Theme: Designing School Internship in Teacher Preparation Programmes
Dates: 27 June – 02 July 2022
Venue: Azim Premji University, Bengaluru
Azim Premji University announces the First Annual Summer School in Teacher Education. The Summer School aims to provide teacher educators working in higher education institutions with an intensive course of study on themes central to the practice of teacher education. This year the theme is Designing School Internship in Teacher Education Programmes.
Teacher education in India is at a critical juncture with several systemic and curricular reforms that have been underway. In the last decade, the National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education (NCFTE) 2009, the Justice Verma Commission Report (2012), and the National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) (Recognition, Norms and Procedures) Regulations, 2014 were instrumental in re-imagining the teacher education curriculum in terms of content, structure and duration.
The National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 and the ongoing work on the proposed curricular frameworks for school education and teacher education are expected to provide further impetus to strengthen the teacher education system in India.
Some of the key proposals of NEP include: First, a strong multidisciplinary integrated four-year programme as a minimum degree qualification for all levels- foundation, preparatory, middle, and secondary level.
Second, ‘developing an understanding of pedagogy with respect to foundational literacy and numeracy, multi-level teaching and evaluation, teaching children with disabilities, teaching children with special interests or talents, use of educational technology, and learner-centered and collaborative learning’.
Finally, a call for higher education institutions to closely network with government and private schools to ensure a strong component of in-school training.
It is hoped that these recommendations would inform the development of a strong curricular framework of teacher education that offers opportunities to develop necessary values, skills and knowledge among prospective teachers to meet the needs of children in the public education system in India.
In recent years, the curriculum as specified by the NCFTE (2009) has formed the basis for various teacher education syllabi drawn up by universities/colleges across India for their two-year and four-year programmes.
One of the major critiques of the teacher education programme has been the apparent separation between theory and practice. According to NCFTE, ‘the common complaint is that theory dominates the curriculum and practice teaching continues to suffer from inadequacies of different kinds such as: it follows a mechanical routine (observation, micro teaching, teaching practice and examination), operates with rigid lesson plan formats, inadequate mentoring and supervision; exhibits no original thinking, lacks variety and context specificity in teaching’.
These inadequacies have posed challenges in designing and organising this important component of the teacher preparation programme within institutions. School Internship must provide student teachers experiences that span the entire school practices that includes teaching, learning, school-community partnership, understanding students, peers, and the work environment.
A process-based teacher education requires structural provisions in the design of the teacher education program that allows for an easy flow of movement from experience to theory and theory to field experience. These experiences must provide teachers opportunities to engage in reflective practice. Providing such seamless experiences requires that the entire field engagement experience is carefully designed, planned and managed.
Even after a decade since 2009, implementation is far from the intention. There have been huge gaps in understanding the conceptual shifts from ‘practice teaching’ to ‘internship’, Majority of the institutions have made mere cosmetic changes to the existing models. Assessing the developing teacher according to the changing expectations in internship has also been a challenging area.
With institutions having to move to the four-year programmes, many of them are grappling with questions on designing and implementing the field practice component in the teacher education programmes, and on ways of making it meaningful for the student teachers.
In the light of the above need, the proposed Summer School attempts to examine some of the practices that are critical for preparing students in learning to teach in schools. It aims to engage with the theme of ‘School Internship Programme’ through an exploration of both curricular and the implementation/administrative aspects of this dimension.
This would involve discussions around both conceptual issues of pedagogy of teacher education and a more nuanced understanding of how these unfold in practice through the various phases of pre-internship, during-internship, and post-internship period.
Some of the important questions that the summer school seeks to address are:
- What are some of the broad approaches to designing field engagement for student teachers across a two-year/four-year programme?
- What are the key components for making observations of classrooms and schools?
- What are the key considerations for student teachers while making conversations with schoolteachers during school engagement?
- What constitutes reflection? What are some ways to stimulate student teachers’ ongoing reflection?
- How do programmes develop, nurture and sustain relationships with cooperating/partnering schools?
- What are the criteria for feedback while mentoring/supervising student teachers during school internship?
- What are the responsibilities of faculty supervisors and teacher mentors of the schools?
- What are some of the key assessment approaches during internship?
These are only a few illustrative questions/themes that the Summer School attempts to examine.
Engaging with these questions collectively would enable us (teacher educators) to gain entry into the tensions and conflicts that arise in teacher education practice as students learn to teach. These questions will remain sensitive to the contexts where the teacher education colleges are located.
This Summer School will be in the nature of seminar-workshops that will draw upon eminent resource persons from reputed higher academic institutions in India and abroad. The design of the summer school is a combination of various themes that the teacher educators are expected to critically examine through dialogue and discussion.
The focus will be on reading, reflection, discussions, and debates along with an equal focus on experience sharing and group activities.
The summer school combines workshop mode, talks, activities, and participation of student teachers as well. Through these modes, guidelines for observation, journal writing, assessment, and school-university partnerships will be developed and circulated for wide use by teacher education institutions across India.
We invite you to join the Summer School!
Interested participants must be currently serving in a teacher education programme at a recognised higher education institution. Participating institutions are requested to fill in the google form with a statement of purpose (SOP) of about 500 words stating your interests and the relevance of topics to be explored in the Summer School for your current work.
The selection will be based on the SOPs submitted. Only one member will be allowed to participate from an institution.
The deadline for filling out the google form is 02 May 2022 and the selection will be based on the SOPs submitted through the google form.
For any other clarification, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The selected participants will be provided travel reimbursement to the extent of 3‑tier AC train fare from their place of residence, boarding and lodging facility near Azim Premji University and commute to and from the University to the place of lodging for the duration of the summer school. Covid-19 protocols will be followed during the Summer School.
- Deadline for the Submission of Statement of Purpose: 02 May 2022
- Announcement of the Selected Candidates: 05 May 2022
- Dates for the Summer School: 27 June to 02 July 2022
Azim Premji University is a philanthropic University located in Bengaluru. The University offers post-graduate degrees in Education, Development, Public Policy & Governance, Economics and Development, and Law. The University also offers undergraduate programmes and a four-year teacher preparation programme (BSc BEd). This summer school is a part of TeachTE, which is a Project anchored within the School of Education at the University. The Project aims to support teacher educators in their professional practice through research, and education.