University of Adelaide and Flinders University explore joint teacher education

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

The University of Adelaide is exploring a new partnership that could enhance teacher education in South Australia.

The concept would involve students enrolling in a double degree program, combining an undergraduate discipline degree at Adelaide with an education degree from a partner university.

Professor Warren Bebbington, Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Adelaide said such a collaboration could help to reduce the duplication in education courses in South Australia at a time when a static school population could mean limited jobs for teachers.

"A double degree across the two universities could enhance the quality of teachers, by combining rigour in a subject area with a broader pedagogical experience than either university could offer alone," said Professor Bebbington.

A joint program was proposed in a review of the University of Adelaide's School of Education, which recommended collaboration with other partner universities. Discussions are underway, with Flinders University particularly keen. Professor Michael Barber, Flinders University Vice-Chancellor welcomed the concept.

"From its earliest days, Flinders University has been at the forefront of teacher education. Our education programs are all underpinned by a rich practical learning experience and excellent partnerships with the school sector," said Professor Barber.

"Research shows that embedding an element of practical teaching from an early stage in university studies makes an enormous difference with graduates being more likely to enjoy a successful career in the classroom and stay in the profession. This collaboration could definitely help us deliver that outcome.

"Our experience is that employers, and indeed parents, want to see that well-rounded classroom teacher who has the academic background as well as the mentoring and communications skills that are essential for quality teaching," he said.

Minister for Employment, Higher Education and Skills, Grace Portolesi welcomed the partnership.

"The University of Adelaide is embracing new models of education, and this continues to build on their reputation for excellence and innovation.

"Universities working in partnership opens up many opportunities for our teachers that will be felt in all schools.

"The University of Adelaide and Flinders University are both highly regarded, and respected institutions. This collaboration is an exciting innovation."


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