02 Sep Educational strategies in continuous professionalisation for teachers and specialists in gifted education
Educational strategies in continuous professionalisation for teachers and specialists in gifted education
Symposium116Eleonoor van Gerven, Slim Educatief, Netherlands; Annemieke Weterings-Helmons, Fontys University, Tilburg, Netherlands; Anouke Bakx, Fontys University, Tilburg, Netherlands
OceaniaFri 10:30 - 12:00
Balanced research and practice
We present three examples of good teacher education practices, aiming for continuous professional development (CPD) of Dutch teachers. In each example, the application of professional standards of teacher education is combined with theoretical and practical knowledge of gifted education. The courses are positioned within the European Qualification Framework at level 7 (master level). This ensures the high quality of educational strategies in CPD for teachers necessary to enhance the quality of gifted education in an educational context based on inclusion and diversity. We focus on three topics in three presentations. We describe what we have in common in our approaches and what we see as the underpinning for our teacher education strategies. We explain how the teacher education programmes we run ensure the embedding of gifted education in general education. Finally, we focus on learner outcomes and how we assess the results of our teacher education programmes.
In this seminar, we present three examples of good practice in teacher education, aiming for continuous professional development (CPD) of Dutch teachers in the domain of gifted education. In each good practice example, the application of professional standards of teacher education is combined with theoretical and practical knowledge of gifted education and with European Qualification Framework for higher education (level 7). This underpins the high quality of educational strategies in CPD for teachers that are needed to enhance the quality of gifted education in an educational context based on inclusion and diversity.
Speaker 1 presents how in the master Educational Needs of Fontys University, students have the opportunity to integrate specialised knowledge and skills of gifted education in their generic courses and how this contributes to the professional development of teachers. Speaker 2 describes how participating in professional learning communities contributes to the professional competencies of general classroom teachers in educating gifted learners in their daily practice. Speaker 3 presents how specialised continuous professional development in gifted education can enhance the quality of education in general and how specialised teachers can create optimal learning opportunities for gifted learners at different levels of the Dutch learner support system in education.
Attendees develop an understanding of how professional teacher education standards affect the quality of teacher education and how gifted education benefits from the systematic application of these standards when educating teachers in the domain of giftedness. Attendees also develop insights on how they can enhance the effects of teacher education.
Teacher education in the domain of gifted education takes place in the context of regular teacher education. That implies that identical standards for teacher education should be applied to ascertain a similar level of quality as may be expected from all other teacher education courses. This leads to the conclusion that the qualification of teacher educators as professional teacher educators is conditional for high-quality CPD in gifted education.
In this first presentation, we describe what we have in common in the way we work with teachers and what we see as the underpinning for our teacher education strategies. This we can discuss how curriculum selection took place, why we made specific choices, what didactical strategies we use and how we can relate the strategies and curriculum selection towards the European Qualification Framework (EQF) for teacher education in general. Developing the attitude matching the Dublin descriptors as referred to in the EQF is an important part of our curriculum.
In the second presentation, we focus on how the different teacher education programmes we run ensure the embedding of gifted education within education in general. In the Netherlands, an inclusive approach to education is mandatory. The political slogan used to stress this approach is together when possible, separate if necessary. This approach implies that teachers have to develop strategies to provide for gifted education in their classrooms. But it also means that we have to equip teachers with the ability to see, understand and respond to educational needs that exceed the educational options in the regular classroom. The student’s learning and development are considered to be core business in education. Consequently, we teachers are responsible that gifted students do not only achieve commensurate to their ability but, even more important, that they learn commensurate to their ability. We discuss how each of our programmes responds to this perspective on education.
In the third presentation, we focus on learner outcomes and how we assess the results of our teacher education programmes. For each course, we provide examples of how we assess learner outcomes. We discuss how using the concept of feedforward ignites future learning. We explain how action research can be effective in stimulating an investigative attitude amongst our students. The process and results of their research process can provide a better understanding of how teachers transfer theoretical knowledge in their daily practice. Last but not least, we present our most significant successes in the three courses and how we use these successes for the future development of new teacher education projects.