1 . 0 INTRODUCTION
The sectors which fosters national development is education by just ensuring the development of a functional human resource. The particular institution of strong educational structures leads to a contemporary society populated by enlightened people, who can cause positive market progress and social transformation. A Positive social transformation as well as associated economic growth are achieved as the people put on the skills they learned while they were in school. Typically the acquisition of these skills is facilitated by one individual individuals ‘teacher’. For this reason, nations seeking economic and social changes need not ignore teachers and their role in countrywide development.
Teachers are the major factor that drives students’ achievements in learning. The performance of teachers normally determines, not only, the quality of education, but the general performance of your students they train. The teachers themselves therefore should get the best of education, so they can in turn help prepare students in the best of ways. It is known, the quality of teachers and quality teaching are some of the most important factors that shape the learning and social and academic growth of students. Quality training will ensure, to some large extent, teachers are of very high quality, so as to get to properly manage classrooms and facilitate learning. That is why instructor quality is still a matter of concern, even, inside countries where students consistently obtain high scores for international exams, such as Trends in Mathematics and Scientific research Study (TIMSS). In such countries, teacher education of primary importance because of the potential it has to cause positive students’ achievements.
The structure of teacher education keeps shifting in almost all countries in response to the quest with producing teachers who understand the current needs of kids or just the demand for teachers. The changes tend to be attempts to ensure that quality teachers are produced and often just to ensure that classrooms are not free of teachers. In the Oughout. S. A, how to promote high quality teachers has been a worry of contention and, for the past decade or so, has long been motivated, basically, through the methods prescribed by the No Children Left Behind Act (Accomplished California Teachers, 2015). Even during Japan and other Eastern countries where there are more coaches than needed, and structures have been instituted to ensure prime quality teachers are produced and employed, issues relating to that teacher and teaching quality are still of concern (Ogawa, Fujii & Ikuo, 2013). Teacher education is for this reason no joke anywhere. This article is in two parts. The software first discusses Ghana’s teacher education system and during the second part looks at some determinants of quality educating.
2 . 0 TEACHER EDUCATION
Ghana has been making strategic attempts to produce quality teachers for her basic school classrooms. As Benneh (2006) indicated, Ghana’s aim of teacher training is to provide a complete teacher education program through the supply of initial teacher training and in-service training software, that will produce competent teachers, who will help improve the effectiveness of this teaching and learning that goes on in schools. The teacher education program for Ghana’s basic school tutors was offered in Colleges of Education (CoE) merely, until quite recently when, University of Education, College of Cape Coast, Central University College and other tertiary institutions joined in. The most striking difference between the systems offered by the other tertiary institution is that while the Colleges or universities teach, examine and award certificates to their students, your Colleges of Education offer tuition while the University involving Cape Coast, through the Institute of BSTC 2020, examines and also award certificates. The training programs offered by these institutions are usually attempts at providing many qualified teachers to teach while in the schools. The National Accreditation Board accredits teacher teaching programs in order to ensure quality.
The National Accreditation Panel accredits teacher education programs based on the structure and written content of the courses proposed by the institution. Hence, the training run by various institutions differ in content plus structure. For example , the course content for the Institute associated with Education, University of Cape Coast is slightly different from the course structure and content of the Center pertaining to Continue Education, University of Cape Coast and non-e of these two programs matches that of the CoEs, nonetheless they all award Diploma in Basic Education (DBE) once three years of training. The DBE and the Four-year Untrained Teacher’s Diploma in Basic Education (UTDBE) programs jog by the CoEs are only similar, but not the same. The same are generally said of the Two-year Post-Diploma in Basic Education, Four-year Bachelor’s degree programs run by the University of Cape Coast, the University of Education, Winneba and the other sorts of Universities and University Colleges. In effect even though, same goods attract same clients, the preparation of the products really are done in different ways.
It is through these many products that teachers are prepared for the basic schools – as a result of nursery to senior high schools. Alternative pathways, as well as programs through which teachers are prepared are seen to be good throughout situations where there are shortages of teachers and more professors ought to be trained within a very short time. A typical example will be UTDBE program, mentioned above, which design to equip non-professional teachers with professional skills. But this attempt to manufacture more teachers, because of shortage of teachers, has the inclination of comprising quality.
As noted by Xiaoxia, Heeju, Nicci and Stone (2010) the factors that develop the problems of teacher education and teacher retention happen to be varied and complex, but one factor that consultant educators are concerned about is the alternative pathways through which trainer education occur. The prime aim of many of the pathways will be to fast track teachers into the teaching profession. This short-changed the necessary teacher preparation that prospective teachers need prior to becoming classroom teachers. Those who favor alternative routes, including Teach for America (TFA), according to Xiaoxia, Heeju, Nicci and Stone (2010) have defended their alternative pathways by saying that even though the students are employed in a short-period of pre-service training, the students are actually academically brilliant and so have the capacity to learn a lot from a short period. Others argue that in subjects like Everyday terms, Science and mathematics where there are usually shortages from teachers, there must be a deliberate opening up of alternative path ways to good candidates who had done English, Math and Science courses at the undergraduate level. non-e of them arguments in support of alternative pathways, hold for the alternative teacher education programs in Ghana, where the academically brilliant trainees shun teaching due to reasons I shall come to.
After the target is just to fill vacant classrooms, issues about quality teacher preparation is relegated to the background, mysteriously. Right at the selection stage, the alternative pathways ease the necessity for gaining entry into teacher education programs. Once, for example , the second batch of UTDBE students were confessed, I can say with confidence that entry requirements into the CoEs were not adhered to. What was emphasized was that, the job seeker must be a nonprofessional basic school teacher who has long been engaged by the Ghana Education Service, and that the candidate holds a certificate above Basic Education Certificate Checking. The grades obtained did not matter. If this walkway had not been created, the CoEs would not have trained learners who initially did not qualify to enroll in the regular DBE program. However , it leaves in its trail a debilitating effect compromised quality.
Even with regular DBE courses, I have realized, just recently I must say, that CoEs through, particular, are not attracting the candidates with very high qualities. This as I have learnt now has a huge determine on both teacher quality and teacher effectiveness. It’s a fact, teacher education programs in Ghana are not regarded as substantial programs and so applicants with high grades do not pick out education programs. And so the majority of applicants who apply for educator education programs have, relatively, lower grades. When the entrance requirement for CoEs’ DBE program for 2016/2017 academic time was published, I noticed the minimum entry marks had been dropped from C6 to D8 for Gulf African Senior Secondary School Examination candidates. This decline in standard could only be attributed to CoEs’ try to attract more applicants. The universities too, lower its cut off point for education programs so as attract additional candidates. The universities as alleged by Levine (2006) see their teacher education programs, so to say, seeing that cash cows. Their desire to make money, force them to smaller admission standards, like the CoEs have done, in order to increase most of the enrollments. The fact that, admission standards are internationally lowered to get a goal of increasing numbers. This weak recruitment perform or lowering of standards introduce a serious challenge to make sure you teacher education.
The Japanese have been able to make teacher instruction and teaching prestigious and therefor attract students through high grades. One may argue that in Japan, all the supply of teachers far exceeds the demand and so respective authorities are not under any pressure to hire teachers. Their technique won’t suffer if they do all they can to select more significant grade student into teacher education programs. To them, the problems relating to the selection of teachers are more important that the issues with regards to recruitment. However , in western and African countries the difficulties relating to recruitment are prime. It is so because the interest for teachers far outweighs that of supply. European and African countries have difficulties recruiting teachers given that teachers and the teaching profession is not held in substantial esteem. Teacher education programs therefore do not attract college students who have very good grades. It is worth noting that, it is far from the recruiting procedure only that determines whether or not coach education will be prestigious, however recruiting candidates with big grades, ensures that after training, teachers will exhibit both the characteristics essential to effective teaching – quality and advantages. Teacher education can be effective if the teaching profession will be held in high esteem and therefore able to attract the perfect of applicants. Otherwise, irrespective of incentives put into place to pull in applicants and irrespective of the measures that will be put in place for you to strengthen teacher education, teacher education programs cannot wholly achieve its purpose.
In order to strengthen teacher preparation, there may be the need for teacher preparation programs to provide good coaching during the initial teacher training stage, and provide and experience support during the first few years after the teachers have been utilised. That is why Lumpe (2007) supports the idea that pre-service mentor education programs should ensure teachers have gained a good quality understanding of effective teaching strategies. Methodology classes therefore should certainly center on effective teaching strategies. Irrespective of the pathway working out program takes, the program must be structured such that trainees secure knowledge about pedagogy, besides the knowledge of subject matter. They should also receive enough exposure to practical classroom experience like the on-campus as well as off-campus teaching practice. Whether or not there is the need to fill vacancies in the classroom due to the high teacher attrition, many states face, teacher preparation programs should aim at making quality and effective teacher and not just filling vacancies.
3. 0 DETERMINANTS OF TEACHER QUALITY
Teacher quality seems to have such enormous influence on students’ learning. Anyone who has been in the teaching business will agree that teacher high-quality is central to education reform efforts. Priagula, Agam & Solmon (2007) described teacher quality as an crucial in-school factor that impact significantly on students’ knowing. Quality teachers have positive impact on the success connected with students. Where the students have quality and effective lecturers the students make learning gains while those with unproductive teachers show declines. With respect to the classroom teacher, teacher superior quality is a continuous process of doing self-assessment so as to have pro development and a self-renewal, in order to enhance teaching. For the tutor educator, an effective or quality teacher is one who is known for a good subject-matter and pedagogy knowledge, which the he/she will be able to build upon.
Outstanding teachers possess and exhibit a large number of exemplary qualities. They have the skills, subject matter, and pedagogy to succeed in every child. They help equip their students using the knowledge and breadth of awareness to make sound and independent judgments. Three determinants of teacher quality could be considered here. They are; pedagogical knowledge, subject-matter content education and experience.
3. 1 PEDAGOGICAL CONTENT KNOWLEDGE
Trainees of every profession receive some sort of education that will give them understanding into and prepare them for the task ahead. Who of the teacher is called Pedagogical Content Knowledge or Pedagogical Knowledge. Pedagogical Content Knowledge can be described as, knowledge the instructors use in organizing classrooms, delivering the content the students will have to show mastery over and for managing the individuals entrusted into their care. Generally speaking, pedagogical knowledge is awareness the teacher uses to facilitate students’ learning. Pedagogical Content Knowledge is in two major forms – teachers’ knowledge of the students’ pre-conceptions and teachers’ knowledge of schooling methodologies. Students come to class with a host of pre-conceptions relating to the things they are learning. The pre-conceptions may or possibly may not be consistent with the actual subject-matter that is delivered. Teachers requires a good idea of both kinds of preconception, in order to help pupils, replace the inconsistent pre-conceptions or build upon the actual consistent pre-conceptions to bring about meaningful learning. Teachers needs to have a repertoire of teaching methodologies for facilitating students’ learning. When the methodologies are applied wrongly little or no understanding occurs in students. In effect when either of the couple of is weak, the teacher becomes a bad one for the reason that that teacher will not be able to execute his/her responsibility in your vocation he/she has chosen. Due to this during teacher planning, Pedagogical Content Knowledge is emphasized.
Teachers gain Pedagogical Content Knowledge from various sources. Friedrichsen, Abell, Pareja, Brown, Lankford and Volkmann (2009) distinguished three future sources of Pedagogical Content Knowledge. They listed the origins as professional development programs, teaching experiences and lastly teachers’ own learning experiences. During their days as students on teacher education programs, teachers are assisted in assortment ways to gain Pedagogical Content Knowledge. For examples, through practice, they learn how to put the pedagogical skills individuals learnt. Teacher education programs and other professional development services create avenues for teachers to gain pedagogical content expertise through workshops, lectures, working together with colleagues, and in training practice. Then their experiences in their classrooms as they present students lead them to gain insight into which methodologies perform under best under specific situations. That last reference is usually ignored. It indicates that the professional knowledge of the music teacher begins to develop long before the teacher becomes a candidate accepting teacher education. This means, the way teachers teach influences towards a large extent the prospective teachers’ professional knowledge together with beliefs. This type of learning is, generally, overlooked by course instructors at all levels because unintentional and informal, it is.
Pedagogical Content Knowledge can be gained through formal and simple means. Learning opportunities for pedagogical content knowledge, that used to be, designed by institutions, based on learning objectives which generally will be prerequisite for certification, constitutes the formal means. On formal learning, students have clear ideas about the goal of acquiring pedagogical skills. Informal learning, on the other hand, seriously isn’t organized intentionally. It takes place incidentally and so can be considered simply because ‘side effect’. As Kleickmann et al (2012) labeled it, it has no goal with respect to learning outcomes, and it’s contextualized to a large extent. This is often called learning by simply experience. Informal, but deliberative, learning situations exists. The occurs in situations such as learning in groups, guidance, and intentional practicing of some skills or devices. Werquin (2010) described informal, but deliberative, learning while non-formal learning. Unlike formal learning, nonformal learning isn’t going to occur in educational institutions and does not attract official certifications. Whether pedagogical content knowledge
Pedagogical Content Knowledge is required to bridges the gap between content knowledge and additionally actual teaching. By bridging the gap, it implies that discussions of content are relevant to teaching and that interactions themselves are focused on the content. As such, Pedagogical Content Understanding is something teachers must pay attention to. Teachers who feature and use good Pedagogical content knowledge have decent control over classroom management and assessment, knowledge about finding out processes, teaching methods, and individual characteristics (Harr, Eichler, & Renkl, 2014). Such teachers are able to create the atmosphere that facilitates learning and are also able to gift or facilitate the learning of concepts by even lagging students. They are able to make learning easier by students therefore teacher with high pedagogical content knowledge can be considered as quality teachers. It is worth noting that it is not even pedagogical content knowledge only that makes good teachers. The teacher will not be good if he/she is master for pedagogical knowledge but lacks subject matter content knowledge.
3. 2 SUBJECT-MATTER KNOWLEDGE
The goal of teaching is to help students develop intellectual resources that will enable them participate totally in the main domains of human taught and enquiry. The degree to which the teacher can assist students to learn depends on any subject-matter the teacher possesses. That is to say, teachers’ knowledge of subject-matter has influence on their efforts to assist students to learn who subject-matter. If a teacher is ignorant or not kept informed he/she cannot do students any good, he/she will somewhat much harm them. When the teacher conceives knowledge to the extent that it is narrow, or do not have accurate information relating to a special subject-matter, he/she will pass on these same shallow and / or inaccurate information to students. This kind of teacher will rarely recognize the consistent pre-conceptions and challenge the misunderstandings of students. Such a teacher can introduce misconceptions because he/she uses texts uncritically or inappropriately alter individuals. It is the teacher’s conception of knowledge that shapes the questions he/she asks and the ideas he/she reinforces as well as sorts of tasks the teacher designs.
Teachers’ subject-matter make any difference content knowledge must go beyond the specific topics of their programs. This is because the teacher does not only define concepts just for students. Teachers explain to students why a particular concept or perhaps definition is acceptable, why learners must know it in addition to how it relates to other concepts or definitions. It is done properly if the teacher possesses a good understanding of the particular subject-matter. This type of understanding includes an understanding of the intellectual situation and value of the subject-matter. The understanding of subject matter mostly reinforces the teacher’s confidence in delivering lessons, therefore making him/her a good teacher.
3. 3 EXPERIENCE
Feel is one of the factors that account for variations in teacher earning, the world over (Hanushek and Rivkin, 2006). The fact that salary discrepancies are based on the number of years the teacher has served, shows that employers believe the teachers experience makes him/her an improved teacher and such a teacher must be motivated to remain from the service. Though some studies like that Hanushek (2011) experience suggested that the experience positively influences teacher quality exclusively in the first few years, and that beyond five years, expertise ceases to have positive impact on teacher efficacy, common sense shows us the one who has been doing something for a long time really does better and with ease. Experience will therefore continue to spend, since, more experienced teachers have the propensity to know more around the subject-matter they teach, and think and behave suitably in the classroom, and have much more positive attitudes toward his or her students.
Teachers who have spent more years of helping, usually, feel self-assured in their skill to use instructional along with assessment tools. These teachers are able to reach even one of the most difficult-to-reach students in their classrooms. They also have greater confidence throughout their capability to control the class and prevent incidence that might produce the teaching and learning process difficult. Their feel makes them much more patient and tolerant than the counterpart with few years of experience (Wolters & Daugherty, 2007). Novice teachers progressively gain and develop assisting and classroom management skills needed to make them effective trainers. They spend time learning themselves – trying to understand well the job they have entered. The teachers who have spent further years teaching have gained a rich store in knowledge the less experience teachers will be trying to develop. Teachers’ sense of effectiveness is generally associated with good perceptions, behaviors and interactions with their students. This is something typically the experienced teacher has already acquired. These explain why more capable teachers are usually more effective teachers than the novices.
Another valid reason more experienced teachers tend to be better teachers than their eco-friendly counterparts, is that, experienced teachers have gained extra training, and hence, have acquired additional teaching skills, needed to be effective from direct experience. Usually the training of academics does not end at the initial teacher training stage. Once graduation, teachers attend capacity building seminars, workshops and even conferences. These give teachers the opportunity to learn emerging coaching techniques and also refresh their memories on the things they’ve learnt. Such seminars, workshops and conferences mostly increase the teacher’s store of knowledge. The other advantage the veteran teachers have is that they have encountered more situations to produce the skills needed to be effective teachers through additional direct, not to mention sometimes indirect experiences. That is to say, they have encountered challenging predicaments which gave them the opportunity to build their skills. Whether they were able to overcome these challenging situation or not, won’t matter so much. If the teachers encounter difficult situations of their classes, they learn from them. If the teachers are able to prevail over difficult situations, they get to know how to resolve such cases at the next encounter, otherwise their reflections and guidelines from co-teachers gives them ideas about how to technique same or similar situations. They also have a greater chance of exposure to current and competent models. More experienced teachers have a very good higher chance of demonstrating superior self-efficacy in most areas, as they quite simply have learned the needed classroom management and instructional proficiency from their colleagues. Teachers who have been in active service for several years are most likely to be classified as quality teachers, because of the things they have learnt from in-service training, capacity building work spaces and seminars, their interaction with other teachers and also what they have learnt from experience in their classrooms.
contemplate. 0 CONCLUSION
Teacher education aims at providing teacher coaching program through initial teacher training for teacher trainees, and in-service training for practicing teachers in order to develop knowledgeable and committed teachers for effective teaching plus learning. To realize this mission, teacher education programs have already been instituted for the training of teachers. These programs change from one country to another. Even within the same country, there might be different programs training teachers for the same certificate. All these alternative programs are a created, specially, where there are shortages of teachers, and attempts are being made to train a lot of teachers at a time. These alternative programs ease the professor certification requirement, allowing those who under normal circumstances wouldn’t become teachers. This introduces serious challenges. Because more and more teachers are needed within a short period, their training is rather fast-tracked resulting in what is usually referred to as half-baked teachers – teachers of lower quality. Applicants who did not develop admission into the program of their choice come into teaching primarily because they have nowhere else to go. Such applicants really do not be dedicated to the teaching service in the end. Fast-tracking primary teacher preparation actually harm the mission for which the teacher training institutions were created. This is because the instructor produced through such training are usually not of premium quality.
Teacher preparation has a direct impact on students’ achievement. The most significant in-school factors upon which student’s success hinges, is a consultant who has been well prepared. A well-prepared teacher is person who has gone through a strong teacher preparation program. It is therefore needed for educators to work to create needed improvements in teacher groundwork. To strengthen teacher preparation, teacher preparation programs have got to provide strong preparation during the initial teacher training stage and give support to fresh teachers until they are inducted. Pre-service teacher education should emphasize the acquisition regarding effective teaching strategies. This can be done in methodology courses and corresponding field experiences. Students who have quality educators make achievement gains, while those with ineffective teachers reveal declines, therefore having high quality teachers in classrooms possesses a positive impact on students’ achievements.
Pedagogical content knowledge, subject matter content knowledge and experience determines the quality of a trainer. Teachers make subject-matter accessible to students by using Pedagogical content knowledge. Pedagogical content knowledge has two tremendous areas of knowledge: teachers’ knowledge of students’ subject-matter pre-conceptions as well as teachers’ knowledge of teaching strategies. What Pedagogical content experience does is that, it links subject-matter content understanding and the practice of teaching, making sure that discussions on articles and other content are appropriate and that, discussions focus on the content and help enrollees to retain the content. The teacher’s job is to expedite the learning of subject-matter by students. The degree to that this teacher can assist students to learn depends on the subject-matter content and articles knowledge the teacher possesses. Teachers who possess erroneous information or comprehend the subject-matter in narrow strategies, harm students by passing on the same false or trivial subject-matter knowledge to their students. The last of the three determinants of teacher quality is experience. Teachers who have dished up more years gain additional and more specific training through attending seminars, conferences and workshops and in-service instruction and so tend to understand their job better. They also would likely have met and solved many challenging situations in their college class and therefore know exactly what to do in any situation.