Preparing teacher candidates as passive technicians, reflective practitioners or transformative intellectuals?

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2015
Tezgiden Cakcak, S. Yasemin
This dissertation study explores teacher roles a pre-service foreign language teacher education program at a public university in central Turkey prepares teacher candidates for using document reviews, in-depth interviews and classroom observations. Designed as a qualitative case study, this study also seeks to unearth the political-economical, sociocultural and institutional reasons behind the adoption of certain teacher roles: teachers as passive technicians, teachers as reflective practitioners and teachers as transformative intellectuals. In addition to surveying teacher roles in program documents, this dissertation reports the perceptions of students, teacher-educators, emeritus professors and program administrators as to teacher roles fostered in the program. Besides, this case study explores the daily reality of methodology and practice teaching courses. The findings of the study suggest that the foreign language teacher education program does not have a specific mission. According to the document on program outcomes, the FLE program aims to educate a reflective practitioner. The interview data and observation findings, however, demonstrate that even though there are some reflective dimensions of the FLE program, it seems to prepare teachers for becoming technicians more than it encourages them to become reflective teachers. The interpretation of findings from a critical perspective indicated that the technicist focus in the FLE program probably stems from the neoliberal economic policies adopted in Turkey. Turkish teacher education system shaped by the Council of Higher Education under the impact of international organizations seems to prefer to educate technician teachers discouraging them from taking active leading roles in the system.

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Citation Formats
S. Y. Tezgiden Cakcak, “Preparing teacher candidates as passive technicians, reflective practitioners or transformative intellectuals?,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2015.