Health Education, Action Competence and Teacher Training Colleges in Kenya


Start date: 31 July, 2009 End date: 30 July, 2013 Project type: Smaller projects: Postdoc Project code: 922-AU Countries: Kenya Thematic areas: Health, Lead institution: Aarhus University (AU), Denmark Policy Brief: Policy Brief Project coordinator: Kari Kragh Blume Dahl Total grant: 2,139,584 DKK

Project summary

The project investigates, to which degree Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) in Kenya support or inhibit the implementation of the Education-For-All (EFA) strategy, and to which degree TTC supports or inhibits students teachers’ development of competencies in Health Education (HE). This problem is investigated through a top-down and a bottom-up research component in the field of student teacher development. At a macro level UFA and the political-administrative discourses in the period from 1994-2009 are examined, because these are seen as conditions for thinking, acting and developing HE competencies as a teacher at TTC. At a meso level a group of teacher trainers will be examined for their understanding of HE concepts and practices, and the institutional regulation of TTC will be examined regarding students’ development of HE competencies. At a micro level a selected group of students will be studied regarding their experiences and understandings of HE and the degree to which their HE competencies develop in an inclusive and participatory way. The project is interdisciplinary, as it is rooted in educational research in developing countries and combines it with ethnographic and social psychological research about children, childhood and schooling. The aim is tripartite: Empirically to generate knowledge for the use in planning of HE at teacher training and to examine the empirical effects of HE competencies, teacher students acquire at TTC. Theoretically the aim is to contribute a theory of HE and EFA in the field of TTC. Normatively to contribute to develop learning environments, which promote students’ HE competencies at a TTC level. The project has four keystones: Educational research and research about everyday life learning, critical educational theory, new sociological/anthropological theory about children, childhood and schooling, and research in professional and institutional pedagogy. Research approaches include fieldwork including rolling surveys at a specific TTC, discourse analysis of the political-administrative field in 2008-2009, and participatory action research. Interview, observation, questionnaire, document analysis and project implementation are concrete methods used.


Project Completion Report:

The expected project/ publication and communication/capacity building activities have been carried through as described in the project plan. Project/ publication activities include three articles about health learning, health education structures and processes and Kenyan teacher training that has been written and disseminated for international journals, and which are currently in the process of peer-review. One article has been written and published in a Danish peer-reviewed journal. One monography about teacher training and students’ competencies is under planning.
Communication and capacity building activities include feed-back at local and national level, meetings with partners and relevant governmental institutions, supervision of M.A students and national conferences with university, governmental and NGO organizations/institutions. Results from the study has been communicated and disseminated at two international/national conferences in Nairobi, Kenya about health education and teacher training in Kenya, and at one international conference in Berlin, Germany. A number of meetings with Kenya Institute of Education, Kenyatta University and Ministry of Education in Kenya (MOEST) has been carried through with the purpose of involving partners and communicate results from the study.

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