Are Czech students of teacher training prepared for interdisciplinary teaching? Cover Image

Are Czech students of teacher training prepared for interdisciplinary teaching?
Are Czech students of teacher training prepared for interdisciplinary teaching?

Author(s): Eduard Hofmann, Hana Svobodová
Subject(s): Applied Geography, School education, Methodology and research technology, Pedagogy
Published by: Masarykova univerzita nakladatelství
Keywords: interdisciplinary cooperation; transdisciplinary cooperation; geographical thinking; student; free writing;
Summary/Abstract: In accordance with the changes in the Czech curricular documents, there is increasing pressure to strengthen cross-curricular links. While the problematics of cross-curricular cooperation began to be solved abroad in the 1980s and is actually implemented in a number of countries, in the Czech environment it has been the topic of professional discussions of the last few years and its implementation is hindered by a number of barriers. At the same time, there is a lack of research in the Czech environment to capture the implementation of cross-curricular education or its comparison in an international context. Klein and Newell (1998, p. 3) consider the interdisciplinary approach as “a process of answering questions, solving problems or topics that are too broad or complex to be appropriately addressed by a single discipline”, notwithstanding that “interdisciplinary studies are based on disciplinary perspectives and integrate their knowledge through the development of a more complex perspective”. Since interdisciplinarity remains often an underestimated concept in the Czech environment, the first partial aim of the paper is to introduce the possibility of integration of partial geographic and other professional disciplines through the topic of “movement”. In order for the interdisciplinary cooperation to be more applied by teachers at schools, their training needs to be taken already in the course of study. In order to determine whether future teachers are able to implement this form of teaching, an investigation has been carried out with students of the follow-up master’s studies for primary and secondary school teachers by a method of free writing on preassigned questions. Due to the qualitative nature of the students’ answers, their answers were coded and subsequently analyzed. The second part of the paper is to evaluate the results of the survey with the students in which they express their opinion on the preparation for the cross-curricular education.