Waikato Journal of Education

How to Cite

Earl, K., Ferrier-Kerr, J., & Ussher, B. (2011). Teacher educators talk about enduring understandings. Teachers and Curriculum, 12(1). https://doi.org/10.15663/tandc.v12i1.33


Teacher educators in tertiary education environments face similar challenges to teachers in other sectors when responding to the rapid pace of change across New Zealand educational contexts. “What is really important?” and “how to fit it all in?” are questions frequently asked about content. Using enduring understandings as a way of addressing these questions by identifying “big ideas” appeared to offer considerable benefits for one initial teacher education programme. This paper draws on a survey of teacher educators’ experiences in using enduring understandings in the programme’s compulsory professional studies papers to evaluate the effectiveness of this innovative approach. These teacher educators expressed approval of the implementation of enduring understandings and identified a variety of benefits. The study found that the development and use of enduring understandings enabled content revision and development to occur within existing policy guidelines. Furthermore there was increased teacher educator and student teacher talk around 'big

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