Uniting epistemological perspectives to support contextualized knowledge development

Sara van der Linden*, Susan McKenney

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
83 Downloads (Pure)


The nature of knowledge and how it is developed have been debated in philosophy and research for centuries. In the literature on teachers’ knowledge, two perspectives have been particularly visible. One perspective stresses cognitive processes and deliberate knowledge acquisition. Another perspective stresses the situated nature of teachers’ learning and knowledge development through awareness. This theoretical article proposes that uniting both epistemological perspectives is beneficial for developing teachers’ contextualized knowledge of how to teach at all phases of career development, and especially early on. In so doing, action and reflection are positioned as central to the development of teachers’ knowledge, and affordances from both the deliberate and the aware perspectives are articulated. Specifically, this article explains why uniting the two perspectives supports better sense-making, more refined instructional planning, and more responsive teaching, before offering a united reflection model. These processes are then discussed in the context of video coaching interventions for early-career teachers. After presenting a blueprint for video-based reflection and key design features that could support teachers’ learning, important differences compared to other reflection models are discussed and implications for (the design of) teachers' professional development based upon this united perspective are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)703-727
Number of pages25
JournalEducational technology research and development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 27 Apr 2020


  • UT-Hybrid-D
  • Instructional design
  • Teacher cognition
  • Teacher effectiveness
  • Teacher reflection
  • Video coaching
  • Epistemology


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