BLFORP Pedagogical leadership, Part 1 and Part 2

All versions:
BLFORP (2024—2025)
BLFORP (2023—2024)
BLFORP (2022—2023)
BLFORP (2021—2022)
BLFORP (2020—2021)
BLFORP (2019—2020)
BLFORP (2017—2018)

Course code: BLFORP

Course name: Pedagogical leadership, Part 1 and Part 2

Semester: Spring

Location: Bergen

Academic year: 2019–2020

Language: English

Credits: 30 ECTS Credits

Available for course students: No

Required prerequisite knowledge

  • Students from ECTE at NLA University College must have passed their Final assessments from Area of knowledge (KO) 1-5, and their oral examination from KO6.
  • International students must be able to document their degrees in Early Childhood Teacher Education or their university placement in equivalent education, both on a bachelor level.
  • Bachelor students from Intercultural studies (IKS) at NLA University College, must have passed their first year of study, 60 ECTS, and be registered within the bachelor programme.

International students will be required in preparation to attend an introductory practice week (5 days) in an early childhood education setting before the start of the semester.

A police certificate (of good conduct) must be submitted at the start of the studies.

Recommended prerequisite knowledge

Knowledge of Early Childhood Education in Norway and/or Scandinavia.

Relevance within study programme

Optional course in the ECTE bachelor program, Intercultural Studies Program or further education.


The course contains the following disciplines:

Pedagogy (20 ECTS), Drama (7 ECTS), and Social Science (3 ECTS).

Part 1 (15 ECTS): Pedagogy (8 ECTS) and Drama (7 ECTS)

Part 2 (15 ECTS): Pedagogy (12 ECTS) and Social Science (3 ECTS)

Learning outcomes descriptors

After completed the first part of the course, the student will have the following learning outcomes:


The student

  • has knowledge of and is conscious of the importance of voice, body language and improvisation with relevance to leadership
  • is familiar with different traditions of pedagogical supervision and their views on learning and development

Gained skills

The student

  • can use drama methods involving both children and staff in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC)
  • can use dramatic improvisation to develop his/her leadership

General competence

The student

  • has the ability of giving and receiving feedback
  • understands the pedagogical leaders’ importance for the quality of the Early Childhood Education and Care and can transfer and apply their knowledge to other organisations, fields and target groups.


After completed the second part course, the student will have the following learning outcomes:


The student

  • has knowledge of the Kindergarten / Early Childhood Education and Care/other organisations as a learning organisation and of the importance of values, legislation, professional policies and discourse within the ECEC field
  • has knowledge of research and debates on the use of digital tools in Early Childhood Education and Care
  • has knowledge of leadership and special needs education in ECE.

Gained skills

The student

  • can use relevant tools for dialogue and can participate in and lead professional discussions about Early Childhood Education and Care or related to other exposed groups .
  • has gained the experience needed to carry out and solve tasks regarded planning, organising, accomplishing, assessing and presenting pedagogical work and leadership

General competence

The student

  • has the ability to work on quality development in Early Childhood Education and Care or other organisations
  • has the competence to assess the content and use of digital tools, programs and pedagogical resources in Early Childhood Education and Care


This course focuses on the role of the leader in Early Childhood Education and Care. This includes leadership related to both children and ECE staff. It will deal with leadership from a social perspective. It will emphasise the pedagogical supervisor’s social responsibility and her/his responsibility for participating in professional discussions. Through practical work, such as participating and leading sessions in processdrama and microteaching, the students learn how to lead children and staff to develop competence. Through practice, the students will learn how quality and competence within ECEC is developed.

The course is organised in the following topics:

PART 1 (15 ECTS):

1. Microteaching, emphasising the development of leadership

2. Development of leadership through the application of improvisation and drama pedagogical methods

PART 2 (15 ECTS):

3. Management of professional processes, focusing on critical thinking and competence development through professional debates and discussions

4. Early Childhood Education and Care´s commission from society and central values of ECEC, including the critical assessment of pedagogical trends and movements in Norway and internationally.

Teaching and learning methods

Study and teaching methods in this course will be lectures, seminars, group work, video recordings, counselling, practice observations and self-tuition.

Part 2 includes ten days of practice with 100 % attendance. There are separate assessment criteria for practice, taken from the learning outcome descriptors. If the student fails practice, he/she will be allowed one more opportunity, to be arranged with NLA´s administration.


The expected amount of workload for the students: Approximately 800-900 working hours, including self-study.

Coursework requirements

The following requirements must be approved before the final assessment:

  • Mandatory attendance in all lessons, instructions, individual or group presentations and group supervision
  • Part 1: Participation in a Process Drama and Microteaching-course
  • Part 1 and 2: Written portfolios, related to learning outcomes descriptions

 The students will be offered voluntary supervision to improve individual portfolios towards the final assessment.

Grading, coursework requirements

Approved / not approved

Final assessment

The Final assessment consists of two main components:

Final assessment part 1:

  • Oral examination:

The student prepares for an assigned professional topic, which is to be presented as an individual oral presentation of 10 minutes, followed by a conversation with the examiners. The student is allowed two days for preparations.

Final assessment part 2:

  • Portfolio assessment: Two of the four required coursework portfolios will serve as the basis for the final assessment.
  • A practice period of 10 days. Assessment criteria are closely related to the learning outcome descriptors for this course.

    International students will additionally be required in preparation to attend an introductory practice week in an early childhood education setting before the start of the semester.

Permitted aids under examination

During the oral examination, lecture notes are permitted.

Support materials are permitted for the portfolio.

Grading, examination

A combined individual grade (50/50) is given for the final examinations, after completion of both parts of the subject.

The grading is A - F on the final exam.

Practice period is graded as passed or failed.

Assessment language


Norwegian and Scandinavian languages by application.


The practice period is placed in part 2 of this subject and is mandatory. It consists of 10 days of work in Early Childhood Education and Care for ECTE students. For students from Intercultural studies, it can be in Early Childhood Education and Care or related public institutions/ private organisations. Se Other rules for additional information.

Practice relates closely to learning outcome descriptors for this course.

The practice period will be guided and counselled by a teaching supervisor.

Course evaluation

The students will be given the opportunity to evaluate the course through oral evaluations and through standardized, anonymous web-based evaluations.

Other rules

Teaching Practice: If international students attending the course are participating in and staying on campus for part 2, the practice period may be moved by the practice administration to a later or earlier date in the semester.

Final assessment: If all international students participates in both parts of this subject, the final examinations for part 1 and 2 may be moved by the exam administration to a later or earlier date in the semester.

Available for Course Students

The course is primarily offered as a single course 30 ECTS study, divided into two parts of 15 ECTS, offered as part of the bachelor in Early Childhood Teacher Education program.

International students may choose only to complete part 1 (15 ECTS). International students will not be eligible to apply for part 2 (15 ECTS) unless part 1 has been completed.


Titles marked * are articles in the course compendium
Titles marked # are in books that have more titles on the list

Titles marked ^ can be downloaded online from the library website.

Unmarked titles are books that may be obtained through loans, purchases or libraries. If page numbers are not stated, the entire book is syllabus.


Compulsory Reading (approx. 2000 pages):


* Amobi, F. A. (2005). Preservice Teachers' Reflectivity on the Sequence and Consequences of Teaching Actions in a Microteaching Experience. Teacher Education Quarterly, 32(1), 115-130. (16 p.)

*Andersen, C. (2004). Learning in "As-If" Worlds: Cognition in Drama in Education. Theory Into Practice, 43(4), 281-286. (5p.)

*Brodin, J., Hollerer, L., Renblad, K. & Stancheva-Popkostadinova, V. (2015). Preschool teachers' understanding of quality in preschool: a comparative study in three European countries. In Early Child Development and Care 185(6), 968-981. (14 p)

* Bundy, P. (2003). Aesthetic Engagement in the Drama Process. Research in Drama Education: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance, 8(2), 171-181. (10 p.)

*Diana, T. J., Jr. (2013). Microteaching Revisited: Using Technology to Enhance the Professional Development of Pre-Service Teachers. Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 86(4), 150-154. doi:10.1080/00098655.2013.790307 (5p.)

*Einarsdottir, J., Purola, A.-M., Johansson, E.M., Broström, S. and Emilson, A., (2015). Democracy, caring and competence: values perspectives in ECEC curricula in the Nordic countries. In International Journal of Early Years Education, Vol. 23, No. 1, 97–114, (18 p)

Einarsdottir, J. & Wagner, J.T., (2006). Nordic Childhoods and Early Education. Philosophy, Research, Policy and Practice in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Greenwich: Information Age Publishing. (300 p.)

Hargreaves, A., & Fullan, M., (2012). Professional capital: transforming teaching in every school. New York; London: Teachers College Press. (220p.)

* Hedegaard, M. (2009). Children`s development from a Cultural-Historical Approach: Children`s Activity in Everyday Local settings as a Foundation for their development. Mind, Culture and Activity, 16(1), 64-81.   DOI: 10,1080/10749030802477374 (18p.)


* Hopmann, S. (2015). ‘Didaktik meets Curriculum’ revisited: historical encounters, systematic experience, empirical limits, Nordic Journal of Studies in Educational Policy,1, 14-21. DOI:10.3402/nstep.v.27007. (8p.)

Hujala, E., Waniganayake, M. & Rodd, J. (2013). Researching Leadership in Early childhood Education. Tampere: Tampere University Press. (273p.)

Hygum, E. & Pedersen,P.M. (2014). Early Childhood Education, Values and Practices in Denmark. Denmark: Systime AS, (150 p.)

Johnstone, K. (2007). Impro: improvisation and the theatre ([New ed.]. ed.). London: Methuen. (p.33-108) (75 p.)

* Katafiasz, K. (2013). Dramatic leadership: Dorothy Heathcote's autopoietic, or embodied leadership model. In L. R. Melina (Ed.), The embodiment of leadership (pp. 23-42). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. (20p.)

Koppett, K. (2002). Training using drama: successful development techniques from theatre & improvisation. London: Kogan Page. (p.9-19, 27-31, 34-39, 42-50, 62-76, 79-87, 100-113) (62 p.)

*Løfgren, H. (2015). Teachers’ Work with Documentation in Preschool: Shaping a Profession in the Performing of Professional Identities. In Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, Vol. 59, No. 6, 638–655, (18 s)

*Løvgren, M. & Gulbrandsen, L. (2012). How early and how long? I Nordisk Barnehageforskning 5(7), 1-9. (9 s)

* Nicol, D. J. & Macfarlane-Dick, D. (2006). Formative assessment and self-regulated learning: a model and seven principles of good feedback practice.  Studies in Higher Education, 31 (2), 199–218. (19 p.)

 * O'Neill, C. (Ed.) (2015). Dorothy Heathcote on Education and Drama: Essential writings. London; New York: Routledge. (p.70-87). (18 p.)

* O'Toole, J., & Dunn, J. (2002). Pretending to learn: helping children learn through drama. Frenchs Forest, N.S.W: Longman. (p. 10-33, 40-53) (26p.)

Qvortrup, J. og Kjørholt, A.T. (red.) The Modern Child and the Flexible Labour Market: Early Childhood Education and Care. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.

^ Rogoff, B. (2003). The cultural nature of human development. New York: Oxford University Press. Ch.5 and 6. (86 p.)

* Sawyer, R. K. (1997). An Improvisational Theory of Children's Play. In R. K. Sawyer (Ed.), Pretend play as improvisation: conversation in the preschool classroom (pp. 29-52). New York: Psychology Press. (23 p.)

* Sinclair, C. (2009). Teaching for the aesthetic, teaching as aesthetic. In C. Sinclair, N. Jeanneret, & J. O'Toole (Eds.), Education in the Arts. Teaching and Learning in the Contemporary Curriculum (pp. 41-53). Melbourne: Oxford University Press. (12p.)

* Steinnes, G.S., & Haug, P. (2013). Consequences of staff composition in Norwegian kindergarten. Nordic Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 6(13), 1-13. (12 p.) 

 * Stetsenko, A., & Ho, P.-C. (2015). The serious joy and the joyful work of play: Children becoming agentive actors in co-authoring themselves and their world through play. International Journal of Early Childhood, 47 (2), 221-234. (14 p.)

 * Säljö, R. (2010). Digital tools and challenges to institutional traditions of learning: technologies, social memory and the performative nature of learning. Journal of computer assisted learning , 26(1), 53-64. (12 p.)

 Taylor, P., Warner, C. D., & O'Neill, C. (2006). Structure and spontaneity: the process drama of Cecily O'Neill. Stoke on Trent: Trentham Books. (167p.)

* Taylor, S. S., & Ladkin, D. (2009). Understanding Arts-Based Methods in Managerial Development. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 8(1), 55-69. (15 p.)

* Tripp, T. R., & Rich, P. J. (2012). The Influence of Video Analysis on the Process of Teacher Change. Teaching and Teacher Education: An International Journal of Research and Studies, 28(5), 728-739. doi:10.1016/j.tate.2012.01.011 (12 p.)

* Vygotsky, L. S. (1967). Play and its role in the mental development of the child. Soviet psychology, 5(3), 6-18. (13 p.)

 * Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Interaction between learning and development. I L. S. Vygotsky, Mind in society. The development of higher psychological processes. Edited by M. Cole, V. John-Steiner, S. Scribner, E. Soubermann, (pp. 79-91). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. (13 p.)

 * Ødegaard, E. E. (2016). “Glocality” in play: Efforts and dilemmas in changing the model of the teacher for the Norwegian national framework for kindergartens. Policy Futures of Education. Vol. 14 (1) p. 42-59. (18 p.)


National curriculum regulations, reports and government guidelines for ECE will be used in the lessons.