Title

Exploring the transition from M.Ed. graduate to Professional Development Teacher

Date of Award

8-1-1999

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Education (M. Ed.)

Department

Institute for Educational Development, Karachi

Abstract

The graduates of the M.Ed. II program of the Aga Khan University, Institute for Educational Development representing seven countries of the developing world, have embarked upon their roles and responsibilities as Professional Development Teachers (PDTs). The study investigated the transition period of this cohort of PDTs from being the graduates of the M.Ed. program to being PDTs who have returned to their workplaces. An open-ended questionnaire was used as the major data collection tool and this was supplemented with interviews of some of the respondents. The major focus of both the questionnaire and the interviews was on PDTs' perspectives and perceptions. The questionnaire was sent to all the thirty-five PDTs of M.Ed. II, including those who are abroad. A total of thirty responses were received, which constitutes 86% of the target population. Supplementary interviews were held with 30% of the respondents The results indicate that the transition period through which PDTs have gone is full of challenges and constraints. Only a few PDTs, mostly from private schools, seemed to be moving smoothly into their new positions and professional roles as PDTs. The majority of PDTs seemed to have struggled for their identity in contexts, which were pervasive and hardly responsive to their professional needs. This struggle has taken different dimensions and was manifested in the psychological conflict of PDTs and the reality of their contexts. The psychological conflicts which PDTs experienced made them, at times, question both their roles as change agents and the very possibility of their bringing about change in their contexts. This conflict was exacerbated by the absence of specific support to meet their personal and professional needs. One of the major implications drawn from the study is about the importance of providing follow up support to PDTs in this transition stage of their professional careers. This could help PDTs to maintain their enthusiasm and commitment, and also assist them to be more successful in fulfilling their professional duties.

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