Student teachers’ situational engagement during teaching practice in Finland and South Africa

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5 Citations (Scopus)


This article reports the outcomes of research on student teachers' situational engagement during their third-year teaching practice in university-affiliated teaching schools (teacher training schools) at the universities of Helsinki, Finland and Johannesburg, South Africa. We have explored situations that possibly engage the student teachers during the teaching practice related to learning, social interaction, working with different domains of teacher knowledge and sourcing from different origins. We have approached the experience of engagement the in the context of flow theory. For the experience sampling measurement, we operationalised engagement as a state of involvement in a learning task identified by higher-than-average individual states of interest, skill and challenge in a situation. In Johannesburg, 42% of all situations were engaging for students compared to 29% in Helsinki. The results emphasise the significance of personal interaction with mentors and university lecturers in supporting engagement. The student teachers found teaching, planning and reflecting on their lessons more engaging than other activities or informal discussions. Students at both universities experienced similar amounts of SMK, PCK and GPK and found working with these categories of knowledge engaging. It is important to include teaching practice in teacher education programmes and organise it in university-affiliated teacher training schools, where mentors can scaffold the students' reflection process, support the students in combining theoretical and practical perspectives of the teaching profession and guide students to seek information from various knowledge sources.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)255-279
Number of pages25
JournalTeacher Educator
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Situational engagement
  • teacher knowledge
  • teacher training school
  • teaching practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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