Professional standards for teachers: "Pass the message game"

Document Type

Book Chapter


IGI Global

Place of Publication

Hershey, PA


School of Education


Dann, C.E., & Richardson, T. (2018). Professional standards for teachers: "Pass the message game". In Richardson, T., O'Neill, S., Dann, B., & Dann, C.E. (Eds.). Formative assessment practices for pre-service teacher practicum feedback : emerging research and opportunities. (pp.140-157). Hershey, PA : IGI Global. Available here.


This chapter uses the concept of ‘pass the message' game as a metaphor to explore preservice teacher education in relation to the communication of the requirements of the professional standards for teachers that are intended to regulate teacher quality. The concept of ‘pass the message' represents the variation in individuals' interpretation and understanding about a particular phenomenon, for example, an individual's understanding of teacher quality. ‘Pass the message game' demonstrates how the meaning of a message becomes distorted as it is told and moved on from one person, or organisation in this case, to another as different interpretations are applied according to beliefs, preferences, knowledge and experience. The passing on and down of intended understandings of professional standards for teachers, suffers from the same challenges as shown by the game of ‘pass the message'. However, with respect to the focus of this chapter, the message is not being passed down from person to person so much as from organisation to organisation. Hence, the issue explored here is the loss in understanding of the original message after it has been promulgated and interpreted from one organisation to the next.



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