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ERIC Number: ED524465
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010-May
Pages: 54
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Professional Learning Communities in the Teachers' College: A Resource for Teacher Educators
du Plessis, Joy; Muzaffar, Irfan
With the introduction of free primary education throughout Africa over the past 20 years, the demand for more qualified teachers has grown tremendously (Nilsson, 2003). Mainstream teacher education programs, typically consisting of 1-3 years of residence in teachers' colleges and some form of practice teaching, are unable to meet this escalation in demand. Given this, many countries have resorted to alternative models of teacher education to supply the needed teachers in a short period of time ("Global Campaign for Education," 2006; Lynd, 2005; Moon, 2007). A number of hybrid programs have also emerged to deal with this increased demand for more teachers. With myriad approaches to teacher education and recruitment in place simultaneously, the quality of most teacher education programs has declined, resulting in calls for increased attention to quality (Carnoy, 2007). Isolation of teacher educators is not conducive to the development of teacher colleges as high quality professional institutions. This paper responds to this need for collective reflection. In this paper, the authors take the perspective that teacher educators can transform their practice through 1) updating their knowledge on salient educational issues for teacher education, 2) engaging in critical dialogue about those issues in relation to their personal beliefs and the local context and 3) developing a reflective approach to their practice. The content of all the chapters is aligned with these purposes. The main body of each chapter consists of the main theoretical ideas underlying reforms in education. This is followed by proposed seminars that prompt the participating teacher educators to carefully examine their own system of teacher education and reflect on the possible ways of removing impediments to reform. Given the central importance of the idea of professional learning communities, the first chapter is devoted to surveying this idea. While the rest of the themes in the remaining chapters will vary, the authors hope that seminars at the end of each chapter will be part of a general effort to form professional learning communities. Appended are: (1) an example of a holistic rubric that teachers may use to tell learners about the progress in reading at the end of a term; and (2) an example of how a teacher educator uses an analytic rubric to assess Parts of Speech Picture Books made by student teachers. Individual chapters contain footnotes and references. (Contains 30 tables and 7 figures.)
EQUIP1. Available from: American Institutes for Research. 1000 Thomas Jefferson Street NW, Washington, DC 20007. Tel: 202-403-5000; Fax: 202-403-5001; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: United States Agency for International Development
Authoring Institution: American Institutes for Research (AIR), Educational Quality Improvement Program 1 (EQUIP1)
Identifiers - Location: Africa