Prospective Teachers’ Conceptions of Character Education and Civic Education

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This article examines how prospective teachers make sense of an increasingly muddled division in practice between programs in character education and civic education. It describes respondents' conceptions of each school program and their views on how they might carry out such efforts in their future practice. The article indicates that prospective teachers consider character education and civic education as an essential part of teaching, and that they are eager to take on the role of educating for character and citizenship. However, it also demonstrates that some prospective teachers appear to have circular conceptions of character education and civic education that might be difficult to square in practice. This study suggests the need to increase prospective teachers' understandings of these programs in a way that gives rise to realistic expectations and sustainable practices.

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