Teacher-education research lacks a common theoretical basis, which prevents a convincing development of instruments and makes it difficult to connect studies to each other. Our paper models how to measure effective teacher education in the context of the current state of knowledge in the field. First, we conceptualize the central criterion of effective teacher education: “professional competence of future teachers”. Second, individual, institutional, and systemic factors are modeled that may influence the acquisition of this competence during teacher education. In doing this, we turn round the perspective taken by Cochran-Smith and Zeichner (Studying teacher education. The report of the AERA panel on research and teacher education. Lawrence Erlbaum, Mahwah 2005), who mainly take an educational-sociological perspective by focusing on characteristics of teacher education and looking for their effects. In contrast, we take an educational-psychological perspective by focusing on professional competence of teachers and examining influences on this. Challenges connected to an assessment of teacher-education outcomes are discussed as well.
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