Classroom management in a dutch teacher education program: A realistic approach

Jan van Tartwijk*, Ietje Veldman, Nico Verloop

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Teachers can profit from a solid knowledge base that can function as a frame of reference to help them organize their thinking. However, theoretical knowledge is easily 'washed out' during the first confrontations with practice. For this reason, several Dutch university-based teacher education programs use a realistic approach to teacher education. In realistic teacher education, the integration of theory and practice is promoted by combining learning at the university and the school from the very start of the program, by tailoring the program to the individual students' needs, and by cooperation between university-based teacher educators and supervisors in the schools. In the university-based part of the program, students' concerns are taken as the starting point for teaching and theory is introduced as a means to enrich students' reflections on their experiences in their classrooms and schools. Because creating a positive, orderly working atmosphere in the classroom is the first concern of many students and beginning teachers, this is one of the first topics that is addressed. In this paper, we describe the teacher education program of the Leiden University Graduate School of Teaching, which has recently made a shift towards a realistic approach to teacher education, and how classroom management is taught in this program. Evaluation data are presented showing the success of this approach.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)169-184
    Number of pages16
    JournalTeaching Education
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2011


    • Classroom management
    • Interpersonal perspective
    • Realistic approach
    • Teacher education


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