THE SECOND GLOBAL TEACHER EDUCATION SUMMIT
Quality of Teacher Education and Learning:
Practice, Innovation, and Policy
Beijing Normal University, Beijing, 17-20 October 2014
For over three decades, globalization as a force of societal change has helped world leaders to revamp their school systems for international competitiveness and to alter the direction of teaching and learning in schools. Policymakers in education have been quick to grasp information about the accomplishments of schools in other nations. Attractive packages are picked and translated into policies with transplantation in mind. The schools and their teachers are asked to conform to reform mandates. Teacher education programs are expected to accommodate policy implementation.
When schools are slow in responding to the requirements of reform, their inefficacies are being delineated. When teachers, who are designated as the spearhead of reform, question the wisdom of reform measures, their effectiveness is challenged. The programs that nurtured teachers are also deemed ineffectual. Today, a chorus of criticisms against teacher quality can be heard, suggesting a worldwide impeachment of the quality of schooling, teachers and teacher education programs.
Instead of contesting widespread cynicism, we wish to invite fellow educators and researchers to join us in addressing critical issues regarding teachers and teacher education so that their quality can be enhanced. The theme of the Second Global Teacher Education Summit is Quality of Teacher Education and Learning: Practice, Innovation, and Policy. By linking teacher education to teacher and student learning, we seek to provide a platform for an international and cross-cultural dialogue with educators and researchers from different parts of the world so that a broad view on the improvement of teachers and teacher education quality can be established. By initiating an inquiry into the practice, innovation, and policy of teacher and student learning, we hope to draw attention to the accomplishments of teachers and to derive meaning from innovative ideas and research findings for a well-balanced approach to teacher education.
For the Second Global Teacher Education Summit, we call for papers that examine various dimensions of teacher education and learning for oral and poster presentation. We shall also consider proposals for symposia that address emergent interests which are related to the sub-themes as described below.
We hope that with your support and participation, the Second Summit will be a convivial event of ideas and fellowship.
(1) Quality of Teacher Education Systems
Systems of teacher education vary in their curricula and styles of administration and operation, but they share a common goal of producing competent teachers who can serve the interests of the nation and its students. Teacher education systems rest at an intersection where higher education, government policies, and community demands meet, but only remain at the peripheries of their concern. Research on teacher education is considered an intellectual orphan; funding for its programs normally falls far behind their actual needs; pathways to licensure are created by official whims; and the community is quick to trace problems related to teachers back to their breeding grounds. In a context of benign neglect, not much has been done to challenge the legitimacy of teacher education programs; but recent attempts in the U.S. to measure the contribution of teacher education to student achievement harbinger a systemic attempt to make teacher education more accountable for its work. While so much can be said about system construction for teacher education and its related challenges and opportunities, we seek views that address quality issues in teacher education systems: What kind of forces are at work to mold teacher education systems as we know them today? What are the characteristics of teacher education systems and programs of high quality? How should we view certain proposed standards of quality for teacher education programs? How should we derive meaning from the measures of large-scale reform endeavors that have borne new sets of demands for change in teacher education programs? Why is change necessary and inevitable in teacher education, an area of work that is parked at a crossroads of history, politics, and society?
(2) Quality Attributes of Teachers and Teacher Education
Research findings suggest that teachers who possess certain qualities are more likely to succeed in classrooms and schools. Attributes such as a solid knowledge and skill base, strong beliefs and commitment, continuous reflection for identity construction, resilience in solving problems, genuinely nurtured professionalism, and inclusive attitude toward differences are some of the indicators that predicate quality of teachers. As teacher education programs attempt to translate such attributes in their curricula, the list of desirable traits have gotten longer, often beyond their institutional capacity to handle problems arising from the demand for new courses. Given the scope and magnitude of the teachers’ quality attributes, it will require arduous labor to reconstruct teacher education curricula for future teachers so that they can prepare themselves and their own students for a myriad of lifelong pursuits in study, family, work, and citizenship. Our quest for a deeper understanding of the quality attributes of teachers and teacher education may lead us to the following questions: What is the state-of-the-art understanding of such quality attributes as teacher knowledge, beliefs, identity, resilience, and professionalism? What evidence do we have to support claims of a causal relationship between the quality attributes of teachers and student learning? What relevance do these quality attributes have in the assessment of teachers? How do the quality attributes enhance (or impede) teachers’ work? How should we judge the quality of teacher education programs through a lens that incorporates these quality attributes? Why is there a noticeable absence of the quality attributes in the debate on the efficacy of teacher education?
(3) Teacher Education and Teacher Quality
Educational reform magnifies issues in teacher quality. Many of these issues are related to the teachers’ inability to deal with change. The teachers’ reluctance to change in accordance with policy requirements are often construed as a sign of professional ineptness or preservation of self-interests. In curriculum reform, for example, the reticence of Chinese teachers to change is no more evident than in their resistance to suggestions that they should move from the pedagogical center. Teachers’ reluctance to embrace national curricula has cumulated to open defiance in certain western societies. Delayed display of conformity has cast teacher quality in dubiety and criticisms are gradually aimed at all aspects of their work – failure to maintain high academic standard, lax in character building, disregard for students’ developmental stages and differences, to name just a few. Teachers are now being assessed all over the world; and their professionality is openly questioned. In the absence of evidence that teachers are ill-trained, teacher education programs, by extension, bear the brunt of criticisms against teacher quality. From what is being taught in their programs to the quality of teaching practice by student-teachers, teacher education institutions are now asked to prove their effectiveness. What will be the future of teacher education when its educational and social relevance can no longer be assumed? What evidence do we have to support arguments that our teachers are working competently to facilitate student learning? What have teachers learned in teacher education programs and on their jobs that delineates teacher quality? How can the teachers’ contribution to the development of schools and students be authentically measured and documented? How can teachers and teacher education programs work together to enhance teacher quality in a genuine and sustainable manner? Why are the foundations of teacher education and teacher professionalism so fragile that both seem powerless in the face of political manipulation and public distrust?
(4) Teacher Education and Student Learning
Teacher education affects student learning through the teachers it nurtures. Students learn in competitive educational systems that are, to a certain extent, driven by fear – fear of falling behind and fear of being surpassed. The teachers’ concerns in teaching will substantiate this speculation. In the past, the accomplishments of teachers that foster student learning were lauded, often in public, as demonstration of professional quality, care and devotion. However this has given way to laments of low academic achievement and anti-social behaviors among our students. Where students achievement scores are found wanting in international assessment exercises, the teachers are faulted for being unable to guide their students’ academic pursuits. By comparison, we are now hearing less about the accomplishments in teaching and learning. As the scope of discussion on student learning is confined increasingly to academic circles, even the teachers themselves are sometimes at a loss when confronted by learning problems that require further inquiry and enlightenment from researchers. For many teachers in our schools, for example, informed observation, diagnosis, and treatment (or referral) of student learning difficulties seem to be such a remote exercise that it is simply beyond their capability to engage. Sadly, our attention has been shifted to achievement standards and scores as the determinant of educational quality; and naturally, there appears to be fewer teachers who are genuinely interested in the complexities of student learning. What can we do for teachers who are keen to learn about learning? What are the elements of teaching that can truly enhance the students’ learning in their tech-driven life experiences? How can we unearth the intricacies of student learning and tailor the work of teacher education to suit student interests? How do we ascertain the contribution of teachers to student learning authentically and draw meaningful lessons from it? How do we ascertain the linkage between teacher education and student learning without prejudicing the purpose, direction, and inner workings of teacher education programs? Why do recently promulgated educational policies emphasize student achievement at the expense of student learning?
(5) Innovative Ideas and Practices in Teacher Education and Development
(1) Tin Ka Ping Teacher Education Research Forum for Young Scholars (Pre-summit conference to be held on 17 October 2014, only for young scholars who come from Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR, Macau or Taiwan)
(2) Forum on Professional Development of Teacher Educators
(3) Forum on University-School Partnership and Teacher Development
(4) Forum on Teacher Education on the Internet and Development of Teachers in Rural Schools
(5) Forum on Quality of Teacher Education from the Perspective of Assessments of International Student Achievement (PISA, TIMSS, etc.)
IV. Invited Keynote Speakers (In alphabetical order)
Xiangming Chen (Peking University, China)
Anthony Clarke (University of British Columbia, Canada)
Cheryl Craig (University of Houston, USA)
Christopher Day (University of Nottingham, UK)
Lin Goodwin (Columbia University, USA)
Pamela Grossman (Stanford University, USA)
Qing Gu (University of Nottingham, UK)
David Hansen (Columbia University, USA)
Chi-kin Lee, John (Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong SAR, China)
Wing On Lee (National Institute of Education, Singapore)
Nai-kwai Lo, Leslie (Beijing Normal University, China)
John Loughran (Monash University, Australia)
Paulien Meijer (Utrecht University, Netherlands)
Lynn Paine (Michigan State University, USA)
Lijuan Pang (Beijing Normal University, China)
Manabu Sato (Gakushuin University, University of Tokyo, Japan)
Michael Schratz (University of Innsbruck, Austria)
Zhongying Shi (Beijing Normal University, China)
Ken Zeichner (University of Washington, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA)
Xiaoman Zhu (Beijing Normal University, China)
V. Important Dates
Conference Dates: 17-20 October 2014
The First Round of Registration: 1 February 2014—31 May 2014
Proposal Submission Deadline: 31 May 2014
Proposal Review: 1-29 June 2014
Notification of Acceptance of Proposal: 30 June 2014
Paper Submission Deadline: 15 September 2014
The Second Round of Registration: 1 June 2014—30 September 2014
VI. Languages of Conference
VII. Conference Formats
Paper, Poster, Forum, Workshop
VIII. Registration Fees
All participants are required to register prior to the conference and submit the proposal and full paper via the on-line registration and paper submission system. Please visit the conference website for further information in detail: . If you have any questions regarding registration, please contact us at email@example.com.
Table 1: Registration Fees
Register by 31 May 2014
300 US Dollar
100 US Dollar
Register after 31 May 2014
500 US Dollar
150 US Dollar
1. “Local Participants” refer to people who are working or studying in Mainland China, Hong Kong SAR, Macau or Taiwan.
2. Keynote speakers register free of charge.
IX. Conference Organizing Committee
Sponsor: Beijing Normal University
The Center for Teacher Education Research, Beijing Normal University, Key Research Institute of Humanities and Social Science in Universities, Ministry of Education, PRC
China Institute of Education Policy, Beijing Normal University
Faculty of Education, Beijing Normal University
Contact Address: Center for Teacher Education Research, Beijing Normal University, No. 19 Xin Jie Kou Wai Street, Haidian District, Beijing, China, 100875
Contact Persons: Pro. Song Huan, Dr. Yuan Li, Ms. Li Shengnan
Tel: 86-10-58804316-602, 86-10-58804316-601, 86-10-58804318