How meaning-oriented learning is enhanced in Dutch academic primary teacher education

S.J. van der Wal-Maris, D. Beijaard, G.L.M. Schellings, J. J.M. Geldens

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    4 Citations (Scopus)


    The present study identifies ways of how meaning-oriented learning is enhanced in academic primary teacher education, a new route to the teaching profession in the Netherlands. Meaning-oriented learners are generally described in the literature as being capable to regulate their own learning, to understand a topic thoroughly, to form their own opinion about it and to draw their own conclusions. Semi-structured interviews were held with both student teachers (n = 32) and educators (n = 18) who participated in this new route. Interviewees perceived common ways of enhancing meaning-oriented learning, such as encouraging students to structure, relate and critically process knowledge. Other ways are related to the development of students’ professional identity as an academic primary teacher in general, for example, through students’ reflection on the development of such an identity and their sharing of knowledge, not only with peers and educators, but also externally in publications, on a conference or on the Web. The present study indicates that the newly developed route to the teaching profession successfully contains elements that provoke meaning-oriented learning. The results of this study are useful for the (further) development of teacher education contexts in which the enhancement of meaning-oriented learning by student teachers is an important aim.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)375-393
    Number of pages19
    JournalTeacher Development
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2018


    • deep learning
    • meaning-oriented learning
    • processing strategies
    • self-regulation
    • Teacher education


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