Appraisals are another form of quality assurance, after a teaching observation at RCG there is a meeting arranged where feedback is given covering the strengths and weaknesses of the lesson and the tutor is given the opportunity to respond to any comments. Training needs are assessed and continuous professional development is also discussed, where the tutor wants to go next. Then written feedback is given so that the information from the appraisal can be reflected on afterwards.
Teaching observations are a positive experience within RCG a chance to receive constructive criticism as well as positive aspects of the lesson and has a benefit towards my professional development. Internal and external moderators also ensure that quality assurance takes place by overseeing that all tutors are marking assignments to the same standards, which means the learning outcomes are all the same no matter where the learning takes place for example within the college or at an outreach venue such as the RCG’s offices where I teach. Reflective practitioner.
Donald Schon made a major contribution to understanding theories and practice of how we learn. He introduced the concept of looking at reflection as a critical process using three separate actions to define this process. Reflection-on-action which happens after the event, thinking back on a situation. After every lesson I reflect back on how it has gone and ask the questions ‘what went well? ‘; ‘what didn’t go well? ‘; ‘how will I improve it? ‘; ‘what resources do I need? ‘; ‘who can help me? ‘; ‘can I observe another practitioner doing this? ‘ I need to ensure that I am being objective, to stand back and be an observer of the event.
I base some of my next lesson plan on this reflection so that I move the learners on to the next step. Reflection-in-action which is during the event, thinking whilst in the situation. Whilst standing in front of the class if a learner brings up an interesting topic that is covered in the syllabus but is relevant I will alter the lesson accordingly. Alternatively if a planned activity is not getting the intended message across for example in a session on inclusion and anti-bias I have an activity where the whole group have to stand in a circle and their instruction is ‘to place themselves into group(s)’.
The intention is that they look at there shoes and place themselves into several groups dependant on their shoe colour. The learning outcome is for the learners to realise how easy it is to be put ourselves into exclusive groups. On one occasion the learner’s did not move, they appeared baffled. So I decided I needed to be more specific, I told them to move themselves according to their footwear they did and put themselves into groups of types of footwear so the learning outcome was eventually achieved. ‘The practitioner allows himself to experience surprise, puzzlement, or confusion in a situation which he finds uncertain or unique.
He carries out an experiment which serves to generate both a new understanding of the phenomenon and a change in the situation. ‘ (Schon 1983: 68) Reflection-through-action – pre-planned deliberately deciding to do something differently, approaching a task in a different way to see the learner’s reactions differently. The last session on ICP is preparing the learners for the multiple choice test, the first time I delivered this I gave them individual example papers then asked them to discuss the questions with a partner.
This did work well, but on the next session I changed the activity by putting them into groups and giving them the same questions and making it a team game. The reactions was very different they got quiet competitive. I have since changed it again as although the competitive element was fun it isn’t an ideal way to end a course. ‘Kolb suggested that learning took place by active involvement followed by reflection and moderation in a continuous cycle’ (Reece and Walker 2000:112).
The cycle involved the ‘concrete experience’ which relates to having the occurrence, event, happening next is the ‘reflective observation’ is stepping back and reviewing what has happened, next is ‘abstract conceptualization’ which is to use the reflection and learn from it, what you can gain from the occurrence, then the result of the conclusion gets put into practice with the ‘active experimentation’, what has been learnt from the original concrete experience and so the cycle starts again.
I have experienced and utilise both of these models when I am tutoring for example the ICP course that I teach there is a lesson on safety where there are various activities to deliver that all relate to the common theme of safety, I started with the first activity where they have to risk assess various rooms in the home environment – the answers they were giving me led to other aspects so using reflection-in-action I decided to lead onto other activities within the subject returning to the risk assessment as each one was completed, I then after the lesson did a reflective observation and concluded that it hadn’t worked as well as I felt at the time as there was some areas that got left out completely and had to be re-visited on the next lesson. The active experimentation will be that the original scheme of activities should be planned as they had been. In order for reflection to be successful one may need to look deep within to find the possible flaw, so a level of self-reflection is needed which some may find difficult. I did find this difficult at first, the key I find is to not see it as a personal slur.
Appraisal or individual reviews can be a good source of personal reflection and benefit ones development and growth as a tutor, they can be an opportunity to discuss and clarify thoughts and ideas on certain aspects or situations whilst getting the benefit from a perhaps more experienced tutor. These can also be used to further ones professional development by identifying possible training needs, further skills that can enhance the skills required to develop as a tutor or further ones career path to a department manager. Appraisal or individual reviews can be a good source of personal reflection and benefit ones development and growth as a tutor, they can be an opportunity to discuss and clarify thoughts and ideas on certain aspects or situations whilst getting the benefit from a perhaps more experienced tutor.
These can also be used to further ones professional development by identifying possible training needs, further skills that can enhance the skills required to develop as a tutor or further ones career path to a department manager. ‘CPD is the means by which members of professional associations maintain, improve and broaden their knowledge and skills and develop the personal qualities required in their professional lives. Although the type of continuous professional development that one undertakes should have be meaningful and specific to development or involve keeping up to date on developments within a certain subject area or in educational policies, reviews, consultations etc.
Mentoring, observing a peer tutor or a subject manger whilst tutoring are all good ideas to enhance development. Continuous professional development is vital to enhance one skills, knowledge and personal qualities. I have undertaken this course as part of my own CPD. Word count – 3300.
References Reece ; Walker (2000) Teaching, Training and Learning: A Practical Guide, Business Education Publishers Ltd Smith, M. K. (2001)
‘Donald Schi?? n: learning, reflection and change’, the encyclopedia of informal education, www. infed. org/thinkers/et-schon. htm accessed on 26th October 2007 http://www. hm-treasury. gov. uk/newsroom_and_speeches/press/2006/press_leitch.cfm accessed on 21st October 2007 http://www. hm-treasury. gov. uk/newsroom_and_speeches/press/2006/press_leitch. cfm accessed on 21st October 2007 http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Quality_assurance accessed on 25th October 2007 http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Continuing_Professional_Development accessed on 26th October 2007 Teresa Wildash – Certificate in Education (Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector) 07/08 1 Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Teaching section.