The University of Waikato
Standards for Teachers and Teacher Education: Avoiding the
Martin Thrupp April 2006
Professional standards for teachers and teacher education can be ‘generic’ or ‘specified’. Generic standards are broad descriptors of teachers’ skills and knowledge. Specified standards attempt to define more precisely what is to be taught, what would count as evidence of the quality of that teaching and what would count as meeting the standard. Specified standards are explicitly intended to allow an assessor to make judgements about teacher performance. New Zealand has a history of favouring generic professional standards but there has been some recent interest amongst academics and policymakers in specified standards.
This paper offers four arguments against introducing specified standards for New Zealand teachers and teacher education.
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