"Den nödvändiga grunden" : underkännanden och erkännanden under lärarutbildningens verksamhetsförlagda delar

Sammanfattning: The thesis builds on how contemporary policy documents express an interest in gatekeeping and in controlling teacher competence, for instance in the form of aptitude tests before teacher education or during practicum in teacher education. The thesis is hence characterised by a general interest in teacher competence and what in the governmental official report SOU 2008:109 is referred to as “the essential basis” in terms of teacher competence – a metaphor that serves as a key notion in the thesis. By analysing interviews and surveys from teacher educators who have been involved in failing student teachers during practicum, the aim is to identify what is considered to be the content of this essential basis. The results indicate that the essential basis contains communicative and relational aspects of teaching, about the ability to take space (oneself) and make space (for others). The most fundamental part is however the ability to assume adult responsibility and maturity in relation to children/pupils in pre-school/school. This is described as an important initial value for teacher education and a desirable ”baseline” for those starting a teacher education. However, informants describe how it is possible within teacher education to work in multiple ways with students who need to learn how to distinctly take space (themselves), in order to then assume a more active role in teaching and in the interaction with children or adolescents. An approach based on a theory of recognition and the concept of social visibility (Heidegren, 2009) is used in this part of the analysis, in order to understand the informants’ description of what usually happens when student teachers develop this essential teacher ability. The interpretation is also backed by Polanyi’s theory on tacit knowledge (1962; 1966/2013). Moreover, findings indicate that the “gate” sometimes opens, even though teacher educators doubt whether the student teacher has developed an essential basis or not. An argument for this is that school is a workplace that ”cleans out rather briskly”, as one supervisor puts it, and school is ”not an easy environment to hold on to”. In brief, school itself is regarded to be an active gatekeeper after teacher education. This might explain the tendency to sometimes pass rather than to fail during teacher education. Therefore the thesis suggests and discusses that teacher education from the very beginning pursue what can be characterised as a “pedagogy of honesty”. 

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