NEWTT | Educational Research and Schooling

NEWTT (2016-2019) A New Way for New Talents in Teaching

Current research on teacher professionalisation, assumes that teacher education programmes strongly correlate with teacher competence (Baumert & Kunter, 2006; Terhart, 2001). In Addition, teacher training programmes at universities are considered the most important element in conveying profession-specific knowledge (Cochran-Smith & Zeichner, 2005; Terhart, 2006).

In Germany and Europe, research on alternative educational training programmes as a prerequisite for the teaching profession has grown in importance in recent years (Hutchings et al., 2006; Reintjes, Bellenberg, Greling & Weegen, 2012; Allen and Allnutt, 2013; Abs, Eckert, and Anderson-Park, 2015). Other findings on traditional and alternative ways of teacher induction shows the American research (i.e. Kane, Rockoff, and Staiger, 2008; Boyd, Grossman, Lankford, Loeb, and Wyckoff, 2009; Xu, Hannaway, and Taylor, 2011).

The international results underline the potential of alternative ways of selection and professionalisation of teachers. However, in Germany the alternative teacher training programmes are still seen rather as a barrier to the long-term goal of improving the quality of teacher education (Völler, 2012; Terhart, 2013).

The search for solutions to the teacher shortage in several European countries has brought alternative ways of teacher education into the focus of interest. NEWTT is an ERASMUS+ project which is funded by the European Commission. NEWTT is defined as a "policy experiment” comparing alternative routes with the traditional routes into the teaching profession in several European countries with the aim of promoting policy reforms (EACEA, 2016).
In order to obtain meaningful results, longitudinal section analysis in five different European education systems (Bulgaria, Latvian, Austria, Rumania, Spain (Basque Country) of alternative and traditional teacher education programs will be realized.

Research questions

he control group design and the methodological challenges of transnational comparisons in this project require an international as well as a country-specific perspective on the research questions.
Therefore the project focuses on the following research questions:

  1. In what way is the professional competence of teachers following a university teacher education program or an alternative teacher education program different? How do the professional competences of both groups develop in their day-to-day work at school?
  2. Which training sessions in the alternative teacher education program do trainees perceive as supportive for the development of their professional competence in particular? How important are theory-based reflection and practical sessions in this context?
  3. What kind of policy implications can be drawn for teacher training at universities based on the comparative analysis between the treatment and control group?
  4. To what extent can the alternative ways of teacher education training that are tested by NEWTT be transferred in regular practice in terms of the EU strategy "policy experiment"?


Research method and design

The NEWTT project is based on a quasi-experimental design with four measurement points (see figure 1). The intervention group includes trainees of the alternative teacher education training of Teach for All (TfA), a non-profit non-governmental organization. The control group includes teachers who have successfully completed a university teacher education training. The survey will be conducted via an online questionnaire, which is translated in the respective languages of the countries.

Quasi-experimental design of NEWTT for all countries

Figure 1: Quasi-experimental design of NEWTT for all countries

Survey instruments

For better comparability and connectivity of data to the international debate on teacher professionalisation in the NEWTT project, scales are used which have already been tried and tested in international studies on teaching and learning (e.g. TEDS-M & TALIS, 2008, 2013; see Tatto et al., 2012, Tatto, 2013; OECD, 2010, 2014). Other instruments for the evaluation of the training sessions as well as a curricular knowledge test are developed by the project team.


The sample consists of trainees taking part in the alternative teacher education program of Teach for All in the five project countries. The sample size varies per country. Bulgaria will have the largest sample with approximately 140 trainees. The samples in Austria and Romania include each approximately 50 trainees. In Spain and Latvia, the sample sizes amount to approximately 30 trainees. The Ministries of Education in each country assist in the selection of appropriate control groups.

Project team

Prof. Dr. Hermann Josef Abs
Eva Anderson-Park, M.A.
Dr. Stefanie Morgenroth

International project partners




National Teach for All-Organisations

National Ministries

Other national partners

Partner Bulgaria

Zaedno v chas

Ministry of Education and Science

Plovdiv University 

Partner Romania

Teach for Romania 

Ministry of National Education

University of Bucharest 

Partner  Austria

Teach For Austria

Ministry of Education and Women

Federation of Austrian Industries

Partner Spain (Basque Country)

Empieza por Educar 

Basque Ministry of Education, Language Policy, and Culture


Partner   Latvian

Iespējamā Misija (Mission Possible)

Ministry of Education and Science



Financial Funding

EU-Erasmus+ KA3: 564718-EPP-1-2015-2-BG-EPKA3-PI-Policy Experiments



Abs, H.J., Anderson-Park, E., Morgenroth, S. (2019). Recruiting and Preparing Teachers Through an Alternative Programme: A European Policy Experiment on the Teach For All Approach in Five Countries. Essen: Universität-Duisburg-Essen.

Abs, H. J., Eckert, T. & Anderson-Park, E. (2015). Effektivität der Qualifizierung von Teach First Fellows. Abschlussbericht zur summativen Evaluation der Sommerakademie von Teach First Deutschland. Essen: Universität Duisburg-Essen.

Allen, R. & Allnutt, J. (2013). Matched panel data estimates of the impact of Teach First on school and departmental performance. DoQSS working paper No. 13/11.

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Terhart, E. (2013). Situation und Entwicklung der empirischen Forschung zur Lehrerbildung. In S.Popp, M. Sauer, B. Alavi, M. Demantowsky & A. Kenkmann (Hrsg.), Zur Professionalisierung von Geschichtslehrerinnen und Geschichtslehrern – nationale und internationale Perspektiven. (Beihefte zur Zeitschrift für Geschichtsdidaktik 5) (S. 39‐55). Göttingen: Vandenhoek & Ruprecht.

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Xu, Z., Hannaway, J., & Taylor, C. (2011). Making a difference? The effects of Teach for America in high school. Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, 30(3), 447-469.