This paper considers the development of teacher professionalism in the context of Northern Ireland. The paper traces the development of the discourse on teacher education in the UK and, through an analysis of ‘Teaching: The Reflective Profession’ (GTCNI, 2007), suggests that teacher development in NI is characterised by its individuality and difference in approach to that of the rest of the UK. It proposes that teacher education in NI rejects the technical rational model of teacher competence in favour of one which promotes critically reflective, activist teachers. The paper also identifies a range of factors which mitigate the actualisation of reflection, partnership and effective collaboration becoming fully embedded across the phases of the profession.
Teacher education; professionalism; competence; reflective practice.