1 Danish School of Education - Centre for Research in Compulsory Schooling, Danish School of Education, Arts, Aarhus University2 Danish School of Education - Pædagogisk Sociologi, Emdrup, Danish School of Education, Arts, Aarhus University3 Danish School of Education - Pædagogisk Sociologi, Emdrup, Danish School of Education, Arts, Aarhus University
Contemporary reforms of basic schooling stand or fall with highly educated professional teachers. Teacher education of course is a key factor in this respect, but evidence also points to the fact that the world’s most improved school systems are getting better by the development of teacher capacity as a source of innovation in the teaching context and in co-operation with peers (Mourshed, Chijoke, & Barber, 2010). A clear trend can be observed in direction of paying still more attention to the processes in school reforms, i.e. to the quality of what actually happens in schools and class rooms and how well it is performed. High performing countries do not only praise the quality of the individual teacher, which is important, they also focus on support on the job, the importance of strong professional learning communities, and teachers possibility of taking part in successful school development (Hargreaves & Fullan, 2012). Teaching in a school-system steered by competence goals requires teachers to be high-level knowledge workers who constantly advance their own professional knowledge as well as that of their profession. With today’s strong focus on student outcomes, teachers are expected to embrace diversity with different pedagogical practices, and being inventive about personalizing educational experiences to teach in a learner centered way. The transition from teacher education to the teaching profession is often by beginning teachers regarded as demanding and critical. How demanding this transition will be, however, depends on how well teacher education has prepared the student for the teaching profession and what experiences the beginning teacher has during his or her first year of practice at the school. The Scandinavian countries like other European countries (e.g. Germany) have over the latest years introduced competence goals in their teacher education programs. These goals pay – compared to the previous goals –more attention to the development of professional skills of the teacher. The presentation will explain how competence based goals in the subjects of teacher education are created. It will also elaborate on capacity building as a force to improve teacher competences for diagnosing students’ learning problems and the ability to draw from a wide repertoire of possible teaching methods appropriate for the diagnose.