Free AIOU Solved Assignment Code 829 Spring 2023
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Course: Teacher Education in Pakistan (829)
Semester: Spring, 2023
Q.1 Compare the objectives of teacher educaiton given by Aggerwal and National Education Policy 2009.
At present this Education Policy is being reviewed by the Federal cabinet for final approval.For a policy to start off in the right direction and base its recommendation on, it must state the “vision” for the coming generation’s education or what outcome it hopes to achieve from its educational provision. This particular policy’s vision formulated by the Ministry of Education is “Education is a categorical imperative for individual, social and national development that should enable all individuals to reach their maximum human potential. The system should produce responsible, enlightened citizens to integrate Pakistan in the global framework of human-centred economic development.”
No doubt the above vision leaves no stone unturned to provide the kind of educated individual who will be a model for fellow Pakistanis as well as one for all countries of the world. The 23st Century skills and fast-paced knowledge revolution demands such a vision through a national education system. However, to accomplish the policy’s aims, the present Pakistani system requires a high percentage of enrollment, minimum drop out rate, equity, access and a “qualitative” approach to learning in the classroom. So far, in the 60 years of its existence, the earlier policy makers have failed miserably in achieving even a modicum of the requirements stated above.
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What makes Education Policy 2009 different in its approach for a workable solution to achieving the impossible? For one, Chapter Three (3) Understanding System Deficiencies, of the policy document exhaustively defines and analyses the deficiencies that have plagued the education sector in the past. It identifies two major reasons and I quote
“There are two fundamental causes for the weak performance of the education sector
(i) a lack of commitment to education — a commitment gap — and
(ii) an implementation gap that has thwarted the application of policies”.
The Planning Commission’s Vision 2030 document says that “We cannot spend only 2.7 per cent of GDP on education and expect to become a vibrant knowledge economy.” The commitment to educating the whole country for a viable economic base is reflected totally in the kind of budgetary allocation the education sector has received over the last three decades. The result has been a low literacy rate and a poorly educated service and tertiary sector that have made Pakistan lag behind India in its bid for markets abroad and at home. The elitist education managed to produce top doctors, engineers, pilots, Chartered Accountants, initial bureaucrats and military personnel but failed to provide an exemplary secondary support group of nurses, technicians, cabin staff, district officers who were mostly educated in the public schools. The public sector schools were of a good standard up to ’70s but then the neglect started to eat away at a valuable resource of the country.Lack of commitment to education may also be attributed to two other reasons. Pakistan’s colonial past played a major role in the way education was managed in the initial years of independence. Although a break with the colonial past was tried but as the policy comments “The tradition of British education, which Pakistan inherited, emphasised academic skills (to serve the colonial administration) rather than skills and competencies for use in the production sector.”
Furthermore, Pakistan’s economy was mostly agrarian and the skill based needs of the economy did not influence the structure of educational provision. The change to an industrial base in the ’60s did not bring the expected change to a more relevant educational structure. The nationalisation policy of the ’70s caused further fall in standards in colleges and schools across the country. For the present, the Economist Intelligence Unit in its latest review of Pakistani education says
“Pakistan’s Education System is among the most deficient and backward in Asia, reflecting the traditional determination of the feudal ruling elite to preserve its hegemony.”
Thus, the commitment gap is all too visible in the successive governments’ neglect of the public sector schools which serviced the middle and lower income groups. These groups were eventually denied the justice to acquire a meaningful education for social and economic mobility up the ladder of success. In today’s Pakistan, the divide between the rich and the poor is so great that it negates the concept of the welfare state that the founding fathers had envisioned.
However, the crux of the matter in proper implementation of policies is clearly enunciated as point 3.1.5 of Clause 92 — it is endemic corruption at all levels of the education sector. It is said in the document that
“Political influence and favoritism are believed to interfere in the allocation of resources to the districts and schools in recruitment, training and posting of teachers and school administrators that are not based on merit, in awarding of textbook contracts, and in the conduct of examinations and assessments.”
With such rampant corruption in a department where selfless and noble service is required for the future security and wellbeing of the country, failure should definitely be laid at the nonperformance of the kind of character building done through religious teaching in the curriculum.
It has no doubt been a waste of time and effort to “rote learn” Islamiyat for examination purposes without application of those pristine moral principles to everyday life. The assessment system should have tapped critical thinking skills to put value on these moral principles so that it made a meaningful impact on the learner. In the case of Pakistan Studies, too, students do not find any meaningful satisfaction in learning about their country as syllabi are rote learned. No effort has been made to access actual “sources” of history to be critically analysed at various stages of education to leave a lasting impression on the learner.
Consequently, how learning is effectively done is a missing element in the policy document as no innovative approach to the education of teachers is recommended. The teachers will continue to acquire a B.Ed or an M.Ed degree as a training certification. These two degrees are still based on the syllabus which the colonial masters instituted pre-Partition. Since the standard of education is below par, the policy recommends that teachers now must be an MA for secondary school teaching and a BA for primary school teaching.
Promises of professional development and rewards abound but the bottom line has not changed. What is needed is a fresh or novel approach to the way efficient teachers can be educated for the kind of pedagogical needs of the 23st Century. What is essential is a pre-service certification course with the modern approach to teaching which all teachers in the country must acquire. This will inculcate a professional outlook to becoming a teacher negating the attitude that anyone can take up teaching.
The great divide Pakistan’s education system
The national education system set up after Partition in 1947 only lacked uniformity in the media of instruction. The post-Partition public schools had Urdu as the medium of instruction and the colonial British government and missionary schools had English as the medium of instruction. However, according to the recent report by the Planning Commission “Vision 2030” the divide is visible in all areas of the education system
“There is a divide between the prevalent school structure and differences in levels of infrastructure and facilities, media of instruction, emolument of teachers, and even examination systems between public and private schools. The rich send their children to privately-run English medium schools which offer foreign curricula and examination systems; the public schools enroll those who are too poor to do so.”
Despite the pluralistic nature of society, there has been a constant refrain for uniformity in educational provision within Pakistan. The new state’s promise of equal opportunity through education has been denied to the disadvantaged in society. There is no level playing field in the domain of education. Consequently, the poor have become poorer and the rich, richer. The preamble to the policy paper admits this gap and its long term consequences when it says in Clause 86
“…There are close links between equity in educational opportunities and equitable income distribution and income growth. If the education system is constructed on a divisive basis, the divisions it creates can endanger in the long run economic growth. An unjust society creates an unstable society and an unstable society cannot sustain stable long term growth.”
The Quaid’s vision for a cohesive Pakistan had made him declare Urdu as the national language. Urdu without any doubt became the lingua franca of the country with Baluchis, Sindhis, Punjabis and Pakhtoons communicating with each other through this common language. This nation building exercise has been eroded by thoughtless interventions in the education sector.
As English medium schools managed to sustain a level of quality in their teaching and learning with a transparent foreign examination system, it was felt that only “English medium” meant a qualitative or better education. It is conveniently forgotten that almost all who went through the public sector Urdu medium schooling also shone and were successful in all the careers. Privatisation of education encouraged the new schools to just opt for an English-medium education which was out of the reach of the less privileged classes who now demand this as a right to a successful future.
However, in the last 10 years, a solid base in language acquisition is lacking. The constant matrix of Urdu and English spoken today on media channels and by the younger generation is a product of the confusion in the education provision. No policy has taken a firm decision of equalising the opportunities for everyone to acquire proficiency in both Urdu and English.
The fault lies with the medium of instruction — for English medium, English has to be learnt first and then the acquisition of knowledge takes place. With Urdu, this is not the case — a lot of time is not wasted when knowledge is acquired through this language which also lays the base for Pakistan’s religious, social and cultural identity. This identity is lost when education is in a foreign language and a foreign curriculum meant for the needs of countries whose society, culture and religion is different to Pakistan. The consequences of such a policy are explained by the linguist expert Dr Tariq Rehman in “Standard Education System in Pakistan” a Pakistan Coalition for Education Position Paper Series.
Dr Rehman says that the purpose of education is to impart knowledge and information that encourages critical thinking and empowers people. However, he continues “As regards the medium of instruction, which is the focus of this paper, it would be fair and justthat most services of the State and the private sector should operate in the local language and Urdu. It is quite unjust that, in the centuries-old colonial tradition, our people face an alien State that does not serve them in their languages. This must change so that as far as possible, the people are able to speak to State officials in their own languages and be responded to in the same. This will also ensure that in this age of globalisation people will remain in touch with their identities.”
For the new commercial schools which offer the British system with O/A levels, Dr
Rehman analyses their output as “Typically, students of these schools show aversion to Urdu and pride themselves on not knowing it, indicating the degree of alienation from their own culture. While it would not be wrong to call them ‘brown sahibs’ or what is now more appropriate ‘native Yankees’, they generally hold more tolerant and peaceful views as compared to their counterparts in Urdu medium schools and madressahs. Thus, this educational apartheid, unjust though it is, is not the end of the story. It corresponds to an acute polarisation of views, attitudes and thinking in these different kinds of educational institutions.”
Concluding thoughts …
Efforts to make learners acquire proficiency in English which is Pakistan’s second language and language of instruction at the university level is solely dependent on the “quality of learning experiences”. Pakistan will not suddenly become backward if this (doing away with English as the only medium of instruction for quality education) is followed — the backwardness of the nation stems from the inequality in and low quality of educational provision.Education Policy 2009 recommends excellent policy actions on all aspects of the education service. The question to ask then is when and how will the policy be implemented.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 829 Spring 2023
Q.2 Discuss the usability of teaching methods recommended by Muslim scholars in the current teaching learning environment.
Early Muslim education emphasized practical studies, such as the application of technological expertise to the development of irrigation systems, architectural innovations, textiles, iron and steel products, earthenware, and leather products; the manufacture of paper and gunpowder; the advancement of commerce; and the maintenance of a merchant marine. After the 11th century, however, denominational interests dominated higher learning, and the Islamic sciences achieved preeminence. Greek knowledge was studied in private, if at all, and the literary arts diminished in significance as educational policies encouraging academic freedom and new learning were replaced by a closed system characterized by an intolerance toward scientific innovations, secular subjects, and creative scholarship. This denominational system spread throughout eastern Islam from Transoxania (roughly, modern-day Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and southwest Kazakhstan) to Egypt, with some 75 schools in existence between about 1050 and 1250.
The system of education in the Muslim world was unintegrated and undifferentiated. Learning took place in a variety of institutions, among them the ḥalqah, or study circle; the maktab (kuttab), or elementary school; the palace schools; bookshops and literary salons; and the various types of colleges, the meshed, the masjid, and the madrasa. All the schools taught essentially the same subjects.
The simplest type of early Muslim education was offered in the mosques, where scholars who had congregated to discuss the Qurʾān began before long to teach the religious sciences to interested adults. Mosques increased in number under the caliphs, particularly the ʿAbbāsids: 3,000 of them were reported in Baghdad alone in the first decades of the 10th century; as many as 12,000 were reported in Alexandria in the 14th century, most of them with schools attached. Some mosques—such as that of al-Manṣūr, built during the reign of Hārūn al-Rashīd in Baghdad, or those in Isfahan, Mashhad, Ghom, Damascus, Cairo, and the Alhambra (Granada)—became centres of learning for students from all over the Muslim world. Each mosque usually contained several study circles (ḥalqah), so named because the teacher was, as a rule, seated on a dais or cushion with the pupils gathered in a semicircle before him. The more advanced a student, the closer he was seated to the teacher. The mosque circles varied in approach, course content, size, and quality of teaching, but the method of instruction usually emphasized lectures and memorization. Teachers were, as a rule, looked upon as masters of scholarship, and their lectures were meticulously recorded in notebooks. Students often made long journeys to join the circle of a great teacher. Some circles, especially those in which the Ḥadīth was studied, were so large that it was necessary for assistants to repeat the lecture so that every student could hear and record it.
Elementary schools (maktab, or kuttab), in which pupils learned to read and write, date to the pre-Islamic period in the Arab world. After the advent of Islam, these schools developed into centres for instruction in elementary Islamic subjects. Students were expected to memorize the Qurʾān as perfectly as possible. Some schools also included in their curriculum the study of poetry, elementary arithmetic, penmanship, ethics (manners), and elementary grammar. Maktabs were quite common in almost every town or village in the Middle East, Africa, Sicily, and Spain.
Schools conducted in royal palaces taught not only the curriculum of the maktabs but also social and cultural studies designed to prepare the pupil for higher education, for service in the government of the caliphs, or for polite society. The instructors were called muʾaddibs, or instructors in good manners. The exact content of the curriculum was specified by the ruler, but oratory, history, tradition, formal ethics, poetry, and the art of good conversation were often included. Instruction usually continued long after the pupils had passed elementary age.
The high degree of learning and scholarship in Islam, particularly during the ʿAbbāsid period in eastern Islam and the later Umayyads in western Islam, encouraged the development of bookshops, copyists, and book dealers in large, important Islamic cities such as Damascus, Baghdad, and Córdoba. Scholars and students spent many hours in these bookshop schools browsing, examining, and studying available books or purchasing favourite selections for their private libraries. Book dealers traveled to famous bookstores in search of rare manuscripts for purchase and resale to collectors and scholars and thus contributed to the spread of learning. Many such manuscripts found their way to private libraries of famous Muslim scholars such as Avicenna, al-Ghazālī, and al-Fārābī, who in turn made their homes centres of scholarly pursuits for their favourite students.
Fundamental to Muslim education though the circle schools, the maktabs, and the palace schools were, they embodied definite educational limitations. Their curricula were limited; they could not always attract well-trained teachers; physical facilities were not always conducive to a congenial educational environment; and conflicts between religious and secular aims in these schools were almost irreconcilable. Most importantly, these schools could not meet the growing need for trained personnel or provide sufficient educational opportunities for those who wished to continue their studies. These pressures led to the creation of a new type of school, the madrasa, which became the crown and glory of medieval Muslim education. The madrasa was an outgrowth of the masjid, a type of mosque college dating to the 8th century. The differences between these two institutions are still being studied, but most scholars believe that the masjid was also a place of worship and that, unlike the madrasa, its endowment supported only the faculty and not the students as well. A third type of college, the meshed (shrine college), was usually a madrasa built next to a pilgrimage centre. Whatever their particularities, all three types of college specialized in legal instruction, each turning out experts in one of the four schools of Sunni, or orthodox, Islamic law.
Madrasas may have existed as early as the 9th century, but the most famous one was founded in 1057 by the vizier Niẓām al-Mulk in Baghdad. The Niẓāmīyah, devoted to Sunni learning, served as a model for the establishment of an extensive network of such institutions throughout the eastern Islamic world, especially in Cairo, which had 75 madrasas; in Damascus, which had 51; and in Aleppo, where the number of madrasas rose from 6 to 44 between 1155 and 1260.
Important institutions also developed in western Islam, under the Umayyads, in the Spanish cities of Córdoba, Sevilla (Seville), Toledo, Granada, Murcia, Almería, Valencia, and Cádiz. The madrasas had no standard curriculum; the founder of each school determined the specific courses that would be taught, but they generally offered instruction in both the religious sciences and the physical sciences.
The contribution of these institutions to the advancement of knowledge was vast. Muslim scholars calculated the angle of the ecliptic; measured the size of the Earth; calculated the precession of the equinoxes; explained, in the field of optics and physics, such phenomena as refraction of light, gravity, capillary attraction, and twilight; and developed observatories for the empirical study of heavenly bodies. They made advances in the uses of drugs, herbs, and foods for medication; established hospitals with a system of interns and externs; discovered causes of certain diseases and developed correct diagnoses of them; proposed new concepts of hygiene; made use of anesthetics in surgery with newly innovated surgical tools; and introduced the science of dissection in anatomy. They furthered the scientific breeding of horses and cattle; found new ways of grafting to produce new types of flowers and fruits; introduced new concepts of irrigation, fertilization, and soil cultivation; and improved upon the science of navigation. In the area of chemistry, Muslim scholarship led to the discovery of such substances as potash, alcohol, nitrate of silver, nitric acid, sulfuric acid, and mercury chloride. It also developed to a high degree of perfection the arts of textiles, ceramics, and metallurgy.
The Abbasids’ massive empire—spanning over four thousand miles—was impressive, but very difficult to maintain. As people converted to Islam, tax revenue collected from non-Muslim subjects dwindled, and the Abbasid court could no longer sustain its expenditures. Abbasid religious authority was also wavering as a more powerful class of religious scholars at the helm of new religious institutions challenged the legitimacy of the system of caliphate.
Ultimately, the highly centralized Abbasid caliphate fragmented into multiple smaller, independent political structures. These new political structures diminished Abbasid power.
It was perhaps this political decentralization and destabilization that led to the spread of Islam beyond the massive Abbasid empire’s borders. Regional rulers, who did not have to manage such vast territories, were able to expand more fruitfully in single directions. For example, the Fatimids and Berber dynasties in North Africa were able to expand into Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Ghaznavids stretched farther into India.
Just as religious institutions were gaining stability, political establishments were becoming even more unstable. As Muslim Turks migrated into the Islamic empires, other groups invaded, including the Mongols. Another source of political instability was the confrontation between Muslims and Christians in Western Europe, with the inquisition, the Crusades.
In the shadow of these political upheavals, Islamic political structures transformed, and new leaders from beyond the traditional Arab Muslim elite emerged. Kurdish leaders, like Saladin of the Ayyubid dynasty, were incredibly influential. Mamluk slave-soldiers of Turkish origin were also gaining power.
Eventually, multiple small states emerged where the Abbasids once ruled exclusively. The Abbasids’ five-century existence finally came to an end with the Mongol sacking of Baghdad in 1258. After the fall of the Abbasids, alternative social and political structures filled the vacuum. Sufi religious institutions were one such alternative structure. Sufi missionaries were responsible for many conversions in sub-Saharan Africa and in South and Southeast Asia.
Conversion from other religions like Christianity and Judaism was relatively easy and quick due to shared religious ideas. Conversion from pagan and polytheistic religions, however, was more difficult. Sufi missionaries navigated these difficulties adeptly, making Islam appealing by assimilating it into existing religious traditions.
This assimilation is evident in the mix of Islamic traditions with pre-Islamic belief systems in syncretic religious systems. For example, Kebatinan, a religion that appeared in modern-day Indonesia around the sixteenth century combined animistic, Buddhist, Hindu, and Islamic—especially Sufi—beliefs and practices.
By the late Abbasid period, Muslim rule was no longer an Arab phenomenon. Muslim Kurdish, Persian, Turkish, Mongol, and Afghan leaders secured power in places as far apart as modern-day Turkey and modern-day northern India. From there, Islam spread to modern-day Malaysia and Indonesia.
Indeed, it was the later Persian Safavid and Turkish Ottoman empires, neither of which was Arab, out of which the modern Islamic world was carved.
Missionaries and political expansion moved Islamic culture, but Islamic culture also traveled through trade. Caravans, groups of travelers who used camels to transport themselves and goods across land, were critical to the spread of Islam. Just as camels enabled the first caliphs to expand their empires, caravans allowed the Abbasids and other powers to expand their civilizations and enrich their cultures by linking provinces which were far from one another. Advanced road networks enabled caravans filled with soldiers, pilgrims, envoys, merchants, and scholars to travel across vast territories.
Along these trade routes, merchant communities developed. Muslims controlled parts of the western silk road and were influential on trans-Saharan trade routes. They also were powerful entities in maritime trade in the Red Sea, Persian Gulf, and Indian Ocean.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1 Code 829 Spring 2023
Q.3 Elaborate the recent developments in teacher education system of Pakistan. Discuss the problems of teacher education and also give suggestions to overcome these problems.
The first element is the study of one or more academic, cultural, or aesthetic subjects for the purpose both of continuing the student’s own education and of providing him with knowledge to use in his subsequent teaching career. A second element is the study of educational principles, increasingly organized in terms of social science disciplines such as psychology, sociology, philosophy, and history. A third element consists of professional courses and school experience. Primary teachers may also receive instruction in the content and methods of subjects other than their own specialties that figure in the primary curriculum. In normal schools and colleges, and some universities, the three elements run parallel to one another, and the student is professionally committed from the outset of his course. Elsewhere, the study of educational processes and professional work (including school experience) may follow the completion of a period of academic study that the student has begun without any prior commitment to teaching as a career. There are still advanced countries where the possession of a university degree, without any qualification in education as such, is sufficient basis for the award of qualified teacher status. In England and Wales, for example, compulsory training for graduates, generally comprising two terms (six months) of professional and theoretical studies and a further three-month period of school experience, was scheduled to come into effect only in 1973.
The sequencing, balance, content, and organization of general and specialist academic work, courses in education, and professional studies and teaching experience has been a subject of discussion since the earliest days of organized teacher education. The importance of the element of general education has been defended on various grounds. Sometimes such academic work may be highly specialized. Students in many colleges of education in England study only one principal subject, to which they devote about one-third of their total time, and teachers who graduate from universities have often pursued three-year courses for single-subject honours degrees. In the United States and elsewhere the academic element is broader, and the first two years of college or university work may embody a wide range of elective subjects from diverse disciplinary fields. Both patterns have their critics, the first because it produces narrow intellectual specialists, the second because it encourages dilettantism and inadequate depth. Where a pattern of electives is combined with a units/credits system, as in some universities in Japan and the United States, it is claimed that one result is an undesirable fragmentation of study and effort. In his influential Education of American Teachers (1963), James B. Conant recommended that half the course requirements of the four-year program of preparation for elementary teachers should be given over to general courses, a further quarter to an “area of concentration,” and the remaining quarter to professional studies, including school experience. Prospective secondary teachers would spend still more time on the subjects they were preparing to teach, with less than 10 percent of their time devoted to practice teaching and special methods. Such a subject emphasis for secondary teachers can be found in many countries. In France the École Normale Supérieure still places freedom of study and the nurture of intellectual curiosity above questions of professional teacher training. Generally speaking, wherever there is a stress upon academic excellence and the achievement of high standards of scholarship, there is likely to be skepticism as to the claims of professional training for teaching. Oxford University had still not appointed a professor of education by the beginning of the 1970s.
In countries where technical or vocational education forms an important part of secondary school provision, there have sometimes been specialist institutions for the training of teachers for this work. Such teachers tend to have lower status than the secondary school staff who teach academic subjects, and efforts have been made to upgrade the position of the teacher of agricultural and industrial arts, home economics, and handicrafts. Nearly all the universities in England and Wales that now offer the bachelor of education degree for college of education students include technical subjects within their list of approved options.
The element of educational courses in the teacher preparation program has been the object of criticism from academic specialists, defenders of liberal culture, and practical-minded professional educators. The growing range of speculation and empirical data generated by the burgeoning social sciences, philosophy, and history, have provided a rich ore from which those responsible for teacher preparation mined the materials they needed for the construction and legitimation of their pedagogic systems and principles. But such borrowing has done little to establish any very coherent system of educational ideas, or to provide the basis for a systematic theory of teaching adequate to sustain the variety and complexity of teacher preparation programs.
AIOU Solved Assignment 2 Code 829 Spring 2023
Q.4 Describe the nature, scope and significance of In-service Teacher Education. How can teachers be motivated for in-service training?
Teaching methods are continually developing, and CPD gives teachers the opportunity to learn new techniques and strategies which enable them to keep up with colleagues who have just finished training.
With UK Schools annually spending £900M on education technology, CPD also allows teachers to keep up to date with the latest developments which can be utilised to enhance everyday teaching.
Pupil interaction skills
CPD gives teachers the chance to reinforce existing skills, as well as learning new ones that aren’t covered during teacher training.
For example, 88% of school leaders believe that Initial Teacher Training does not adequately prepare teachers to help those who have special education needs and disabilities (SEND). Further training can allow teachers to build on their interaction skills and learn strategies for helping these pupils to achieve their full potential.
Practise makes perfect
A survey carried out with medical students at Yale University showed that the surgical students who practised using a simulation performed better than those who did not.
Teachers can use the same type of simulation training to improve classroom management and interaction with difficult pupils in a safe environment.
Our virtual reality training allows teachers to interact with pupils in real time and practise areas that they are struggling with until they feel comfortable dealing with these situations in the classroom.
CPD has been shown to increase teacher motivation, confidence and commitment to teaching. Learning new skills and applying them in the classroom can lead to a more stimulating and effective teaching environment.
The Digitally Supported Learning Environment (Vocational and Learning Center for the development of the digital ability of teachers), was launched in October 2019. The Digitally Supported Learning Environment as a modern flexible learning environment supports modern pedagogical approaches and is not limited to a physical space, but extends to a wider digital and online space. The goal of the Environment is to provide access and information to the educators and executives on modern digital technologies and, through standard activities that highlight the pedagogical value of their use, to motivate them to use them for effective learning. The Environment will also host students with their teachers, offering them experiential activities utilizing augmented and virtual reality, 3D applications and printing, robotics packages and humanoid robots. Cyprus has participated in the third phase of a Teaching and Learning International Survey which was carried out in 2018 and focused on the beliefs of teachers, their initial education and training and career development opportunities, leadership and management of human resources, the school climate, their job satisfaction, and their self-sufficiency. In addition their motives were investigated on their choice of profession, innovation practices in schools, as well as practices on equality and diversity in the classroom.
The research led to important findings and encouraging results concerning Cypriot teachers and their habits and practices on the issues that were investigated.
The reasons for the choice of profession, as the survey shows, had more to do with the social dimension (influence on child development, contribution to society) and less with personal motivation (relevance to personal obligations, stable professional career, secured job, and reliable income).
On average, teachers in Cyprus participated in 3-4 activities. Exemption from teaching tasks as an incentive to participate in professional development activities decreased from 58.5% (2013) to 20.9% (2018).
The majority of teachers participated in activities that were related to the syllabus (86.9%), in knowledge and understanding of cognition subject (82.6%), student assessment (82.4%), pedagogical teaching skills (79.6%), student behavior, and class management (71.3%).
The involvement of teachers in Cyprus in specific activities was higher than in 2013 and also higher than the involvement of Europeans teachers.
The need of Cyprus teachers was strongly highlighted for training in teaching students with disabilities (27.4%), in teaching in a multicultural or multilingual environment (19.6%) and in communication with people from different cultures (13.5%).
The Ministry of Education and Culture is responsible for organizing in-service training for teachers in the public sector. The Pedagogical Institute is the main provider of in-service training, offering both compulsory and optional courses.
The Department of Teachers’ In-service Training provides the following compulsory courses, which take place in morning hours and the participants are relieved from their duties in order to attend them:
- Compulsory recurrent course for newly promoted head teachers in primary education;
- Compulsory recurrent course for newly promoted head teachers in secondary education;
- Compulsory course for newly promoted deputy head teachers in secondary education; and,
- Compulsory course for newly appointed teachers and their mentors (induction course).
Optional seminars of the Pedagogical Institute are usually held in afternoon or evening hours and they are open and free for all teachers. They cover a wide range of topics including Psychology, Sociology, Pedagogy and Information Technology.
School-based seminars are also offered focused on identified needs of the individual schools.
Beyond offering centralized training the Department of Teachers’ In-Service Training focuses on adopting other forms of teachers’ support, such as e-learning courses; supportive educational material development; implementation of intervention programs in school units. Attendance certificates are issued to all participants.
Promotion is the main incentive for continuing education of teachers in ECEC and school education, as the following regulated measures indicate:
(i) With regard to the promotion of teachers to the post of an inspector or higher, postgraduate qualifications of at least one-year duration are a prerequisite;
(ii) With regard to the promotion of teachers to any post, additional credit units are recognized to holders of postgraduate qualifications;
(iii) Postgraduate qualifications are positively considered by the inspectors in appraising a teacher’s performance, while the teacher’s appraisal reports constitute a criterion for promotion. Similarly, the certificates of attendance issued by the Pedagogical Institute of Cyprus may be positively considered by the inspectors as well.
(iv) Financial incentives, such as salary increases or extra remuneration do not exist.
Supporting measures are those aiming to eliminate disincentives to teachers’ continuing education. Offering courses free of charge is the most common among them. The Pedagogical Institute, as the responsible body for the teachers’ in-service education, offers both obligatory and optional courses free of charge.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 829 Autumn 2023
Q.5 Explain the structure of Teacher Education in Pakistan, also critically analyse the effect of 18th amendment on teacher education.
Apart from the political restructuring it mandates, the amendment also holds some major implications for the country’s system of education. Through it a new article, 25A, has been inserted into the constitution that reads: “Right to education: The state shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to 16 years in such manner as may be determined by law.” This is an important undertaking by the state since education, in contemporary times, is considered an important tool for enhancing one’s chances for socioeconomic development.
In Pakistan, a large number of students do not have access to schools or drop out before they reach the fifth grade. A major reason behind the high dropout rate is poverty, and as a result a large number of children remain illiterate and cannot become part of the literate human resource group which is vital for the development of a country. An effective implementation of this article of the constitution would without doubt pave the way for enriching the national human capital.
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Another major implication of the 18th Amendment for education is that the curriculum, syllabus, planning, policy, centres of excellence and standards of education will fall under the purview of the provinces. This is a big step forward for education.The 18th Amendment, passed unanimously by parliament, was the result of a rare consensus between all the major political parties. After becoming a part of the constitution, however, some strong voices of dissent were raised by different quarters, including the Ministry of Education. A campaign has been initiated to spread the idea that the provinces are not ready to take up the massive challenge of dealing with the provision of education. This claim is made on the assumption that the provinces do not have the capacity or the financial resources to cope with the huge challenge in front of them.
It has been argued that the contents of the curricula should remain with the federation since the provinces could take liberties which may result in putting the unity and ideology of the country at risk. Critics have asked how standards would be maintained across the provinces and how quality would be assured. And what if all the provinces introduced regional languages in schools? Would this weaken the federation?
Looking at the above points, one can understand the federation’s concern regarding the future of education once it becomes a provincial responsibility. However, this concern seems to emanate primarily from a lack of trust in the capacity and ability of the provinces.
It is interesting to note, though, that the provinces are already providing for school and college education and they do have the capacity (in terms of intellectual resources) to handle the job. As far as funds are concerned, the provinces have been funding education from their budgets. The federation would give partial grants to the universities only.
The provinces should have the autonomy to design the curricula according to contextual needs and learners’ requirement. If the federation is very concerned about the curriculum issue, it can keep Islamiat and Pakistan Studies under its control. The curricula for other subjects should be designed by the provinces concerned. Education standards can be monitored through provincial quality assurance departments and the inter-provincial coordination committee. Similarly, the provinces may introduce regional languages as a subject in their respective provinces as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is attempting to do.
This right was already there, even before the 18th Amendment. The diversity of languages is more likely to strengthen the federation, rather than weaken it. Recall that the denial of the demand to name Bangla as a national language in addition to Urdu played a major part in the separation of East Pakistan.
A cursory glance at the points above tells us that all the problems can be resolved without much ado. It seems, however, that concerns about the incapability of provinces to deal with educational responsibilities emerge from a trust deficit where the centre, in its self-righteous manner, doubts the competence and integrity of the provinces. Why is that so? Why this reluctance on the part of the federation? Why these fears that the provinces may mess up the education system?
To understand this, we need to realise that education has a strong link with power. Education, as political theorist Gramsci suggested, can pay an important part in controlling minds. Historically education has been used to take and maintain control of marginalised countries and groups, so if education becomes a provincial matter, certain powerful groups and organisations see it as a shift in power which is not in their favour. The outcome is a lot of hue and cry, and the offering of lame excuses.
What is required at this point is a positive attitude by the federation, a trust in the competence, integrity and patriotism of the provinces. As has been suggested, there are two kinds of federations in the world: hold-together and come-together. We need to make a move from holding the provinces together to persuading them to come together. The 18th Amendment provides an excellent opportunity for such a paradigm shift.
The federal government is left to deal with international treaties, education in federal territories and inter-government coordination. Entry 16 (federal agencies/institutions for research), entry 17 (Pakistani students in foreign countries and vice-versa), and entry 7 (national planning and national economic coordination of scientific and technological research) remained unchanged. The federal government has to abolish inter-provincial coordination e.g., inter-board committee’s and inter-provincial education ministerial which were a part of the federal ministry of education.
The 18th Amendment redefines the role of provinces. Since its passage in April 2011, no concrete steps are being taken by the provinces, in particular the province of Balochistan, to deal with the HE sector.
Challenges for provinces
The curriculum and standard of education must be competitive at national/international levels (uniformity with national and international standards). This would need experts especially at the higher education level. New wings/sections have to be established for new responsibilities and new policies have to be approved from the cabinet or assembly e.g., Balochistan does not have the compulsory Primary Education Legislation for implementing article 25-A (Free and compulsory education for children of ages 5-16 years).
The province would require specialised arrangements to respond to the challenges confronting the HE sector. It must therefore have in place a provincial HEC or council in line with the HEC Ordinance of 2002 with clear composition, power and functions to deal with the HE sector and its standards, and it must be an autonomous body.
Legislation for special study centres
A new legislation would be required for centres of excellence, area study centres and Pakistan Study centres devolved to the provinces and previously working under Acts of 1974, 75 and 1976.
Provision of HR and financial resources
Balochistan needs to hire new staff to perform function in the HE sector. New wings/sections have to be established, delegation of new responsibilities to provincial education department e.g., Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education, textbook boards setting standards for the private sector on policy and curriculum. This may require legislation from the parliament.
The legislative and administrative capacity of the provinces and provision of funds could be a serious challenge. The provinces have to project financial resources required for HE. The HE sector in Balochistan is under severe financial and HR crisis. It is not even in a position to pay salaries to its employees. Under clause (4) Article 167, the provinces can make plans to engage federal and international partners to borrow/receive assistants/loans for projects.
Impacts on HE
- The 18th Amendment Act will have a significant impact on the HE sector nationally and provincially. At the national level, no legal and legislative protection is given to the HEC as a federal unit. As per Article 38 devolved,
HEC may not justify its position as a single body on HE.
- Devolution would encourage multiplicity of standards/regulations on admissions, and minimum quality requirement for appointment, promotion, quality assurance on academics, curriculum and scholarships and would impact on overall knowledge exchange.
- HE at the national level will face serious challenges on access, quality, relevance and equity that hold fundamental positions promoting national cohesion. HEC will also face international challenges from international donor agencies on adopting economic and social change essential to education innovation at the institutional level. As devolution limits the HEC’s role in the provincial HE sector, it would also limit its role in cross borders/collaboration in sharing knowledge.
- The socio-economic development plan is very much connected with the country’s HE and science and technology programmes. For instance the HR requirements such as doctors, engineers, scientists and economists have to be determined at the national level and so is the funding that comes from the federal government. Devolution will have a negative impact on the process of national socio-economic development provincially and federally.
The devolution of the education sector especially Article 38 will have a negative impact on the HE sector at the national and provincial level as it is challenging the mandate of HEC.
The HEC and the provinces will face national/international challenges. Article 129 (“the provincial government subject to the Constitution, the executive authority of the province shall be exercised in the name of governor by the provincial government consisting of chief minister or ministers” will deeply politicise the appointment of VCs, rectors and presidents.
Uniformity, standards/regulations compatible with the national/international standards may not be maintained in the HE sector in all provinces. The 18th amendment would be a failure as far as the HE sector is concerned.
Challenges such as access, quality, relevance and equity require further response from the HEC.
Entry 38 may have to be placed in the concurrent FFL Part II. This requires HEC to approach the Council of Common Interest/federal government for reconsideration by the National Assembly. The dissenting note from Mr Ahsan Iqbal (member of the committee, now federal minister) that Entry 38 should be in the FFL Part II is already on record.
The HEC ordinance 2002 must be enacted from the Parliament.
The provinces need legislation for devolved subjects. There should also be specialised arrangements responding to challenges confronting the HE sector e.g., administrative and resource capacity. Policy and planning wings in the provincial education secretariat also need to be established. Besides, the development of autonomous bodies such as the HEC or councils is needed at the provincial level. Heads also need to be put together to come up with financial resources for HE.