Rachel Lofthouse Peter Birmingham


The camera in the classroom: video-recording as a tool for professional development of student teachers


Authors:  Rachel Lofthouse and Peter Birmingham



Conventionally, school-based mentors have supported student teachers through the processes of training, observing, feedback and discussion. Quality assurance evidence demonstrates that despite good documentation and university-based guidance there remains inconsistency in the calibre and outcomes of these collaborative relationships and their ability to promote reflection.  The transition of the initial teacher education PGCE to a Masters level course provided an opportunity to use new tools to develop the working relationships between student teachers and their mentors.  One such change was the development of a portfolio assignment which involved student teachers in videoing their own lessons.   This paper outlines the findings of the first year of research relating to the video intervention.  Its focus is the student teachers’ responses to both recording lessons and using footage to support the processes of analysis, mentoring and reflective writing.  In addition, the views of mentors and PGCE tutors are considered. The results of questionnaires show that the outcomes of the video intervention are seen as positive and substantial by the majority of participants.


Keywords: initial teacher education; video-recording of lessons; mentoring; reflection; tools