Are school-based mentors adequately equipped to fulfil their roles? A case study in learning to teach accountancy
dos Reis, Karen
MetadataShow full item record
This article reports on a study that explored how school-based teachers fulfilled their roles as mentors in response to challenges faced by pre-service teachers while learning to teach accounting. Pre-service teachers in their final year at a University of Technology in South Africa and practising teachers from six high schools participated in the study. Pre-service teachers e-mailed reflection journals on a weekly basis over a period of four months to the first author who is a teacher educator. Unstructured interviews were carried out with each pre-service teacher and their respective mentors. The results indicated that not all mentors assisted the pre-service teachers according to the expectations of their roles. Despite mentoring having the potential to enhance the preparation of pre-service teachers, in the cases studied it did not always yield positive results. It became clear that the cumulative nature of the accounting discipline requires a different type of mentoring from other disciplines. In fact, numerous factors revealed in the study influenced the failure and success of mentoring pre-service teachers. Many of these factors are ones over which the university has no control.