Santagata serves as the current director of UCI's Education Center for Research on Teacher Development and Professional Practice and as the School of Education's Global Engagement liaison. She has contributed as a visiting scholar, Institute of Advanced Studies, Alma Mater Studiorum, Bologna, Italy in 2019, and a visiting professor at the Technische Universität Berlin, Germany from 2018 to 2019.
Video has been used extensively in teacher preparation to develop noticing skills. Experienced teachers generally detect, understand and interpret the multiplicity of events that take place in the classroom, whereas novice teachers tend to focus their attention on more superficial aspects that are often not strictly relevant to students’ learning. This study presented video-recorded lessons both to a group of Italian novice teachers in training (without previous teaching experience) and to a group of more experienced teachers (with three or more years of service) with the aim of comparing the observation and interpretation skills of the two groups. Results confirmed prior findings: novices mostly described what they observed, focusing on the teacher’s actions and without demonstrating a critical stance nor suggesting instructional improvements. Contrary to prior research, the majority of novice participants did not focus on issues of or classroom climate or management, and differences between novice and more experienced teachers were not statistically significant. The discussion suggests various hypotheses that might explain these findings and highlights the need for professional development experiences that centre the work of teaching specifically on close analysis of practice and of student thinking.