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An overview of the phenomenon of teaching out of field

Price, A.ORCID: 0000-0002-5925-1133 (2017) An overview of the phenomenon of teaching out of field. Unterrichtswissenschaft, 45 (2). pp. 102-113.


At a time of increasing levels of accountability, surveillance and credentialism in education, it seems contradictory that the phenomenon of Teaching Out of Field (TOOF) continues to exist across a range international educational settings. TOOF occurs despite the growing prevalence of graduate and teacher professional standards and specific criteria for accrediting pre-service teacher education (PST) programs. These graduate, teacher and program standards have been developed in most cases in order to ensure that teachers have what is assumed to be the necessary pedagogical and content knowledge to be effective, quality teachers. Upon graduation, however, teachers are often assigned subjects or year levels for which they have little or no formal qualifications. Such assignment decisions are often influenced by local school staffing needs or the exegesis of a flexible workforce rather than pedagogical considerations. Study of the phenomenon of TOOF, therefore, not only draws attention to debates about the skills teachers need but also to the efficacy and the legitimacy of the teacher standards movement. This paper draws from four different country settings to provide an overview and theoretical contribution to an understanding of the phenomenon of TOOF within the broad global context of more regulated teacher accreditation processes.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Education
Publisher: Julius Beltz GmbH
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