ISSN 1450-216X Vol.46 No.2 (2010), pp.179-185
© EuroJournals Publishing, Inc. 2010
Teacher Training in Pakistan: Problems and Solutions for
Student Teaching Preparatory Programs
Assistant Professor of Education, Department of Education, University of Sargodha (Pakistan) E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Assistant Professor of Education, Department of Education, GC University Faisalabad (Pakistan) Abstract
Student teaching is a unique opportunity for inexperienced, pre-service teachers to develop a clear professional identity and explore the full responsibilities of a practicing teacher while having solid, supervisory support from an experienced educator. However, this valuable educational opportunity needs improvement in today’s Pakistani educational system. The study incorporated student teachers, cooperating classroom teachers, and school administrators in the Punjab Province. Two local university education departments and, more specifically, four colleges designated for elementary teacher training affiliated with Pakistan’s University of Education, were used for the study through sampling techniques. Eighty-four student teachers, cooperating teachers, and school principals were interviewed. In addition, a rating scale was administered to 150 student teachers and 44 cooperating teachers selected from the above mentioned institutions. The analysis of data revealed that Pakistani trainee-teachers were weak in discipline, lesson planning, classroom management, and content knowledge. They face the problems of transport, rigid school discipline, communication problems in English, and difficulty of teaching junior classes. These problems can be solved by more rigorous training in the above said weak areas. This manuscript discusses research findings, identifying both problems and solutions for Pakistan’s student teaching preparatory programs.
Keywords: Teacher training, problems, solutions, Pakistan, preparatory programs
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan was founded on the 14th of August 1947. Pakistan is the land of the Indus River, which flows through the country for 2500 kilometers (1600 miles) from the Himalaya and Karakoram mountain ranges to the Arabian Sea. It is a land of snow-covered peaks and burning deserts, of fertile mountain valleys and irrigated plains. It has an estimated population of 151.5 million. Agriculture is the hub of Pakistan’s economy which consists of both crops and livestock products. The education sector in Pakistan suffers from insufficient financial input, low levels of efficiency for implementation of programs, and poor quality of management, monitoring, supervision, and teaching. Each of these deficiencies contributes to Pakistan’s illiteracy rate, which is one of the lowest in the world, and the lowest among countries of comparative resources and social/economic
Teacher Training in Pakistan: Problems and Solutions for Student Teaching Preparatory Programs 180 situations (Memon, 2007). Additionally, Pakistan is facing the problem of overcrowded classes in its schools. Usually there are 50 students in a class; but, in some cases, there may be as many as 120 students. This issue is rarely addressed in teacher training. The teacher education programs in Pakistan do not significantly raise the level of knowledge and skills of teachers so that there is any measurable impact on the students’ learning (Situation Analysis of Teacher Education in Pakistan, 2006). There is no single ruling authority to provide proper guidance and direction to these institutions to monitor their program quality. Teacher trainers usually do not have experience teaching in the schools for which they prepare new teachers; that is why teacher trainers tend to teach in a theoretical way. Trainee-teacher outcomes are more closely related to the level of education of...