Initial teacher training (ITT) involves different perspectives regarding the role of theoretical versus practical knowledge in teaching and requires an answer to how students integrate theory and practice and how learning environments contribute to this integration. Many authors have been advocating the idea of teachers as researchers of their own practice as a way to establish connections between theoretical knowledge and the knowledge gained from their practice. The ITT program of the University of Lisbon is based on a conceptual framework that proposes that student-teachers construct professional knowledge from researching their own practice in a context of supervised practice. This paper aims at describing the interpretations that student-teachers make about the Portuguese science curriculum, as well as describe the research questions and methods that they used for collecting data concerning students learning, and their evaluation of the learning process. For that, 31 written reports were analyzed. While involved in the design of the didactic proposals, student-teachers were encouraged to interpret the formal curriculum and turn it into a teaching curriculum, and to critically reflect on the curriculum. By researching their own practice, they developed new understanding regarding students’ difficulties, promoting students’ conceptual change and managing classroom and students’ behavior.
Part of the book: Science Education