The advancement of the waste resource optimization and scenario evaluation model: the inclusion of socio-economic and instituitonal indicator.
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This study explored Novice Teacher Educators (NTEs) experiences of Relational Learning in a private Higher Education Institution (HEI) in South Africa. The main purpose of this study was to gain a deeper understanding of how NTEs involved in initial teacher education experience Relational Learning in a private HEI. It further attempted to gain an insight of how these experiences of Relational Learning influenced their learning as teacher educators and their work as NTEs in a private HEI context. Literature used in this research highlighted the need to develop competent NTEs due to the increase demand for access into higher education institutions, public and private, the limited structured induction and mentoring for NTEs and the limited research on the relational experiences of NTEs. Key debates on national and international higher education contexts were also foregrounded. The literature review also focused on understanding the phenomenon of Relational Learning as a progressive approach to learning, through and about relationships. Relational Learning is viewed as a catalyst for learning with others. Situated Learning Theory (SLT) and Relational Cultural Theory (RCT) was employed as the theoretical framework for the study. The study focuses on six NTEs who are newly appointed teacher educators in their first three years of employment primarily involved in the teaching of pre-service teachers (or student teachers) in a private HEI's as research context. The NTE participants moved from a school context into a HE context. This research study is a qualitative interpretive case study. All six NTEs that participated in this research were purposively selected by the researcher. Criteria used to select participants included NTE being in their first three years of their higher education careers and being able to access technologically devices. A qualitative approach was used to generate data and the data generation instruments used were questionnaires, individual semi structured interviews and a collage with presentation. The data generation process took three months and data generated was validated for authenticity by each participant by member checking. The findings of the data revealed that NTEs experienced many challenges in their first few months of being NTEs and considered this to be an exceptionally overwhelming shift. To overcome these difficult times NTEs moved to develop relationship with colleagues and more than often self-selected their mentors to guide and assist them as there was limited structured and mentoring with the institution. The relationship developed between NTE and self-selected mentor is a growth fostering relationships as foregrounded in Relational Cultural Theory. The xiii. findings of this research showed that mutual relationships between NTEs and teacher educators paved the way for NTE to become active members of communities of practice (COP). The responsibilities of HEIs is to provide relational opportunities for NTEs so they may ease into the profession. Relational opportunities such a mentoring, inductions, conversations and social activities to name a few have a fundamental role to play in enculturating a NTEs into HEI. Relational Learning has a pivotal role to play in the growth and development of NTEs thus improving the quality of teacher education