Student teacher learning in rural contexts: Challenges and opportunities

  • Jane Pennefather
Keywords: student teacher; expansive learning; contexts


This paper explores particular aspects of the learning of Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) student teachers in the Wild Coast Rural Schools’ Partnership Project (WCRSPP). In considering how PGCE student teachers might be prepared to teach effectively in a deeply rural context, with its tensions and challenges, the paper’s objectives are to understand the complexity of the process of what student teachers learned and how they learned in this context.

The article highlights the situated nature of the student teacher learning as well as the multidimensional and expansive nature of the learning that emerges through significant moments of mediation. By highlighting the contradictions in the context, and the potential for deep learning that can emerge in unexpected ways, the notion of teacher learning being clearly defined and stable is challenged.   Findings and discussions in this paper are drawn from the bigger PhD research project which explored student teacher learning in the WCRSPP.


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