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Individual and flexible: Working conditions in the practice of Swedish distance-based teacher education


J Ola Lindberg 
Mid Sweden University, Sweden 
ola.lindberg@miun.se
 

Anders D Olofsson 
Umeň University, Sweden 
anders.d.olofsson@fceduc.umu.se

 

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Abstract

This article reports on the working conditions within Swedish ICT-supported distance-based teacher education. Data collected from teacher trainees are analysed and discussed in relation to Swedish governmental policies concerning teacher education and distance education and theories emphasising the importance of social aspects of education. The findings indicate working conditions that are mainly controlled by the teacher education program, and that teacher trainees to a high degree are fostered into individualism. Exceptions are in group work, which on the other hand seems to be given only minor attention in teacher education. This raises questions related to the intentions of teacher education. First, there are questions concerning issues of flexibility and choice, more precisely about what aspects are flexible or not. Second, there are questions concerning possibilities of teacher education providing an education that enables teacher trainees to develop the competencies needed to be able to teach. 

Teacher education, working conditions, flexible learning, online learning community, Sweden

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 Lindberg, J.O. and Olofsson, A.D. (2006). Individual and flexible: Working conditions in the practice of Swedish distance-based teacher education. International Education Journal, 7 (5), 699-708.
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