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The implementation of learner-centred teaching in Mauritian state secondary schools: examining teachers’ beliefs and classroom practice

Allybokus, Bibi Sabina (2015) The implementation of learner-centred teaching in Mauritian state secondary schools: examining teachers’ beliefs and classroom practice. EdD (International) thesis, UCL Institute of Education.

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The Mauritian Education system is a highly elitist and examination-oriented system where teachers in state secondary schools enjoy complete autonomy in the selection of their teaching methods. Despite education policies recommending learner-centred teaching (LCT) for a more inclusive, integrated and holistic approach to education (NCF, 2009, p. 7), most secondary education teachers generally use teacher-centred teaching (TCT) methods even after having learned LCT in professional teaching courses. In this study I examine how 30 professionally trained teachers from eight state secondary schools in Mauritius understand LCT and how they implement it in class. I also explore why those teachers choose this approach and which skills they think are necessary for effective LCT. This qualitative study uses a social-constructivist approach. It was carried out in two phases. In the first phase I looked into teachers’ understandings of LCT and in the second phase I observed teachers enactment of LCT in their classrooms. Data gathering tools were questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, focus groups, class observations and debriefing sessions. The findings point towards two perspectives of LCT: the first perspective is a cognitive perspective, which is more achievement-oriented, and the second one is an emancipatory perspective, which focuses on re-engaging learners with their studies. The study also shows that their work contexts, their beliefs and the pressure of an exams-oriented system shape teachers’ understanding of LCT and in its actual form LCT in Mauritian schools is only partially learner-centred with a mix of LCT and TCT. The main contribution of this thesis is the acknowledgment of the kind of LCT that teachers can achieve without any form of support and the potential of our teachers in transforming our classrooms with authentic and effective forms of LCT provided continuing professional development and school support become regular features of our education system.

Item Type: Thesis (EdD (International))
Controlled Keywords: Learner-centred teaching, teacher-centred teaching, teachers' understanding, constructivist strategies, cognitivist perspective, emancipatory perspective
Subjects: Departments > Lifelong and Comparative Education
Depositing User: Mr Julian Zerfahs
Date Deposited: 08 Jul 2015 15:00
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2015 15:00
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