Models of In-Service Teacher Education with Scope, Merits, and Limitations 

The term ‘in-service teacher education programme’ refers to any program offered to teachers who are already working in schools. It is done with an objective to update and renew the knowledge, technical skills, etc., of teachers to enhance and maintain their teaching efficiency.  In-service teacher education is also regarded as the continuation of pre-service teacher education.

Models of In-Service Education

The different models of in-service education are as follows:

  1. Reflective Teaching Model: RTM’s main focus is on the reflection of teachers to enable them to implement reform teaching strategies. It takes its inspiration from the theories of constructivism. Its main recommendations are ongoing and consistent sessions of teaching, joint planning, and reflecting.
  2. Split Model: It is similar to the RTM and includes training of 6-8 days at the district or block level followed by the practice of inputs received in the professional development programme.
  3. Observation or Assessment Model: In this model, the teachers are observed in their classroom and their instructional practices are assessed by a professional development provider, a special working district-wide, or a master teacher in a school, and they are given structured feedback.
  4. Open Lessons: In this model, a teacher is required to develop lessons and invite colleagues to observe the lesson and in a post-observation session, they are given feedback. Teacher behaviour is the main focus of this model.
  5. Study Groups: In this method, teachers collaborate as a small team or in single large groups to solve a common problem or to create a plan to achieve a common goal.

There are other models of In-Service Teacher Education which are as follows:

  • Continuing Education versus Deficit Instruction
  • Organizational Structures
  • Curriculum and Staff Development
  • Teacher’s Personal Growth
  • Redefinition of the Administrative Role

Scope of In-Service Teacher Education

  1. In order to teach a subject you need to have the necessary knowledge but in order to ensure larger social transformation, you need more than just basic information.
  2. Teachers are needed to be on their toes regarding decision making for which they need to be aware of the various possibilities in which student learning can unfold in the context of their development.
  3. Teachers need to be equipped at all levels of education, namely Pre-primary, Primary, Elementary, Secondary, Higher Secondary, and Tertiary. The requirements and understanding of students vary at each level. Hence, the preparation of stage-specific teachers is essential.
  4. “Teachers’ interpretation is the most crucial input in the field of education.” Teachers are not only entrusted with education but also with morals, personalities, values and commitments which they are able to cultivate in teacher education.

Merits of in-service Teacher Education

The merits of in-service teacher Education are as follows:

  1. Better Planning: It enables teachers to plan and deliver instructions effectively as per the learning needs of all students regardless of their developmental and cognitive levels, and learning styles.
  2. Better Organisation: It also enables teachers to organize the classroom environment and manage it better for maximum academic performance.
  3. Better Classroom Management: It enables teachers to manage the skills interactions in the classroom in a better manner to create a conducive and safe learning environment for the student’s academic success.
  4. Develops Cooperation: It also develops the skills of cooperation among teachers so that they can collaborate with students, parents, and other colleagues of the school community with cooperation.
  5. Dynamic Classroom Environment: It enables the teacher to create a dynamic classroom environment facilitated by effective and positive communication between students, teachers, parents, and other school community members.

Limitations of the Models of In-Service Teaching

The limitations of the models of in-service teaching are as follows:

  1. Designing programs that are relevant and suitable for both the experienced and the new teachers can be challenging.
  2. Planning and designing collaboratively can also be highly challenging.
  3. When there is maximum participation of teachers, scheduling programs can be difficult.
  4. Planning to create sustainability by including budget implications can be difficult too.
  5. To facilitate active learning in program content, emphasizing realistic and effective approaches can be difficult.

These are the various merits and limitations of the different modes of in-service teacher Education which include face-to-face interaction, distance, and offline mode of learning.

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