Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Consistent picture of the ideal teacher and the ideal pupil in school policy documents

08.03.2011
A thesis from the University of Gothenburg on school policy documents shows that the ideal pupil and the ideal teacher are supposed to be naturally curious and have an inherent will to learn as a means of increasing Sweden's economic competitiveness. "The argument that education should contribute to democracy or solidarity has taken a back seat," says author Lena Sjöberg.

Lena Sjöberg, a PhD student at the University of Gothenburg and lecturer at University West in Trollhättan, has critically reviewed various types of policy document from the 1940s through to today.

These include government reports and bills, European Commission texts, Swedish Teachers' Union campaign materials, and student teachers' examination assignments.

"A relatively consistent, and so powerful, picture emerges of the ideal teacher and the ideal pupil today," says Sjöberg. "They constantly want to learn more and be mobile, creative, flexible and productive."

Sjöberg notes the large number of systems and techniques created since the 1990s to steer pupils and teachers in the right direction, such as national testing, teacher licensing, developmental dialogues and personal development plans.

Extensive control

"These systems and techniques have come at the same time that schools have been deregulated and decentralised. There is much talk about the competent student and the professional teacher, but in practice there is a big gap between the rhetoric and the extensive control that has been built up."

The policy documents also reveal a lack of consensus on how the teaching personality is formed. From the mid-1960s until the early 1980s, the documents suggested that teacher training could actually mould the teaching personality, and this view is still around today.

Genetic predisposition

A competing view is that a teacher needs certain inherent personality traits, as expressed in the 2007 government report on teacher training HUT 07, which argues that teachers need to have an aptitude for the profession: "However good the training is, it cannot create the good teacher that children and pupils need if he or she does not have the essentials for successfully pursuing the profession," the report says.

"This is an echo from the mid-20th century," says Sjöberg. "It was also said back then that teachers need to have a certain natural predisposition."

"This is probably part of the personal characteristics that cannot to any great extent be influenced by teacher training," states a bill from the 1950s.

There are therefore parallels between the mid-20th century and today - but there is also a big difference:

"Back then, schools were considered first and foremost to have a democratic role. Today, there is instead an economic rationality that prevails - the aim of education is now primarily to increase our competitiveness in the global economy and ideally take Sweden to the top of the class. This change in how the role of education is perceived can be seen not only in the Swedish documents but also in the European Commission texts.

For further information, please contact:
Lena Sjöberg, tel: +46 (0)70 993 2309, e-mail: lena.sjoberg@hv.se
Bibliographic data:
Journal: (EDUCARE, (1),73-99. 2010
Title: ”Same same, but different”. En genealogisk studie av den 'goda' läraren, den 'goda' eleven och den 'goda' skolan i svenska lärarutbildningsreformer 1940-2008,

Author: Sjöberg, Lena.

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://hdl.handle.net/2077/24101

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Penn researchers show that mental 'map' and 'compass' are two separate systems
22.05.2015 | University of Pennsylvania

nachricht Real stereotypes continue to exist in virtual worlds
05.05.2015 | Penn State

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Advance in regenerative medicine

The only professorship in Germany to date, one master's programme, one laboratory with worldwide unique equipment and the corresponding research results: The University of Würzburg is leading in the field of biofabrication.

Paul Dalton is presently the only professor of biofabrication in Germany. About a year ago, the Australian researcher relocated to the Würzburg department for...

Im Focus: Basel Physicists Develop Efficient Method of Signal Transmission from Nanocomponents

Physicists have developed an innovative method that could enable the efficient use of nanocomponents in electronic circuits. To achieve this, they have developed a layout in which a nanocomponent is connected to two electrical conductors, which uncouple the electrical signal in a highly efficient manner. The scientists at the Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel have published their results in the scientific journal “Nature Communications” together with their colleagues from ETH Zurich.

Electronic components are becoming smaller and smaller. Components measuring just a few nanometers – the size of around ten atoms – are already being produced...

Im Focus: IoT-based Advanced Automobile Parking Navigation System

Development and implementation of an advanced automobile parking navigation platform for parking services

To fulfill the requirements of the industry, PolyU researchers developed the Advanced Automobile Parking Navigation Platform, which includes smart devices,...

Im Focus: First electrical car ferry in the world in operation in Norway now

  • Siemens delivers electric propulsion system and charging stations with lithium-ion batteries charged from hydro power
  • Ferry only uses 150 kilowatt hours (kWh) per route and reduces cost of fuel by 60 percent
  • Milestone on the road to operating emission-free ferries

The world's first electrical car and passenger ferry powered by batteries has entered service in Norway. The ferry only uses 150 kWh per route, which...

Im Focus: Into the ice – RV Polarstern opens the arctic season by setting course for Spitsbergen

On Tuesday, 19 May 2015 the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its home port in Bremerhaven, setting a course for the Arctic. Led by Dr Ilka Peeken from the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) a team of 53 researchers from 11 countries will investigate the effects of climate change in the Arctic, from the surface ice floes down to the seafloor.

RV Polarstern will enter the sea-ice zone north of Spitsbergen. Covering two shallow regions on their way to deeper waters, the scientists on board will focus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International symposium: trends in spatial analysis and modelling for a more sustainable land use

20.05.2015 | Event News

15th conference of the International Association of Colloid and Interface Scientists

18.05.2015 | Event News

EHFG 2015: Securing health in Europe. Balancing priorities, sharing responsibilities

12.05.2015 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers develop intelligent handheld robots

27.05.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering

"Hidden" fragrance compound can cause contact allergy

27.05.2015 | Health and Medicine

Supernovas help 'clean' galaxies

27.05.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>