What Competencies Do Teachers Need? Demands of the Teaching Profession from the Perspective of Teachers and Teacher Educators

Sabine Weiß, Simone Schramm, Ewald Kiel


Studies on the demands professional teachers face are not sufficient. Especially neglected is the articulation of demands in terms of an experience based social practice, although social practices of this kind are very influential in everyday professional action. Teachers complain that their particular attitudes and concepts of classroom activities are not considered adequately in research on teaching. The study described in this article uses group discussions, composed of two groups, experienced teachers and experienced teacher educators, in order to identify central job demands for different school types (primary school, middle school, elementary school). The analyses of these discussions is based on qualitative content analysis based on MAYRING. Central findings for both expert groups simultaneously highlight demands referring to social competencies and student interaction. Furthermore, one can find differences based on school type. For example, subject knowledge is more important for elementary school teachers; primary school teachers need to be more stress resistant. Furthermore, some demands, e.g., subject knowledge and ability to communicate, are defined depending on school type. Developmental tasks for prospective teachers are deduced from the demand profiles. Our qualitative research on the demands teachers face has proved fruitful and might reconcile to some extent the gap mentioned above between research and experience based social practice. This gap is bridged by providing teachers with the possibility to articulate their attitudes and concepts of classroom activities in terms of so called collective orientation patterns.

URN: http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs1403201


content analysis; demand profile; group discussion; professional knowledge; school type; social competency; system of categories; teacher; teacher-student-relationship

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-15.3.2174

Copyright (c) 2014 Sabine Weiß, Simone Schramm, Ewald Kiel

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