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Teachers and Youth in Educational Reality


Airi Liimets and Marika Veisson

The first seven articles of the book provide an overview of how Estonian educational scientists, collaborating with colleagues from Finland and Sweden on one of the articles, have empirically studied the quality of learning environment, teachers’ professionalism and their perceptions of their own teaching as well as their professional role and students’ coping at school. When dealing with the educational reality, a wholeness-centred educational thinking is represented. Therefore, one of the articles is devoted to the question of how to define youth and interpret the development of the concept of youth. One article deals with creativity in relation to the social field. The last article compares the semantics of the concepts Paideía and lifestyle as expressions of the wholeness-centred educational thinking.
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Teachers’ Beliefs Regarding Effective Teaching: the Cornerstone of Curriculum Reform


Tuuli Oder


During the recent educational reform in Estonia, a new National Curriculum for Basic Schools was introduced in 2011. In order to establish whether teachers’ beliefs about effective teaching are in accordance with the principles of this new curriculum, research was conducted among more than a thousand teachers working at the basic school level (grades 7–9, students aged 13–15). The research included teachers of mathematics, biology and English as a foreign language (EFL). This article analyses the results of the research among EFL teachers. The study identifies that, although EFL teachers’ beliefs regarding effective teaching are generally in accordance with the principles of the new curriculum, there are certain aspects that should be addressed in both pre-service and in-service teacher education programs. It also reveals that there are significant differences between the beliefs of teachers from different schools according to the language of instruction – in this case Estonian and Russian.

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