The teaching profession continues to have difficulty in codifying a body of knowledge on which to base pre-service teacher education programs. One problem is the gap between the student teachers’ theoretical beliefs and their practical experiences in classrooms. Student teachers often fail to implement their ideas and instead comply with the status quo in the classroom. Previous research has identified the student as dealing with this dilemma by developing a mind set which places theory in one compartment and practice in another. This paper describes a study of ten student teachers at the end of their training. Their descriptions of their experiences confirm the theory-practice gap but they also demonstrate that they are very much aware of the discrepancy between how they teach and how they would like to teach. It is a situation which they feel powerless to change. Pre-service course objectives need to be aligned with those of professional development programs for practising teachers in order to bring about a convergence of thinking and consequent change in schools.
& Stevens, K.
Communication between theory and practice: How student teachers develop theories of teaching.
Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 21(2).