Ämneslärarstudenters lärande i verksamhetsförlagd utbildning

Project: DissertationIndividual research project

Research areas and keywords



Research on placement in teacher education
This presentation is on my research within the field of educational sciences, and reports the starting point of my PhD project.
The teacher’s education programmes in Sweden have substantial periods of placement. My focus is on placement in high school and upper secondary. Around the millennium the concept of internship (praktik) was replaced by placement (verksamhetsförlagd utbildning/VFU). From then on there seems to be significant uncertainty about the definition and how to conceptualize placement. The first part of my project thus investigates how to understand the concept of placement. Questions asked are: What does the concept include – and what are the concept’s political, social and educational implications?
The second part of the project deals with how varying conceptualisations of placement affects the processes of professional development in which supervisors and students are involved during periods of placement. The project’s aim is to try to better understand what happens in these processes when an unclearly defined concept is mandated.
Since the research project investigates concepts, language, processes, power/conflict, discourse and practice within a complex institutional framework, the theoretical approach is multidisciplinary. The theoretical framework consists primarily of post structural theory (discourse theory) and social constructionism. Among theoretical contributors are Koselleck and Skinner on concepts and conceptualisation, Foucault as well as Dean, Fairclough and Laclau and Mouffe on discourse and discourse theory, and possibly Geertz on the analysis of processes of professional development during periods of placement.
Concerning methodological design, the initial concept/conceptual analysis involves discourse analysis and discourse theory. The empirical parts will involve qualitative interviews along with observation and written texts (to get hold of aspects of work skill development and reflexive processes). I might also go for a few longitudinal field studies, following students and their supervisors in action.
As mentioned, the ambition is to understand the concept of placement, and to describe processes of work skill development (professionalism). A guess is that it will be possible to identify and explain the complexity – and main variables – of the concept of placement. Regarding processes of professional development (professionalization), I expect to describe what these processes are about and how they are carried out by students and supervisors.
Effective start/end date2017/09/01 → …


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