Innovation in Teacher Education and Teacher Professional Development through Partnerships

A special issue of Education Sciences (ISSN 2227-7102). This special issue belongs to the section "Teacher Education".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (19 April 2024) | Viewed by 3452

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Education, Tel Hai College, Upper Galilee 1220800, Israel
Interests: science education; educational effectiveness research; educational change; pedagogy; innovative learning spaces; teachers’ professional development

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Graduate Studies, Oranim College, Tivon 3600600, Israel
Interests: science education; STEM education; gifted education; self-regulation; metacognition; assessment; teachers’ professional development; innovative learning environments

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The quality of teacher education and teacher professional development has been acknowledged as an important factor influencing teaching, learning, and students’ achievements. Professional development programs (PDPs) are an important tool with which teachers increase their knowledge and skills, change beliefs, and develop their educational practices. Therefore, these programs are fundamental to any effective educational innovation effort. Innovations appear to answer critical issues in education. Innovation is crucial in a continuously changing and challenging world, and educational practitioners must adjust and adapt changes to the curriculum while implementing innovative pedagogical practices.

This Special Issue deals with innovation in teacher education and teacher professional development through partnerships. Partnerships comprise networks that connect educators with various partners such as community groups, training providers, researchers, industry, and government organizations to work on local issues and community-building activities to improve education. Partnership includes active and committed involvement when the partners share responsibility for a joint activity to achieve specific goals.

Therefore, we invite you to submit research papers (qualitative/ quantitative/ mixed methods) focused on teacher education process (both initial teacher preparation and teachers’ continuing professional development). To this end, we welcome manuscripts that address topics that include, among others:

  • Innovative teacher education and/or teacher professional development programs that demonstrate partnerships in formal or informal educational settings.
  • Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) that are based on partnerships.
  • Research–Practice Partnerships (RPPs) as long-term collaborations between practitioners and researchers to investigate problems in practice and solutions for educational improvement.
  • Professional Development Schools (PDSs) as collaborations between schools and universities to support the learning of prospective and experienced teachers while simultaneously restructuring schools and schools of education.
  • Participatory Design (PD) approaches to support mutual learning through equitable partnerships of communities and experts through the design of an innovative teacher education and/or teacher professional development intervention.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Irit Sasson
Dr. Shirley Miedijensky
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Education Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • innovation in education
  • teacher education
  • teacher professional development
  • partnerships
  • professional learning communities (PLCs)
  • research–practice partnerships (RPPs)
  • professional development schools (PDSs)
  • participatory design (PD)

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

20 pages, 1061 KiB  
Article
Results of a Competency-Based Approach to Prepare General Educators to Effectively Include Students with Disabilities
by Andrea R. Harkins-Brown, Nicholas Gillon and Andrea Schanbacher
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(5), 475; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14050475 - 30 Apr 2024
Viewed by 652
Abstract
Research has shown that general educators may lack the competencies to effectively include students with disabilities, thus widening the gaps in outcomes between students with disabilities and their peers. In this study, we outline the development and implementation of a competency-based continuing education [...] Read more.
Research has shown that general educators may lack the competencies to effectively include students with disabilities, thus widening the gaps in outcomes between students with disabilities and their peers. In this study, we outline the development and implementation of a competency-based continuing education program, designed to equip general educators to effectively include students with disabilities (SWDs) and earn special education certification. This paper presents the results of a program evaluation conducted using both validated measures and author-developed instruments. Participants included general education teachers, instructional coaches, and those in similar roles. Results indicated that participants significantly increased their knowledge of professional standards, demonstrated knowledge in high-leverage practices, and showed high levels of self-efficacy to implement inclusive practices. We discuss these results, emphasizing the timeliness of this nontraditional approach and its implications for teacher preparation, research, and policy amid the troubling national special education teacher shortage. Namely, this approach epitomizes a model that allows leaders to strategically utilize their existing workforce to address vacancies in special education and emphasizes that the responsibility to support SWDs rests squarely upon all educators. Full article
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16 pages, 227 KiB  
Article
Learning the Practice from the Practice: Theory–Practice Courses in Teacher Education
by Orit Oved and Nirit Raichel
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(2), 185; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14020185 - 12 Feb 2024
Viewed by 991
Abstract
In teacher education programs, it is important to deepen knowledge alongside developing practices through practical experience. One practice of the Professional Development School’s (PDS) model in clinical experience is designing courses linking theory to practice. The present study examines the perception of the [...] Read more.
In teacher education programs, it is important to deepen knowledge alongside developing practices through practical experience. One practice of the Professional Development School’s (PDS) model in clinical experience is designing courses linking theory to practice. The present study examines the perception of the administrative officers in colleges of education in Israel regarding the Ministry of Education’s Theory–Practice (TP) courses and the challenges in implementing them in the curriculum. This study was conducted in 16 state academic colleges for education and 37 administrative personnel participated: presidents, vice presidents, rectors, deans, and heads of courses and practical training. A semi-structured interview was used, and the data was analyzed thematically. The research participants believe that TP courses as a tool implemented as part of the PDS model may be effective in training teachers to integrate theory with practical experience. The participants raised three major challenges to implementation: systemic, pedagogical, and organizational. The participants emphasize that designing and implementing TP courses is a complex, slow process requiring organizational change and the mindset of administration and teaching staff at both the colleges of education and the schools. Long-term assessment is required to examine the effect of reducing hours dedicated to education theory and subject knowledge. Full article
18 pages, 836 KiB  
Article
Research–Practice Partnership in a Professional Development Program: Promoting Youth at Risk
by Shirley Miedijensky and Irit Sasson
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(2), 132; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci14020132 - 28 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 814
Abstract
Research–Practice Partnerships (RPPs) embody enduring collaborations between practitioners and researchers that systematically address practical challenges to enhance education. This study describes research conducted within the framework of an RPP in which researchers were united with an educational association tasked with leading a professional [...] Read more.
Research–Practice Partnerships (RPPs) embody enduring collaborations between practitioners and researchers that systematically address practical challenges to enhance education. This study describes research conducted within the framework of an RPP in which researchers were united with an educational association tasked with leading a professional development program (PDP) for teachers serving youth at risk. This study focuses on demonstrating a model for evaluating the implementation of the program’s educational philosophy among PDP participants. This comprehensive model comprises three interlinked components: cultivating awareness of the educational philosophy, fostering a profound comprehension of its principles, and facilitating the application of practices aligned with this philosophy. To investigate these dimensions, we drew upon data gathered through a survey administered to 140 educators and through in-depth interviews with 22 members of the educational staff. By examining these three pivotal components, we not only dissect the implementation process but also identify strengths and weaknesses, paving the way for a tailored intervention strategy. Beyond the immediate implications for program improvement, this research underscores the program’s reciprocal benefits for both researchers and practitioners. It holds the potential to influence the professional development of those involved, concurrently enriching the broader research community with invaluable insights gained from real-world educational contexts. Full article
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