Title

Exploring student teachers` self-reported experiences and perceptions about practicum in B.ED (HONS) : A survey study from the province of Sindh

Date of Award

2020

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Philosophy in Education

Department

Institute for Educational Development, Karachi

Abstract

Pakistan has introduced several reforms in teacher education in recent years. One of the most consequential has been the restructuring of the B.Ed. (Hons) program, in which the practicum takes center stage. The practicum places student teachers (STs) under more experienced ones, where they learn how to do their job in a real-world setting. However, limited work has been done to explore how STs view the teaching practicum. To bridge this gap, a cross-sectional survey study was carried out, aiming to explore the experiences and perceptions of 180 STs (both male and female) in the urban and rural contexts of Sindh, Pakistan. An adapted version of the Inventory of Experiences and Perceptions about the Teaching Practicum (IEPTP) was used to collect data which comprises five domains (Institutional Socialization, Professional Development, Socio-Emotional, Resources/Supervision, and the Vocational). Data were collected online because the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic was surging at the time. A descriptive analysis was employed for overall experiences, while inferential tests were carried out to explore differences across groups. The results revealed that the STs have a moderate level of satisfaction with the practicum. The average mean score ranges from the highest of 3.64 out of 5 in the Professional Development aspect to the lowest of 2.47 in the Socio-Emotional. On the other hand, the Institutional Socialization dimension is rated medium-high (M=3.57). Contrarily, in Resources/Supervision (M=2.93) and Vocational Aspects (M=2.92), the STs have exhibited a lower than medium level of satisfaction. Gender comparisons revealed that of the five comparisons made, four were found to be significant (p<0.001), with two in favour of males (Institutional Socialization & Socio-Emotional) and two in females (Resources/Supervision & Vocational Aspect), while both genders have reported similar levels of satisfaction with Professional Development. Similarly, comparisons across region revealed that of the five, three were found to be significant (p<0.001), with two in favour of the rural region (Institutional Socialization & Socio-Emotional) and one in the urban (Resources/Supervision). The study provides new insights to policymakers and practitioners for designing and implementing the practicum to provide enhanced learning experiences to STs that may have sustainable outcomes. Moreover, the study also generates possibilities for further research based on an adapted version of the IEPTP.

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