PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF TEACHER EDUCATORS AROUND THE WORLD: THE CHALLENGE OF THE MOFET INSTITUTE
MOFET Institute (ISRAEL)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Conference name: 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2013
Location: Seville, Spain
Abstract:Education is maybe the only thing which can change reality, especially where people live in poverty and ignorance. And how does Education start? With highly qualified teachers, updated, flexible and with a strong vocation!
Nowadays there are excellent institutions for teacher training, as well as good teachers who know how to teach. But, who trains them? Generally, teacher educators are experts on education, veterans and professional. The matter is whether "to teach" and "to teach how to teach" are the same? Most teacher educators learned to be teachers, but never got the training to become teacher educators. The above question provoked that, in 1983, a centre for professional development of teacher educators was created: The MOFET Institute in Israel.
The MOFET Institute is a national inter-collegiate centre for the research and development of programs in teacher education. It constitutes a unique framework both in Israel and worldwide for teacher-educators' professional development. The target: to provide teacher educators with knowledge, tools, and materials while supporting infrastructures which would allow them to reach these goals.
MOFET's International Channel, founded in 2007, is linked to the teacher training departments of many important universities all over the world. Its main purpose is to broaden its institutional model: an international co-working community for all professionals involved in teacher education and education. The original idea is to work with international leading teams, from within the teaching community, and to share/build the common knowledge base of the profession itself.
MOFET's activities include three areas: Cooperation for building training and professional development systems, for developing/spreading the professional knowledge and human resources, and for developing/adapting pedagogical and technological infrastructures. These activities allow participants from all over the world to acquire/create professional knowledge, both didactic and pedagogic; form international interactive study groups; share ideas and discuss common problems; initiate, plan and lead changes in education, teacher education and higher education systems; all activities are adapted to the needs, languages and possibilities of the partners.
MOFET's International Channel works online and face-to-face:
a) Online: Academic content portals, conferences, webinars (online encounters), an Online Academy. It also operates various social networks.
b) Face-to-face: Professional study tours, educational leadership seminars, visits of experts in Israel, programmed evaluation, etc.
All these modalities are currently delivered in English or Spanish.
Within the many relevant international activities, we can highlight the following: 2009 – 2013: Visits of German, Chinese, Dominican and African delegations; courses for teacher training at World ORT seminars; A survey on behalf of UNESCO in East African countries; an evaluation research in Mexico; participation in a Caribbean congress; diffusion of the MOFET model in East African countries; The Sixth International Conference on Teacher Education, in Israel.
The MOFET Institute model principally aims to support teacher educators all around the world, to promote and develop teacher educators while contributing to the improvement of teacher training. That improvement, in turn, impacts the whole education system.
Keywords: Teacher education, teacher professional development, cooperation.