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Assist. Prof. Dr. Süleyman Sadi SEFEROGLU

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1 Improving the Quality of Teaching in Schools Through Professional Development of Teachers
Assist. Prof. Dr. Süleyman Sadi SEFEROGLU Hacettepe University Faculty of Education Department of Computer Education and Instructional Technology Ankara, 06800, TURKEY sadi_at_hacettepe.edu.tr Web: 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May 6-9, 2008, Anadolu University, Eskişehir

2 Introduction The continual deepening of knowledge and skills is an integral part of any profession. Teaching is no exception Teachers and the quality of their teaching have always been considered important issues in education 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

3 Introduction During the past decade, a considerable body of literature has emerged on professional development, teacher learning, and teacher change. Studies tell us that A teacher who has opportunities to learn and to grow can provide more opportunities for young people. Therefore, supporting the continual development of teachers is important to improving the quality of teachers and the quality of their teaching. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

4 Purpose To present alternative ways of improving the quality of teaching in schools by enhancing professional development of teachers through providing professional communication among them guiding them to use their own resources, creating an environment in which they share experiences and support and help each other. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

5 Introduction Studies highlight that
student performance will not improve if the quality of teaching is not improved. the quality of teaching in schools cannot be significantly improved without improving the quality of teachers. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

6 Professional Development
Literature on the improvement of the teaching profession suggests that professional development is a necessity for better teaching and better schools because “If the teacher is also learning, teaching takes on a new quality”. Therefore, to improve the quality of teaching, teachers should be given opportunities to grow professionally 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

7 Professional Development
Professional development is needed because professional success usually generates greater professional success. When teachers experience success, they gain greater confidence in their own abilities to make a difference in the lives of their own students. As a result they look for other ways to make themselves even more effective. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

8 “Reform” types of professional development
Although traditional forms of professional development are quite common, they are widely criticized as being ineffective in providing teachers with sufficient time, activities, and content necessary for increasing teacher’s knowledge and fostering meaningful changes in their classroom practice 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

9 “Reform” types of professional development
In order to provide professional communication among teachers and to guide them to use their own resources, creating an environment in which sharing and supporting each other, helping each other are the basic norms is essential. As a result, teaching becomes fulfilling, rewarding, enjoyable, and satisfactory profession. Two related techniques seem most appropriate for creating such an environment; mentor teaching and peer coaching. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

10 “Reform” types of professional development: Mentoring and peer-coaching
Mentoring and coaching, take place, at least in part, during the process of classroom instruction or during regularly scheduled teacher planning time. By locating opportunities for professional development within a teacher’s regular work day, reform types of professional development may be more likely than traditional forms to make connections with classroom teaching, and they may be easier to sustain over time. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

11 “Reform” types of professional development
Reform types of activities: may be more responsive to how teachers learn may have more influence on changing teaching practice may be more responsive to teachers’ needs and goals. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

12 Two “Reform” types of professional development
Mentoring and Peer Coaching Darling-Hammond suggests that the surest way to improved instruction is a formal system of teachers helping teachers. She states that “Every recent evaluation of the growing number of mentor teacher programs underscores the usefulness of having teachers help other teachers.” 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

13 Two “Reform” types of professional development
Definition of Mentoring The term mentor historically implies someone who is responsible not only for educating a young child but who acts as a counselor, confidant, or even a parent. It has its roots in Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

14 Mentoring The Odyssey: In this myth, Odysseus, a great royal warrior, has been off fighting the Trojan war and has entrusted his son, Telemachus, to his friend and advisor, Mentor As the story unfolds, Mentor accompanies and guides Telemachus on a journey in search of his father and ultimately for a new and fuller identity of his own. History is full with examples of such relationships: Socrates and Plato, Freud and Jung, Lorenze de Medici and Michelangelo, Haydn and Beethoven, Boas and Mead, Sartre and de Beauvoir, and so on. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

15 Definition of Mentoring
... a nurturing process in which a more skilled or more experienced person, serving as a role model, teaches, sponsors, encourages, counsels, and befriends a less skilled or less experienced person for the purpose of promoting the latter’s professional and/or personal development. Mentoring functions are carried out within the context of an ongoing, caring relationship between the mentor and protégé. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

16 “Reform” types of professional development: Mentoring
forms of assistance given to new and colleague teachers, include giving information related to procedures, guidelines, or expectations of the school district, locating materials or other resources, giving information about teaching strategies or the instructional process, 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

17 “Reform” types of professional development: Mentoring
forms of assistance given to new and colleague teachers, include offering support through empathic listening and by sharing experiences, giving guidance and ideas related to discipline, or to scheduling, planning, and organizing the school day, helping teachers by arranging, organizing or analyzing the physical setting of classroom, and teaching while the new or colleague teacher observes. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

18 “Reform” types of professional development: Peer Coaching
Peer coaching is one teacher helping another teacher improve his/her instructional skills or develop a new teaching practice. It is not an evaluative, judgmental procedure, but instead a non-threatening, positive experience designed to help teachers become more effective at what they do. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

19 Two “Reform” types of professional development
Mentoring and Peer Coaching Although most peer coaching programs are directed toward experienced teachers and most mentoring programs are for the purpose of improving the induction of new teachers, both programs aim to help teachers to increase their expertise, and, thus, the improvement of the quality of education. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

20 A Comparison of Peer Coaching and Mentor Teaching
While an experienced teacher helps a novice-inductee or a “new to system” teacher in mentoring, in peer coaching, regardless of the number of years they have been teaching, one teacher can help another teacher to acquire a new technique or strategy. In other words, coaching implies an equal relationships of two or more individuals helping each other, while in mentoring, an experienced individual gives advice to a less experienced individual which implies an unequal association. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

21 A Comparison of Peer Coaching and Mentor Teaching
Both strategies give teachers opportunities to realize their leadership capabilities and their potentials, and to obtain the satisfaction of helping another individual who needs their help. They also give teachers a chance to see the information and the knowledge that they lack, and to use that information to be better teachers. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

22 A Comparison of Peer Coaching and Mentor Teaching
Another common characteristics of mentoring and coaching is that, in both staff development options not only inductee, protégé or colleague teachers need to be trained but the mentors and the coaches also need to be trained to do their job properly. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

23 Two “Reform” types of professional development
Main goals in peer coaching and mentor teaching: To improve communication and collaboration among teachers To assess teachers’ professional needs and concerns To improve teachers’ awareness of professional development 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

24 Two “Reform” types of professional development
Main goals in peer coaching and mentor teaching: To break down the psychological walls between classrooms, and give teachers opportunity to share their experiences To facilitate teacher learning To create an environment of trust and respect 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

25 Core features of professional development
Collective Participation Promoting Active Learning Fostering Coherence 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

26 Core features of professional development
Collective participation: There is a growing interest in professional development that is designed for groups of teachers from the same school, department, or grade level. Professional development designed for groups of teachers has a number of potential advantages. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

27 Potential advantages of collective participation:
teachers who work together are more likely to have the opportunity to discuss concepts, skills, and problems that arise during their professional development experiences. teachers who are from the same school, department, or grade are likely to share common curriculum materials, course offerings, and assessment requirements. By engaging in joint professional development, they may be able to integrate what they learn with other aspects of their instructional context. teachers who share the same students can discuss students’ needs across classes and grade levels. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

28 Potential advantages of collective participation:
By focusing on a group of teachers from the same school, professional development may help sustain changes in practice over time, as some teachers leave the school’s teaching force and other new teachers join the faculty. Professional development may help contribute to a shared professional culture, in which teachers in a school or teachers who teach the same grade or subject develop a common understanding of instructional goals, methods, problems, and solutions. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

29 Potential advantages of collective participation:
Collective participation in the same activity can provide a forum for debate and improving understanding, which increases teachers’ capacity to grow Knapp (1997) emphasizes that change in classroom teaching is a problem of individual learning as well as organizational learning, and that organizational routines and establishing a culture supportive of reform instruction can facilitate individual change efforts. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

30 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
A second core feature of professional development concerns the opportunities provided by the professional development activity for teachers to become actively engaged in meaningful discussion, planning, and practice Opportunities for active learning can take a number of forms, including the opportunity to observe expert teachers and to be observed teaching; to plan how new curriculum materials and new teaching methods will be used in the classroom; to review student work in the topic areas being covered; and to lead discussions and engage in written work 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

31 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
four dimensions of active learning: observing and being observed teaching; planning for classroom implementation; reviewing student work; and presenting, leading, and writing. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

32 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
Observing and being observed One element of active learning is the opportunity for teachers to observe expert teachers, be observed teaching in their own classroom, and obtain feedback. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

33 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
Observing and being observed These opportunities can take a variety of forms: providing feedback on videotaped lessons, having teachers visit each others’ classrooms to observe lessons, having activity leaders, lead teachers, mentors, and coaches observe classroom teachers and engage in reflective discussions about the goals of a lesson, the tasks employed, teaching strategies, and student learning. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

34 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
Planning classroom implementation A second element of active learning involves the opportunity to link the ideas introduced during professional development experiences to the teaching context in which teachers work The introduction of new approaches may have different implications depending on the curriculum in place in a teacher’s school, the specific textbooks adopted in the teachers’ classrooms, and the required assessments in the teachers’ districts. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

35 Core features of professional development: Promoting active learning
Planning classroom implementation Also, the characteristics of the students enrolled in the teachers’ classrooms, including the material covered in previous grades and students’ expectations for classroom instruction, may affect the implementation of new teaching approaches. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

36 Core features: Promoting Active Learning
Reviewing student work Another element of active learning is the opportunity to examine and review student work. By examining students’ written responses to problems, for example, teachers may gain an understanding of students’ assumptions, reasoning and solution strategies Also, examining and discussing examples of student work may help teachers develop skills in diagnosing student problems and designing lessons at an appropriate level of difficulty. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

37 Core features: Promoting Active Learning
Presenting, leading, and writing Apart from opportunities to observe teaching, plan classroom implementation, and review student work, professional development activities may also offer teachers the opportunity to give presentations, lead discussions, and produce written work. Active participation of this kind may improve outcomes by permitting teachers to delve more deeply into the substantive issues introduced. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

38 Core features: Fostering Coherence
A third core feature of professional development concerns the extent to which professional development activities are perceived by teachers to be a part of a coherent program of teacher learning. Professional development for teachers is frequently criticized on the ground that the activities are disconnected from one another-in other words, individual activities do not form part of a coherent program of teacher learning and development. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

39 Core features: Fostering Coherence
A professional development activity is more likely to be effective in improving teachers’ knowledge and skills if it forms a coherent part of a wider set of opportunities for teacher learning and development. Should build on what teachers have already learned; emphasize content and pedagogy aligned with national, state and local standards, frameworks, and assessments; support teachers in developing sustained, ongoing professional communication with other teachers who are trying to change their teaching in similar ways. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

40 Suggestions for further research
There is a clear need to new, systematic research on the effectiveness of alternative strategies for professional development. The National Research Council, for example, in a review of recent research on the cognitive sciences. teaching, and learning, argues that Research studies are needed to determine the efficacy of various types of professional development activities, including pre-service and in-service seminars, workshops, and summer institutes. Studies should include professional development activities that are extended over time and across broad teacher learning communities in order to identify the processes and mechanisms that contribute to the development of teachers’ learning communities. 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

41 Concluding Remarks If we can create an environment where teachers share and exchange ideas, we can begin to improve the quality of teaching. Interaction is a key to empowering teachers as professionals. When teachers have the opportunity to analyze their work under supportive conditions, they find such reviews to be productive and rewarding. When teachers help teachers to increase their effectiveness, everyone wins, most of all, the students 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir

42 Thank You! Dr. S. Sadi SEFEROGLU
Hacettepe University Faculty of Education Department of Computer Education and Instructional Technology Ankara, 06800, TURKEY sadi_at_hacettepe.edu.tr Web: 8th International Educational Technology Conference, May , Anadolu University, Eskişehir


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