Beliefs and Practices of Three Literacy Instructors in Elementary Teacher Education


  • Mary Clare Courtland Lakehead University
  • Laurie Leslie Lakehead University



This article describes the beliefs and practices of three literacy teacher educators at one site of a longitudinal multisite case study of teacher education and literacy teaching that describes teacher candidates’ experiences in literacy courses and their first two years of literacy teaching. One instructor held a social constructivist perspective and focused on depth of conceptual understanding; two promoted breadth to prepare the students for the early years of teaching. The courses highlighted print literacy. Neither critical literacy, multiliteracies, or multimodality were emphasized. Instructors perceived that their students were prepared to teach literacy, but noted inconsistencies between their courses and practices in the field experience.

Author Biographies

Mary Clare Courtland, Lakehead University

Mary Clare Courtland is a professor in the Faculty of Education, where she teaches undergraduate courses in literacy and graduate courses in curriculum studies. Her interests include young adolescents’ comprehension as mediated by multimodalities and teacher education for literacy teaching.

Laurie Leslie, Lakehead University

Laurie Leslie is a doctoral candidate. Her areas of research include literacy, language arts, and teacher preparation. Laurie is currently instructing courses in language arts and literacy, literacy across the curriculum, and media literacy.