Using video for the identification and assessment of learning in initial teacher education

Grant type: Research
Round: Research grant 2009
Amount awarded £4,400.00
Completed: July 2010
Leader(s): Dr John McCullagh
Organisation: Stranmillis University College
Contact Email:
Contact phone: 02890384257
Fergal Corscadden
CETL Coordinator Stranmillis University College Belfast
James Stewart
W5 Discovery Centre Belfast
Start Date: 1 September 2009
End Date: 30 June 2010
Interim report received: 13 January 2011
Final report received: 20 July 2010

This project sought to explore the extent to which video analysis may support the development of student teachers’ reflective classroom practice. The project was based on the Year 4 module ‘Primary Science Beyond the Classroom’, which included a placement in a local primary school. The 18 students, working in pairs, planned, taught and evaluated a cross-curricular science scheme in support of a class visit to the W5 science centre in Belfast. During the teaching phase the student teachers used video cameras to record each other’s practice and used this footage to reflect and identify aspects of their practice for development. The students combined recordings from the start and end of their placement and included their own video diaries to produce a final video outlining their professional development. The evaluation of the project was based on data collected via questionnaires, semi-structured interviews and focus group interviews with the students involved.

All of the students reported that video analysis enriched the process of evaluation and personal reflection and was of great support to their professional development.

A comparison of student evaluations written before and after watching video recordings of their lessons showed marked differences. Evaluations written after viewing the video recording were much more detailed, focussed more on the pupils and the consequences of the student teachers’ actions and contained more evidence for assertions and conclusions. The use of video was found to enhance the level of student reflection for all the students.

 In addition to providing the opportunity for a more thorough analysis of the various interactions taking place during a lesson the students found the video encouraged greater collaboration with peers, tutors and teachers. The experience was found to have a long lasting impact on students’ reflective practice with evidence of learning being transferred into other teaching situations. All of the students felt that the experience had greatly supported their professional development and would recommend the use of video more extensively throughout their teacher training programme.