Explorations into teacher thinking have illustrated the considerable influence that prior experience exerts on the developing cognition of teachers. This paper extends the discussion by examining the influence of informal and formal educative cultures on the development of individual trainee constructs of language teachers, teaching and learning. Participants in this study were all preservice teachers training to be specialist Malay, Tamil, Chinese or English language teachers. Data was collected through the use of written biography, metaphor and personal construct interviews. Analysis of data reveals that trainees enter formal teacher training with well developed constructs of the ideal language teacher and related approaches to language learning. However, it was also found that trainees have less knowledge of language teaching pedagogy. Similarities and differences in the constructs of the ideal teacher and preferred approaches to language learning of the various cultural groups of trainees will be discussed. The study reveals a number of significant attributes of, and influences by, individuals from different educative settings which may effect the way trainees approach their program of professional development and/or the way they may conduct themselves, as language teachers in the classroom.
|Publication status||Published - 1996|