A Critical Look at a Blended English Language Teacher Education Program with an Emphasis on the Practicum
Keywords:English language teacher, distance education, practicum, student teachers, cooperating teachers
The aim of the present study was to explore what types of difficulties student teachers enrolled in a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in English Language Teacher Education program offered in a blended format and their cooperating teachers encountered during the student teacher practicum. The participants were 21 fourth grade student teachers and 12 cooperating teachers. Semi-structured interview questions were used to collect data. The interviews were tape-recorded and then transcribed to be analyzed. According to the findings, the problems student teachers faced were grouped into four areas: assessment systems, computer–assisted communication, challenges with mentors, and psychological issues. Cooperating teachers’ problems were categorized as problems associated with the program and problems associated with the student teachers. The results of this study contribute to an increased understanding of the problems that student teachers and their cooperating teachers face during field experience at an English language teacher education program offered in a distance format. This study provides suggestions for establishing more effective mentorship during the field experience.
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