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Develop beginning-teacher knowledge in a partnership setting with university通过学校与高校的合作建立新教师的“知识库”

Understanding The Complexities of Developing Beginning-Teacher Knowledge in a Partnership Setting

More and more bilingual schools have established partnerships with universities in order to create or improve their initial teachers training system. We hope this article from Dr Brian Marsh can help teachers and school leaders to understand the complexities of the partnership and use the resources in a more efficient way. 

Written by | Dr Brian Marsh

Edited by|BISE

The foundation for career-long learning is established during the earliest stages of a teacher’s career. Beginning teachers need to acquire knowledge, skills and understanding as well as learn how to critically evaluate and improve their own practice during the period of initial teacher education. Stürmer et al. (2012) indicate that beginning-teacher education programmes should both equip beginning teachers with a declarative knowledge base about effective teaching and support them in applying that knowledge in classroom situations. However, problem of what beginning teachers need to know raises a number of issues and questions like: 

what should comprise the specific content of beginning-teacher learning?

In teacher education there is more urgency about ‘what to do’ than about ‘why’ beginning teachers should do it (Ovens, 2000). One significant consequence is that beginning teachers look for immediate and pragmatic solutions. Nevertheless, Alsop et al. (2005) argue that locating the specifics of teaching within some broader theoretical framework should be fundamental to the development of teachers. National policy in England (DfE, 2011) looks at knowledge and expertise in terms of competence and capability within the classroom. While this acknowledges subject and pedagogical knowledge, it omits consideration of the place of educational theory. The content of what beginning teachers should learn is contentious and policy-driven.

Teachers require a vast range of things they should both know and be able to do in order to undertake their work (Darling-Hammond, 2006). This was outlined in a framework of knowledge, skills and dispositions (Bransford et al., 2005):


Commenting on this framework, Burn et al. (2015) write:

"the range of different aspects that each dimension encompasses and the complex interplay between them make the prospect of trying to get to grips with them a formidable undertaking."

At the heart of the debate are questions about the nature of knowledge and the effects of different kinds of knowledge on teachers and teaching (Loughran, 2006). Part of the debate surrounds the relationship, and perceived value, of the formal knowledge of teaching (often seen as the province of a Higher Education Institute, HEI) and the practical knowledge of teaching (as created by teachers through their classroom experiences). Teachers in schools put forward their everyday practice and demonstrate the complex and usually tacit knowledge that informs it; but it is also important to note that an appropriate knowledge base off acts, principles and experience is essential for underpinning and justifying the choices and actions they are making.

A useful conceptualisation of teacher knowledge is that originally developed by Shulman (1986). He recognised was that if teachers are to be effective practitioners, they need both an in-depth knowledge of their subject and a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of how to represent this subject knowledge to learners. Shulman (1987) went on to describe seven categories in what he calls a teachers’ knowledge bases:

1. Content knowledge;

2. General pedagogic knowledge;

3. Curriculum knowledge;

4. Pedagogical content knowledge;

5. Knowledge about the learners;

6. Knowledge of educational contexts;

7. Knowledge of educational ends, purposes and values.

Although conceptualisation of this has evolved since Shulman first articulated this framework, see e.g. Gess-Newsome (2015), one benefit of Shulman’s (1987)thinking is that it offers an opportunity to identify those aspects of knowledge required by a teacher, particularly pedagogical content knowledge. It begins to outline those factors that teachers need to develop. Pedagogical content knowledge incorporates how teachers interpret and transform subject knowledge in the context of supporting pupil learning (Van Driel et al., 1998). It encompasses an understanding of common learning difficulties and pupil misconceptions. Subject content knowledge is brought to the classroom, whereas pedagogic content knowledge is developed and learned from classroom experience. The two interact and inform each other.

Pedagogical content knowledge is what allows for the meaningful blending of content and pedagogy for teaching. (Segall, 2004)

Initially beginning teachers have very limited pedagogical knowledge but rapidly acquire it. They do so through observation and discussion of other teachers’ practices (Hagger and McIntyre, 2006), collaborative planning and teaching, and focussed support and evaluative feedback on their planning and teaching from teachers in their placement school (Burn, 2007b). Early-career professional learning is characterised by the accumulation of experience, although not all of itis consciously processed. Moreover, as pedagogical knowledge increases, so does the understanding of subject content knowledge (Wellington and Ireson, 2008).The usefulness of this framework is that it begins to outline those factors that teachers need to develop.

Whilst there is no universally accepted consensus about which knowledge components are included, the notion of pedagogical content knowledge provides a valuable framework for the discussion of teachers’ knowledge and their decision-making because it focuses attention on subject-specific knowledge, as well as other categories of knowledge used by teachers (Burn, 2007a, Segall, 2004, Burn, 2007b).

However, there are difficulties for trainees seeking to develop pedagogical content knowledge:

1. Kerfoot (2009), for example, suggests that pedagogical content knowledge is the most demanding to acquire and is only developed over a period of years;

2. Loughran et al. (2004) note that it is a difficult process to both recognise and articulate. It is an internal construct that is complex and tacit, and time is rarely provided in schools for discussions that enable teachers to describe their tacit professional knowledge in articulated forms;

3. Carlsen (2010), building on Shulman’s work, suggests that these domains of teacher knowledge support consideration of questions such as: ‘How might a Biology teacher’s knowledge differ from that of a biologist?’

4. Shulman fails to identify which aspects of a teacher’s knowledge base are codified and which are implicit.

5. The knowledge bases are not stand-alone dimensions – they are complex and deeply interrelated.

6. PCK is an integrative framework – it doesn’t distinguish which teacher knowledge base or component of a teacher knowledge base is best suited for being developed in an HEI setting or in school.

Although Shulman’s (1987) typology is useful in identifying those components that comprise a teacher’s knowledge base, he does not comment upon either how that knowledge is acquired or where it is acquired. Hall and Andriani (2003) suggest that tacit knowledge is acquired by experience, the knowledge of what works, and is characterised by causal ambiguity. Eraut (2007) argues that there is a large tacit dimension in professional knowledge, which includes routines and understanding the situation, both in preparation and when responding to classroom events.

新教师在职业伊始难免有些手足无措。而很多学校都与高校合作,借助高校的课程和资源帮助新教师成长,建立自己的“知识库”。而如何更好的使用高校的教育资源呢?相信白金汉大学的 Brian Marsh博士的这篇专为新教师写的文章一定会让你有所收获。

作者 | Dr Brian Marsh





1. 知识库具体内容有哪些?

2. 如何才能有效地传达这些内容来尽可能支持新教师今后的发展?





1. 学科知识;

2. 教学法;

3. 课程知识;

4. 教学法内容知识;

5. 对学生的了解;

6. 对教育背景的了解;

7. 对教育的意义、目的和价值的理解


而在教学法方面,新教师的教学法会知道的比较有限,但很快就能通过观察和讨论其他教师的教学, 互助,通过同事反馈等途径掌握。早期的教师职业发展的特点是通过不断积累经验,教学法和学科知识也在同时增加(Wellington and Ireson,2008)。该框架的益处在于,它简单明了的概述教师需要发展的因素。


1. 认为学科教学知识是这些知识中最重要的,需要几年的时间内才得到发展(Kerfoot 2009)

2. 发展学科教学知识是一个很艰难认知和表达的过程。因为学科知识其复杂的内部结构,而且学校则很少提供时间让学科教师描述讨论他们专业知识(Loughran 等人 2004)

3. 教师知识领域会出现问题,例如“生物学教师的知识与生物学家的知识有何不同”等。(Carlsen  2001)

4. 知识库不是独立的维度,它们内部是复杂的,并却高度关联

5. 学科教学知识是一个综合性的框架——它不区分哪个教师知识库或教师知识库的某部分最适合在学校中进行学科教学

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