Building intercultural competence and professional confidence through collaboration in an Italian IPE

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Abstract

Each author in this chapter has been leaders of a practicum program in Prato, Italy, where Monash University has a centre that supports the development of engagement in the local schools and community. This chapter explores the collaboration between the leaders and the students and findings from interviews and observations of the learning experiences of various cohorts of pre-service teachers (PSTs) who undertook the practicum in Italy in three different programs from 2014–2016. While the findings show that most PSTs develop intercultural competence, and an increased sense of teacher identity and confidence through negotiating a range of situations during their practicum experiences in Prato, it is evident that a complex range of factors influence individual’s learning journeys. Being a PST in Italian schools where the curriculum, language and expectations can be challenging means there are frequently hurdles to overcome. In this chapter, both the positive learning and challenges during the IPE are discussed through narratives of the outcomes of collaboration between the university mentors and PSTs, and what these experiences reveal about the impact of varied factors influencing individual PSTs’ personal journeys.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNarratives of Learning Through International Professional Experience
EditorsAngela Fitzgerald, Graham Parr, Judy Williams
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer
Pages95-110
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9789811048678
ISBN (Print)9789811048661
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2017

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