Fostering teacher candidate dispositions in teacher education programs

Lauren L. Cummins, Bridget Asempapa


The role of teacher preparation programs is to ensure that candidates are effectively prepared in the knowledge, skills and dispositions needed to be an effective educator.  However, dispositions have always been a challenge to the field of teacher education, particularly in response to assessing dispositions and in answering the question; can dispositions be taught?  Many professionals in education and career counseling believe that candidates come endowed with the dispositions needed to be an effective teacher and this “endowment” is the reason the candidate has chosen the career of teaching.  Though, to a certain degree this premise may hold true, this article discussing a study done in an early childhood teacher preparation program with teacher candidates and demonstrated dispositions can be “taught” if there is intentionality with effective teaching methods related to dispositions. Pre and post assessment results of 99 teacher candidates are compared in an introductory early childhood education course to measure candidates’ tendencies to act in ways conducive to appropriate professional dispositions.  A teaching intervention related to dispositions is also discussed and provided the premise that with intentional and effective teaching, comes intentional and effective learning.


dispositions; teaching interventions; intentional teaching

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ISSN 1527-9316