Sarah Steadman

Thesis title:

The Making of Teachers: A study into the differing experiences of PGCE students in university and school based initial teacher training environments.


Sarah’s research focuses on the experiences of secondary English beginning teachers and how the choice of PGCE environment impacts on their development as practitioners. The research project title alludes to Pam Grossman’s seminal book ‘The Making of a Teacher’ (1990) where she suggests that, ‘Teacher education can provide a framework that shapes what beginning teachers subsequently learn from experience.’ p111. Inherent within this premise is the tension between learning ‘from experience’ and the relevance of theoretical study, an idea developed further by Grossman in later works that advocate practical methods in teacher training.An ‘on the job’ (Cochran-Smith 2005) approach to the development of teachers prioritises school-led systems over the traditional home of teacher education in universities. It is intended that the research will illuminate the differing approaches to learning and teaching practices in university and school-based initial teacher training. The development of in-depth understanding of the cultures of both university and school-based PGCE settings could help to inform future policy decisions around the nature and location of initial teacher education and the relationship between universities and schools.

Social media:

First supervisor:

Viv Ellis


6 – Education, Mind & Society




Viv Ellis, Warwick Mansell & Sarah Steadman (2020): A new political economy of teacher development: England’s Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund, Journal of Education Policy

Viv Ellis, Sarah Steadman & Tom Are Trippestad (2019) Teacher education and the GERM: policy entrepreneurship, disruptive innovation and the rhetorics of reform, Educational Review, 71:1, 101-121
DOI: 10.1080/00131911.2019.1522040

Sarah Steadman (2018) Defining practice: exploring the meaning of practice in the process of learning to teach, TEAN Journal, 10(1), pp. 3-9

Sarah Steadman (2003) ‘The Writers’ Zone’: A Study of the Impact of Targeting Verbal Reasoning on Student Performance and Behaviour, English in Education, 37:2, 38-47, DOI: 10.1111/j.1754-8845.2003.tb00598.x