International schools, loosely defined as those involving students, teachers, curricula and/or languages not from the host country, form a significant sector of education worldwide, with numbers estimated at more than three thousand and predicted to grow rapidly over the next decade. Of equal significance is their role in developing students who are internationally-minded, often explicitly included in school mission statements, and increasingly accepted as a central educational imperative rather than a desirable but peripheral option. It is generally acknowledged that teacher effectiveness has a profound influence on student learning, and it follows therefore that teachers who model international-mindedness are also an important part of the equation. Yet, as the number of international schools increases, appropriately-prepared teachers are becoming increasingly scarce.
This thesis identifies key issues facing international teachers, each well documented in literature and research, and increasingly evident in educational policy and strategy at national and international levels, yet found to be lacking in teacher preparation. It is my contention, therefore, that the substantial and systematic inclusion of these issues in initial teacher education programmes is absolutely essential and I investigate how the theoretical commitments of policy statements can be converted into practical provision of appropriate preparation for international teachers.
By considering literature and research, survey data and anecdotal evidence from the international education community, I attempt to describe (though not define) international teachers, the international nature of the education they provide to their students, and the type of preparation they need in order to do so. Based on the key issues identified, I propose seven domains of knowledge and skills deemed essential for teacher preparation, synthesised into a potential model for systematic implementation within individual schools and programmes, or within whole educational systems at state or national level.
|Date of Award
|1 Nov 2008
|Mary Hayden (Supervisor)
- Teacher training