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  • 1.
    Adamson, Frank
    et al.
    Stanford University.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Karlstads universitet.
    Privatization or public investment? A global question2016In: Global education reform: How privatization and public investment influence education outcomes / [ed] Adamson, F, Åstrand, B & Darling-Hammond, L, Routledge , 2016, 1, p. 1-15Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 2.
    Adamson, Frank
    et al.
    Stanford University.
    Åstrand, BjörnKarlstads universitet.Darling-Hammond, LindaStanford University.
    Global education reform: How privatization and public investment influence education outcomes2016Collection (editor) (Other academic)
  • 3.
    Hudson, Brian
    et al.
    University of Sussex.
    Zgaga, PavelUniversity of Ljubljana.Åstrand, BjörnUmeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Advancing Quality Cultures for Teacher Education in Europe: Tensions and Opportunities2010Collection (editor) (Other academic)
  • 4.
    Nygren, Thomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Humlab.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    En splittrad historia: Sambandet mellan kursplaner i historia för gymnasieskola och högre utbildning2012In: Nordidactica: Journal of Humanities and Social Science Education, ISSN 2000-9879, no 2, p. 1-30Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This quantitative and qualitative analysis of syllabuses indicates difficulties in the relation between history teaching in upper secondary schools and in higher education. Using analytical tools stemming from research of education and history didactics we highlight problematic differences between universities. It is evident that history education in many ways lacks a progression from upper secondary school to higher education. Judging from the formulations in the syllabuses, the grading demands on the students in upper secondary schools are in some cases even higher than in the universities. The results from this study suggest a need for further analysis of the teaching of history, and other subjects, in higher education in relation to teaching in upper secondary schools.

  • 5.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Teacher Education, Teacher Education in Swedish and Social Sciences.
    Akademins betydelse - synpunkter på skapandet av det förflutnas bilder: Medieforskning och historisk forskning2004In: Hvor går historiedidaktikken?, Institutt for histtorie og klassike fag, Norges teknisk-naturvetenskaplige universitet, Trondheim , 2004, p. 299-Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    The paper emphasizes the need for further research on the relationship between the picture(‘s) of the past and conditions for research. A short description of how research has been done on media is presented. It is noted that media society early in its own history started to raise questions on how internal structures and roles shapes the picture of current society. Through a comparison with the academic historical society it is argued that such an ambition still have to be searched for. The picture of the past, is, like the picture of current society, drawn, not in a vacuum but in context of power struggle. It is proposed that further research on conditions, roles and structures within those academic research groups (institutions, networks etc) should be illuminating. A consequence is that the task for history didactic research has to be broadened to encompass such research.

  • 6.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Akademins betydelse - synpunkter på skapandet av det förflutnas bilder: medieforskning och historisk forskning2004In: Skriftserie fra Institutt for historie og klassiske fag, ISSN 0805-0589, no 45, p. 179-187Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 7.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Teacher Education, Department of Teacher Education in Swedish and Social Sciences.
    Aspects of recent reforms of teacher education in Sweden2006In: Posodobitev pedagoških študijskih programov v mednarodnem kontekstu: Modernization of study programmes in teachers' education in an international context / [ed] Zgaga, Pavel, Ljubljana: Pedagoška fakulteta, University of Ljubljana , 2006, p. 72-84Conference paper (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
    Abstract [en]

    This paper outlines some aspects of reforms of teacher education in Sweden. The main features of latest reform and their context is analyzed. The focus of the paper is the complex situation of teacher education as a professional programme within the higher education system. An underpinning notion is that the higher education system, the traditional Swedish universities have not recognized the strategic importance of teacher education and therefore not in reality provided it with equal opportunities for development of research and necessary funding for such endeavor. This attitude from universities towards teacher education is regarded as the main reason for the most striking failure of Swedish teacher education – an in depth integration into academic research. After thirty years within the higher education system it could questioned if teacher education in reality could be regarded as a research based education. In the end the bologna process is touched upon and critique is raised against the Swedish way of bologna adaptation as expressing a low awareness of teacher education as a professional education and, an attitude based on traditional values within traditional universities.

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  • 8.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Karlstads universitet.
    Conceptual Understandings of Democracy and Values as Aspects of Teacher Quality: The Case of Teacher Education in Sweden2015In: International Perspectives on Education and Society, ISSN 1479-3679, Vol. 27, p. 385-412Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This chapter focuses on a conceptual understanding of democracy and values education in teacher education, taking the perspective that educa- tion, of necessity, must encompass broader purposes of qualification, socialization and subjectification and that the relationship between them is characterized by interdependence. This chapter analyzes two aspects of teacher quality: first, the importance of values and the understanding of and approaches to values and democracy; second, variations in con- ceptual understandings within a particular educational field (teacher edu- cation). The study maps what teacher educators and institutional leaders for teacher education programs have to say about democracy and values education in relation to teacher preparation given the context of demo- cratic education reforms in the postwar period. This chapter addresses issues such as the readiness among teachers to teach democracy and values as an overarching and qualitative aspect of the teaching profes- sion. This study finds that, on the one hand, there is strong curricular support for democracy and related values education in schools and, on the other hand, a mixed landscape in teacher education. The situation within teacher education suggests an embracement of these issues but with a high degree of conceptual ambiguity and vagueness.

  • 9.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies. Karlstads universitet.
    Conflicting Ideas on Democracy and Values Education in Swedish Teacher Education2014In: Crossing Boundaries for Learning – through Technology and Human Efforts / [ed] Hannele Niemi, Jari Multisilta and Erika Löfström, Helsinki: CICERO Learning Network, Helsinki University , 2014, p. 223-252Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A decade ago, less than 25% of students in four teacher education programs in Sweden had positive feelings towards their studies in values education. The majority of the students claimed that they had learned the basic concepts, but felt that those concepts were not clearly defined (Frånberg, 2006, p. 151). Consequently, roughly 4 out of 5 students felt that they had not been sufficiently prepared for their role of instilling values in their students. The newly reformed teacher education program was accompanied by an increased ministerial emphasis on values education, but it is unclear what impact it had (Zackari, 2000, p. 11). Studies indicate signs of improvement, but those studies are not fully comparable, so there are good reasons to address these issues again (Åstrand, 2013a). The fact that the majority of students report ambiguity in their understanding of the main concepts of values education suggests there may be varied understanding of the central concepts among teacher educators. The primary aim of this article was to study understandings of and approaches to core terms in Swedish teacher education that relate to democracy and values education. Following that, the analysis also takes into account changes in legislation, policy and reform. 

  • 10.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Contemporary challenges for quality assurance in teacher education: the Swedish example – do central inspections impede local quality cultures?2012In: Quality assurance and teacher education: international challenges and expectations / [ed] Judith Harford, Brian Hudson and Hannele Niemi, Oxford: Peter Lang Publishing Group, 2012, p. 85-114Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This chapter provides a description as well as an empirical analysis of the Swedish quality assurance (QA) system for teacher education (TE). On a descriptive level it is essential to note that TE is included in the general QA system for higher education (HE). Governmental ordinances provide the framework and the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education (NAHE) is the responsible body.

    The description of Swedish HE and its QA system offers a frame for understanding of Swedish TE and its QA model. The QA system of Swedish HE is recently reformed towards focus on outcome in relation to previous system focusing on prerequisites, processes and results. Higher education institutions (HEI) has to apply to requirements but they are not only free to act and design local quality assurance system according to local strategies, they are assumed to do so in order to enhance quality.

    On an analytical level concern is raised regarding consequences of the increased emphasis on QA. There are indications that progress in QA also results in higher quality in first category operations as research and teaching but there are concerns that emphasis on national QA activities diminishes the role of QA elements developed locally due to local conditions, strategies etc.

    Self-evaluation reports are essential parts of the last decades QA system and such reports are in this study used as empirical records on QA strategies. The relationship between institutional characteristics and choice of QA elements is analyzed as significant for the level of adaptation to what’s assumed to be required from above and as indications on development of local QA cultures. Findings indicate that HEI restricts their QA to what appears to be required by NAHE. The external inspection seems to dominate over local initiatives that could be assumed to be of fundamental importance for the future development. 

  • 11.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Diversity and homogeneity: notions on the role of higher education in democratic societies2013In: Higher Education Reforms: Looking Back – Looking Forward, Ljubljana: University of Ljubljana , 2013, p. 44-69Conference paper (Refereed)
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  • 12.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Does Teacher Education Matter?: Newly Graduated Teachers’ Evaluations of Teacher Education in Sweden2012In: Reflecting Education, ISSN 1746-9082, E-ISSN 1746-9082, Vol. 8, no 2, p. 6-22Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    What do newly graduated teachers think about the value of their own teacher preparation? This study reports the findings of a national questionnaire administered to almost 10,000 student teachers in Sweden who in the 2007-08 academic year were conferred with a teacher degree. Teacher education programmes in Sweden were subject to national evaluations in 2005 and 2008. Substantial criticism was voiced against programmes and the public debate was loud. In relation to those evaluations and the following debates, the national association for deans responsible for teacher education programmes sparked an internal discussion on quality, an initiative that resulted in launching this questionnaire as a collaborative project. The questionnaire asked for the opinions of these newly graduated teachers by including questions in four areas, with each evaluating a different aspect of the teacher profession concerning how well they had been prepared for: 1) direct teaching/instruction; 2) the wider work of a teacher; 3) development work; and 4) outreach and collaboration. According to these newly graduated teachers, they appear to have been best prepared for their entry to working life when it comes to direct teaching/instruction. The other three areas have a smaller proportion of satisfied respondents. It was also found that, despite decades of reforms aimed at merging the two teacher education traditions (the academic tradition and the seminar tradition), significant differences still remain concerning how subject teachers (teachers for secondary school) and class teachers (teachers for pre- and primary school) experience and evaluate their teacher preparation. The results are analysed in relation to the general debate on learning in higher education and the more specific discussion on the value of teacher preparation. They are also discussed in relation to programme design and whether particular areas of study should mainly be located in either initial (pre-service) teacher education or programmes for professional development. (http://www.reflectingeducation.net/index.php/reflecting/article/view/112 )

  • 13.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Karlstads universitet.
    From citizens into consumers: The transformation of demcratic ideals into school markets in Sweden2016In: Global education reform: How privatization and public investment influence education outcomes / [ed] Adamson, F, Åstrand, B & Darling-Hammond, L, Routledge , 2016, 1, p. 73-109Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 14.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Svensk historielärarutbildning i ett komparativt perspektiv med utgångspunkt i alumners omdömen om sin utbildning2013Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    What about the education of history teachers? An entangled history of academic and educational cultures

    Preparation of future teachers is a key component in societies strategies for the future – and frequently under both debate and reform. This study investigates outcome from the point of view of newly graduated teachers opinions on their period of training. The study is based upon a questionnaire to all teacher students (n=7856) in Sweden two years after graduation. Education of history teachers is compared with preparation of teachers in other subjects and other teacher degrees. This national case study is analyzed in relation to international studies on students learning in higher education (Pascarella & Terenzini, (1991), Arum & Roksa, (2011) as well as to studies on academic cultures and traditions (Becher & Trowler 2001, Biesta 2011). Questions addressed are: How does students perceive the balance between and outcome of studies in content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and the wider preparation for a teaching career? How successful are teacher students training in areas like teaching history in relation to democracy, values etc.?
What are the differences between preparation in different subjects, at different types of higher education institutions and being prepared to teach a subject or as a class teacher?

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    130827 Åstrand SWE Hist TE.pdf
  • 15. Åstrand, Björn
    Svensk lärarutbildning – en akademisk professionsutbildning med förhinder2020In: Lærerutdanning i nordiske land / [ed] Elstad, Eyvind, Oslo: Universitetsforlaget, 2020, p. 90-119Chapter in book (Refereed)
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  • 16.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Svensk skola i ett nordiskt perspektiv: observationer och perspektiv2014In: Gymnasiepædagogik, ISSN 1399-6096, no 94, p. 55-68Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 17.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Karlstads universitet.
    Swedish teacher education and the issue of fragmentation: Conditions for the struggle over academic rigor and professional relevance2017In: Overcoming Fragmentation in Teacher Education Policy and Practice / [ed] Brian Hudson, Cambridge University Press, 2017, 1, p. 101-142Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 18.
    Åstrand, Björn
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Historical Studies.
    Tortyr och pinligt förhör - våld och tvång i äldre svensk rätt2000Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Torture in the past is the subject of this dissertation. The aim of the study is to discuss one of the grand narratives of Swedish history. In an evolutionary frame Sweden has been put forward as a country which early developed judicial security for citizens. This dissertation contains a critique against an objectivistic view of the concept of knowledge. It proposes instead an evolutionary concept. In the discussion of sources I argue that although historians have been skilful in their evaluation of sources important problems still remains.

    The phenomenon of torture is here investigated at three different levels, as discourse, as norm and as practice. A point of departure is an overview of the discourse of torture and the use of torture in the past, from ancient times to the beginning of the early modern period in Europe. The purpose of that study is to gain some general insight concerning torture to which the main study, with focus on the phenomenon of torture in Sweden, could be related. The presentation of the history of torture starts in ancient Greece. The ability to use torture was regulated in Greek society. An important element in the discourse concerns a social regulation of torture; another is the connection with different concepts of truth.

    The conditions for the use of torture have changed over time. In early Middle Ages the practice of ordeals was common in Europe. In difficult cases tribes decided guilt with help from God. When the Christian church during the High Middle Ages rose to power it prohibited the use of ordeals. The obvious consequence of this act was that people had to make decisions by themselves, when they no longer could turn to God’s will when making decisions in severe judicial cases. In this context torture became important and was put into use. The existence of ordeals has been an obstacle to the use of torture. Torture had a strong position at the end of the medieval era, and this dissertation discusses whether the legislation is to be understood as implementation of torture or as regulation of an already existing practice.

    The first study of torture in a Swedish context deals with the discourse concerning the concept of torture. It is found that accusations of use of torture were used in propaganda and that torture in this context was understood as something unswedish and shameful.

    Next part focuses on the Old Swedish legislation prior to 1614. It is found that there is a prohibition against torture in the legislation from the fourteenth century, which must be regarded as a first attempt in Swedish law to regulate the use of torture. The study also focuses on the fact that the plaintiff had such extensive rights, that these could enable use of torture.

    The last part of the dissertation deals with the legal practice in Stockholm between 1474 and 1614. It identifies places for torture, actors and the judicial context in which the use of torture was practised.

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