This study addresses student learning in Dutch academic primary teacher education (PTE), a new route to the teaching profession in the Netherlands since 2008. The creation of academic PTE is in line with international developments. As a consequence of a growing political and social need to bring both a higher quality and a broader range of teachers into education, many countries have reformed their teacher education (McMahon, Forde, & Dickson, 2015). One aspect of this reform pertains to raising the level of the entry qualification (Barber & Mourshed, 2007). In the Netherlands, concerns about the quality of primary teachers has led to several changes in Dutch PTE and to the development of a new, academically oriented route. Dutch regular PTE is a form of higher vocational education (in Dutch abbreviated as hbo). Students who have completed an upper secondary track (havo or mbo) are admissible. Academic PTE has been introduced alongside regular PTE. With the introduction of academic PTE, students with at least pre-university education (vwo) and students who prove otherwise to meet the academic admission requirements are able to opt for either academic or regular PTE. In academic PTE, both professional and scientific competencies are developed (Van der Wel & Van Bergen, 2012). It is expected that academically qualified primary teachers contribute to changes in the school culture, for example by bringing recent scientific findings and research competencies into schools. Academic primary teachers are also expected to be more capable of contributing to educational innovations at both classroom and school level than those who are not academically qualified (Van der Wel & Van Bergen, 2012). It is furthermore assumed that the inclusion of academic primary teachers in primary school teams may help bridge the traditional gap between educational research and educational practice (Klingel & Erbes, 2012). In this dissertation we take the position that for being able to learn throughout their career demonstrating a meaning-oriented learning pattern is important for all teachers (cf. Oosterheert, 2001; Vermunt & Endedijk, 2011), but that this is a prerequisite for academic primary teachers to meet the expectations set. Learners with a meaning-oriented learning pattern view learning as an active process of knowledge construction, are capable of regulating their own learning, want to thoroughly understand a topic, form their opinion about it, and draw their own conclusions (Vermunt & Vermetten, 2004). Previous research revealed that many student teachers are not meaning-oriented, but combine an application-oriented learning pattern with a reproduction-oriented learning pattern (Gordon & Debus, 2002; Oosterheert & Vermunt, 2001; Van Petegem, Donche, & Vanhoof, 2005). It may be that students enrolled in academic PTE will not form an exception to this. All academic students have to maintain or, more likely, have to increase their meaning-oriented learning pattern during PTE. The focus of this study is to learn more about academic PTE students and their learning in academic PTE, especially about (changes in) students’ meaning-oriented learning patterns and about what in their learning environments enhances this learning pattern.