Belgian trainee teachers fail in basic general knowledge

A large number of Belgium’s future secondary school teachers struggle with basic concepts of geography, politics and history, a study published on Wednesday has shown, Reuters reports. Among final year teaching students involved in the study, one in three could not identify the United States on a map and almost half did not know where the Pacific Ocean was. Shown a picture of Mao Zedong, two in three could not recognize the Chinese Communist leader, with the most common response being that it was the late North Korean leader Kim Jong-il. Researchers at the Limburg Catholic University College tested 1,000 students in eight teacher training colleges in Belgium’s Flemish region. The test, which asked 114 multiple choice questions, was carried out because students often showed gaps in their general knowledge, the researchers conducting the test said…

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