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Teacher educators' perceptions of their profession in relation to the digitalization of society

Magazine article
Authors Anna Roumbanis-Viberg
Karin Forslund Frykedal
Sylvana Sofkova Hashemi
Published in Journal of Praxis in Higher Education
Volume 1
Issue 1
Pages 87-110
ISSN 2003-3605
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Pedagogical, Curricular and Professional Studies
Pages 87-110
Language en
Links jphe.org
Keywords Digitalization, teacher educators, professional identity, Sweden
Subject categories Pedagogy

Abstract

This study takes an exploratory approach to investigating Swedish teacher educators' perceptions regarding their profession in relation to the digitalization of society and education, including higher education. Eighteen semi-structured interviews were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings show that the teache reducators perceive digitalization on a scale that ranges from simply using tools to being part of a technology-initiated revolution of educational institutions and society. From this range of digital developments emanate individual, group, and organizational requirements/demands, needs, and consequences for being, that is, personal experiences of how digitalization affects the work, and acting, that is, doing something in response to the demands of using and teaching with digital technology. The teacher educator is situated primarily in being with the requirements for working professionally and acting as a teacher, which creates tensions and challenges for the individual and the professional self. Teacher educators require support to strengthen their professional identity, to facilitate activities for professional development, and to stimulate reflective practice. A further difficulty is the lack of relevant policies and strategies. This study highlights the complex challenge of teaching and learning simultaneously in a profession that implicates autonomy and responsibility of its practitioners. This creates limitations for the teacher educators to move from being to acting.

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