The Importance of Professional Development for Teachers
The learning and teaching process is an essential element in the cognitive and technological development that the world is witnessing today, and to keep pace with this development, it is necessary to prepare and develop the teacher continuously to meet the necessary needs of society and raise the educational level.
The teacher is one of the main factors for the success of the educational process, without an academically qualified and professionally trained teacher who is aware of his great and comprehensive role, no educational system can reach its goals.
With the tremendous technological development, there has become an urgent need for a professionally developed teacher on an ongoing basis to keep up with this development, a teacher who meets the needs of the student in learning and meets the needs of society and its requirements for progress and advancement.
There is an imperative need to train teachers to keep up with changes and developments to maximize the effectiveness of the teacher and develop his abilities following modern trends and contemporary technologies.
A creative teacher is a student seeking more learning and development, keeping pace with the information technology revolution, not a person who is limited in his life to the knowledge and skills he acquired in preparatory institutions only.
During this article, we will know the concept of professional development of a teacher, the forms of professional development and its justification, and the areas of professional development and their importance.
Definition of professional development of a teacher:
Professional development is a set of means aimed at helping teachers learn new skills, develop their abilities in professional practices, explore advanced concepts to raise the efficiency of teachers, and develop performance at school.
Professional development is a continuous process planned in an organized and implementable manner to improve the level of performance of the teacher by equipping him with the necessary skills and developing positive trends to improve the level of learning and teaching in response to the changes and needs of society.
Keel University has defined the professional development of a teacher as a process consisting of three stages:
Vocational training: it’s the work to provide teachers with the set of skills necessary to raise their efficiency.
Professional education: modifying ideas and beliefs about their work and practice and emphasizing professional values through courses and readings.
Professional support: that is, providing an atmosphere of job stability and improving working conditions, and staying inside schools for long periods.
Forms of professional development:
- professional development of the teacher through training and development programs during teaching.
- professional development of the teacher through self-development methods.
- professional development of the teacher through contemporary technologies.
Obstacles to professional development:
- Fear of change.
- Poor level of professional development programs.
- Lack of information about professional development programs.
- Weak material and moral incentives.
- The absence of a future vision among planners.
- Unwillingness to teamwork.
Areas of professional development of teachers:
- Development and renewal in the field of academic teacher specialization.
- Developing the teacher in the field of human relations, communication, interaction, and the way he deals with situations that he may be exposed to during the performance of his educational function.
- Modernization in the field of scientific research and the field of academic supervision.
- Development in the field of teachers' use of information and communication technologies and their useful employment in the field of education and pedagogy.
- Teacher development in the field of updating old educational curricula and designing modern educational curricula suitable for the current reality and changes in the world.
- Developing the teacher in the field of teaching methods and teaching performance, through the use of modern methods of communicating ideas and information to learners.
- The field of development, self-evaluation, and commitment to the ethics of the teaching profession.
The impact of professional development of teachers on the performance of a student:
- This greatly motivates him, because the student is alienated from learning as a result of the traditional routine in the means and methods of Education.
- Narrowing the gap between scientific progress and the reality of students in school, limits their abilities to excel and creativity.
- Creating a spirit of competition among students in the preparation of various teaching aids.
- Raising the level of education and progress in various aspects of the educational process, and helps to form educated and developed societies that achieve prosperity in society because of their effective services.
The most important justifications for the professional development of a teacher are the following:
- The cognitive revolution in all fields of science and knowledge and the communication revolution have contributed to its spread and expansion
- The revolution in the field of information and Communication Technologies has led to the world is a small city where information and data move at a tremendous speed
- The plurality of the roles of the teacher and the multiplicity of his responsibilities in the educational field, after he was a receiver of information, he became an assistant to the learner to explore it through advanced and contemporary teaching methods
- Accelerated developments in the field of teaching and learning strategies, which requires the teacher to keep up-to date
- The global trend towards adherence to the overall quality of the learning process and academic accreditation in the learning process
- Keeping abreast of everything new and advanced in the educational process and applying it according to international standards
- The multiplicity of learning systems and the diversity of methods of development and self-learning following the development and diversity of contemporary technologies
The achievements of professional development for teachers:
- Keep abreast of developments in the field of teaching and learning theories and work on their application to achieve effectiveness in learning.
- Keeping abreast of developments in the field of specialization and applying everything new.
- Establishing the principle of continuous learning, lifelong learning, and relying on self-learning methods.
- Consolidating commitment to the ethics of the teaching and learning profession and adherence to it.
- Linking theory and practice in educational fields.
- Developing the skills of employing contemporary educational technologies and using them to communicate information to the learner effectively.
- Empower the teacher with the skills of using information sources and searching for everything new.
- Contribute to the formation of advanced learning communities that provide professional services to the community.
- Contribute to addressing educational issues in a scientific and sophisticated manner.
- Develop all kinds of assessment skills and competencies, especially self-assessment skills.
In the past, the greatest interest was related to how to prepare the appropriate curriculum, prepare students and provide them with scientific expertise paying attention to the preparation of teachers and their adequate readiness to do their job appropriately.
But the teacher is the cornerstone of the educational and pedagogical process as well, so it is necessary to also pay attention to the teacher, develop his skills, his way of teaching, and use teaching aids.
The aim is to transfer interest to the learner to achieve the desired educational benefit.