Teacher Education Research Network (TERN)

Building Research Capacity in Teacher Education

The Teacher Education Research Network (TERN) is now entering its third year.  The ESRC is funding the Workplace Learning in Teacher Education Seminar Series  taking place in 2011 (Professor Olwen McNamara, University of Manchester; Professor Jean Murray, University of East London; Professor Marion Jones, Liverpool John Moores University; Dr Grant Stanley, Liverpool John Moores University). Building on the success of TERN, the seminars will involve and benefit a wide range of stakeholders in teacher education, including academics, policy makers and teacher practitioners (You may like to visit our seminar series website at http://ternesrcseminars.net/TERNseminars.htm, where you can find further information about the seminar series and podcasts, PP slides and presenter hand-outs.).

The series will consist of five one-day seminars in 2011 at various venues around North West England and will energise TERN as the keynotes for TERN events will now be those of the seminar series and TERN Research Group activities will be allocated time at these seminars. An invitation to attend the series will also be extended to selected colleagues more centrally involved in workplace learning at North West England universities and partnership schools.

Current education policy positions teacher professional learning as key to the effectiveness of school systems and identifies the Finnish education system as particularly high performing (McKinsey, 2007). The Finnish system, in which all teachers are educated to masters level, is acknowledged as the model for the English MTL.  These seminars aim to address the issues by exploring the perspectives current national and international research can bring to understanding policy and practice relating to teacher workplace learning on professional masters degrees; and drawing on cross-professional analysis and user groups to develop robust models of school-based coaching and mentoring.

The five seminars in 2011 will be structured as outlined below (NB The names of the presenters listed for each seminar are those which are currently confirmed.):

1.  Focus: ‘Social theory and policy’. [Date: 26th January; Venue: The University of Manchester]
What can perspectives from theory, research and practice in the UK and internationally, and in particular in Finland, tell us about accredited professional learning in England? Invited speakers: Professor Pertti Kansanen, University of Helsinki; Professor Anne Campbell, Leeds Metropolitan University; Professor Meg Maguire, King’s College, London University; Dr Michael Day, Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA).  

2.  Focus: ‘Socio-cultural aspects of learning’. [Date: 30 March; Venue: Manchester Metropolitan University] 
What are the factors inherent in teachers’ workplace settings that generate expansive learning environments? How are learner identities constructed and differentiated in the workplace? How does the culture of the workplace accommodate learner identities and what hierarchies, power relations and psycho-social factors operate?
Invited speakers: Etienne Wenger, visiting professor, University of Manchester; Professor Kari Smith, University of Bergen; Professor Julian Williams, University of Manchester; Professor Yvette Solomon, Manchester Metropolitan University.

3.  Focus: ‘Learning across the professions’. [Date: 25 May; Venue: University of Chester] 
What intellectual and theoretical purchase can multi-professional perspectives offer to understand accredited professional learning in the workplace? How do the professions frame and articulate their knowledge bases and signify which knowledge is valued? How do they conceptualise the growth of expertise and what models of professional learning do they hold? 
Invited speakers: Professor Michael Eraut, University of Sussex; Professor Neil Humphreys, University of Manchester; Professor Tim Dornan, University of Manchester.

4. Focus: ‘Supporting workplace learning’. [Date: 6 July; Venue: Liverpool John Moores University].
How can coach/mentor/ fieldwork supervisor support extended learning? Under what conditions does that learning percolate into wider communities of practice? How does Activity Theory help us understand the dynamics of workplace learning? How best can the university tutor operate in the space afforded to support the development of an enquiry discourse /culture?
Invited speakers: Professor Anne Edwards, University of Oxford; Professor Michael Eraut, University of Sussex; Philippa Cordingly, CUREE; Dr Kevin Woods, University of Manchester.

5.  Focus: ‘Towards new models of practice'. [Date: 5 October; Venue: The University of Manchester]
What place is there for new technologies in developing the workplace professional learning? How are learner identities positioned by technology enhanced learning? How have our understandings of professional learning in teacher education been informed by cross professional theoretical insights? What possibilities for more effective and better theorised models of pedagogy have emerged in the seminars for the various communities serving teacher workplace learning?

Invited speakers: Professor Patrick Carmichael, Liverpool John Moores University; Professor Ian Menter, University of Glasgow; Professor Michael Eraut, University of Sussex;  Professor Pertti Kansanen, University of Helsinki .

TERN Co-ordinators

Participating Universities

LJMU University of Manchester Roehampton University University of Glasgow University of East London ESRC