Teaching is never just teaching. Better teachers help create even better learners. Therefore, professional development is indispensable for all educators who want to keep up with the latest teaching trends and exchange ideas with people in their fields.
There are a number of professional development courses most of us, educators, participate every year and I’m one of the biggest fans of these organizations. Not only do such courses keep us on our toes but they also give us a chance to meet professionals with different experiences. The latest one of these magical meetings I attended was an Oxford Professional Development Course conducted by Dr. Deniz Kurtoğlu EKEN from Sabancı University. The training, SEIRD (School Effectiveness and Improvement through Research and Development), was held at Ted University, Ankara between December 5-7, 2012.
As OUP puts it, the aim of this training programme was to “explore answers to some key questions with a view to helping schools to improve and enhance their effectiveness in order to serve more fully and effectively the educational needs of their students“. What made this organization unique was that it brought 26 ELT administrators from 18 universities around Turkey together. The training began with raising questions and concerns regarding Foundation Year Programmes in Turkey. As a result, ELT management practices of different universities were discussed in detail during three days of training.
Three-day-programme covered the following areas of training and discussion;
* The Scope of School Effectiveness
* Academic Management and Teacher Roles
* Developing as a Manager
* Enhancing Teacher Motivation and Staff Morale
* Teachers’ Personal and Professional Development
* Classroom Observation for Research and Development
* Assessment of Student Learning
* The Role of Institutional Research and Feedback in School Effectiveness
* Developing School Task Groups and Projects
* Performance Management and Evaluation
* Developing a School Development / Strategic Plan
* Curriculum Development
I’d like to give special thanks to OUP for such a great organization; TED University for their flawless hospitality and Dr. Deniz Kurtoğlu EKEN for her inspirational and thought-provoking presentations, never-ending joy and flow of energy that made this programme a priceless experience for me.