THE NEED FOR A REFORM IN TEACHER EDUCATION PROGRAMS TO COPE WITH THE DEMANDS OF THE 21ST CENTURY AND SUGGESTIONS FOR POSSIBLE PRACTICES
Eastern Mediterranean University (TURKEY)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2012 Proceedings
Publication year: 2012
Conference name: 5th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 19-21 November, 2012
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:For the last decade, researchers, practitioners, teachers, and scholars engaged themselves in trying to understand what the 21st century demands human being to exist and survive in the current global social system within which the education is formed and reformed. What is obvious is that the life experiences we commonly share are totally different in comparison to 10 years ago. The way we work, communicate with each other, spend time on leisure activities, the way we understand each other, and habits of living have been changed and still been changing. Technological, sociological, political, psychological, and educational changes altered people to hold different attitudes toward their environments. Change, in this context, is such a term that not only signifies the differentiation of daily habits of living but also connotes with another term for the last three decades, and that is globalization. A considerable body of evidence indicate that getting deeper understanding of the 21st century accompanies with unpacking the intense relationship between globalization, as the defining feature of 21st century, and education (Lau, 1992; Melnick & Zeichner, 1998; Rodrik, 2000). Yet, very few researchers have so far mentioned the strong bond between globalization, education, and critical thinking, and very little research proposes ways ensuring that globalization may not literally wipe away the educational conventions of societies.
The current research aims at documenting the real challenge the 21st century created for the citizens of societies, necessary human skills to exist and survive in the system, the role of education and of specially teacher education in answering the human needs to cope with the demands of the current century, and possible practices that can create the reform in teacher education programs. This paper will mainly discuss the importance of the reform in teacher education programs, which theoretically will start a chain reaction through the different levels of educational systems and also propose an original and unique model of teacher-education as a reform strategy to meet the global demands. The practices that may possibly bring such a change into being in teacher education programs and the methodological aspects regarding the assessment procedures of any improvement regarding the reform movement will also be outlined in the current theoretical paper.
Keywords: Reform in Teacher Education, Globalization, Critical Thinking, Required Practices.