The emergence of a distinctive European scholarship of professional development: Challenging mainstream conceptualisations, consensus and causality claims

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Abstract

Drawing on theoretical perspectives on employee-centrism and epistemic development, this conceptual article explores the notion of a distinctive European scholarship of teacher professional development. It is argued that ground-breaking critical European research is at the forefront of challenging mainstream professional development research – particularly that emanating from the United States. Such mainstream scholarship is centred around causal chains and a ‘consensus’ about the features of ‘effective’ professional development that generates students’ learning gains. Critical scholarship, in contrast, recognises the complexity of professional development, challenges linear-based, causality assumptive conceptualisations, and, with a focus on their well-being, perceives teachers as primary developees, rather than as conduits for policy implementation. It is argued that European critical scholarship, having made significant contributions to the field’s knowledge base, is well placed to lead the advancement of an epistemic-development-focused agenda, to augment our knowledge and understanding of teacher professional development.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Journal of Teacher Education
Early online date7 Dec 2023
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Dec 2023

Keywords

  • generativity in professional development
  • epistemic fields
  • linearity in professional development
  • employee-centrism
  • effective professional development
  • causality
  • causal chains
  • conceptualisation of professional development

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