Year

2005

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Faculty of Education

Abstract

This study reviews the current short term basis professional development of teachers in Sri Lanka. The status of the Sri Lankan program is reviewed in detail with a review of international literature. In this study, theories and principles which provide the basis for teacher development and effective teacher professional practices are used to formulate the theoretical framework. The teacher development models studied within this framework are reviewed in relation to the nature of the Sri Lankan model to identify the elements which would be useful for incorporation to improve the model of short term basis continuing professional development of teachers. This study falls within the qualitative research paradigm. However, some simple quantitative analysis is included where the need was felt to highlight points of relevance. The respondents in this study are teachers, principals, teacher educators, program developers and implementers. The sample studied included a review of the role of the teacher centres which are considered central to all short term basis continuing teacher development in Sri Lanka. The data gathering techniques include focus group meetings, individual interviews, observations, document review and field notes. This study focuses primarily on the academic aspects of short term basis continuing professional development and not on administrative management aspects. Therefore, the sources for data collection were selected from sources of academic contribution. However, the data related to administrative and management aspect revealed by the academic staff were reviewed. Short Term Basis Continuous Professional Development (STBCPD) is taking place outside the schools controlled by the teacher centres. The findings reveal that this system has considerable limitations as well as advantages. Owing to various factors, teacher development inside the school is also problematic and cannot be carried out systematically within the school. It has become difficult to assess either teacher development or changes of the students� performance that can be attributed to short term basis continuing teacher development practices as currently practiced. The study recommends an integrated model of short term basis continuing professional development integrating teacher centre and school-based practices, implementing adult learning principles and approaches and mechanisms to assess performance. Further, the integrated model provides for sustainable and appropriate coordination among the responsible stakeholders in the field of short term basis continuous development of teachers in Sri Lanka.

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