Service Learning in an Undergraduate Primary Teacher Education Program and Transforming Lives

Book chapter


Scott, Anne Lia. (2021). Service Learning in an Undergraduate Primary Teacher Education Program and Transforming Lives. In Third International Handbook of Globalisation, Education and Policy Research pp. 841-858 Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-66003-1_48
AuthorsScott, Anne Lia
Abstract

Although service learning experiences are becoming more prevalent in many universities internationally important questions and challenges remain unanswered. What might service learning experiences look like when large cohorts of preservice teachers complete 70 h as an integral part of an undergraduate primary teacher education program? Has the service learning added to the preservice teachers’ preparation for the profession? In this study, 130 preservice teachers in their third year of a four-year Bachelor of Education Primary course participated in various community-based programs, including a local homework club for primary school-aged children, as part of their compulsory professional experience unit over 24 weeks. Preservice teachers’ written online discussions about their experiences were inspected using Butin’s (Teach Coll Rec 105:1674–1692, 2003) conceptual framework for service learning. Findings indicate that many preservice teachers gained valuable insights about people, learning and themselves (personally and as prospective teachers) as a direct result of their experiences in the non-school setting. Factors which led to the success of the program involved: scheduling time for service learning into the weekly timetable for those studying third-year education units; providing an induction program for preservice teachers; having a designated liaison person to facilitate clear communication between the agency and university partners; and, providing prompts for preservice teachers’ regular and focussed critical online reflections on their service learning experiences. In spite of the modest levels of success with the implementation process feedback from preservice teachers using the university evaluation instrument indicated they needed more regular contact with those with whom they worked to develop productive learning relationships; and, that they wanted more freedom with the way they reflected on their service learning experiences.

Keywordseducation; Primary school; teachers
Page range841-858
Year01 Jan 2021
Book titleThird International Handbook of Globalisation, Education and Policy Research
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Place of publicationSwitzerland
ISBN978-3-030-66002-4
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-66003-1_48
Web address (URL)https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-66003-1_48
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Research or scholarlyResearch
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All rights reserved
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Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Print18 Sep 2021
Publication process dates
Deposited24 Jan 2024
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© 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG.

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