Positioning Dispositions in Initial Teacher Education: An Action Research Approach

Qilong Zhang, Joanne Hayes, Rawhia TeHau-Grant, Roberta Skeoch, Lois France, Ke Jiang, Ruth Barnes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


In spite of debate, ambiguity, and tension around teacher dispositions, in the past over two decades, the place of dispositions in initial teacher education (ITE) has been widely supported among policy makers and researchers. Specifically, debate on whether dispositions are teachable has largely given way to action to foster dispositions. Adopting a two-cycle participatory action research design, this study explored ways to teach the first-year teacher candidates' dispositions in an early childhood ITE programme in New Zealand. The intervention included eight focus dispositions and corresponding strategies to teach each focus disposition. Data collection methods included student self-assessment surveys, individual and focus group interviews with students and teaching staff, team meetings, and a variety of pedagogical documentation. Ethnographic content analysis generated three themes: legitimacy of the intervention, experiential orientation of the intervention, and effect of the intervention. The study exemplifies how dispositions intervention can be incorporated in ITE programmes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-54
Number of pages16
JournalAustralian Journal of Teacher Education
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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