Secondary Education in Uzbekistan, are amply demonstrated in another notable feature of Gulyamova, Irgasheva and Bolitho’s chapter, that is the space it gives to project participants to speak for themselves. Their narratives bring the project to life, providing vivid illustrations of their varied experiences, their successes as well as the struggles they went through over time. Chapter 2 offers, then, many learning opportunities (though, of course, not the only ones) for those who wish to initiate and sustain large-scale, sector-wide reform programmes. The following two chapters take us from the state to the private sector. Anne Burns and Emily Edwards (Chapter 3) recount a sector-wide initiative by English Australia to promote high levels of professional practice among the 2,500 teachers working in the English Language Intensive Courses for Overseas Students (ELICOS) sector. This was achieved through an Action Research (AR) project (for which Burns provided professional guidance), with teachers from across the sector invited to develop outline research projects that they wished to conduct in their institutions. A number of these were selected for support. Among these in 2012 was one by Edwards, who provides an account of professional development from a personal perspective through her participation in the AR project. AR was chosen because of its ‘transformative power’ and Edwards’ account demonstrates clearly its potential to act as a catalyst for CPD and career progression. Just as significant, though, is the impact participation in the AR project had on her students’ learning. Edwards became more connected to her students’ needs, helping them to improve their writing abilities, while her decision to negotiate with them in the development of self-directed learning materials led to an increase in their self-study skills, essential for their university studies beyond the English programme. Burns’ and Edwards’ conclusion that ‘Providing teachers with opportunities to conduct action research as a form of CPD is an investment in teacher quality; and ultimately teacher quality leads to enhanced student learning’ is clearly established here. Though at its inception this was a top-down project, its success relied on the active engagement of teachers in the innovation, demonstrating a similar synergy between top-down and bottom-up approaches to that we saw in India. Here it was English Australia that was manning the CPD ‘travel desk’. In Chapter 4 Isabela Villas Boas examines the experience of her own institution, Casa Thomas Jefferson, in Brazil, in developing multiple opportunities for its teachers to access professional development, differentiated according to their needs and linked to their career stages. In an organic process over a number of years, her institution has moved towards ‘Visionary Professional Development’, which is professional development centred on the needs of the teachers and which contributes to a true learning institution rather than adopting a ‘one size fits all’ approach, with managers deciding on topics for one-off workshops attended by all teachers at pre-specified times throughout the year. Teachers were always ‘recognised as the lifeblood of an effective institution’ but now their own agency is seen as central to the development of the learning institution. Teachers are not just offered choice among a range of CPD alternatives proposed by the institution, but are encouraged to propose projects which they feel are important to their own development. The end result is that Casa Thomas Jefferson has developed a learning community in which all teachers,
Published on Aug 29, 2014
Published on Aug 29, 2014
The publication, edited by David Hayes offers global perspectives on the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) of English language teach...