The Key of BTC’s Global Leadership in Teacher Education: Teaching Practice
October 10, 2018
As the Bahrain Teachers College celebrates its tenth year, it is reflecting on some of its unique achievements. In this installment, we look at Teaching Practice.
After decades of research searching for the single most important factor in teacher education, scholars have identified it as clinical teaching practice within a university-based teacher education program. For this reason, the most reform-minded faculties of education throughout the world have recently been adding in significant clinical practice components and enhancing university faculty mentorship for future teachers while they work within schools as interns.
The Bahrain Teachers College has been doing this now since its founding, and while other faculties of education around the world are trying to catch up, Bahrain is forging new ground. From the very first year of the Bachelor’s of Education program, students visit schools, engage with teachers and students, and observe lessons. Gradually as they advance, students at the Bahrain Teachers College increase their responsibility within the schools by teaching lessons, planning instructional units, providing assessment feedback, and so forth. By their final semester, nearly all of their time is spent in schools, applying directly to practice what they learned from faculty of the College, with the mentorship of both faculty and cooperating teachers at the schools.
Many graduates of the Bahrain Teachers College claim that the Teaching Practice requirements were among the most important of their experiences, and indeed, the most formative portions of their initial teacher preparation.
According to Dr. Mahmood Osama, Head of the college’s Division of Teaching Practice, “Our team strives to implement a clinical and innovative practice strategy in the schools by having student teachers apply the following equation: Let me try what I have learned; let me think and reflect on my mistakes; let me accept other people’s view to learn from it; let me try another time to be the champion during the teaching time.” It is such a strategy that allows BTC students to become expert teachers so early in their careers.