Teacher Education Research Group

Institute of Teacher Education and School Research


Pedagogical Knowledge

This project aims to contribute to the current international discussion on general pedagogical knowledge (GPK) in teacher education (TE). In an era of accountability, benchmarking and professional competences both nationally and internationally, teachers' pedagogical knowledge (PK) is of significant research interest for international organisations (e.g. OECD). However, it could be argued that an economic based approach which measures teacher knowledge reduces the scope of research to constructing professional competence indicators. Whereas Shulman provided one of the first comprehensive theoretical models on teacher knowledge, Voss and König's work has sought to operationalize and measure general pedagogical knowledge (a specific aspect of Shulman's model). In doing so, their approaches have mirrored the primarily competence oriented operationalisations of GPK, for instance employed by the OECD. In contrast, our current research project entitled pKiTE (pedagogical Knowledge in Teacher Education) adopts a co-evolutionary inductive and reconstructive theory building process which takes into account the fluidity of GPK in teacher education thus allowing us to more adequately explore crucial questions of GPK in teacher education such as gender, migration and wider aspects of diversity. Our approach advocates a learning oriented epistemological model which draws on the knowledge concept of Mittelstraß (instrumental knowledge and orientation knowledge), an analytical definition of GPK, Bruner's concept (1960) of fundamental ideas as a framework for content and the dimension of learning-teaching orientation