Monday, August 25, 2014

Urgent Need of Personalised Professional Development for Our Teachers

Most of us know that every student has their own approach to learning and a single teaching method might not prove effective for every student. Hence there is a need for personalised learning which helps learners to acquire skills and knowledge at their own pace with the help of technology. Similarly there is also a strong need for personalised professional development for teachers.

Just like their students, every teacher has his/her own needs and strengths. Hence we need to use the right tools that will cater to their needs and enable our teachers to perform at their best.

Why Personalised Professional Development is Important?

Using technology and other educational tools to meet the unique needs and styles of different teachers not only helps in making their professional development more effective, but it also increases their performance and efficiency. According to different studies when professional development is customised to the teachers’ needs, educators become more proficient at different tasks in their classrooms like helping students to focus on the topic, modify activities to attend to student interests, creating a optimistic atmosphere, as well as encouraging a higher retention level.

Here I have listed some other reasons why teachers need personalised professional development-

Teachers are Trained Professionals

Almost every professional setting requires focused training that caters to the individual needs of the professionals. Just like the executives in the corporate sectors, teachers are also professionals who need training to gain new and relevant skills in order to improve their productivity and performance.

Teachers Face Individual Challenges

To tell you honestly, I think teaching is not an easy job. I am sure every teacher encounters different and unique challenges which vary according to their classroom environment, grade level and professional experience. When these inconsistencies are identified and addressed, it becomes much easier to open new communication channels which help to understand the best way to help students progress.

Teachers Must Be Empowered

Several studies have shown that professional development for teachers and educators is relevant and personal; outcomes and engagement of the teachers improve considerably.

Teachers Need To Be Informed

Under the conventional professional development model, it will be more challenging for you to measure effectiveness as there is no availability of data which will help to analyze whether needs of a teacher have been dealt with. However, with personalised professional development, it is easier to accumulate and evaluate data that will allow us to make better recommendations on an individual basis.

Challenges in Personalised Development

However you need to understand that personalised does not mean isolated. Personalised professional development can offer a wide range benefits when it promotes cooperation and collaboration. Moreover tailored professional development also requires much effort and time, which may seem overwhelming when compared to common development programmes. But finally the outcomes make personalised programmes worth the time and effort.

Using Technology

As technology has made it s way into the education sector to make learning more effective and accessible, teachers can now make the most of this opportunity to gather and evaluate data to create personalised lesson plans for their students. Thus educators need to get used to the latest educational technology tools in order to support their students’ development through their own individualised professional development.

To sum up, personalised professional development focuses on the strengths of teachers and addresses various challenges which they face regularly. It empowers our educators to become better and efficient teachers. Although there are several ways to achieve this, but taking a tailored approach for developing our teachers is undoubtedly the best.

Do you agree with me? Can personalised professional development truly help our teachers? What do you think? Share your views and opinions below.

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