Abstract Content (up to 300 words recommended)
Background/context - This paper originated from the development of a new internationally linked, cross cultural professional experience model created between The University of Hong Kong and Monash University to better prepare student-teachers to become ‘globally ready’ and equipped to teach in culturally and linguistically diverse contexts. This paper will report and share the learning experiences of three student-teachers from HKU who did their four-week international practicum in a local Melbourne school in July 2014.
The initiative/practice - Participating student-teachers have already completed their first phase of their home-based teaching practicum. This proposed model intends to broaden the horizon of the student-teachers to a culturally different environment to become a ‘globally-ready’ teacher. They are expected to take the strengths from the home-based context and also learned innovative practices in the culturally different context.
Method(s) of evaluative data collection and analysis - This programme involves different kinds of qualitative data, namely: pre- and post-exchange practicum questionnaire; focus group interviews after the completion of the questionnaire; weekly reflective journals during international practicum; video-recording of their authentic lessons; and a public presentation in a School-University Partnership Forum held by HKU. The qualitative data were interpreted to allow the emergence of learning themes to support if the student-teachers could make globally ready teachers.
Evidence of effectiveness - At the time of preparing this abstract, it is known likely that one of the mentor-teachers from Melbourne and the co-author may join the three HKU student-teachers in the HKU Partnership Forum. The confidence developed among the three HKU student-teachers to do their capstone practicum in their final year of their initial teacher education programme (Feb-April 2015) give strong evidence to the effectiveness of the international practicum model.
Addressing the theme/s of the Conference (up to 200 words recommended)
This paper addresses the sub-theme of “Educating graduates to be responsive and adaptable professionals” as we are preparing student-teachers to be ready at four levels, moving from classroom ready to school ready to community ready and finally globally ready through a ‘cross cultural international practicum model’. A critical component of this model designed features the introduction of student-teachers to localised community information through a social space framework exploring the aspects of demography, geography and economy (Reid, et.al, 2010) and culturally. This orientation to their learning communities developed within the professional experience is intended to develop their ‘funds of knowledge for teaching’ (Moll et al, 1992) and encourage the subsequent development of place consciousness (Greenwood, 2003) informed classroom practices. By this we strongly believe that we are also preparing and educating the students to be responsive and adaptable global ready teachers.