Author's Name: Wellington Samkange
Subject Area: Social Science and Humanities
Subject Education
Section Research Paper


Mentor, protégé, mentee, student teacher, models, teacher education, relationship


There have been reforms in teacher education in Zimbabwe. The reforms were intended to improve the quality of teachers. The reforms in teacher education have resulted in primary teacher education colleges adopting a new model of teacher education. The model is the 2-5-2 model. The model created a new role for mentors in teacher education as students are out on teaching practice for most of their training period. A study was carried out to examine the role of the mentor in teacher education in Zimbabwe. The study used the qualitative methodology and the case study design. Two primary schools were conveniently selected. A total of twelve mentors and twelve student teachers responded to open ended questionnaires. The study observed that differences in ages between mentors and student teachers were at times marginal. It was also observed that the relationship between the mentors and student teachers was mostly free and open, and at times a parent/child relationship depending on age difference. There appeared to be no clear system of selecting mentors. When it came to models of mentoring, there was no specific model that appeared to be followed, as the model followed was a combination of the apprenticeship model and the competence based model. Whilst most student teachers, appreciated the role of the mentor there were cases where they felt that some mentors were taking advantage of them. It was also observed that mentors lacked training in mentoring and this compromised their roles in teacher education. The study ends with the recommendations that the selection of mentors in schools should be rationalised and that there is need to conduct a similar study at national level.

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