Faculty Development in Education – Flaws and Remedies

I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn. .

Albert Einstein

It can never be wrong once we say that lap of the mother is a first place where a child learns to speak the initial words. Yes, it’s the same place where the basic learning starts which includes the decision of right / wrong and basic social norms and behaviours. However, it is more pertinent to mention that the enhancement of this learning is being done by the teachers in schools, colleges and universities. After parents, teachers are the role model for the student which contribute a lot in transformation process of making him / her a useful member of the society. In recent past I have seen decline in overall attitude of our young people towards basic norms and ethics. I have seen them hurting others on societal grounds of religion, sectarianism, class difference etc. This attitude and pattern is at rise with each passing day. Corruption, whether financial or ethical is not being taken seriously by our younger generation. This somehow depict that there is a gap in grooming process of these minds and should be examined at all tiers by the researchers of social sciences. In my subsequent thought process, I would highlight my point of view.

I have seen number of universities coming up in the country but alarming thing is that mostly these are privately owned corporate structures which are coming up as good profit earning organizations not meant for lower and lower middle class people like us. There is hardly any sign of government universities for the marginalized community of low income tier. Due to good salary package and allied facilities food Human Recourse flows to the corporate oriented universities and remaining left out is absorbed by government institutions.

Its bit natural that what we see, we do get its effect. May be that effect is negligible but at some stage it does reflect in the conversations and actions. Being affiliated for quite some time with academia for pursuance of my higher studies, I have experienced some critical flaws which if addressed may be able to bridge the gap of grooming young generation. Here I don’t say that complete academia is flawed because there are people who can be taken as example of perfection. Its bit natural that whenever we see problems, we tend to compare those with other elite cadres of the country with whom we are or were affiliated like Armed Forces and bureaucracy. In my opinion there is a difference in process of training which leads to grooming which in turn give edge to these elite institutions in presenting themselves in general masses. I have observed that there are some serious discrepancies in personality development of academia. They may be good teachers but their conversational skills in terms of using words, their dress presentation and informal student-teacher interactions definitely need improvement. Yet another pertinent aspect of academia is their intellectual ability / integrity in grading and doing justice to submitted student work. Senior management was seen taking no notice or deliberately overlooking these aspects was also not understood.

Human Resource Management of academia needs to be revamped. Merely teaching them pedagogies and curriculum management may not solve the issue. There is a need to give them dedicated personality development and presentation skills which may not be possible without dedicated hard work of management tiers. In December 2018, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced formation of National University in Prime Minister House. University will house the Institute of advanced studies in its initial phase, which will promote research opportunities in Pakistan. I suggest that some faculty development institute should also be developed in this university which should work for personality development of university faculty. This institute should only concentrate on non-teaching aspects like speaking skills, conversational skills, dressing pattern for on and off campus activities. In addition, basic personality and character assessment should also be done here and recommendations should be given in keeping or relieving the faculty members. The training module should be of at least three-month duration and trainees should not be allowed to leave the institute. Living and dining facilities should be provided at same place. Their activities and conduct should be observed 24/7 in this duration. Training staff should include ex bureaucrats, armed forces officers and psychologists.

HEC has to play a positive role in making such things possible. Proposed solution can be amended as well to make it practicable. I am sure that if this aspect is looked after, we will definitely see a change not only in faculty standards but also in overall conduct of our younger generation. We need to tell our younger generation what is right and not what is flawed. Youth follows what their ideals do, not what they say. So the teachers have to DO what is correct so that wrong message should not spread.

16 thoughts on “Faculty Development in Education – Flaws and Remedies”

  1. In-service training for all teachers must be part of every institute’s stategy. Management need to promote a culture of learning and development and especially develop a collaborative approach to course development. No teacher is fully trained and we can all learn from each other.

  2. Sehrish Qayyum

    Highlighted areas to be revamped are well described, we have to get out of this system to get real meaning of pedagogy and teacher student bonding….. Huge responsibility is on the management figures in every educational institute…..

  3. Well, I generally agree with your point of view regarding teachers not being ideal and hence the students are not getting the best material as role models. Giving social training skills to the available teachers could help reduce the gap between ideal and what is available right now. But not much in my thinking. It is generally accepted that personality and grooming is finalized in one’s teen life period and not much thereafter. Therefore, I would suggest another important aspect may be added in your analysis i.e. Why are we getting lower spectra of society as teachers? (Ofcourse this is a general statement and exceptions are there). Especially in males when one fails to get into any decent and lucrative and well paid profession, the remaining lot joins the education field. And it is never their first choice in the first instance. We have to ascertain the reason as to why teaching profession is the least sort after profession in Pakistan. Why teachers lost respect in Pakistan, the country created in the name of Islam and in Islam teachers are considered as a ‘rohani’ father. There could be many reason for this decline but to me the main reason is the monetary aspects; side effects of corporate culture, where your status in the society is determined with your monetary status and not your character or other traits. Alas, we cannot get rid of this corporate culture being citizen of global village so we have to find the solution from within this ambit. In my eyes the remedy to the problem could be substantial increase in pay package of the teachers. Once this profession will become financially lucrative, it will automatically attract the best lot of the society. I would suggest that government should start a pilot project where people are hired with handsome pay package and tasked to teach at the primary level. There the students are in formidable age and once molded by the best teachers will continue to look forward to best teachings and ideals in their life.

    1. Partially agree to the point of Payments. I did a study on comparison pay packages of teachers and another public sector organization for which people dream off. But finding were not depicting overall compensation difference. Hence the point of declining standard due to merely salary cannot be expected as a excuse.

  4. Well written the recommendations for an institute and the training strategies are also appreciable too much focus on the dressing up may lead to a conflict as our culture is diversified. Yes we can adopt a flexible criteria for dressing.

    1. Good observation. Organizations like Armed Forces wear uniform and hence easy to maintain uniformity. But as far as civilian dress code is concerned it would be very subjective. Decent dress for someone would be unacceptable for another. As Bano Qudsya said in her novel, Raja Gidh, that one wearing burqah consider the one wearing chaddar as modern and similarly one wearing chaddar would consider one wearing dupatta as modern. This aspect must be kept in mind before dressing code for teachers are decided.

    2. Thanks Saman Arif for your feedback, the point I wanted to highlight was socially acceptable dress code. We all are wise that what is acceptable and what is not. Mostly female teachers are well and nicely dressed. Contrary to that, I have seen male teachers sometimes dress in way which is not suitable for class, occasion or for an educator. We must see around and even then if not sure may ask the one who are familiar.

  5. Well written Afaq and I am glad to see the specific attention has been given to the most significant areas of teacher training. Your thought provoking, pragmatic and much reflective article is definitely help many of the teacher educators as well as the prospective teachers. So, I as as a teacher educator personally feel to publicize it and do write more highlighting more neglected areas of higher education.

  6. Shahid Tasllim Satti

    Nice piece of writing. It discussed the essential inadequacies which exists in the process of faculty development in such important field i.e education. Which is key factor for the development of any society. Also it presented how to overcome such shortcomings. As you suggested, if government takes initiatives in this regard by opening Training department for education faculty it’ll be great landmark. Also I would like to share something which I experienced and really liked while studying in USA. They have some “community projects”. It’s mandatory for the students to complete during their course duration. In such community projects teachers also participate voluntarily with students. By working together for some positive cause for the betterment of community, they build positive relationships with each other. They start taking their teachers as inspirations. This is something very practical and can’t be learn from books or by traditional way of teaching. There is need to adopt such practices in the process of Trainings. I truly appreciate the great work done by you..!!

  7. Zeryab Ali Yehya

    Superb effort.. We should consider Islamic way of teaching to our schooling systems.. A teacher should have not only comprehensive knwoledge but he/she have the moral character.. Wich we can not find in Madrisa education system..
    كَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا فِيكُمْ رَسُولًا مِّنكُمْ يَتْلُو عَلَيْكُمْ آيَاتِنَا وَيُزَكِّيكُمْ وَيُعَلِّمُكُمُ الْكِتَابَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ وَيُعَلِّمُكُم مَّا لَمْ تَكُونُوا تَعْلَمُونَ
    Just as We have sent among you a messenger from yourselves reciting to you Our verses and purifying you and teaching you the Book and wisdom and teaching you that which you did not know.

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    يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَن يَرْتَدَّ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِ فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ يُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لَائِمٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَن يَشَاءُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ
    O you who have believed, whoever of you should revert from his religion – Allah will bring forth [in place of them] a people He will love and who will love Him [who are] humble toward the believers, powerful against the disbelievers; they strive in the cause of Allah and do not fear the blame of a critic. That is the favor of Allah ; He bestows it upon whom He wills. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing.

    فَبِمَا رَحْمَةٍ مِّنَ اللَّهِ لِنتَ لَهُمْ ۖ وَلَوْ كُنتَ فَظًّا غَلِيظَ الْقَلْبِ لَانفَضُّوا مِنْ حَوْلِكَ ۖ فَاعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَاسْتَغْفِرْ لَهُمْ وَشَاوِرْهُمْ فِي الْأَمْرِ ۖ فَإِذَا عَزَمْتَ فَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُتَوَكِّلِينَ
    So by mercy from Allah , [O Muhammad], you were lenient with them. And if you had been rude [in speech] and harsh in heart, they would have disbanded from about you. So pardon them and ask forgiveness for them and consult them in the matter. And when you have decided, then rely upon Allah . Indeed, Allah loves those who rely [upon Him].

    Educate men without religion and you make of them but clever devils.

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