Creating Effective Teaching and Learning Environments: First Results from TALIS
OECD. Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development
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TALIS highlights better and more targeted professional development as one avenue towards improvement. It shows that teachers who participate in qualification courses commit considerable time and money to these courses, which they think are effective. At the same time, relatively few teachers participate in this type of activity and those who do often feel frustrated by the lack of sufficient time to devote to them. This suggests a need to review the amount of time and money made available to teachers for such courses. Another issue is the broader phenomenon of high unmet need, which 42% of teachers associate with a lack of suitable professional development on offer. This indicates that a sound assessment of provision and support against development needs should be a priority in many countries. The fact that a sizeable proportion of teachers are underwriting the full cost for their professional development is evidence that many teachers are willing to contribute their share to advancing their career and profession, though ability to pay needs also to be considered. TALIS also shows that there is generally much greater scope for teachers to learn from other teachers, with teachers reporting relatively infrequent collaboration of the teaching force within the school beyond a mere exchange of information. Improving this will require adequate instructional leadership as well as effective human resource development policies in schools. The generally positive reception by teachers of the appraisal and feedback on their work provides another indication of the willingness of the profession to move forward. The fact that the more feedback teachers receive on their work, the more they trust in their abilities to address teaching challenges suggests this to be another lever to raise learning outcomes. TALIS suggests that, in many countries, the onus is now on public policy to develop a more effective and supportive evaluation culture for schools and to ensure that the quality of the work of teachers is adequately recognised and rewarded.