an improved quality of life for their people. There is also increasing research evidence that the quality of teaching, and by extension the quality of the teacher, is directly linked to the quality of learning by their students and the achievement of quality outcomes for education. (14)

The successor to the MDGs, the SDGs, continues to influence teacher training policy. In conjunction with Goal 4 of the SDGs, ensuring quality education, countries are adopting strategies for environmentally sustainable development education in colleges, including “whole-institution approaches to ESD” (Ferguson-Murray 2016: 32) in teacher’s colleges. In accordance with the Global Action Programme on Environmental Development, created by the UN to facilitate reaching Goal 4.7 (promoting sustainable development through education) benchmark, schools in the Caribbean require teachers and administrators to adapt “the management of the physical facilities in a sustainable manner” (Ferguson-Murray 2016: 29) and teacher training increasingly includes “locally relevant teaching and learning resources” (32). When the SDGs were adopted, a steering committee formed to implement Goal 4 in Latin America and the Caribbean released a roadmap of where its implementation would occur within the CEPS. In the areas of teacher training and recruitment, the roadmap promised to “map activities and actions” of teacher training institutes so as to “promote synergies and joint actions between diverse regional education institutions” (UNESCO 2019: 11). This would help standardize teaching programs to duplicate teacher education in regional colleges across both regions. The steering committee also pledged to strengthen the capacities of all countries in the region to generate and gather SDG4 information and data to monitor the education targets … Articulate regional monitoring mechanisms for monitoring quality education … Build upon existing resources to further develop an open resource platform on best practices. (UNESCO 2019: 9–10)


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While none of these address teacher training explicitly, they affect regional goals for instruction and measurement, and teacher training is obligated to conform. However, one lingering criticism in the literature is that development stemming from international donors largely ignores “social and economic goals, histories, and levels of development among countries, the advice of consultants from such organizations tended to cohere” around deregulation and data collection (Welch 2021: 335). In what follows, we look at some of these alignments. Teacher training institutes in the Caribbean have already adjusted their curricula to reflect the values of the SDGs. Bermuda College (n.d.) offers teacher training courses that emphasize “educational reform movements; teacher ethics, multiculturalism; the contributions of local educators to the teaching profession” (para 79), aligning it neatly with Goal 4.7, and Charisma University (n.d.) teaches students to “the best practices for classroom evaluation, explain procedures for the evaluation of learning experiences, and evaluate different views on classroom evaluations” (para 1) and “analyze effectiveness rates of classroom evaluation” (para 2), matching the promise the steering committee had earlier made to articulate monitoring mechanisms in the region. St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College (2015) now includes teaching Home Economics as part of its teaching TVET program, and UWI (n.d.) is committed to ensuring its teachers possess “an understanding of education as being located within the wider social context [sic] knowledge and understanding of a variety of theories, models, strategies, and approaches to teaching and assessment appropriate for young children and early adolescents” (para 15) in its program mission statement. The University of Guyana (2017) also emphasizes assessment and measuring, teaching critical thinking, and global competencies in its program of studies for a bachelor’s in education, while the University of the South Caribbean (2020) offers required courses in monitoring and assessment, current trends in curriculum, and “best practices” for its primary-level teachers. Also worth noting is that virtually all colleges require skills in teaching English, which accounts for roughly 15 percent of the first languages for the Caribbean but is the most spoken language globally. Aside from global governance bodies such as the UN, state actors influence teacher education. The United States has a stake in teacher education in CARICOM through the USAID-funded CETT. The CETT is composed of five mutually reinforcing components: 1) Diagnostic tools to assess student performance 2) Teaching and learning materials focused on addressing key reading problems 3) Teacher training to improve teachers’ pedagogical skills, including training to utilize the tools and materials 4) Action research to enhance the tools, materials, and teacher training 5) Information and communications technology to support the other four components by improving linkages between institutions and by disseminating\ training, materials, and best practices. (JBTE 2013) Like the UN’s 2030 strategy, the CETT focuses on training teachers in diagnostic skills, pedagogical knowledge for a global society, and information technology. In a two-year internal study on the effectiveness of the Caribbean CETT, it was noted that

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“the trainings encouraged the importance of child-centered learning (constructivist approach), with an awareness of phonetics” and “teachers significantly increased their perceived importance of constructivist and phonetic approaches” (USAID 2011: 13). CETT was implemented in every country in CARICOM and provided in-service training to teachers in poorer areas of all member countries (USAID 2011: 2). Aside from the United States, China’s Confucian Institutes have been set up in over twenty-one Caribbean/Latin American countries as “educational and cultural promotion centers, which are partially financed by China’s Ministry of Education” (para 1) with “curricula focused on teaching Mandarin and Chinese government-approved courses on Chinese civilization and history” (Elminowski 2021: para 3). This partnership includes students earning their teaching credentials in Caribbean universities; for example, the University of the Bahamas offers a study-abroad option for its education students so that teacher candidates can experience teaching in China (University of the Bahamas 2017). Global forces have also helped guide the Caribbean education system as it transitions online. Teacher education programs in CARICOM member states are increasingly being offered online, frequently funded by international knowledge centers. For example, an online teacher education course for licensed teachers accredits them within the region through a partnership with UWI to teach their own classes online (Porto 2019). This course is funded and created by the US-based InterAmerican Development Bank (IADB), with a partnership with the regionally based Caribbean Development Bank (IADB 2022). IADB was created as a financial institution funded by the Western powers and China to provide loan development funds to Latin America, South America, and Caribbean countries. Teachers who completed the program noted that teaching online classes “builds capacity and can stimulate growth and development in the region through the increase in human capital” (Porto 2019: para 7). Even before the COVID-19 pandemic began, UNESCO, guided by its target benchmarks of the SDGs, provided online learning resources to Caribbean teachers. In conjunction with the Blackboard Corporation, UNESCO offered teachers in the Caribbean a “fourweek teachers training that aims to develop teachers’ capacity in distance and blended learning” with the goal “to train 200 teachers, 10 per country, with the skills to apply innovative online and blended teaching methods or adaptive pedagogies in the new teaching and learning situation” (UNESCO 2020: para 2). In fact, in talking about this program, Lee Blakemore, Blackboard Chief Client Officer, argued: It is more important now than at any other time that teachers develop best practices for delivering engaging and sustainable online learning environments. The COVID-19 pandemic has altered how teachers around the world have to connect with students while school buildings remain shuttered. (as cited in UNESCO 2020: para 3, emphasis original)

The global marketplace shift indirectly affected teacher education in the Caribbean beyond private corporations or NGOs transferring knowledge. While one could argue that the overarching economic importance is implied, one must also consider the linkages between UNESCO and the World Bank and acknowledge the likely pressures that existed on countries to adopt and integrate UNESCO’s goals as a means of legitimation in the eyes of the world. While the original language of the


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EFA documents stressed education as a human right, the pressures that led to them being widely adopted came with a considerable economic cost that most small states could not afford. So, while UNESCO and the World Bank couch their reforms around concepts such as human rights, their proposed goals and solutions for countries are undoubtedly designed with an open, deregulated market in mind. While education models are generally used to transfer “best practices,” “what is often missed about what is transferred is the fact that the so-called best practices are global neoliberal reforms that place knowledge at the center of the ‘competition state’” (jules and Arnold forthcoming). “Best practices” are being measured at the state and regional levels, but their actual content is being determined at a global level by non-Caribbean policy makers. For example, Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica recently participated in the OECD’s international assessment, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) examination. While the “OECD may not be directly dictating what constitutes ‘skilled teachers’ or the quality of education, they do help transfer ideas of such things into regional citizenship education by steering the conversation through PISA” (jules and Arnold: forthcoming). But neoliberalism does not exist only to bring resources to regions in need, and the open markets also draw talent away from a region. Globally, schools are becoming increasingly underfunded as “neoliberal educational policies that worked to destroy teacher unions, underpay state-licensed educators, and vanish challenged schoolhouses seen as a burden to taxpayers” (Ali 2019: 102). There is an imbalance of skilled teachers within the Caribbean being trained and those leaving, because “the profession of teaching globally continues to search for staff to carry on the business of education. Rich countries have been recruiting from poor, less developed countries” (Miller 2006: 189) and so skilled teachers leave the region in droves, creating a “brain drain” of teaching talent. In the run-up to the pandemic, one of every two teachers rated as “highly skilled” was leaving the region “due to active UK and US recruitment efforts … create[ing] significant shortages, as hard-to-replace mathematics, physics, science and computer science teachers are shown to be the most prone to move abroad” (Jamaica Observer 2018, para 6). Even within the Caribbean, places such as Guyana continue to export teachers to the smaller islands, while untrained and underqualified teachers often occupy the remaining spots. Those who stay are faced with an influx of “charterand-contract school designs [which] pay teachers less for their work, reduces the employment attrition rate, and consummates an over testing industry that regulates and controls how teachers instruct and are evaluated” (Ali 2019: 102). This testing industry refers back to earlier neoliberal literature on governance-by-data, with “big data sets” produced by testing leading to “governments taking over what appears to be best education and practices” (Wolhuter et al. 2022: 9).

Conclusion In 2020, schools across the Caribbean were forced to move to online learning in the face of the global pandemic, with nearly 7 million students forced to attempt distance learning, being instructed by over 91,000 teachers (UNESCO 2020). While the overall

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internet access rate for Latin America and the Caribbean stood at 74 percent when the lockdowns began, this varied wildly by country; some CARICOM member states, such as Guyana and Haiti, stood at less than 40 percent (World Bank 2020). When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Caribbean, the immediate response to teacher training was to focus intensely on teachers’ digital learning skills. This was already a concern among policy makers and international organizations as previously, “researchers in the CETT program found that a lack of technological infrastructure was a major hurdle in preparing students for the realities of the 21st century” and opted to promote ICT within the program (Byfield 2022: 217). In August of 2020, UNESCO partnered with the edtech company Blackboard and launched the Professional Development for Teachers for Blended Learning and Online Strategies project in the Caribbean, which selected over forty facilitator teachers from the region to train other teachers at the “elementary and secondary levels with strategies for designing the online classroom” in the face of the lockdowns (UNESCO 2020). UNESCO continued to fund teacher training in distance learning through 2021 with the Distance Learning and Teacher Training Strategies in the Caribbean SIDS project, which saw support for those facilitator teachers as they developed distance education training programs of their own (UNESCO 2021). However, teachers still felt unprepared for the demands placed upon them during the pandemic, with many stating they simply had to upload their lessons to YouTube to get their students to see them (Abdul-Majiad et al. 2022). It was noted that teacher training suffered not only from a lack of access to distance learning technology, but was also lacking in meeting the “emotional labour” of working with children in this time of crisis (Abdul-Majiad et al. 2022). Ultimately, teacher training in the Caribbean was slow to implement changes to accommodate online learning and teaching, as “from the perspective of teacher training before COVID-19, educators were ‘attached’ to schools and slow to incorporate ICTs for education beyond the classroom” (Bleeker and Crowder 2022: 30). Even discounting the global pandemic, it is a challenging and uncertain time to be a teacher within the Caribbean system. While a unique Caribbean educational space—CEPS—allows for the free movement of skilled teachers within the region, as all must pass through the same assessments and measurements as determined by the CXC, teachers still face a wide variety of challenges. For many of them, there has been a rapid change in what is demanded of a teacher. It is an unfamiliar world for those who went to school in the 1980s and 1990s within the region. Global forces have altered the Caribbean’s goals for its students and what teacher education looks like. Despite regional goals to teach “21st-century skills” such as critical thinking, innovation, and entrepreneurship, there is increased emphasis on measuring and assessing students, harkening back to the “sage on a stage” days that the Caribbean supposedly left behind. Numerous supranational organizations make promises to hopeful teachers that they can train them or give them the necessary resources, and while these are often filtered through the governance mechanisms of the CEPS (i.e., standard courses across teacher education colleges, standardized TVET training), they are being assessed by different entities and thus are being pulled in numerous directions. Additionally, many have been lured away through recruiting tactics by other countries, leaving the remaining teachers as


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overworked, underskilled, and underfunded. Still, the Caribbean education system has been enjoying one of the highest investment periods since the 1970s. The push for technological innovation in how teachers reach their students may well prove to be the key to these “21st-century skills.”

Notes 1 CARICOM’s full members are Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. 2 CARICOM’s associate members are Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands. 3 The OECS, founded in 1981, is a subregional entity of CARICOM. All full members of the OECS are members of CARICOM. Today, the OECS is a ten-member integrative project comprising of Antigua and Barbuda, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, The Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Martinique, with Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands are associate members of the OECS. 4 CXC’s mandates are exerted through the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) which fulfills the requirements for programs and professional courses at regional and extraregional universities and other tertiary-level institutions (CARICOM 2013). Mathematics and English A exams are mandatory, while students have a choice of thirty-one other CSEC subjects to choose from, including twenty-eight subjects at the General Proficiency and five at Technical Proficiency. Students can select any of the sixteen CAPE examinations and may earn a diploma after completing six units and an Associate Degree after completing seven units including Caribbean Studies and Communication Studies. UWI and national universities accept CXC as the core entry requirement and candidates must pass a minimum of five CSEC courses with grades 1–3 (A–C), with mandatory passes in English A and Mathematics. 5 The Open Campus is a virtual campus that offers online degrees and has fifty physical site locations in sixteen countries. 6 Some countries have a striker minimal qualification for teacher entering training programs. For example, Barbados does not accept Grade III passes at CXC while secondary school teachers only need to pass one CAPE or GCE A-Level examination in St. Lucia. 7 Recently there have been attempts to establish regulations that the principals of EEC facilities should have some form of certification or complete a set number of courses. 8 Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Turks and Caicos contribute and/or sponsor fees for their nationals. Nationals are charged a tuition fee equivalent to approximately 20 percent of the economic cost, while students from PanCaribbean (Aruba, Bonaire, Brazil, Columbia, Costa Rica, Curacao, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Suriname, and Venezuela) are charged 25 percent above fees for nonsponsored students from contributing countries (UWI 2014).

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9 In 2003, the CVQ was launched to accredit a defined set of competencies based on core work practices of an occupational area, as identified in the Regional Qualifications Framework and certified by the Caribbean Association of National Training Agencies (CANTA).

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jules, t.d. (2015). “The Caribbean Educational Policy Space: Educational Gradualism, Zero-Sum Policy Reforms, and Lesson-Drawing in Small (and Micro) States.” Journal of Supranational Policies of Education (3): 307–29. jules, t.d. (2017). “‘Mature Regionalism’ and the Genesis of ‘Functional Projects’: ‘Educational Regionalism’ in Small (and Micro-States).” Globalisation, Societies and Education, 15 (4): 1–17. http://doi.org/10.1080/14767724.2016.1264289. Louisy, P. (2001). “Globalisation and Comparative Education: A Caribbean Perspective.” Comparative Education, 37 (4): 425–38. Miller, E. (1999). “Teacher Development in the Caribbean.” Paper presented at the World Bank Conference on Improving Caribbean Education, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. Available online: https://oas.org/cotep/GetAttach.aspx?lang=es&cId=656&aid=981. Miller, W. P. (2006). “Professional Lives in Transition: Overseas Trained Teachers in England.” Caribbean Journal of Education, 28 (2): 187–215. Porto, S. (2019). “Online Education for the Caribbean’s Educators.” Caribbean DevTrends+. Available online: https://blogs.iadb.org/caribbean-dev-trends/en/onlineeducation-for-the-caribbeans-educators/. Salajan, F.D. and t.d. jules (2019). “Introduction: The Educational Intelligent Economy, Educational Intelligence, and Big Data.” In t.d. jules and F.D. Salajan (Eds.), The “Educational Intelligent Economy”: Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and the Internet of Things in Education, 1–11. Bingley, UK: Emerald Publishing. Sir Arthur Lewis Community College (2018). “Primary Education Associate Degree Programme.” Available online: http://www.salcc.edu.lc/index.php/education/60primary-education-associate-degree-programme. St. Vincent and the Grenadines Community College (2015), “DTE Programmes.” Available online: http://www.svgcc.vc/dte-programmes. Steiner-Khamsi, G. (2021). “Policy-Borrowing and Lending in Comparative and International Education.” In t jules, R. Shields and M. Thomas (Eds.), The Bloomsbury Handbook of Theory in Comparative and International Education, 327–43. New York, NY: Bloomsbury Press. Shortwood Teacher’s College (2018). “Bachelor of Education in Teaching (Four Year FullTime).” Available online: http://stcoll.edu.jm/programme/bachelor-of-education-inteaching-four-year-full-time/. Sutton, P. (2006). Modernizing the State: Public Sector Reform in the Commonwealth Caribbean. Kingston, Jamaica: Ian Randle Publishers. The University of West Indies (n.d.). “Bachelor of Education.” Available online: http://sta. uwi.edu/fhe/education/bed. Turks and Caicos Islands Community College (2017a). “Associate Degree in Primary Education.” Available online: http://tcicc.edu.tc/edt/associate-degree-in-primaryeducation/. Turks and Caicos Islands Community College (2017b). “Bachelor of Science in Primary Education.” Available online: http://tcicc.edu.tc/edt/bachelor-of-science-in-primaryeducation/. Turks and Caicos Islands Community College (2017c). “Faculty of Education and Training.” Available online: http://tcicc.edu.tc/edt/. UNESCO (2020). “Professional Development for Teachers for Blended Learning and Online Strategies.” Available online: https://en.unesco.org/online-teacher-capacity-training. UNESCO (2021). “Distance Learning and Teacher Training Strategies in the Caribbean SIDS.” Available online: https://en.unesco.org/distance-education-caribbean.


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United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO] (2020). “UNESCO and Blackboard Launch Pilot Project for Distance Education Teachers Training in the Caribbean.” Available online: https://en.unesco.org/news/unesco-andblackboard-launch-pilot-project-distance-education-teachers-training-caribbean. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO] (2019). “SDG4 – E2030 Implementation Roadmap for Latin America and the Caribbean.” Available online: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000265870. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO] (2014). “Latin America and the Caribbean: Education for All 2015 Regional Review.” Available online: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002327/232701e.pdf. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO] (1993). “The Initial and Continuing Education of Teachers in Barbados: A Case Study: Bridgetown, Barbados.” Available online: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/ images/0009/000996/099674EB.pdf. United Nations Children’s Fund [UNICEF] (2010), “A strategy for Strengthening Health and Family Life Education in CARICOM Member States.” Available online: http://cms2.caricom.org/documents/11874-hfle_regional_strategy.pdf. University of the Bahamas (2017). “Confucius Institute.” Available online: https://www. ub.edu.bs/academics/institutes/confucius-institute/. University of Guyana (2017). “Bachelor of Education (Primary General).” Available online: http://feh.uog.edu.gy/srms/departments/56/programmes/771/details. University of the Southern Caribbean (2018). “B.Ed in Primary Education.” Available online: http://usc.edu.tt/academics/degrees-offered/programmes/info/primaryeducation/. University of the Southern Caribbean (2018). “History.” Available online: http://www.usc. edu.tt/about-us/usc-at-a-glance/history/. University of The Virgin Islands (n.d.). “Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education.” Available online: https://www.uvi.edu/academics/education/programs/bachelementary-educ/entry-requirements.aspx. University of Trinidad and Tobago (n.d. a). “Bachelor of Education.” Available online: https://u.tt/index.php?wk=5&programmes=1&utt_programme_key=102. University of Trinidad and Tobago (n.d. b). “Bachelor of Education.” Available online: https://u.tt/index.php?wk=5. University of the West Indies (2014). “2014/2015 Undergraduate Financial Information and Registration Guidelines.” St Augustine: Trinidad. Available online: https://www. mona.uwi.edu/admissions/pdf/financial-informaion.pdf. University of West Indies—Cape Hill (2018a). “Choose from Over 250 Degree Programmes in Disciplines at the UWI, Cave Hill Campus.” Available online: http://www.cavehill.uwi.edu/programmes/. University of West Indies—Cape Hill (2018b). “Entry Requirements.” Available online: http://www.cavehill.uwi.edu/admissions/entry-requirements.aspx#H. University of West Indies—Mona (n.d.). “Bachelor of Education Programme.” Available online: https://www.mona.uwi.edu/soe/sites/default/files/soe/uploads/New%20 BEd%20Brochure_2014_2015.pdf. University of West Indies—Mona (2018). “Undergraduate Programmes.” Available online: https://www.mona.uwi.edu/humed/content/undergraduate-programmes. University of West Indies—Saint Augustine (n.d.). “Bachelor in Education.” Available online: http://sta.uwi.edu/fhe/education/bed.

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University of West Indies—Saint Augustine (2018). “Faculty Entry Requirements— Social Sciences.” Available online: http://sta.uwi.edu/admissions/undergrad/social_ requirements.asp. USAID (2011). Centers for Excellence in Teacher Education (CETT) Two-Year Impact Study Report 2008–2009. Puerto Rico: Aguirre Division of JBS International. Welch, A. (2021). “Neoliberalism in Comparative and International Education.” In t jules, R. Shields and M. Thomas (Eds.), The Bloomsbury Handbook of Theory in Comparative and International Education, 201–16. New York, NY: Bloomsbury Press. Wolhuter, C.C., O. Espinoza and N. Mcginn (2022). “Narratives as a Way of Conceptualising the Field of Comparative Education.” Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education. World Bank (1990). “Long Term Economic Prospects of the OECS Countries.” Washington, DC. Available online: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/ en/863941468225573002/Long-term-economic-prospects-of-the-OECS-countries. World Bank (1993). Caribbean Region—Access, Quality, and Efficiency in Education (English), A World Bank country study. Washington, DC: The World Bank. Available online: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/863941468225573002/Long-termeconomic-prospects-of-the-OECS-countries. World Bank (2020), Individuals Using the Internet-Latin America and Caribbean. Available online: https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/IT.NET.USER.ZS?locations=ZJ.



A Case Study on Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction during the Education Practicum in a Normal University in China Jingxin Cheng, Xiaodi Li, and Ming Yi*

Introduction Teacher professional identity construction is considered indispensable in teacher education programs in the global context (e.g., Bullough 1997; Dong 2008; Morais and Ogden 2011). “From the Vygostkian perspective, the overall aim of a teacher education program is best conceived as the development of professional identity” (Van Huizen et al. 2005: 275), and the construction of a teacher’s professional identity is a focal process for student teachers in becoming teachers (Alsup 2006; Friesen and Besley 2013). Teacher professional identity has been considered a pivotal factor to teachers’ effectiveness, decision-making about their career, commitment to the profession, as well as engagement in professional development (Beijaard et al. 2004; Day et al. 2005; Lasky 2005; Wang 2020). Since 2015, based on endogenous conditions and advanced international experience, the Chinese government has issued a number of documents and reports toward teacher education reforms. One vital part among the reports is to focus on teacher education practice programs and promote the construction of future teachers’ professional identity (Zhang 2013; Xie 2016). From a broader perspective, positive experiences in terms of teacher professional identity construction during the education practicum hold potential to promote student teachers’ professional commitment, specifically, their belief in the value of the teaching profession (Hong 2010; Zhao 2013). The term “normal university” in China refers to the higher education institutions in charge of prospective school teachers’ training and in-service teachers’ training, and are regulated and funded through a national or local government authority (Xu 2011; Zhou 2020). Since the 1990s, the pattern of teacher education in China has been changing progressively, with the government encouraging comprehensive universities to provide teacher education programs, and normal universities to transform into comprehensive and research-oriented universities (Lu 2009). Overly emphasizing the disciplinary topics at the expense of teacher knowledge in some * These authors contributed equally to this research


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normal universities directly affected the development of student teachers’ teaching ability (Yuan 2018). With the deepening of globalization in aspects of the economy, science, and technology, it has become a national issue in China that teachers of all educational levels face difficulties in meeting the education needs of the new era, which is reflected in demanding that teacher education programs produce “teachers with teacher knowledge that ensures the needs of education in 21st century” (CPC Central Committee and the State Council 2018: 5). In an international context, the role of teacher knowledge in ensuring teachers’ teaching effectiveness has been broadly emphasized. According to Elbaze (1981), teacher knowledge plays an important role in guiding a teacher’s work, which includes: [K]nowledge of subject matter; of classroom organization and instructional techniques; of the structuring of learning experiences and curriculum content; of students’ needs, abilities, and interests; of the social framework of the school and its surrounding community; and of their own strengths and shortcomings as teachers. (p. 47)

British sociologist Basil Bernstein (as cited in Dickinson 2012) addressed the relationship between teacher knowledge and teacher identities, and theorized a connection between social interactions and language in forming knowledge, ultimately providing a theory of how teacher identities are developed through interaction and discourse. Beck and Young (2005) furthered Bernstein’s argument about the relationship between knowledge and professional identity, stating that the latter depends to a large extent on the teacher’s relationship with knowledge and how knowledge is constructed. In carrying out teaching practices, teachers interact with others and obtain teacher knowledge, and in the process of acquiring teacher knowledge, their identities are also affected (Bernstein and Solomon 1999). Additionally, Xie (2016), in his study on the cultivation of student teachers’ practical abilities, argued that student teachers’ lack of teacher knowledge and teaching ability may lead to a professional identity construction crisis. Cui and Zhang (2019) also argued that student teachers who have a strong teacher professional identity would have strong enthusiasm and motivation to be involved in education and become what the Ministry of Education of China calls “outstanding teachers with high professional quality” (2014: 1). In the process of becoming a teacher, especially in transforming the knowledge of teaching theory to teaching practice, the education practicum in China is considered by education leaders to be an essential step. Much of the literature focuses on teacher identity formation. However, little is known about student teacher experiences in the field (Shi and Cheng 2020). This case study examined teacher professional identity construction among student teachers of a normal university in China during their education practicum. These first teaching experiences influence student teachers’ construction and reconstruction of professional identity and beliefs (Iaochite and Costa Filho 2016). The education practicum is the “capstone experience” for student teachers’ professional identity construction in the process of learning to teach (Gaudelli and Ousle 2009). Therefore, it is necessary to adjust the research perspective, go deep into

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the process of education practice, and explore student teacher professional identity construction. In 2016, the Ministry of Education in China issued the Guidelines on Strengthening the Education Practicum of Student Teachers, aiming at solving problems in the education practicum, such as unclear objectives, insufficient contents, and weak guidance. This document outlines the overall plan for and the requirements of the education practicum along nine goals outlined by the Ministry of Education of China (2016), including: Clarifying the objectives and tasks of the education practicum, Constructing an all-round education practicum system, Innovating the forms of education practicum, Organizing and carrying out standardized education practicum, Implementing the ‘Double-Mentor System’ in the education practicum, Improving the evaluation system with multiple participation, Building long-term and stable education practicum bases, Establishing and improving the incentive mechanism for mentors, and Ensuring funding for education practicum.

(pp. 1–4)

The education practicum is a crucial part of teacher education programs in China, usually arranged in the seventh or eighth semester, lasts for one semester of about 16 to 18 weeks, and takes place at partner schools mostly from preschool to secondary level. During the education practicum, student teachers interact with in-service teachers and students in the placement school, and with university-based mentors; apply subject matter knowledge and pedagogical knowledge in real teaching situations; and show their sense of association or disassociation with the teaching profession. Student teachers are usually assigned to observe, teach, and complete administrative work. By the time they start their education practicum they may or may not have the Teacher Qualification Certificate because the Teacher Qualification Certificate Examination is held twice per year. This case study focuses on the following research questions: 1. How do the Chinese student teachers’ perceptions/experiences impact their professional identity construction during the education practicum? 2. How do the Chinese student teachers perceive their professional identity evolved as they encountered the placement school context during the education practicum? This case study at a selected normal university in China contributes to the literature of research on teacher education and comparative and international education (CIE) by providing rich information on the Chinese teacher education system, including policy frameworks, curricular structures, teacher beliefs and knowledge, as well as the challenges facing teacher education. In addition, this case study brings insights into teacher education approaches, specifically the education practicum in Chinese


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settings, informed by comparative perspectives in the global context. The Shenzhou Normal University (pseudonym), where this case study was conducted, is a highly popular public teacher education college representative of large schools in China, with a comprehensive range of majors. This fits Patton’s (2002) “information rich” (p. 242) profile for the current case study that aimed to understand the construction of teacher professional identity among Chinese student teachers during their education practicum at placement schools and provide a comprehensive picture in understanding teacher education programs and approaches in China.

Theoretical Framework Considering the helpfulness of combining theories with studying teacher professional identity construction as proposed by Clarke (2008), Dang (2013), and He and Lin (2013), we synthesized activity theory (Engeström 2015), community of practice, and positioning theory into the current study as a theoretical framework. Hence, we employ Engeström’s (2015) activity theory lens, through which we study student teacher professional identity construction in the context of the placement school-based education practicum. We see the placement school as an activity system, interrelated with the normal university-based learning-to-teach context, as well as China’s culturalhistorical contexts concerning teacher identity. In this framework, through activities, student teachers transform internal thought processes and behaviors, and these activities are seen here as informing their transformation into members of the teacher community. We view the cultural historical activity theory (CHAT) as relevant to use in the current study, as it provides a lens to “an understanding of how multiple contexts in which an individual operates work together to transform internal thought processes and behaviors” (Saka et al. 2009: 1000). Meanwhile, considering Wenger’s (1998) perspective on identity as social participation in a community of practice, we contend that student teacher professional identity construction is influenced by student teachers’ participation in their communities of practice, in this circumstance, the colleges of teacher education and the placement school contexts where they are trained and practice to teach. Furthermore, we consider notions of identity being recognized as “a kind of person” (Gee 2000: 99), as a framework for investigating the professional identity construction of student teachers in the current study. Rogers and Babinski (2002) discussed the importance of new teachers communicating with other new teachers in their research on professional development activities for elementary school teachers. They asserted that other beginning teachers serve an important role in the professional development of their fellow teachers. This communication could, in fact, be a form of a community of practice, which could lead to critical analysis and identity growth. Forming a community of practice is relevant to the student teachers developing a professional identity. For example, education programs can be one community that nurtures discipline identity (Kerkhoff et al. 2020), where new teachers can talk with one another about the tension and frustration of the profession and create an identity space for themselves.

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Furthermore, under the umbrella of social constructivism, positioning theory not only stresses social situatedness of the self, but also emphasizes the individual– collective interface and individual variance throughout any social groups (McVee 2011). In this study we draw on positioning theory in our analysis since we are trying to understand how language is used in student teachers’ identity enactment, especially, how student teachers position themselves while interacting with others in their teaching practicum. Gee (2011) pointed out that individuals often use discourse, including written discourse, to build one’s own identity and attribute a certain identity to others as well. The written discourses in this study refer to education practicum reports, which include teaching plans, reflective journals, and practicum summaries, recording and reflecting the transitional stage from students to teachers. Through writing practicum reports, student teachers experienced the discursive practice of text-building skills which not only helps them reflect on the outside reality, but also helps them construct that reality (Haniford 2010). As Haniford (2010) puts it, “The multiple positioning involved in constructing a teacher identity is evident in these written plans” (p. 988); therefore, we applied positioning theory in analyzing the textual artifacts included in this study. China is a latecomer to the study of teacher professional identity and popularly adopted frameworks are sociocultural theories, Korthagen’s onion model, pragmatic identity, critical discourse analysis, and Zimmerman’s discourse identity. However, only a few researches adopt frameworks combining these theories (Shi and Cheng 2020). The current study enriches the literature on teacher professional identity construction by combining theory frameworks as well as by introducing more available theoretical perspectives. In general, applying a synthesized theoretical framework in the current study helps us “appreciate how students navigate through and develop understandings of themselves in different educational contexts” (Vågan 2011: 45). The following section describes the theories used to operationalize the construct of student teacher professional identity. We review the proposed concepts and factors that contribute to teacher professional identity from sociocultural perspectives and then propose a working definition of student teacher professional identity.

Teacher Professional Identity Regarding the social nature of identity, research papers in both Chinese and English emphasize that identity is constructed and negotiated through social processes and under the influence of external contexts (Day and Gu 2007; Vågan 2011; Dang 2013; Lantolf et al. 2015). This suggests identities are the means individuals either relate to or distinguish themselves from others through their social relations with others. Sociocultural perspectives suggest that identity construction is a social process in which an individual’s identity can shift over time and vary depending on the context (Alsup 2006). Cherryholmes (1988) proposed the concept of teacher professional identity in the field of education and saw it as an organic combination of the individual self and the social self. Teacher professional identity is not unchanged, fixed or unitary


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but multiplex and dynamic in nature and in constant construction (Beauchamp and Thomas 2009; Beijaard et al. 2004; Izadinia 2013). Miller (2009) surmised that teacher professional identity “reveals several consistent themes, along with the overarching conceptualization that identity is relational, interactional, constructed, and performed in context” (p. 175). In line with the concepts proposed above, and given the research site and participants (placement schools and student teachers) of this case study, we see student teacher professional identity as constructed through interactions, performing teacher’s work, and in relation to the placement school context. We consider that student teacher professional identity refers to being a teacher (i) with regard to a student teacher’s perceived identity at one moment in time and in their future, (ii) in relation to student teachers’ teacher knowledge for teaching practices in placement schools, (iii) their performance in education practicum work, as well as (iv) their positionality in connection to others including, but not limited to, students at placement schools, placement school cultures, fellow student teachers, mentors, and the larger teaching profession. A student teacher continually acquires teacher knowledge (e.g., subject matter, classroom organization and instructional techniques, curriculum content, students’ needs, the social framework of the school and its surrounding community, and their own strengths and shortcomings as teachers) while carrying out the teaching practice through interaction in the placement school context. The degree of teacher knowledge acquisition contributes to student teacher professional identity (Kong 2018). When student teachers’ sense of self within the teaching profession is developed, they develop their own theories of actions, moderate their actions toward their personal theories, and perform as teachers, fulfill teacherly values (e.g., to observe classes, to give classes to the students), and engage in the role of teachers (Danielewicz 2001). Furthermore, while interacting with others in the context of the education practicum, student teachers may self-position themselves, and are positioned by others in multiple identities, which constitute actions involved in constructing the teacher professional identity (Olivero 2017).

Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction during the Education Practicum In their study of two mathematics pre-service teachers’ reflective narratives about their experience in practice, Mosvold and Bjuland (2016) examined how the pre-service teachers positioned themselves and how a mentor teacher positioned them. They concluded that identity is regarded as a dynamic and discursive process that relies upon the individuals’ positioning in reflective narratives. Wang et al.’s (2016) study on student teacher professional identity construction before and after the education practicum in China showed significant differences in the cognitive dimension, emotional dimension, and behavioral tendency of student teachers’ identity before and after the internship. This indicated that the form (independent-arranged or universityarranged), content and the areas (urban or rural) of the teaching practicum would produce these changes on student teachers’ identity.

Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction


Chen and Hu’s (2019) study focused on exploring pre-service English teachers’ professional identity changes before and after the education practicum. Results showed that student teachers’ professional competency, interaction with the pupils, relationship with placement schools and mentors, and curriculums of teacher education affected their professional identity construction. Xie and Xiong (2014) used a case study to explore the student teacher professional identity construction and concluded that student teachers’ identity attribution is related to their self-efficacy, motivation, cognition, and school environment. The study indicated that lack of preparation in professional knowledge, beliefs, emotions, and attitudes became the biggest obstacle for student teachers to professional identity construction during the education practicum. Finally, Zhang and Chen (2014) studied how student teachers’ perceptions of knowledge and identity affected their knowledge transformation and identity acquisition. The research revealed that knowledge and identity were interactive in learning to teach. Student teachers’ perceptions about the core of a teacher’s knowledge affected their understanding of their identity, and vice versa. These studies are closely connected to the present study, which also investigates student teacher professional identity development in the context of the education practicum. From these studies, we acknowledge that student teacher professional identity construction during the practicum is a continuous and dynamic process, involving many factors that influence student teachers’ professional identity construction, such as, their relationship with the placement school community, the practicum context, the practicum work, as well as their teacher knowledge and selfattitude. Although most of the studies above are exploring the factors that impact the student teachers’ professional identity, there are few empirical studies on how student teachers construct their teacher professional identity.

Research Context and Participants The educational practicum is part of the curriculum in undergraduate teacher education programs in China, arranged in the seventh or eighth semester, lasting sixteen weeks at placement K-12 schools. The Shenzhou Normal University educational practicum investigated in this case study was arranged in the seventh semester and reduced to twelve weeks because of the disruptive effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The researchers are familiar with the case study context. Two researchers are senior lecturers at Shenzhou Normal University, and have been working at this normal university for more than ten years. One researcher has graduated from a teacher education program at Shenzhou Normal University and had educational practicum experiences. These experiences have deepened the researchers’ understanding of this study’s context. To minimize any undue influence on the participants, the researchers made it clear to the student teachers during the recruitment phase that their participation was entirely voluntary, that they could withdraw from the study at any time, and that their withdrawal would not affect their grades in any way. Dillman et al. (2014) have shown that a request for participation coming from a credible source works the best in recruiting participants for a study. Participants for


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

this study were recruited through the Dean of the Graduate School. The Graduate School at Shenzhou Normal University coordinates the educational training of student teachers. The data collection for this study, involving interviews with student teachers in China and requests for student teachers’ reflective reports, was conducted remotely by the US-based authors of this study. Following the Dean’s introduction, we sent recruitment messages via email and mobile apps (e.g., OICQ, WeChat) to all student teachers who were enrolled in education programs at Shenzhou Normal University and participated in education practica in placement schools. The term “tailored” (Dillman et al. 2014: 16) is used to describe how to modify a solicitation approach to fit the characteristics of a target population whose participation is sought by a researcher. The recruitment protocol included three attempts (Willis et al. 2013; Phillips et al. 2016), adopting the tailored design method (Dillman et al. 2014). Thus, we sent: (a) personalized WeChat announcements, (b) personalized emails with a link to upload the education practicum reflective reports, and (c) personalized follow-up reminder messages via Wechat and emails (Willis et al. 2013; Phillips et al. 2016). Fifty-one student teachers agreed to participate, and all were recruited for their education practicum reports. Thirteen of the respondents were purposefully selected to participate in our focus group interviews, representing different genders, a variety of placement schools, grade levels taught (elementary, junior high, and senior high), and content areas in the different areas of the province.

Data Sources and Analysis The data included six interview transcripts—three first-round interviews and three second-round follow-up interviews of Chinese student teachers—and fifty-one education practicum reports (see Table 11.1). Table 11.1  Data sources. Data Sources

Number of Participants


Related to Research Questions

Data Analysis

Focus-group 13 interview

One month after the EP

1. How do the Chinese student teachers’ perceptions/ experiences impact their professional identity construction during the education practicum?

Thematic analysis

Education practicum report

One month after the EP

2. How do the Chinese student teachers perceive their professional identity evolved as they encountered the placement school context during the education practicum?

Thematic analysis


Student Teacher Professional Identity Construction


This analysis aimed to determine the themes using thematic analysis (Clarke and Braun 2017). Focus group interviews were conducted and transcribed in Chinese, and collected education practicum reports were also in Chinese. The three co-authors conducted member checks and analyzed the qualitative data in Chinese. The themes and excerpts were translated and reported in English. To ensure the reliability of the translations, as native speakers of Chinese, we invited native speakers of English to proofread the translated themes and excerpts to achieve the best equivalence in the two languages. We practiced intercoder agreement (Creswell and Plano Clark 2017) to secure the credibility of the qualitative results. The three coders compared and discussed our codes and notes to see the extent to which independent coders agree on the coding of the content (Lavrakas 2012). Rather than focusing on getting to a standard coefficient, our focus was on a practical improvement of the coding quality, for which we addressed and edited the codes that did not match in terms of definition and word choices to achieve agreement. After coming to a consensus about the codes, we continued coding the rest of the data. To increase validity and reliability, we followed qualitative inquiry approaches during the whole study, including member checks, triangulation, and disconfirming evidence reporting. Emerging themes, along with explanations, were returned to all participants by emails to check for accuracy and their resonance. Triangulation was complemented by drawing from more than one participant’s statements to build evidence for the findings. In addition, we committed to an in-depth description of the data and, if any, reporting disconfirming evidence to “confirm the accuracy of the data analysis” (Creswell and Plano Clark 2017: 633).

Findings We generated five themes through qualitative data analysis to answer the research questions. These themes highlight the various contributors to student teacher professional identity construction.

Main Themes In this research, themes are understood as the subject and main idea; it could be a sentence or a word, based on the research questions and interview answers. Five major themes emerged as the data was reviewed and coded through the thematic analysis approach (Clarke and Braun 2017). ●●


Understanding of the teaching profession. Student teachers’ understanding of what a teacher should be and how they will moderate their actions and act; the role of a teacher and their perceptions toward the teaching profession during the education practicum and for future professional development. Teacher knowledge. The acquired knowledge in the subject matter, classroom management techniques, instructional techniques, curriculum content, knowing students’ needs, and their strengths and shortcomings as a teacher.

186 ●●



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Role model and classroom manager. The common tasks involved in the educational practicum for student teachers, other than teaching, are acting as role models and performing classroom management. Influence of people. The findings of this study showed that people’s influence is important for student teacher identity. Influencing people included teachers in the field, other student teachers, and students from their class. Challenges. Student teachers mainly shared that they experienced balancing competing priorities between practicing the teacher’s work and preparing for the Unified National Graduate Entrance Examination (UNGEE), and obstacles imposed by mentors.

Understanding of the Teaching Profession The research findings within this theme showed that student teachers’ previous educational experience left them with impressions of what a teacher should be, and they began the process of identity formation before entering the placement school community. Through social relationships and deep connections with others, which reinforce the student teachers’ sense of professional identity, student teachers constantly moderated their actions toward others based on their environment and aligned themselves with the teacher role they perceived within the placement community (Wenger 2000; Beijaard et al. 2004). For example, student teachers shared their thoughts in focus group interviews and practicum reports: My image of an ideal teacher was formed around high school. At that time, a teacher with profound knowledge was very attractive to me, so I hope I could be that kind of teacher one day. (student teacher 8, focus group interview)

Another student teacher stated in the practicum report: I perceived myself as a new teacher in the placement school, so it is very important for me to learn from others modestly. First, I need to learn how to give a good lesson from the outstanding teachers. Second, I need to act the role of a good teacher, because great learning makes a teacher, moral integrity makes a model. So, I need to observe more, ask more, learn more, practice more, reflect more, and improve my teaching skill, so as to lay a solid foundation for my future teaching, and become a qualified teacher. (participant 5, education practicum report)

Teacher Knowledge The focus group interview transcripts and education practicum reports showed that teacher knowledge significantly influences the student teacher’s professional identity construction. With the advancement of teacher knowledge in the placement school

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context acquired through observation and interactions with in-service teachers and mentors, student teachers reflected positively on teacher professional identity construction. For instance, on this theme, a participant shared the following reflection: I have taken the course of study of K-9 English textbooks in the sixth semester. I’m familiar with the textbooks and have practiced the design of lesson plans with the textbooks. I know, in theory, what to teach to the class. And after spending the first week doing class observations, joining team meetings of the in-service teachers, exchanging ideas with my mentors about the textbook and teaching plans, I felt I’m better prepared and more confident when teaching the class. (student teacher 9, focus group interview)

Another student teacher in the education practicum report stated: I obviously enjoyed myself much more at the placement school by the end of the education practicum compared to the earlier days. Because by then I was more knowledgeable in interpreting textbooks and students, adjusting ways of teaching accordingly, and knowing what I’m good at and what I need to improve as a teacher. These made me feel like a teacher. Education practicum is an indispensable and valuable process for me. (participant 12, education practicum report)

In the activity theory conceptualization (Engeström 2015) of the placement school context, student teachers continuously gained new teacher knowledge while practicing acquired teacher knowledge through activities. Thus, student teachers transformed internal thought processes and behaviors, and these activities are seen as at the center of transformation into members of the teacher community. Student teacher professional identity construction closely connects to social, cultural, historical, and political contexts (Varghese et al. 2005; Trent 2013).

Influence of People Sending student teachers to practicum schools in a cohort results in a working community, shielding them from outside pressures, and helping them better to acquire knowledge (Lave and Wenger 1991). Student teachers named one another as providers of important emotional and sensemaking support, both during and after the practicum experience, corroborating Sciaky’s (2015) findings. Previous research showed that practice community members have the potential to remain a knowledge source for one other (Cheng and Yi 2021). One student teacher stated in the focus group interview: My friend and I will discuss what we did at the placement school, and it really helps. I will compare what we did at school, and who is more like a teacher. I think that my relationship with my students is more like a teacher and a friend. I am very serious


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in class, and they all respect me and treat me as a teacher. I try my best to keep a feeling of exchanging a little bit from each other, not to allow myself to have a sense of distance from them. (student teacher 7, focus group interview)

Every interaction between a practicum student and a practicum mentor is unique because it varies based on mentors’ and students’ teaching styles and personalities. Both tensions and support were reported. Not all the participants reported that they had the opportunity to be in charge of a classroom or teach a class independently, but those who did have these experiences reported that having a supporting and flexible mentor helped with their confidence in constructing their teacher identity. Another influencing factor is the communication level of student teachers and mentors.

Role Model and Classroom Manager Many participants reported classroom management as a difficulty for them, and they felt unprepared for it because this part of the practicum accommodates different needs in different classrooms. Based on the participants’ reports, not all of the classrooms required much effort related to classroom management. However, this became an issue when student teachers were struggling to define their roles and responsibilities in the classroom. One student teacher shared in her education practicum report: My placement school is a rural school, and a lot of students come from lowincome families. They often ask me about what it is like to be in college. So, I think I  need  to  be a model figure to the students, and maybe one day they will go to college too. (participant 11, education practicum report)

Students are human, and their responses to classroom teaching can vary by days, schools, groups, and social context. These kinds of situations examine student teachers’ ability to adapt and adjust their teaching style. Most participants reported that they felt stressed and intimidated at the beginning of the educational practicum, and their construction of the teacher identity process helped them address this issue. Our data indicates that student teachers constructed their professional identity by fulfilling the mentoring activities Wenger (1998) discussed through interactions with teachers in the field.

Challenges Participants shared that they experienced balancing competing priorities between their practicing teacher’s work and preparing for the Unified National Graduate Entrance Examination (UNGEE), as well as the obstacles imposed by mentors. The following

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excerpts showed how the challenges in student teachers’ professional identity emerged. One of the student teachers shared her experience on competing priorities: Preparing for UNGEE requires a lot of time, while the practicum assignments are relatively heavy at the beginning. When I completed my day of practicum and returned to the library, there was little time left for study. Even though I really want to learn some knowledge from the practicum to improve my teaching ability, I can only prepare for the exam by compressing some practicum time. (student teacher 6, focus group interview)

Another student teacher’s excerpt stated the obstacles imposed by mentors: I planned to observe as many classes as I can, and hoped I could learn some knowledge of teaching from my mentor. Actually, I had few opportunities for classroom observation, because my mentor assigned me a great amount of homework to grade. And in the second week of the practicum, my mentor asked me if our university has a rigid requirement for the number of the class observations. She suggested that there is no need to observe so much class if there is no requirement. This made me feel that she is reluctant to have me in her class. (student teacher 11, focus group interview)

In the activity theory conceptualization (Engeström 2015) of the placement school context, student teachers’ goals (objects) could influence them (subjects) in constructing their teacher professional identity. Student teacher professional identity construction manifested in their commitment to the education practicum, which is influenced by the challenges they encountered at the placement schools.

Implications In China, teacher education programs spend ample time in the theoretical curriculum, but offer very limited access to activities such as class observation, workshops, and demonstrations. Student teachers usually engage in teaching as soon as they arrive at the placement schools. Increasing the ratios of activities such as class observations, workshops, and demonstrations in the theoretical curriculum would better prepare them and significantly prevent them from being overwhelmed when starting their education practica. With the current fixed and exam-oriented curriculum, it is difficult for student teachers to practice their teaching skills. Placement schools should facilitate the promotion of teachers, support student teachers by offering them more opportunities to teach in the classroom than currently available. The authors consider that the teacher practicum plays a central role in teacher preparation programs, and it is essential to provide opportunities in which student teachers can participate in classroom teaching and prepare to be teachers. The data revealed that some student teachers faced challenges in managing the requirements of the education practicum and preparing for UNGEE, which could


Teacher Education Intersecting Comparative and International Education

influence their commitment to the education practicum. Rescheduling their education practicum to avoid a conflict with UNGEE may lower the pressure they experience and allow them to dedicate themselves to the practicum. Allowing student teachers to practice without experiencing challenges should provide them with the opportunity to fulfill their teaching dispositions and principles, which could foster a commitment to the teaching profession so as to help them construct their professional identity.

Conclusion Research studies show that the construction of a teacher’s professional identity is a focal process for student teachers in becoming a teacher (Alsup 2006; Friesen and Besley 2013). In terms of the social nature of identity, research papers both in Chinese and English emphasize that identity is constructed and negotiated through social processes and under the influence of external contexts (Day and Gu 2007; Dang 2013; Lantolf et al. 2015). This case study found that within the placement school context, student teachers constructed their teacher professional identity in dynamic and relational ways. These influenced the process of performing a teacher’s work based on the perceived and actual acquired teacher knowledge, as well as their understanding of the teaching profession through interacting with others. This study’s findings enriched knowledge in the field of student teacher professional identity construction from a Chinese perspective through the themes it revealed, namely: a better understanding of the teaching profession; teacher knowledge; influence of people; role model and classroom manager; and the higher status of student teacher professional identity construction. This case study informs the broader CIE research by offering insight into alternative teacher preparation approaches and strategies in improving the educational practicum process. This study also contributes to the CIE literature by finding the commonalities and differences in teaching methods and education practicum designs. It also has the potential to generate further discussions on the common ground between teacher education and CIE research and practice in teacher preparation programs. These could include aspects such as adjusting the ratio of theoretical education and practicum in curriculum design, the ratio of classroom teaching and administrative workload, and the flexible scheduling of education practica for optimal outcomes. Finally, this study illustrated the applicability of theories related to student teacher identity construction (Yin 2018), while at the same time offering a research design that can be replicated in similar settings, with the aim to examine teacher identity construction in teacher education training programs across multiple and global contexts.

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Part Four

Social Issues in Teacher Education in Global Times of Crisis



Social Issues Are the Syllabus: Worldwide Teacher Education in Changing Times Jordi Castellví, Gustavo A. González-Valencia, and Antoni Santisteban

Introduction Education based on social issues has a long tradition in anglophone and francophone countries as well as in Italy and Ibero-American countries, although it has received different names depending on the country or the time period in which it has been placed. Many articles have been written about how it is addressed and the different proposals considered in each context (Legardez and Simonneaux 2011; Ho et al. 2017; Pineda-Alfonso and Navarro-Medina 2019; Santisteban 2019; Evans 2021). However, its impact on teacher training programs has not been studied. John Dewey and Paulo Freire maintain that education is not a neutral process but a type of social control. In this general framework, the aims of social studies are defined in relation to the type of society we want to build. For Ross (2019), there is no “scientifically objective” response to the question on the purposes of education because those purposes are decided upon according to a way of understanding the world. Freire (1970, 1974) described education as a resource which can be used in two ways: (1) to integrate people in the logic of a social system and obtain their conformity; and (2) to integrate them in a process for “the practice of freedom,” which is how people face reality critically and creatively, and discover how to take part in the transformation of their world. This second possibility gives meaning to a social science teaching based on social issues and conflicts. Work based on social issues originated in Dewey’s (1995, 2002) proposals in the first half of the twentieth century in his defense of education based on people’s real problems in society, on the development of contemplative thinking, and on learning of democratic participation. For Dewey (2008), knowledge is built through experience, in the continuous interaction with the environment, bringing meaning to life and education. Conflicts and resistance to change in these interactions help to requalify the experience based on the emotions generated and the rationality required to define our ideas. Several authors (e.g., Quillen and Hanna 1948; Hunt and Metcalf 1968) applied Dewey’s ideas, who defined a series of strategies in which citizens needed to be trained.


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These proposals were called “problem-based approaches” and were widely disseminated in history courses in the United States in the following decades and teacher training programs in the United. Hunt and Metcalf (1968) devised what was known as “reflective inquiry,” proposing a systematic model for problem analysis which included values, semantics, and empirical analysis. Two different trends followed their work: (i) teachers or researchers who placed emphasis on methodology and the term “inquiry” as a process, from an intellectual perspective; and (ii) those who sought to lay the foundations of work based on dilemmas and the study of situations of social conflict as the backbone of a history and social studies curriculum. The above trends have existed and continue to exist, providing different responses to the innovation and change processes taking place in education and teacher training. In light of comparative international education trends (Kitchen and Petrarca 2016), we analyze and compare national trends, issues, and challenges for social issues education in teacher training programs and we evaluate their contributions to education in changing times. To this aim we study the theoretical development of these proposals in the cultural contexts in which they have a major impact. This study aims to contribute to comparative and international education (CIE) by illustrating how various teacher education trends that promote addressing problems and social issues are practically developed in different countries. In parallel, these teacher education approaches benefit from CIE, moving them from local and isolated practices to a global perspective, and facilitating comparison-making, a situated analysis, and their promotion. In the first section we introduce the cases of problem situations developed in the French-speaking countries and the laboratiorio di storia in Italy. Both proposals consider that problem-based teaching and learning means introducing a methodological change in classes, based on the problematization of curriculum content, whatever this may be (Kitchen and Petrarca 2016). While they present a solid methodology easily transferable to school educational practices and enable the problematization of the content established in the official curricula, their pertinence is questioned for dealing with issues with a higher degree of controversy (Ross and Vinson 2006; Renner 2009; Evans 2011; McCrary and Ross 2016). In the second section we introduce the proposals developed in the anglophone context grounded in social justice inquiry teacher education (Kitchen and Petrarca 2016). In contrast to the previous proposals, they maintain that a methodological innovation that does not consider the specific knowledge being taught and learned does not make sense, and that we must use knowledge and skill construction processes to apply it to everyday reality. The issues-centered education and controversial issues approaches to teacher education they defend make social and controversial issues the content to be taught. In the third section we go back to the francophone context with the questions socialement vives, a similar approach to the anglophone one focused in open debates in the media and society, with historical roots. In the fourth section we introduce the problemas sociales relevantes as proposed in the Ibero-American countries, which derives from the anglophone proposals, but with its own particularities.

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All these proposals present many opportunities to educate reflexive and critical teachers. However, the effects are not observed in the short term, there is no consensus among teachers and researchers around their implementation, and its critical character can lead to the creation of resistances among the teachers. In the last section we compare all proposals and trends, and we draw some conclusions regarding the importance of including social and controversial issues as core content in social sciences teacher training programs in changing times.

The Problematization of the Content: Problem Situations and the laboratorio di storia The teacher training in social science teaching that could be qualified as more methodology-focused, and often found in other fields of knowledge, is problem-based learning. Social science teaching begins with the problematization of the topics in the curriculum, whatever the content, to propose a work process following certain steps or guidelines to generate a model applicable to other social problems. After problematizing the content, discussions and debates are proposed on concepts or facts related to the past and present to teach democratic values. We must recognize the importance of teacher training in developing skills to problematize any curriculum content. One of these trends are the problem-situations, which have been developed in the francophone context in work done by Dalongeville (2003, 2006), De Vecchi and Carmona-Magnaldi (2002), and Le Roux (2004). In the same vein, Huber (2004) proposes the problem-situation as a strategy for problematizing the knowledge to be taught. For Dalongeville (2003), problematizing the content means, for example, analyzing the concept of “Barbarians” in the context of the Roman Empire, and transposing it to current times. This reminds us of Todorov’s (2008) question: “Who are the Barbarians today?” This enables us to relate the past to the present, and to argue about social values and their evolution over time. This type of work addresses all educational levels and must be a subject of study and development in teacher training in such a way that future teachers are capable of thinking about and implementing this type of proposal. In this regard, for De Vecchi and Carmona-Magnaldi (2002), a problem is an initial situation about which we have some information. Based on this, we set out to achieve a goal, which leads us to develop a series of actions that trigger an intellectual activity. This entails an inquiry process to achieve a final result, which was initially unknown. For De Vecchi and Carmona-Magnaldi (2002), the problem-situation should: ●● ●●


make sense for the person learning and be a challenge, not only compliance; be linked to an identified, defined obstacle, considered to be surmountable and that the student becomes aware through social representations; lead to questions among the students (which do not only respond to the teacher’s questions);

202 ●●




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create one or more interruptions which lead to deconstructing the initial explanatory model or models if they are inappropriate or wrong; correspond to a complex situation, where possible linked to reality, which can lead to different acceptable responses and different usable strategies; lead to a general knowledge (notion, concept, law, rule, skill, and know-how to be and to do …); be subjected to one or more moments of metacognition (analysis a posteriori about how students experienced the activities and the knowledge that has been integrated). (p. 42)

A similar tradition originated in Italy, suggesting transforming education classes in history, geography, and social science into a laboratory where problems are solved. It is a very skills-based work that presents a challenge to solve relying on multiple of sources of information (Mattozzi 2002). In geography didactics, for De Vecchi and Staluppi, the laboratory is another type of didactic organization where interdisciplinary projects in environmental intervention are addressed. For Landi (2006), in history didactics, the laboratory requires the development of skills to tackle the complexity of historical problems, also from an interdisciplinary perspective. As Landi (2006) notes: [S]ince addressing a problem in an operational way almost always involves the need to consider the topic from multiple perspectives, the laboratory is, therefore, an opportunity to reflect on the interdisciplinary connections needed to address the challenge of complexity. (p. 69)

For Mattozzi (2006), the most important considerations are for future teachers to develop a mente laboratoriale [a laboratory mind], promote curiosity, ask questions and seek responses, value the information, make decisions, and solve problems or propose alternatives. Various authors agree on the importance of working with historical sources in the laboratory to solve historical problems (Bernardi 2006). In Italy, several research projects have been conducted about experiences in the history or geography laboratory, many from an action-research perspective (Deiana 1999; Brigadeci et al. 2001). These proposals have a major impact on social sciences teacher education programs mainly in French-speaking countries and in Italy. However, the problem-based learning trend has a global impact in education providing future teachers “the knowledge, skills and attitudes to face the demands of a dynamic world today” (Ling and Jee 2007: 1), and offering them a solid methodology easily transferable to school practices and to official curricula. On the other hand, Such proposals also exhibit some weaknesses underlined by scholars such as Ross and Vinson (2006), Renner (2009), Evans (2011), McCrary and Ross (2016), among others, who consider them noninnovative, very focused in the disciplinal content, and limited to the unquestioned problematization of official curricula or looking for an alternative and renewed education that promotes social justice.

Social Issues in Worldwide Teacher Education


Issues-Centered Education and Controversial Issues In anglophone countries, other alternatives of working with social problems have been proposed, based on critical theory and focused on defending a social science curriculum in which social problems and controversial issues are the core components, in addition to perhaps sharing a methodology with other proposals such as those above. But the main difference is that while some schools of thought seek methodological models to address social problems, critical theory insists on considering more uncomfortable problems, taboos, and the latent and controversial issues in our society, as the essential contents the teachers must prioritize to work in social science, geography, and history classes. One of the main contributions in this line of thinking is Evans and Saxe’s (1996) work. They place the teaching of present-day controversial issues requiring reflection and historical contextualization at the heart of social science education. In the same work, Evans, Newmann, and Saxe (1996) define issues-centered education as work based on: problematic questions that need to be addressed and answered, at least provisionally. Problematic questions are those on which intelligent, well-informed people may disagree. Such disagreement, in many cases, leads to controversy and discussion marked by expression of opposing views. (p. 2)

They add that these problems can be past, present, or future. The work of Evans and Saxe (1996) had a wide influence on critical social studies, as it informed research teaching methodologies using issues-centered social studies. In Ibero-American countries, this was adapted as problemas sociales relevantes (relevant social problems) (González-Valencia 2011), for example, based on Benejam’s (1997) contribution, for whom relevant social problems can be a tool through which teachers may foster students’ “interest in finding alternative policies, allowing them an active role, a vision of the future and to develop an attitude of social and political commitment” (p. 41). Other authors have also adhered to this stance in relation to teaching and teacher training (Pagès 1994; Rozada 1997; Santisteban 2004, 2011). According to Hahn (1996), the strengths of these proposals reside in their promotion of greater interest among teachers in social science teacher training. Consequently, teachers develop advanced cognitive skills, participatory political attitudes, and a critical awareness of global matters and other important social issues. Nonetheless, Hahn (1996) underlines some of their weaknesses: (i) the effects are not observed in the short term; (ii) there is very little knowledge about how to address such controversial topics in primary education, as the majority of studies were conducted with children over the age of 10; and (iii) there is no consensus among teachers and researchers around defining teaching and learning based on social problems and how to implement it.


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Scholars such as Fien (1992) and Warga (2014) agree that the introduction of issuescentered education in teacher training must be combined with different factors so that it is effective, namely: (i) developing the skills needed to establish relevant relationships between the content to be taught and the relevant social problems; (ii) in university classrooms, promoting discussions, project work, debates, simulations, and essays on controversial issues, so that future teachers become accustomed to considering different stances on and interpretations of problems; (iii) teachers in training should feel that they can express their point of view freely and learn to listen to other opinions, to acquire knowledge, skills and social attitudes; and (iv) these conditions should be experienced in schools by teacher candidates during their training, with the coperating teachers with expertise in these approaches. This approach enables the teachers to relate the school environment to the surrounding world to counter the common dissociation students develop in considering the education they receive in school as unrelated to everyday life (Ross 2019). Furthermore, assuming that problems are familiar, interesting, and important for the broader community, we can ensure that both students and teachers become active societal actors concerned about environmental problems, cognizant of historical contexts, and the relationship between past and present (Avery 2004). According to Ross (2019), we need to train teachers who consider children and youths to be a part of the citizenry, who consume, who use public services, who have an opinion and who have an influence in families, who suffer social conflicts, and who have a voice to think about alternatives to these problems and to build their future. Work based on social problems in school classrooms and teacher training stems from perspectives embracing critical theory and critical social studies, although its reach has not been as wide as may have been expected (Nelson and Stanley 2013). For some authors, this is due to what has been called “the war against critical social studies,” which has taken place in the last two decades (Evans 2004, 2006, 2011). Other authors have followed this argument and demonstrated that teachers have gradually lost freedom and autonomy to decide incorporate relevant social problems in their teaching (Ross and Vinson 2012). In view of this situation, education for social justice is proposed, which addresses social problems, and questions power and situations of inequality and injustices (McCrary and Ross 2016). In addition to the methodological and conceptual difficulty involved in taking social problems from theory to educational practice, there is also the controversy surrounding the issues addressed in the actual educational context. This controversy can be a great tool for change for those training critical teachers, but it often becomes an obstacle that leads to the creation of resistance among the teachers. In his work on controversial topics in history classes in the United States, Eulie (1966) posits that “the heart of democracy is controversy” (p. 89). As he states, controversy fosters critical consciousness, helps build reasoned opinions, accepts diverse stances, promotes participation, and connects the reality of the world, its conflicts, and complexity with the knowledge acquired at school. He compares these matters with the teaching of history based on the rote learning of facts, dates, and other information. Controversial issues highlight all those strategies that support education for a democratic citizenry, considering that controversy, debate, contrasting opinions, arguments, conflict, and consensus are the foundations of an authentic democratic

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education (Hess 2008, 2009). This translates into working on controversial issues, accepting the essence of plurality as political education for participation, and assuming the existence of points of view, interests, intentions, and diverse or opposing ideologies. In short, developing critical thinking skills through the analysis of controversial topics is an essential element in education and democratic life (Santisteban 2017). In his work on the role of controversial issues in the social studies curriculum, Wellington (1986) believes that a controversial issue: (i) puts values and interests up against each other; (ii) is politically sensitive; (iii) triggers emotions; (iv) refers to a complex topic; and (v) is a current issue. Education for a critical, responsible, and committed citizenry cannot ignore these topics, as any type of education that ignores controversial issues is inadequate, any discipline that does not address them in its classes will offer an incomplete image of the subject; even scientific disciplines today cannot limit themselves to cause and effect relationships, without also considering ideological approaches. A controversial issue cannot be resolved through the evidence of facts or experimentation; rather, we need to make value judgments. Therefore, approaches about the balance of forces, neutrality, and the objectivity of teachers are questioned (Avery and Barton 2017). This situation is a real inconvenience for social science education, as it does not provide certainties, but, at the same time, it shows the educational potential of this type of issue, namely, learning how to analyze information and make decisions. Controversy must not be perceived as a confrontation, but as the construction of knowledge through discussion while also developing dialectic thinking. Controversy allows students to develop their learning in a context in which knowledge is not stable, accepting the role of uncertainty in our society, identifying all the possible alternatives or solutions to social problems, and encompassing the entire reasoning process (Latour 2011). Controversial issues analyze problematic situations where legal, moral, economic, and social matters are confused. They are important in public matters and people’s lives, and they are at the heart of political action. The teachers must define what it understands by controversial issues, as different research shows that there is a tendency to work on controversy in social science classes, but often it is not clear what a controversial issue is for the teachers, whether it encompasses gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, etc. For Ho et al. (2017), controversial issues can be addressed from various perspectives. For example, from a historical perspective, we can ask: why did the United States use atomic bombs to end the war with Japan? Other issues may be addressed from a political perspective, as in should the minimum salary be increased? Yet other issues may be approached from a personal or moral angle: should I vote in the next elections?

Questions socialement vives (Socially Acute Questions) In a similar approach to issues-centered education, but in the francophone tradition of the 1990s, Chevallard’s (1997) work engendered proposals for considering socially acute questions in science didactics, seeking to transform the school into a place where acute questions are answered, and to revive a curriculum they defined  as “dying.”


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Alpe (1999, cited in Marquat, Rafaitin and Diemer 2014) proposed the concept of socially acute questions. Legardez (2004) proposed placing these questions at the center of teacher training and social science teaching, as open debates in the media and society, with historical roots. Legardez and Simonneaux (2006, 2011) state: i. It is an acute question for society, which questions social practices and refers to the social representations of the participants. It triggers debates, disputes, and conflicts based on how the media address it. ii. It is an acute question for the science in question and causes debate or controversy among the specialists of disciplines or among experts in the professional fields. iii. It is an acute question for school knowledge, which questions the content and proposals of school programs and manuals, with which it comes into dispute. One of the most important questions for this approach is sustainable development because it facilitates the practice of discussion and promotes the collective quest for solutions to the problem, but other questions can be relative to the main contemporary economic problems, such as recessions, economic cycles, unemployment, inequalities, poverty, over-indebtedness, among others, as they help to generate contexts for debate and cooperation to construct alternatives with a scientific and social foundation, but also one of values or ethics, from a transdisciplinary perspective (Legardez 2004). Socially acute questions also address silenced historical topics that are latent in society as, for example, Algeria’s independence process in France or the consequences of the Civil War in Spain. In history, Tutiaux-Guillon (2011) considers acute questions to be the demands of groups or minorities who condemn silence and the forgotten suffering of their forefathers. In addition to the recognized groups, such as those carrying the memories of genocides, there are also those who claim the memory of slavery, the treatment of enslaved people, and the suffering caused by colonization: “Here the facts come into play, but especially emotions, sensitivities and even myths. The truth of pain speaks louder than scientific truth. Scientific truth is suspicious of living with the oppressors” (Tutiaux-Guillon 2011: 27). The reference to the acute past triggers diverse memories of suffering, such as the memory of descendants of deported black people or that of the descendants of people who died in Nazi concentration camps (Chaumont 2002). In other contexts, defeat or resentment also appear as historically acute questions. For Brusa and Musci (2011), socially acute questions consider many aspects of social life, ethical problems, and relationships with others, such as the intercultural aspect. For these authors: “the integration [of socially acute questions] in the teaching of history would avoid the proliferation of ‘education for … ’ (education for peace, education for sustainable development, etc.). The reason for this absence probably lies in the loss of meaning and the ability to influence the teaching of history” (p. 52). In this regard, there is no doubt that the purpose of teaching history in teacher training must be to train critical and responsible citizens with adequate knowledge of history to consider and participate in social changes. In

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this regard, a refreshing perspective is the role of history in education for global citizens, which emphasizes invisible people, groups, and identities (Santisteban and González-Monfort 2019).

Problemas sociales relevantes (Relevant Social Problems) Lastly, the Ibero-American tradition has adopted the concept of problemas sociales relevantes (relevant social problems), adapting the anglophone proposals, especially those of Evans and Saxe (1996) and incorporating elements from the socially acute questions from the francophone context (Legardez and Simmoneaux 2006, 2011). For Pagès and Santisteban (2011), the introduction of relevant social problems in teacher training is still very recent and in practice, it has few followers. These authors point out that, in Ibero-American countries, teacher training based on relevant social problems has always been linked to active schools and the critical tradition. A study plan focused on relevant social problems proposes using public questions to highlight controversial problems such as the content of social science, geography, and history, aimed at honing the teachers’ ability to incorporate significant issues that help to develop their students’ critical thinking skills and encourage the latter group’s participation in public life. Starting with a critical perspective for teaching social science, research and innovation groups appeared in the 1970s and 1980s, which published studies and educational proposals for social science teaching based on relevant social problems, especially for secondary education. The majority of these groups came together in a federation called FEDICARIA, which shared reflections and debates, and developed alternative didactic materials to textbooks (Grupo Cronos 1993). In relation to teacher training, the Rosa Sensat Social Science Group (movement for pedagogy reform) has a proposal based on critical pedagogy and promotes groups of teachers who work cooperatively throughout Catalonia, so that social science has “a critical function, in relation to the social reality in which the students are immersed” (Casas, Janer and Masjuan 1979: 8), and it highlights that social science must: help to consider the history syllabus based on the current reality. Suppose history must serve to discover and interpret the current world. In that case, we believe that, if we relate the current problem to its historical evolution, we will help students to understand the meaning of history and to make it interesting to study, while also helping them to understand the society in which they live. (Rosa Sensat Social Science Group 1981: 8)

In the last decades of the twentieth century, the Rosa Sensat1 Social Science Group proposed relevant social problems-based work, which incorporated in social science teacher training many topics that are today very controversial, such as territorial tensions and the centralism of the State, the Spanish Civil War, the dictatorship and the repression, and the historical memory. Through Benejam’s (1997) work, we can verify the continuity of these problems. We can also notice the appearance of new topics and the beginning of important research into some of them. Despite


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the contextual changes, some are part of what we can call “the teaching of current affairs” (Pagès 2008). Topics such as the study of migrations have been worked on in schools and in teacher training for years and continue to be addressed (Pagès 1979), along with other relevant social problems, such as the Civil War or problems related to the environment. According to Pagès and Santisteban (2011), the relevant social problems that are mostly addressed in teacher training in the Ibero-American context can be positioned on one of these axes: (i) problems related to democratic culture, human rights, and social justice; (ii) problems related to everyday life, cohabitation rights and duties, inclusion/ exclusion, and identity; (iii) problems related to memory and historical consciousness, time considerations, sustainability and, especially, images of the future. From a critical perspective, teacher training in Ibero-America has adopted relevant social problems as the backbone of social science teacher training. This perspective has increasingly adopted a more integrative, less disciplinary, and more transdisciplinary approach to the question raised by teachers: what do history, geography, and other social science subjects contribute to the solution of social problems and conflicts? What does each discipline contribute to the training of people or a critical democratic citizenry? In Chile, for example, we find some proposals for teacher training in this regard, such as the work of Salinas, Castellví, and Camus (2020), which focuses on the “Chilean social outbreak” in recent times, to train future teachers’ critical thinking and promote their participation in the democratic reconstruction. This is a constant thread we increasingly find in all Latin American countries. Many of these countries have been subjected to dictatorships during the last century, and an education based on their latent problems seeks to strengthen their democracies. In Colombia, work on teacher training for peace in the context of the armed conflict between the state and the guerrillas has been the most notable (González-Valencia and Santisteban 2016; González-Valencia and Morillo 2018; Sant and González-Valencia 2018; GonzálezValencia, Santisteban, and Pagès 2020). Another current relevant social problem appearing in university departments in Spain and Latin America is the invisibilization of people and human groups in the teaching of history and social science, for example, women (Marolla, Castellví and Mendoça 2021), children (Pinochet and Pagès 2016), and indigenous people (Sanhueza, Pagès and González-Monfort 2020). The GREDICS research group at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) has further explored teacher training in recent years based on relevant social problems. The proposals worked on have focused on addressing current topics as a central axis of the curriculum, with a view to training teachers to be critical citizens capable of using relevant social problems in their educational practice. The topics addressed have evolved over the years. To be relevant, they must be current topics, which can be worked on from historical, geographical, political, sociological, economic, or other social perspectives, which may trigger debate. Some of the proposed activities have focused on questioning walls and borders in the world, denouncing homophobia and

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authoritarian discourses, and hate speech.2 Also notable are the proposals emerging from the University of Seville, in teacher training, to work with social problems and teach about democratic participation (García-Pérez 2000, 2015).

Conclusions Education is not a neutral process, but a political act (Freire 1970, 1974) and the different proposals for teacher training based on social issues demonstrate this. Although these present differences and similarities, they have shared objectives. The problem-situations, the Italian laboratorio di storia and the problematization of content place the educational methodology in the limelight. They base the educational process on inquiry, on asking questions, and on consulting sources to solve the enigmas and problems set out. However, they do not focus on the content, which can be historical or contemporary, but may also concern problematic curricular content.

Table 12.1  Comparison of the different proposals for working with social problems in teacher training. Approach

Possible questions


Situation-problème (Problem situation)

Who are the Barbarians today? (Dalongeville 2006)

Problematization of the content

Laboratorio di Storia (History Laboratory)

Can be applied to any historical topic (Mattozzi 2002).

Inquiry and consultation of primary and secondary sources.

Issues-centred Education and Controversial Issues

When should governmental authority be ignored or rejected? (Evans, Newmann and Saxe 1996). Why did the United States use atomic bombs to end the war with Japan? (Ho et al. 2017).

Questions Socialement Vives (Socially Acute Questions)

Sustainable development; Decolonisation (Tutiaux-Guillon 2011). France and Algeria’s independence; The Armenian genocide; The Shoah (Falaize 2010).

Problemas Sociales Relevantes (Relevant Social Problems)

Source: Compiled by author

Inequality, conflicts, unemployment … (Grupo Cronos 1993). The absence of woman and children in school history (Pinochet and Pagès 2016; Marolla et al. 2021). Freedom of expression as a democratic quality (Gómez Saldivia 2020).

Analysis of current problems and conflicts with local/global historical roots. Debate and argument. Future proposals.


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Some might argue that the socially acute questions are, in turn, relevant social problems and controversial issues, without an essential difference between these terms, other than the fact that they arise in different contexts. On the one hand, they are acute and relevant questions or problems for society, science, and school knowledge. On the other hand, the most suitable methods are debate and argument (Pagès and Santisteban 2011; Pineda-Alfonso and Navarro-Medina 2019). They place the focus on the students and to the formation of critical thinking, they are based on critical theory, and the role of the teachers is not one of a neutral spectator, which would be impossible when addressing these topics, but of a facilitator in inquiry and free discussion. They are transdisciplinary questions on the curriculum, although they can have a disciplinary origin or arise from a geographical, historical, political, or economic reflection. In the case of geography, they refer to the management of land and resources, of new geographies, of space as power. In the case of history, they refer to the darkest events in the past, in some cases called “delicate topics.” In the case of politics, they refer to notions of power and participation in democratic systems. In the economy, they tend to be associated with the impacts of globalization and the economic recessions of the last decade. All of them include elements of social justice inquiry teacher education, since they set the theoretical focus on “equity, diversity and social justice,” calling “teacher candidates to examine dominant group hegemony” (Kitchen and Petrarca 2016: 159) and helping their students live democracy in schools (Gay 2000). The main differences can be found in the nature of the problems set out, which have a specific nature for each of the cultures and countries where these proposals are developed, but which, at all times, have a global impact. In any case, what gives meaning to work based on social issues is thinking of education as a tool for change and social justice. The study of teacher education trends that are problem-based and/or oriented to social justice inquiry (Kitchen and Petrarca 2016) has a major contribution to CIE. In the first place, it illustrates how these theoretical trends in teacher education are practically developed in various countries. Moreover, it helps understand how teacher education traditions in those countries shape the construction of teacher education programs, orienting them to a problematizing methodology or to addressing controversies, while some of these trends coexist in countries such as France and can interrelate and create synergies. However, it must be acknowledged that problem-based and social justice inquiry teacher education programs are not the majority. These two teacher education trends benefit from CIE, giving them an international scope and moving them from local and isolated practices to a global perspective, embedding them in general trends that facilitate comparison-making, founding synergies, and promoting social issues in teacher education. These have proven to be urgent in light of recent research studies in various countries, such as Spain (Santisteban, DíezBedmar and Castellví 2020; Castellví, Díez-Bedmar and Santisteban 2021) and the United States (McGrew, Ortega, Breakstone and Wineburg 2017), showing that future teachers continue to have great difficulties interpreting sources, determining the ideology underlying information, developing solid arguments about social problems and taking these topics to educational practice (Ho et al. 2017), which is demonstrated to be essential in becoming a teacher in changing times (Darling-Hammond and Bransford 2005; Kennedy 2019). The problems stem in part from the training they

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have received, which in many cases continues to be disciplinary, rote-based, and of inherited routines. Social issues education is a complex task, both in the context of teacher training and in schools’ educational practice. It is difficult to measure the impact of this training on future teachers (Hess 2008). In fact, measuring its impact has never been our mission. However, in these changing times, we are convinced that training teachers who can address our society’s past, present, and future problems will enable us to train more critical citizens committed to human rights, democracy, and social justice.

Notes 1 Longstanding group of Catalan teachers who work and train cooperatively for pedagogical reform. 2 Teacher training dossiers based on relevant social problems (material developed by GREDICS): https://ddd.uab.cat/collection/gredics.

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Tunisian Teacher Education and COVID-19: Expecting the Unexpected Richard Arnold, tavis d jules, Imen Hentati, and Donia Smaali Bouhlila

Introduction Since 2011, Tunisia has served as a bulwark of democracy in a region otherwise known for its autocratic governments. Tunisia underwent a drastic shift in 2011 when the people overthrew President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who had ruled since 1987, and installed a democratic government in an event now known as al-sahwa (the Jasmine Revolution). The country has managed to maintain its democracy in the last decade despite increasing terrorist threats and rising Islamic fundamentalist groups within its borders. Moreover, Tunisia has been of particular interest to international knowledge banks (such as the World Bank and the IMF) wishing to keep these threats at bay in the region, not the least of which are the supranational educational entities looking to influence the only remaining democracy from the Arab Spring. Tunisian education has relied heavily on its international donors and partners, but this was not enough to prepare its teachers for the move to distance learning in the wake of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19 [coronavirus disease 2019]) pandemic. While no countries can claim to have had a flawless transition to online education, we can see specific weaknesses in the training of Tunisian teacher candidates that might have otherwise better prepared them for the worst-case scenario in which they found themselves. We observe how global and regional trends and challenges from policy borrowing in a neo-institutional context in teacher education prepared teachers in Tunisia for virtual education when the time came for remote mass learning during the pandemic lockdowns, and what worked and what did not. We begin with an overview of the teacher education system in Tunisia. We then discuss the various offerings in higher education teachers have access to. Next, we discuss the role and impact of external partners on teacher education. We then address the impact of COVID-19 on teacher education by paying attention to Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). We conclude the chapter by offering insights into the future of teacher education in Tunisia and the implications of comparative international education (CIE) in this scenario.


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The Tunisian Teacher Education Landscape The education system in Tunisia is similar to many European models. Since its independence, Tunisia’s educational system has undergone significant educational reforms in 1958, 1991, and 2002, which all restructured the relationship between the state and education. The 1958 Educational Act enshrined education as a fundamental right, and thus the first two decades of independence were devoted to the spread of education [the 1960s] then to Arabization and Tunisification [the 1970s], the present decade [the 1980s] is that of making choices for the future. The key issue is how to form the generation of the year 2000. (as cited in Daoud 1991: 4)

The 1991 reforms focused on the reinstitution of Arabic as the language of instruction for primary and secondary schooling. These education reforms (known as Les Lois de Mohamed Charfi) aimed to expand schooling in rural areas and increase enrollment among girls while introducing human rights and tolerance programs into the curricula. The 2002 educational reforms focused on “social liberalism” (Mbougueng 1999) and sought to implement aspects of neoliberal market reforms in conjunction with heavy state interventions in the social sector. The Education Act of 2002 made the pre-primary year universal in the public sector and introduced support programs for children having difficulties at school. It also called for the integration of ICTs into the curriculum and the creation of the Tunisian Virtual School in 2002 ([TVS], which later became the Virtual University of Tunis [L’Université Virtuelle de Tunis, VUT]). Since the 1991 Education Laws, the frameworks for schools have specified that teachers are responsible for ensuring that students meet the desired objectives for the centralized curriculum (Akkari 2005). While there have been efforts in the last decade to decentralize instruction, the curriculum itself remains dictated by the Ministry of Education. Tunisian education is divided into two phases—basic education, which comprises six years of primary education, and three years of preparatory and secondary education, which consists of two years of general education followed by two years of specialized education based on how students have been tracked and performed in national examinations (Hamdy 2007: 3). While these years of schooling are compulsory, pre-school and kindergarten are not. In those final two years of secondary school, students are tracked into a generalized focus on mathematics, experimental sciences, technical sciences, economics and management, arts, computer science, and physical education, with most classes incorporating these themes. Students can also choose to spend these last two years in technical vocational educational training (TVET) for a more specialized degree track. Upon completing these two years of secondary schooling, students must sit for the Tunisian Baccalaureate exam (Examen National du Baccalaureate) to attend college or the workforce.

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Table 13.1  Tunisia at a glance. Indicator



Data Tunis



Muslim (official; Sunni), 99.1%; other (includes Christian, Jewish, Shia Muslim, and Baha’i)