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Dual identities: the in-service teacher-trainee experience in the English Further Education sector

By Kevin Orr and Robin Simmons


Since 2001 there has been a statutory requirement for teachers in English Further Education (FE) colleges to gain teaching qualifications. In marked distinction from other sectors of education, around ninety percent of FE staff in England are employed untrained and complete their initial teacher-training on a part-time in-service basis. By consequence, these staff sustain the dual role of employed teacher and teacher-trainee at the beginning of their career. While there exists a body of work relating to trainees on full-time pre-service FE teacher-training courses, there is a lack of published research on this much larger group of in-service trainees, and on their experience of becoming qualified teachers. An ESCalate-funded project based at the University of Huddersfield has sought to address that lack by researching the dual roles and dual identities of employee and trainee on in-service FE teacher-training courses. The in-service route may be necessary to attract established vocational practitioners into FE and to enable them to continue earning a salary whilst undertaking their teacher-training. However, this paper argues that how the dual roles interact may cause tensions that constrain the development of trainees' practice

Topics: LB2300
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