Book chapter
Open access

From Asyut, via Shkodra to Zug: Creating values by connecting teacher trainers in international academic networks

PublisherZurich : Zurich University of Teacher Education
First online date2022-12-30

Interest in and projects for the professional development of teacher educators in International Academic Networks (IANs) is increasing, but research in joint global initiatives is still very much in its infancy. In this article, we present the outcomes of a study whose aim is to examine the values created during the exchange processes taking place between academics in teacher education. The relevant data to address this question was gathered over the course of the two five-year Swiss-funded network projects “Learning Cultures in Universities – LECU” and “Swiss-North African Academic Network – SINAN”. This study contributes to a more elaborate understanding of the creation of shared values in communities of practice (Wenger-Trainer & Wenger-Trainer, 2020).

We use methods of qualitative social research to gain a rich and deep insight into the value created from the perspectives of the participants: a group of almost 50 university teacher educators originating from five different countries and with an average of 10 years of teaching experience. The data gathered consisted of an analysis of:

a. empirical fieldnotes about the debriefing discussions after the university classroom visits and school visits and

b. online focus group interviews with academics from both networks.

The networks’ outcomes provided different types of immediate, potential, applied and realised values at an individual and collective level. Visits to schools and university classrooms, network meetings around competency-based education and the projects of the duos and trios count as the most relevant activities. Encounters beyond the meetings supported the work in groups and the formation of communities of practice. The exchanges through LECU and SINAN showed that academics benefit from plurilingual and intercultural interactions, overcome institutional restraints to focus on the essence of teacher training and discuss topics qualitatively to advance the profession’s challenges and deliver high quality results.

  • Value creation
  • International academic networks
  • Teacher education
  • Transcultural exchanges
Citation (ISO format)
BOULOS, Samir et al. From Asyut, via Shkodra to Zug: Creating values by connecting teacher trainers in international academic networks. In: Learning across Borders in Teacher Education: Experiences with the Swiss-North African Academic Network (SINAN) Project. Zurich : Zurich University of Teacher Education, 2022. doi: 10.5281/zenodo.8032596
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Book chapter (Published version)

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