Ethical crossroads: A study of factors impeding professional growth in initial teacher education in Zimbabwe

  • JL Mswazi
  • A Shumba


Research on current discourses on educational change in general and teacher education in particular have identified reasons why some teacher education courses fail to connect with trainees. This study sought to investigate factors that underlie pre-service teachers\' resistance to an innovative religious and moral education course. A descriptive survey methodology was used to collect relevant data in this study. Oser's (1991) concept of moral dilemmas was utilized as a theoretical framework for investigating and interpreting the results. The sample comprised of 200 out of 700 teacher trainees randomly selected from two primary teacher's colleges. A questionnaire was used to collect data from participants. The study found that the socio-affective, factors, namely the dominant social values and expectations, religious beliefs and doctrines, and an inadequate professional support infrastructure constituted the major impediments to the adoption of professional behaviors commensurate with teaching Religious and Moral Education by prospective teachers. This study recommends the adoption of inclusive policy interventions at national, college and school levels.

South African Journal of Higher Education Vol. 22 (4) 2008: pp. 843-860

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eISSN: 1011-3487