The present study focuses on the teaching practices of students at the Hellenic Open University (HOU) M.Ed. in TESOL and investigates the extent to which the written assignments have an effect on these practices. It employs quantitative methodology, in order to examine the degree to which the reflective nature of the course has informed or transformed the classroom reality of the student teachers, in terms of their methodological choices, their attitudes towards learners and learner progress, as well as their own self-perception and roles as trainees. 177 teachers have participated in the research by completing a questionnaire and useful conclusions as to their beliefs and attitudes towards their teaching practices are drawn. Overall, a positive attitude towards the assignments is exhibited in terms of their innovative nature, relevance and applicability to actual teaching contexts. Nonetheless, a number of factors appear to affect sustained integration and regular implementation of new knowledge in classroom situations. Therefore, based on the research findings, as well as relevant literature, suggestions for further research into the links between teacher education coursework and teaching practice are made at the end of the study.
Keywords: teacher development, teaching practice, distance learning, written assignments