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Fulfilling the dream : an online early childhood teacher education course
Australian Teacher Education Association National Conference (2008)
  • Pauline T Taylor, James Cook University
This paper presents a study into the motivations, aspirations and characteristics of students who embarked on a new wholly-online early childhood teacher preparation program introduced at James Cook University in 2007. The inquiry contributes to a number of areas where there is currently little research. Australian studies into the experiences of first-year undergraduates focus on on-campus students, not on students who engage with tertiary studies wholly online, nor do they specifically relate to preservice teacher education. Contemporary research into e-learning is predominantly based on blended learning rather than solely online modes of study. In addition, there is little literature relating to the experience of traditionally marginalised groups engaging with tertiary study solely through e-learning in teacher education programs. This study showed that most students enrolled in the degree in 2007 were mature-aged women working in the child care sector who saw online learning as the only avenue to pursue their dreams of becoming teachers. Findings suggest that e-learning is a more egalitarian teaching and learning environment than on-campus study. The inquiry points to effective strategies to support student learning and proposes that online delivery, despite its challenges, is a valuable vehicle for providing opportunities for traditionally marginalised learners to fulfil their dreams of becoming teachers and should be better supported by the federal government as part of the initiatives in the area of early childhood education. [Author abstract]
  • Adult students,
  • Distance education,
  • Online learning,
  • Females,
  • Preschool teachers,
  • Teacher education,
  • Higher education,
  • Student motivation,
  • Online teaching,
  • Web based courses
Publication Date
Citation Information
Pauline T Taylor. "Fulfilling the dream : an online early childhood teacher education course" Australian Teacher Education Association National Conference (2008)
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