Challenges for practice teaching in UAE schools: Supervisors' and pre-service teachers' perceptions
Zeina Hojeij, Fida Atallah, Sandra Baroudi and Rana Tamim
Zayed University, United Arab Emirates
Field experience, or practice teaching, or practicum has become a cornerstone of teacher education. It is a high-impact experience and a period of intense learning and growth if done professionally. While current research highlights the experiences of pre-service teachers as a catalyst for improving their perceptions, little is known about faculty supervisors' perceptions and the challenges they face during practicum courses. Hence, the aim of this study is to explore the experiences of the faculty supervisors (n=11) and pre-service teachers (n=69) throughout their time in the initial teacher program in the College of Education at Zayed University, a public university in the UAE, including any challenges they faced. Quantitative and qualitative data were collected through surveys, individual interviews, and reflective journals. Results revealed that having a well-structured program, establishing strong collaboration and coordination with the partner schools, and ensuring direct contact with mentors are the factors that enhance the faculty supervisors' experience. Based on these findings, recommendations are made that focus on the areas of scheduling, logistics, requirements, and expectations of the program.
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|Authors: Dr Zeina Hojeij (FHEA, COI, BB Certified Associate) is an Associate Professor and current Chair of the Educational Studies Department in the College of Education at Zayed University, Dubai, UAE. She holds an EdD in Educational Leadership and Administration from Saint Louis University, USA. Her research interests include educational leadership, English language education, mobile learning technology, and teaching and learning.|
Dr Fida Atallah is an Associate Professor of Educational Technology and a certified mathematics educator at Zayed University, Dubai, UAE. She acted as the Quality Assurance Coordinator for the College of Education between 2017 and 2019. She has taught a range of courses including learning technologies, curriculum design, and instructional strategies. Her research interests include STEM education initiatives, student perspectives on their mathematics learning experiences, and perspectives of field experiences.
Dr Sandra Baroudi is an Assistant Professor at the College of Education at Zayed University, Dubai, UAE. She holds a PhD in Educational Leadership and Management from the British University in UAE. Her research interests include educational leadership, educational policy and management, technology in education, and teaching and learning.
Dr Rana Tamim is a Professor of Educational Technology at the College of Education at Zayed University, Dubai, UAE. She has a varied teaching experience with extensive expertise in curriculum and instructional design. Her research interests include knowledge synthesis through systematic reviews, impact of computer technology in facilitating learning, and pedagogical approaches to the integration of technology in the design of learning environments based on student-centred principles.
Please cite as: Hojeij, Z., Atallah, F., Baroudi, S. & Tamim, R. (2021). Challenges for practice teaching in UAE schools: Supervisors' and pre-service teachers' perceptions. Issues in Educational Research, 31(2), 513-536. http://www.iier.org.au/iier31/hojeij2.pdf