Can inspectors really improve the quality of teaching in the PCE sector? Classroom observations under the microscope

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/2436/334789
Title:
Can inspectors really improve the quality of teaching in the PCE sector? Classroom observations under the microscope
Authors:
O'Leary, Matt
Abstract:
For some years now, teachers in the post compulsory sector have been lambasted in educational circles for what some perceive as the poor quality of teaching and learning in classrooms. Such criticisms have tended to emanate from those responsible for inspecting the sector’s provision. In fact, when Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education) and the ALI (Adult Learning Inspectorate) took over responsibility from the FEFC (Further Education Funding Council) for post compulsory inspections, it made it clear that as part of its remit, it would endeavour to bring about an overall improvement in the standards of teaching and learning in classrooms. This ‘improvement’ was to be based significantly on the strengths and weaknesses identified by inspectors in classroom observations. This paper examines the role that classroom observation has to play as a tool for teacher assessment and development in external inspections and similar schemes within the post compulsory sector. It is argued throughout that current models of classroom observation, which typically involve some form of appraisal or assessment of the teacher’s performance, run contrary to the principles of teacher development and as such do little to improve the overall quality of teacher performance. The position postulated in this paper is that such approaches to observation tend to induce a culture of negatively charged emotions and focus on the more trivial features of teaching. Furthermore, instead of providing teachers with the opportunity to develop their own ability to reflect on, and assess, their teaching, they tend to rely too heavily on the subjective judgements of inspectors/observers. In conclusion, this paper contests that if future classroom observation schemes are serious about improving the standards of teaching and learning in the post compulsory sector, then they must move towards a more equitable model in which both teachers and learners themselves are actively involved in the process of assessment.
Citation:
Can inspectors really improve the quality of teaching in the PCE sector? Classroom observations under the microscope 2006, 11 (2):191 Research in Post-Compulsory Education
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Journal:
Research in Post-Compulsory Education
Issue Date:
2006
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/2436/334789
DOI:
10.1080/13596740600768984
Additional Links:
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13596740600768984
Type:
Article
Language:
en
ISSN:
1359-6748; 1747-5112
Appears in Collections:
Mentoring and Professional Development in Education

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorO'Leary, Matten_GB
dc.date.accessioned2014-11-12T15:50:39Z-
dc.date.available2014-11-12T15:50:39Z-
dc.date.issued2006-
dc.identifier.citationCan inspectors really improve the quality of teaching in the PCE sector? Classroom observations under the microscope 2006, 11 (2):191 Research in Post-Compulsory Educationen_GB
dc.identifier.issn1359-6748-
dc.identifier.issn1747-5112-
dc.identifier.doi10.1080/13596740600768984-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/2436/334789-
dc.description.abstractFor some years now, teachers in the post compulsory sector have been lambasted in educational circles for what some perceive as the poor quality of teaching and learning in classrooms. Such criticisms have tended to emanate from those responsible for inspecting the sector’s provision. In fact, when Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education) and the ALI (Adult Learning Inspectorate) took over responsibility from the FEFC (Further Education Funding Council) for post compulsory inspections, it made it clear that as part of its remit, it would endeavour to bring about an overall improvement in the standards of teaching and learning in classrooms. This ‘improvement’ was to be based significantly on the strengths and weaknesses identified by inspectors in classroom observations. This paper examines the role that classroom observation has to play as a tool for teacher assessment and development in external inspections and similar schemes within the post compulsory sector. It is argued throughout that current models of classroom observation, which typically involve some form of appraisal or assessment of the teacher’s performance, run contrary to the principles of teacher development and as such do little to improve the overall quality of teacher performance. The position postulated in this paper is that such approaches to observation tend to induce a culture of negatively charged emotions and focus on the more trivial features of teaching. Furthermore, instead of providing teachers with the opportunity to develop their own ability to reflect on, and assess, their teaching, they tend to rely too heavily on the subjective judgements of inspectors/observers. In conclusion, this paper contests that if future classroom observation schemes are serious about improving the standards of teaching and learning in the post compulsory sector, then they must move towards a more equitable model in which both teachers and learners themselves are actively involved in the process of assessment.en_GB
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherTaylor & Francisen_GB
dc.relation.urlhttp://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13596740600768984en_GB
dc.rightsArchived with thanks to Research in Post-Compulsory Educationen_GB
dc.titleCan inspectors really improve the quality of teaching in the PCE sector? Classroom observations under the microscopeen
dc.typeArticleen
dc.identifier.journalResearch in Post-Compulsory Educationen_GB
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