Let's talk about teacher education! A CDA of media debates (2016-2017) about Swedish teacher education

Year: 2018

Author: Edling, Silvia

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The purpose of the paper is to contribute to international research on the media’s role when it comes to naming and framing the debate about teacher education, by using Sweden as a case. Four major newspapers in 2016-2017 have been analyzed in relation to: a) the challenges/strengths of current teacher education, b) solutions for changes/improvements in current teacher education and c) who the actors for promoting these changes/improvements might be. Drawing on critical discourse analysis, the study shows that the media mainly emphasizes the negative aspects of teacher education, specifically a scepticism towards the scientific basis. An outside-inprofessionalism is emphasized. The desired changes are mainly concerned with altering postmodern perspectives to cognitive ones, followed by organizational changes and the development of teachers’ professional skills. Finally, the debate is fuelled by a few people outside the field of educational research who argue that researchers in psychology and neuroscience should have the power to define the content of education. The results corresponds well with international research, but at the same time provide information about current challenges and solutions that advocators in media highlights in relation to Swedish teacher education. They bring to fore the need for more nuanced debates about teacher education.