Title

New reform in teacher education: An investigation of the implementation of 4-years B.ED. (Hons.) elementary programme in four selected teacher education institutions in Sindh, Pakistan

Date of Award

2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Philosophy in Education

Department

Institute for Educational Development, Karachi

Abstract

Over the past many decades, teacher education remained focus of the government. The national education policies since 1947 proposed for reforms in teacher education to improve the quality of education. Similarly, the National Education Policy (2009) recommended for reforms in the teacher education with a particular focus on pre-service teacher education. In line with recommendations, the Higher Education Commission and provincial governments have introduced a 4-year B.Ed. (Hons.) Elementary programme with the support from United States Agency for Internal Development, Pre-Service Teacher Education Programme (USAID, Pre-STEP) to improve the quality of education in Pakistan. This study sought to discover how is the B.Ed. (Hons.) elementary programme being implemented in the four selected teacher education institutions (TEIs) in Sindh, Pakistan. A mixed method research design was employed, which helped in collecting the data in breadth and depth to understand various aspects of the programme implementation. The quantitative data were collected from 120 prospective teachers and 30 faculty members through a 5-point Likert scale questionnaire to know about their views and experiences of the B.Ed. (Hons.) elementary programme. The qualitative data were collected through interviews and focus group discussions (FGD) from 45 research participants who comprised of key informants, department heads, faculties and prospective teachers. The groups for FGDs comprised of 4-6 research participants. This study found significant changes in teaching practices, use of ICTs and assessment tools and practices as an outcome of the interventions made. Moreover, the study found that the USAID, Pre-STEP played a significant role in implementation of the programme. However, many factors hampered the implementation especially in the post project period. These factors include; lack of updated reference materials and equipment including ICT, lack of qualified human resources, the mismatch with ground realities as well as between students' background and the specialized courses offered, lack of coordination, needed infrastructure and continued struggle for sustainability of actions after the project. The study also found that the Government Elementary Colleges of Education (GECEs) face greater challenges in terms of sustained enrolment as compared with university departments. This study suggests that the policy makers and programme implementers need to ensure conducting proper needs assessment and institutional analysis prior to starting a new programme and develop a proper sustainability strategy for post project period. The TEIs need to be equipped with the required resources. The revised recruitment policy (2017) need immediate implementation to ensure induction of qualified and performance-oriented staff to enhance the quality of education. Further, the TEIs need to work in strong partnership with the schools and key stakeholders. Moreover, a comprehensive follow-up, monitoring and evaluation system need to be put in place to improve the teacher education system at TEIs and Ministry levels.

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