Professional Development Of Teachers


Professional development is essential for every individual, whether employed or not. It is vital for every business and professional organization to increase the knowledge and skills of their employees. They should strive to enhance the quality of performance, to ensure an improvement on the personal and professional front. A professional development program boosts the individual’s career, through travel, research, workshops and seminars and by working with professionals who are experienced. Professional development training courses are not only applicable to people in business or management, but are also important for professionals such as teachers, technicians, nurses and engineers.

Several professional development programmes offered to teachers in different parts of the world. If these programmes prepare the quality of teachers, then they can better serve the needs of the growing population. Methodology which we adopted for these programmes including seminars, training practices and surveys etc. Then we evaluate it through data which we collect from reflective journals, portfolios, classroom observations, group work, discussions and presentations

As a young teacher I yearned for the day when i would know my craft so well, be so competent, so experienced, and so powerful, that I would walk into any classroom without feeling afraid. (P. J.Palmer, 1998, p. 57).

At the secondary level many teachers with strong background in mathematics but they did not courses in probability and statistics as part of their preparatory degrees and  there is no any curriculum work in their pre-service education courses. There is a major problem that teachers have not much knowledge even about their own subjects. Professional development of teachers is now recognized as an important component of policies which enhanced interest in research that identifies feature and importance of effective professional learning. Today funds are allocated to promote professional development programmes, through this it provides opportunities to learn and we all know that great teachers create great students and many school going student’s achievements related to their teachers. So it is critical to pay close attention to how we train and support both new and experienced teachers? So Ongoing professional development keeps teachers up-to-date on new research that how children learn, emerging technology tools for the classroom and new resources.

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According to Darling-Hammond (1994) teachers professional development is a process of enhancing teachers’ status through increased awareness and an expanding knowledge base. Interpretation of teacher’s professional development as an investigation of their practice is shared by other researchers.

With the passage of time, many societies changes their education system, they are making educational reforms and the most important part of these reforms is Professional development for teachers, they are finally got a point that only through teachers they can improve their society, they can enhance the potential of their new generation. In Pakistan during 2005-6, the professional development programmes were piloted in 100 schools in three Towns of the district Tandlianwala, Samundari and Faisalabad City and is now being developed in 500 schools up to 2008. In Pakistan there are a lot of teacher training institutes but unfortunately these are not sufficient to fulfill the demands of untrained teachers. Warwick and Reimers (1995) refers to some of the factors which are responsible for falling the standard of education and these are unmotivated faculty and students, inactive dean, and a lack of supervision. In institution of Pakistan the professional development is consider with knowledge, so the person gives full attention to acquire knowledge through text books and lectures, but  the professional development means acquiring expertise in the relevant field. Just to know about anything is not enough but doing that work is a part of professional development. Professional development is like a model which take cares of knowledge, skills and attitude and in other words professional development programmes should involve head, hand and heart.


  • To update experienced and qualified curricular staff to maintain awareness of new developments in learning and teaching.
  • To support policy making, planning, implementation and evaluation of teacher education and professional development in Pakistan.
  • To recommend, what are the challenges that are faced public and private universities of Pakistan for effective professional development.
  • To evaluate and analyses training provision to promote continuous improvement.
    • To update experienced and qualified curricular staff to maintain awareness of new developments in learning and teaching.


The major purpose of this study is the need assessment for professional development of teachers in Pakistan. Need assessment is that process which gathers the need of individual, groups, communities or societies. If we use the process of need assessment in education then we identify the needs of student in particular subject, to determine the weakness of student’s achievement, to determine the need of training for teachers and to determine the needs of local, regional and national educational system.

The worth of professional development for teacher is very important role, it improves the student’s learning. Professional development creates educational reforms that not only update the skills and knowledge of teacher but it also enhance the student’s productivity and achievements. In many participating countries 89% of teachers are engaged in professional development. Only 11% teachers have no concern with it. Out of 4 teacher only 1 teacher did not participate in professional development in Denmark, the Slovak republic and Turkey.

Ostern and Kott Kemp (1993) argue that :

·            Teachers need professional growth opportunities.

·            Working together improves professional growth or development.

·            Explain or describe their own standards for more responsibilities.

Professional development programmes are efforts to bring change in the class room practices of teachers, in their attitude, in their beliefs and in the learning outcome of students. (Griffin, 1982, P.2)

Despite of all the importance of professional development , the research indicate the ineffectiveness of most programmes, majority of programmes fails because teachers are not too much interested in these programmes , they just take part in professional development for getting certification, and they want to show that they are better teachers. (Guskey, 1986)

Teachers attracts to professional development because they wants to expand their knowledge, their skills and abilities. They want to contribute their knowledge and skills and enhance their effectiveness. But its not enough to get knowledge  and skills, the major role of teacher is now to implement these practices ,and also enhance the knowledge of students, and professional development are specific and certain rather than vague or general and practice ideas that directly related to day by day practices in their classrooms. (Fullen and Miles, 1992)

Jaworski (1996) says,

Pakistani culture, for example, encourages deference to older, wiser and more eminent members of the society. Education is situated in a hierarchical power structure where curricula are defined externally to schools and success is measured by examination performance (pg.69).


(source: Thomas R.Guskey, 200, Vol8)

Professional development in a broader way refers to the development  of person in his or her professional role. More specifically we can say that professional development  is a professional growth which teacher achieves in gaining increased experience and examine his or her professional career systematically. Professional development includes formal experience as well as informal experiences. Formal experiences such as attending seminars, professional meetings and workshops etc, and informal experiences such as watching television documentaries and reading professional publications etc. (Glatthorn, 1995, P. 41)


Diploma in Higher education (DHE)

This kind of training arranged for two months during summer vacations for  consecutive three years for teachers. Those teachers who participate in it, and complete their training programmes of six month in three years, diploma in higher education with two increments should be awarded.

Certificate in higher education (CHE)

This kind of training arranged for three months for lecturer who are selected for universities and colleges.This training is compulsory for each teacher. Main concept of this training is to enhance the practical skills.

Periodic Training ( PT )…

This is a one month training for teachers to enhance their capabilities, their knowledge and their competencies. This is a periodic training which held after every five years and teacher should have brilliant chance to improve their skills.

(Source: Naveed Sultana, 2004)


There are some professional standards which we discuss here.

Standard-1:        Subject Matter Knowledge… Teacher understand the basic concept, theories, history,latest trends in national and international level and process of getting knowledge of that subject which they are going to teach.

Standard-2:     Human Growth and Development… Teacher understand how students acquire knowledge, skills and develop habit of mind. How to identify the development abilities of student and provide opportunities to that support their intellectual, emotional and physical development.

Standard-3:     Knowledge of Islamic ethical values/Social life skills… Teacher understand the Islamic ethical values and practices in the light of Quran and Sunnah, and promote it. The values which are globally accepted are being promoted.

Standard-4:     Instructional planning and strategies… Teacher understand the instructional planning and design short term as well as long term plans which is based on student’s needs and development progress and then develop a strategy to achieve these goals.

Standard-5:     Assessment… Teacher use different types of assessment for evaluating how students learn, how they implement their knowledge in their practical life. The result of such kind of assessment improve teaching and learning.

Standard-6:     Learning Environment… Teacher creates a supportive and respective learning environment  that encourage student’s positive social interaction in learning and self motivation.

Standard-7:      Effective communication and use of technology… Teacher use verbal or non verbal kind of communication techniques for supportive interaction with students. Teacher also use technologies in class rooms and laboratories activities.

Standarad-8:     Collaboration… Teacher build a relationship with student’s parents and their guardian to support student’s learning.

(Source: Policy and planning wing, Ministry of education, 2009)


There are some types of professional development..

·            Courses/workshops.

·            Education conference or seminars.

·            Qualification programmers.

·            Observation visits to other school.

·            Participation in a network of teachers.

·            Individual or collaborative research.

·            Mentoring or peer observation and coaching.

·            Reading professional literature.

·            Engaging in informal dialogue with peet.

(Source: Naveed Sultana, 2004)


There are number of factors which were identified as importance for its success. Several of these factors are described below.

·            Continual development of lead trainer.. Regular training workshops and seminar which is based on new practices and knowledge encourage the trainer to participate in these special conferences and seminarswhich enabled them to keep up to date with new technologies. This knowledge enhancement is not only benefited for teachers but also for these learners who learn from these teachers.

·            Sharing knowledge and skills… Teacher learns from others teachers in their institutions and training centers. Teacher gain confidence after using these tools in class rooms which they have learned.

·            Collaboration and partnership… Teacher development programmes build a partnership among teachers, trainers, supervisors and university exporters. These networks facilitate sharing of knowledge which lead to further improvement.

·            Support from Principal and administrative… It is important for principal and administrative that they provide support and opportunities that they enable them to apply these knowledge and technologies which they learn from training.


Study is helpful in providing ground realities concerning the execution and implementation of the program. Findings of the study will be helpful to develop a comprehensive plan for further improvement in the universities.Majority of respondent stated that professional training of univeristy teachers is necessary for their professional development in latest knowledge, skills, teaching techniques, technology, evaluating techniques and social, administrative skills. Only training enhance the mental and social development.


  • Lack of appropriate training programmes and methods.

The major problem is the lack of appropriate training programmes. One of the teacher said that some teachers wants to learn and enhance their knowledge but there is not sufficient programmes to meet their needs and they unable to enhance their capabilities and the methods of training is also not good, because the level of understanding of every person is changed, some people wants to enhance their knowledge orally and some wants to use text books and other material.

  • Lack of modern techniques.

There is lack of modern techniques, if teacher able to understand and work with these techniques and can enhance the productivity of students but unfortunately he is not be able to do like that because there is no enhancement in technology. In university arrangement of multimedia is another a big problem, if teacher wants to prepare his lecture on this new technique that he can enhance the knowledge of students and provide a know how about this useful technique but there is a lack of multimedia and teacher cannot teach their students with their own will.

  • Lack of research and Text  Book knowledge.

It’s a very natural phenomenon today that student just based on text book knowledge. Because in training programmes trainers just provide work books, teacher guide and audio cassettes, through this teacher enhance their skills but there is  not practical work, there is no any research, they do not train the teachers properly that how to do research and what is the benefits so like that teacher teach their students, they provide them notes and other material to learn, they do not encourage them to do research for enhancing their knowledge.

  • Lack of communication and collaboration.

Respondent says that there is a lack of communication and collaboration. Teachers don’t want to discuss the problems with other members of department. One of the teacher said that there is a communication gap which create a hindrance to improve their quality.

  • Time management problem.

Mostly the training held in summer vacations. So sometime it happens that many teachers are busy with their families, get to gathers, and many times mostly teachers are in abroad for PHD or M.Phill so they cannot attend these training programmes.

  • Lack of evaluation techniques.

There is no training in test constructions, marking and analyzing the results, due to this many teachers don’t aware of evaluation techniques which could help to evaluate the student as a whole.

  • Lack of resources and budget.

That’s the major problem that there is a lack of resources and budget. Government sometime does not involve in these training programme due to budget problems, and teacher who wants to get knowledge he unable to get it. One of the teacher said that limited resources creates a great hindrance, like teachers do not have proper books facilities, the books which is available in libraries that sometimes are not relevant with his subjects. There is a lack of net facility, teacher cannot search their material for enhancing the skills of students.


  • Teacher should demonstrate the use of effectiveness of modern methods and techniques of teaching in the classrooms. The advance technology like multimedia and video conferencing should be used to improve teaching.
  • Teacher should be trained in evaluation and measurement techniques. These techniques remove the deficiencies of students.
  • Teacher’s professional development must be as a long term process which begins with the initial stages and ends when the teacher retires from the profession.
  • Teacher should create a friendly learning environment in which student easily learn everything which teacher wants to teach. Through this friendly learning environment students will not hesitate to ask every problem which he or she is facing during their studies programmes.
  • Proper training programme should be held for teacher’s professional development. In training programmes explanatory printed text, work books, teacher guide, audio cassettes, video programmes which demonstrating various teachers models, teachers kit, practical work books should be included to make teacher more competent, effective and knowledgeable.
  • Actions researches should be encouraged in the classes. Those teachers who promote new technology and methods should rewarded properly.Provide the resources that teacher can enhance the knowledge of students. Seminars should be held after every two month

Source by NilofurAbbasi

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