What have the teachers learned? The impact of social studies VT program on selected government school teachers

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (M. Ed.)


Institute for Educational Development, Karachi


This exploratory study presents the impact of Social studies visiting teacher (VT) program at IED on government school teachers' learning (views, attitude) and their practices in order to identify some key features of individual professional development efforts. The fieldwork for the study was done in four government schools in Karachi Pakistan with four Social Studies VTs (female) who have done VT course in 1996. The study focused on trying to understand what the teachers were taught in the VT program, what they learned and how it influenced their practices. The data for study was collected from VT, head, VT's colleague, course instructor and DEO through observation, interviews, discussions, documents and some activities (ideal lesson plan & teaching, situations). The major findings of the study were that Social Studies VT program has had some influence on VTs' attitude towards Social Studies and students which has become more positive. VTs have begun to consider Social Studies as more important, useful and an interesting subject, and students as a main key in teaching learning process. The program has had some impact on teachers' person. They have become more confident, polite, and tolerant and it has removed their fear of English language. This program has impacted on VTs' knowledge about skills and strategies that could be useful in teaching Social Studies or any subject. They specifically mentioned questioning skills, thinking skills, social skills and map skills, co-operative learning, peer coaching, lesson planning, and assessment. They have some partial understanding and misconceptions. VTs seems to have had very little influence on their practice. The nature of the VT program's impact on teachers has been explained in the study with reference to three factors: program factors, school factors and individual's factors. These factors act as filters between what the VTs are taught, what they learned and the extent to which they integrate their learning with their practice. The conclusion of the study is that teachers learned from VT program, but these factors determined what they would do? The implication of the study with recommendations are presented at the end of the paper.

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