Harnessing the potential of recently retired physics teachers to mentor new physics teachers

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    Three new physics teachers graduating from a university provider of initial teacher education in England were paired with a recently retired physics subject specialist teacher in order to provide informal mentoring during their first year of teaching. The aim of this was to explore if a mentoring intervention of this kind could support teacher knowledge growth of the new physics teachers and influence their retention in the teaching profession. Qualitative data from the study suggests that substantive content of the mentoring discussions that took place addressed issues of general pedagogy and pedagogical content knowledge. The retired teacher mentors were enthusiastic and able to act as mentors. Suggestions emerge for ways of facilitating the mentoring.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number015020
    JournalPhysics Education
    Issue number1
    Early online date3 Dec 2021
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2021 The Author(s).


    • physics education
    • teacher education
    • Mentoring/methods

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Physics and Astronomy


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