Presentation on Education SA and the BEd: Prof Balfour

Report
Academic Depth and Rigour in Initial Teacher
Education: A query
Akademiese Diepte en Nougesetheid in Aanvanklike
Onderwysersopvoeding: 'n Vraagstuk
Opening Remarks and Introductory Presentation on SA Education
Context, to Guests of the Faculty of Education Sciences:
Prof Robert J. Balfour (Dean)
BEd Colloquium
12 February 2014
Potchefstroom
School system in crisis…
GRADE
MATHEMATICS 2012
MATHEMATICS 2013
1
68
\60
2
57
59
3
41
53
4
37
37
5
30
33
6
27
39
9
13
14
School system in crisis…
COMPARISON OF NSC CANDIDATES' PERFORMANCE IN SELECTED
SUBJECTS
Table 19: Candidates' performance at 30% and abo5e in selected subjects, 2010 - 2 0 1 3
% Achieved
Achieved 30% &
Above
Wrote
2013
% Achieved
Achieved 30% &
Above
Wrote
2012
% Achieved
Achieved 30% &
Above
Wrote
2011
% Achieved
Achieved 30% &
Above
2010
Wrote
Subjects
(Full-Time)
Mathematical
Literacy
280 836
241 576
86.0
275 380
236 548
85.9
291 341
254 611
87.4
324 097
282 270
87.1
Mathematics
263 034
124 749
47.4
224 635
104 033
46.3
225 874
121 970
54.0
241 509
142 666
59.1
Physical
Sciences
205 364
98 260
47.8
180 585
96 441
53.4
179 194
109 918
61.3
184 383
124 206
67.4
Higher Education not much better…
CHE report : A Proposal for Undergraduate Curriculum Reform in
South Africa: The Case for a Flexible Curriculum Structure
Table 1: Graduation in regulation time, overall and by population group
(%): 2006 first-time entering cohort, excluding UNISA
graduation in regulation time (%)
African Coloured Indian White
All
Attrition by end of regulation time (%)
African Coloured Indian White
All
3-year degrees
20
20
26
43
29
39
50
37
31
37
4-year degrees
30
28
31
47
36
41
47
43
33
39
3-year diplomas5
16
27
27
38
20
45
45
39
38
44
All 3- and 4-year
qualifications
20
24
28
44
27
42
47
39
33
40
Higher Education not much better…
CHE report : A Proposal for Undergraduate Curriculum Reform in
South Africa: The Case for a Flexible Curriculum Structure
The proportion of the intake into contact institutions that is wellenough prepared to complete undergraduate curricula within the
intended time is small – only 27%, or roughly only one in every four. It
also shows the high rate of attrition that has occurred by the end of
regulation time: 40% overall
By the end of the regulation time in all three
qualification types, more students have been
lost to failure and dropout than have graduated –
more than
twice as many in the case of African
.
and diploma students.
Framing 'quality & rigour': perspectives offered by the
Faculty of Education Sciences (internal) BEd Report 2012
SMK = Subject Matter Knowledge
PCK = Pedagogical Content Knowledge
There seems to be no common understanding with regard to how specialised
SMK or specialised PCK should be taught.
The jury is also still out as to whether the school subject should determine the
content of the equivalent subject in the BEd curriculum or whether the
academic discipline should determine the content of the equivalent subject in
the BEd curriculum. The dominant view is that the school curriculum
should not drive the content of the teacher-education curriculum.
There should be a dialogue between the school and academic sister
discipline to determine the content of the teacher-education
curriculum. Pedagogical knowledge should be supported by a sound
basis of content knowledge.
Work-integrated learning is considered to be the most important means of
bridging the gap between the world of teacher education and the world of the
school.
More from the FES- BEd Executive Report 2012
A National Perspective On Teacher Education
Three basic models for teacher education:
• the consecutive
• the integrated
• the concurrent
BEd: Apart from UWC all the other
universities follow their own version of the integrated model. UWC uses
an adapted version of the consecutive model in the training of their
education students. During the first and second years of training the
academic subjects are completed with the faculties for basic subject
disciplines, while the education or professional subjects are completed
during the last two years with the faculty of education.
FES-BEd Executive Report 2013… recommendations
A culture of scholarship and strong communities of practice
It is recommended that Faculty implement a programme to develop a
culture of scholarship and strong communities of practice. Examples
would typically include colloquia where topics such as academic
scholarship, academic rigour, authentic school contexts, the intended,
espoused and hidden curriculum, quality, and so on, can be debated.
Disciplinary knowledge and depth of knowledge
1. Subject groups should critically evaluate the
scope and depth of the disciplinary knowledge
that is being taught in every academic subject
or module; knowledge should be increased
and/or deepened where and when necessary;
FES- BEd Executive Report 2013: more recommendations
about academic content and appropriate level…
2. Specialists in academic disciplines (from the faculties for related
disciplines, whether from the NWU or other universities) should
participate in the assessment and evaluation of the academic
subjects that are included in the teacher education programme and
such assessment and evaluation should form part of a particular
subject group’s assessment and evaluation;
3. The academic rigour of the content being taught should be
improved where necessary;
4. An assessment should be made of students’
content knowledge, depth of knowledge and,
in particular, higher-order thinking or cognitive
skills in novel and creative ways, in order to
encourage them to develop their own notes
and summaries and to develop their own,
personal self-directed learning abilities.
JET Report on the NWU BEd: 2013
Content Knowledge
Concern was raised by several staff members that the courses offered
by the institution “are too closely tied to the national curriculum” and too
closely linked to whatever happens to be in the school curriculum. The
rationale provided for this close linkage is so that “students will be more
familiar with what they have to teach during their practicals”. However,
for some staff, this presents a barrier in their attempts to offer content
comparable to that offered in the mother faculties.
JET Report on generic and specific pedagogic content
knowledge…
Pedagogy
Many staff members acknowledge the importance of PCK but the
conception of teaching within this curriculum is consistently presented
as a generic activity that is applied to various subjects. In the generic
courses students are taught aspects like conceptualization of lessons,
assessment strategies, teaching strategies and learning support in a
generic way. Students and staff are expected to apply these generic
strategies in their subject/phase specialization. However, there is very
little contact between the staff offering these core courses (from the
School of Education) with the phase and subject methodologists (from
the School of Curriculum Studies), and so the potential for collaboration
is not yet adequately exploited. Staff well aware of this limitation, but
seem unsure of how to initiate conversations, always reluctant to step
on one another’s toes.
JET Report on NWU BEd 2013: some data
Table 3: Perceptions of major challenges to producing high-quality teachers
Teacher
Educator
Number
2
11
5
20
3
12
14
4
10
19
Large classes
– less
individual
attention,
especially
during
microteaching
1
1
1
Poor literacy,
conceptual
knowledge/
understanding
of students
entering
programme
Limited time
available to
make
powerful
interventions
Students
entering
teacher
education who
don’t really
want to be
teachers / low
admission
criteria for
teacher
education
1
1
1
1
1
Staff
workload:
High teaching,
marking loads
Problems
within the
institutional
structure; the
way we
structure / run
our teacher
education
programmes
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
1
Questions to consider for the BEd Colloquium
• How do we understand academic depth in relation to specialist
content knowledge?
• How do we measure academic rigour in relation to pedagogic
content knowledge (pck) and specialist content knowledge (sck)?
• What kinds of measures do we need to put into place to assure the
quality of pck and sck?
• What kinds of academic conversations do we need, and with which
stakeholders, in relation to the proper benchmarking of quality pck
and sck?
• How do we identify, select and include stakeholders in QA
mechanisms?
FES- BEd Colloquium
12 Feb 2014
It gives us as Faculty great pleasure to Welcome Prof Hamsa
Venkat to address the Colloquium on 12 Feb 2014. Prof Venkat
holds the position of SA Numeracy Chair at Wits – focused on a 5-year
research and development project in primary mathematics. Her work in
South Africa has been in the areas of Mathematical Literacy and
Primary Mathematics teaching and learning. The Numeracy Chair work
involves research, and the development and trialling research-based
interventions across ten government primary schools in one Gauteng
district. The project runs from 2011-15.
Prior to this, Hamsa was based in London for many years, working initially as a high school
mathematics teacher in London comprehensive schools, before moving into teacher
education at the Institute of Education and research in mathematics education at King’s
College. She obtained her PhD at Kings College London and is the winner of the 2005
British Educational Research Association dissertation award for making the most significant
doctoral contribution to research in education in 2004.
Thank you

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