This article is located within the context of teacher education in the UK which, in the last decade, has seen the introduction of government-led Qualified Teacher Status standards for initial teacher training. The study resides in the work of a university in the North-West of England, which is involved in the initial and postgraduate professional education of teachers. It examines firstly, the belief systems held by tutors engaged in this part of Higher Education, which might be characterised as their personal epistemology, and secondly, raises questions around these core beliefs, and how they are manifested at the pedagogical interface. The focus of the research rests on a perceived lack of congruence between the espoused ideology of tutors involved in initial teacher education, and the expectations of general classroom practice in this field. The degree to which this may have an impact on the concepts of teaching transmitted to course participants is examined, alongside a consideration of the clash of cultures experienced where dissonance exists between individual ideology and pedagogic identity. Examination of the same issues for tutors involved in postgraduate education, which is not subject to government-led standards, is used to contrast the pressures within each field.