The role of the cooperating teacher in the context of physical education teacher training: The cooperating teacher’s perspective
This study aimed to capture how cooperating teachers of physical education are positioned in the supervision role defined in the normative documents of the higher institutions and how they interpret their actions at school. Twenty-six cooperating teachers involved in initial training programs for physical education teachers of four public universities in Portugal were interviewed. For data analysis, the construction of situational maps (Clarke, 2003), based on two coding cycles (open and focused) were used to emerge and establish connections between the structural elements of training (Charmaz, 2006). The results indicate that the way that the cooperating teachers assume the role of mentors is guided by the normative documents and configured by the relational dynamics established with the faculty supervisor. The role that cooperating teachers assume are predominantly instrumental, of support and management of the pre-service teachers’ academic and professional learning. The partnership established between school and university based on a collaborative and complementary relationship had emerged as necessary and as a priority for the quality of the training process.