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Develop a checklist covering the expected requirements of a professional teacher

Develop a checklist covering the expected requirements of a professional teacher.

Reece and Walker (2000, p518) list some key competences of the role of teacher. This is one basis on which to base a checklist of expected requirements, as are other discussions of competence such as Minton (1979, p118). There are also plenty of existing checklists and collections of characteristics. Some examples are given in appendix 1. It can be difficult to compare and combine these approaches, though, as they all approach the same concept from different levels of detail.

At a very high level, a professional teacher has only one overriding objective: to enable learners to learn. To construct a checklist, that high-level objective must be expanded into a more fine-grained list of points.

For example, it might make sense to split the requirements into those that occur during "teaching time", and those that occur outside scheduled teaching hours. "Teaching time" requirements might include the ability to manage a classroom, communication skills, an understanding of student learning and the ability to adapt to learners’ needs. Other requirements might include curriculum and lesson planning, reflection and self-development, working with colleagues and within an organisational structure and so on.

However, such a checklist must also be appropriate to the context in which the teacher in question is expected to practise. A teacher working solely with one-to-one mentoring in the workplace is likely to have quite a different set of expected requirements from a team teacher dealing with large classes of students desperate to accumulate a paper qualification.

So the "checklist" I propose is deliberately loosely worded and suitable for multiple interpretations. The benefit of this is that it encourages reflection and peer discussion, both of which are valuable tools for improvement.

  1. A teacher should enable learners to learn
  2. A teacher should do this in a way appropriate to the context
  3. A teacher should learn, develop and improve teaching practise

Any of the other checklists and categorisations from the referenced books or appendices may be used to track development toward these loose goals.

Appendices

  1. Examples of checklists and collections of characteristics

References:

  • Armitage et. al. (1999) Teaching and Training in Post-Compulsory Education. Open University Press
  • Minton, D. (1997) Teaching Skills in Further and Adult Education. 2nd Ed. City & Guilds.
  • Reece, I and Walker, S. (2000) Teaching, Training and Learning; a practical guide. 4th Ed. Business Education Publishers.


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