REPUTATION OF PEDAGOGUES AND IMAGE OF THIS PROFESSION IN LITHUANIA: POLITICAL, SOCIETY AND EDUCATIONAL ASPECTS
Global world and mass media changed a role of professionalism and the image of the profession too. The changes of computer progress influenced new challenge for teaching and learning processes in lots of aspects. But one of the main problems in Baltic countries is the decreasing reputation of pedagogues. While internet and various computer programs occupied educational area, and while the IT sector became the most popular and expensive in the world, the teacher’s image became less prestigious. The role of teacher had modified – pedagogue is not a leader of knowledge any more, but he is the transferor of knowledge who helps to learn and study. This transformation of roles raised a lot of problems in the context of education and society: teachers do not want to work for low salaries and are tired from work overload and difficult psychological circumstances; the students are free to evaluate the education process and the teachers work; society is changing its opinion about pedagogues due to mass media information, that forms the stereotypes of this profession; the politicians try to raise the motivation of pedagogues but lack the political decisions in this context. All this creates a huge transformation of professional role of pedagogues in the consciousness of pupils, society and politicians. Research object – reputation of pedagogues and image of this profession in the position of politicians, society members and students.
To enclose theory and research based key indicators that influence the reputation of pedagogues and the image of this profession in different social groups: politicians, society members and students.
The research has been lasting for more than 7 years in Lithuanian context. There had been done 4 empirical researches. Three of them were qualitative based. First research was a qualitative content analysis of politicians’ opinion in mass media press about pedagogues / teachers reputation, image, importance and status and its’ future perspectives (there were analyzed more than 50 articles in mass media). Second qualitative research was the analysis of society members’ comments and opinions about research object, written below mass media articles. The comments of anonymous society members were selected according to the content and were coded, and analyzed. Third qualitative research was used to identify qualitative data from students’ perspective about their pedagogues’ image and reputation. Content analysis was used for qualitative data analysis and heuristic method for theoretical data interpretation in the context of paradigms. Also there was used a representative quantitative research (700 students from Lithuanian schools participated in it).
The key indicator of mass media information about pedagogues during last 7 years is mostly oriented towards negative image creation of this profession: the content of articles is based on pedagogical problems and financial and political discomfort. Opinion of society and students, are divided in two different key categories. One of them beholds negative image and reputation of pedagogues because of low salary, difficult working conditions, mass media opinion and experience. The other part of participants high-rises pedagogues’ profession and its’ importance. Good reputation of pedagogues in the public discourse is disseminated by politicians. However, they do not support their opinion by real actions.