Burton, Steven (2016) In-service initial teacher training in post-compulsory education : A phenomenographical investigation into the influence of initial training on professional practice. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

This thesis investigates the perceptions of former Initial Teacher Training (ITT) trainees in the post-compulsory sector, in an attempt to identify how their ITT influenced their practice as teachers within the sector.
It analyses the perceptions of former trainees, gleaned through 21 semi-structured interviews
and 35 completed questionnaires; together with semi-structured interviews of 5 managers of
teaching staff from the sector, who employ university-led ITT for the development of their
staff. The research employed a phenomenographical approach, in that it considered the perspectives and interpretations of the respondents to be wholly paramount.
The study has found that initial teacher training in the post-compulsory sector produces teachers who experience perceptions of enhancement in three key ways. The first is that they are more connected with the sector, connected with their institutions and connected with the realities of teaching following their teacher education. The second is that they have a greater sense of self, together with a greater sense of professionalism, and carry more practical and pedagogical skills into the workplace following their teacher education. The third relates to their commitment to continuing professional development, and their ability to identify opportunities and necessities for their own development.
The contribution to knowledge involves the creation of a middle range theory of the influence of initial teacher training on professional practice, developed from the three
factors alluded to above, and postulated in the form of a model of conceptions demonstrating
the influence of post-compulsory teacher training on its trainees. Additionally, it also makes
recommendations to policy makers in ITT, including that the current emphasis on subject
specialist teaching is reconsidered and clarified; and that the current government’s removal of compulsory completion of ITT for teachers in the sector is dissonant with the concepts of professionalism existing in both academic literature, and the perceptions of the participants in this study.

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