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Lee, Y. P. (2000). Cognitive style as a factor in the design of teachers’ professional training. In J. Ee, Berinderjeet Kaur, N. H. Lee and B. H. Yeap (Eds.), New ‘Literacies’: Educational response to a knowledge-based society: Proceedings of the ERA-AME-AMIC Joint Conference 2000 (pp. 278-287). Singapore: Educational Research Association.
This paper charts the learning styles and hemispheric modes of teacher trainees enrolled in the National Institute of Education's pre-service courses for the training of primary schools mathematics teachers. The instruments used were the Learning Style Inventory and the Hemispheric Mode Indicator. The types of adults attracted to the teaching profession may have distinctive learning styles. The study shows that trainees from the mathematics pedagogy courses are distinguished by very strong abstract conceptualisation skills and weak concrete experience skills. In spite of the short duration of the training programme and the need to equip trainees with basic skills and knowledge, the training provided must also respond to pragmatic demands for relevance and the application of knowledge while encouraging the reflective examination of experience necessary to create the reflective teacher. The understanding of trainees’ learning styles helps in the design of course activities to facilitate learning and effective transfer of training. It can provide a framework for learning during on-the-job training. The use of the teaching practicum becomes a focus for trainees to test and explore new ideas. Learning goes beyond the tutorial room to become an integral and explicit part of work itself when the trainees graduate into full fledge teachers.
This paper was published in the Proceedings of the ERA-AME-AMIC Joint Conference held at Singapore from 4-6 September 2000
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