Higher Education

, Volume 57, Issue 4, pp 463–475 | Cite as

The development of learning patterns of student teachers: a cross-sectional and longitudinal study

  • Vincent Donche
  • Peter Van Petegem


Research on learning pattern development during pre-service teacher education is scarce. In a cross-sectional (study 1) and longitudinal study (study 2) the development of learning patterns of student teachers is analysed. Participants in study 1 were 646 first-year and 350 third-year student teachers enrolled in an initial pre-service teacher education programme. 236 student teachers participated in study 2. Vermunt’s’ Inventory of Learning Styles was used to assess differences in learning patterns. By examining intra-individual changes in learning patterns we expected to find developmental trends within learning patterns. Results show that meaning oriented learning increases over time and undirected learning decreases. Some learning patterns are however more subject to change than others. The development of learning patterns was found to be relative and dependent on the learning pattern which students have already mastered in the first-year of a teacher education programme.


Learning conception Learning pattern Learning style Longitudinal study Self-regulation Student learning Student teacher Teacher education 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Education and Information SciencesUniversity of AntwerpAntwerpenBelgium

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