Front. Educ.
Sec. Teacher Education
doi: 10.3389/feduc.2022.919332

From pre- and in-service teachers’ asymmetric backgrounds to equal co-teaching: Investigation of a professional learning model

 Anttoni Kervinen1*,  Päivi Portaankorva-Koivisto1*, Merike Kesler1, Arja Kaasinen1,  Kalle Juuti1 and Anna Uitto1
  • 1University of Helsinki, Finland
Provisionally accepted:
The final, formatted version of the article will be published soon.

The existing co-teaching practices in teachers’ professional learning emphasize collaboration between pre-service and in-service teachers. Although this collaboration is usually defined by a mentor–student relationship with asymmetric power relations, successful co-teaching practices in schools are considered to involve parity, resulting in mutual learning for all involved parties. In this study, we designed a model for teachers’ professional learning in which pre- and in-service teachers collaborate and have shared goals, with the aim of equal responsibilities for planning and implementing instruction, despite the teachers’ diverse backgrounds. During the four years of piloting and developing the model in the Finnish teacher education context, we investigated how the participants reflected on the co-teaching process. We analyzed data from collaborative reflection sessions to identify the challenges and benefits of this untypical form of collaboration. The findings showed that asymmetric backgrounds may cause challenges, but that if these are overcome, they can also create opportunities for valuable co-teaching experiences for all the participants. Helping the participants initiate the co-teaching process and take different roles appeared to be essential for a successful process. We discuss the findings regarding the development of co-teaching practices in teacher education and in schools.

Keywords: Co-teaching, In-service teacher training, pre-service teacher training, Teacher Education, collaboration

Received: 13 Apr 2022; Accepted: 02 Sep 2022.

Copyright: © 2022 Kervinen, Portaankorva-Koivisto, Kesler, Kaasinen, Juuti and Uitto. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence:
Dr. Anttoni Kervinen, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, 00014, Uusimaa, Finland
Dr. Päivi Portaankorva-Koivisto, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, 00014, Uusimaa, Finland