ERG SES H 05, Policies in Education
The relevance of initial teacher training quality as a key factor of a successful education system has recently acquired a remarkable presence in the international policy agendas. The Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) identifies every five years the indicators that are able to determine a high-quality teaching profession. The recruitment and selection of the best candidates for the initial teaching education have been shown as strong concerns by The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD, 2016). Additionally, Eurydice Network pointed out the importance of implementing intelligent structures to select and attract qualified graduates into the teaching force (European Commission, 2015). As a consequence of both reports, two types of educational systems can be found. On the one hand, a vast majority which recruits its candidates based on a generic common examination shared with the rest of qualifications. On the other hand, a minority which evaluates other kinds of dispositions and personal competencies beyond cognitive skills.
The present paper is based on the hypothesis that the best educational systems are those in which the recruitment and selection policies transcend a generic knowledge examination. The role of teachers as mere “delivers of the curriculum” is not useful anymore. What is more important nowadays is to develop other abilities which help students in a changing world (OECD, 2015). Nevertheless, evaluating and including the Emotional Dimension into the initial training access processes are shown as educational needs. Emotional Dimension of teachers is covered in TALIS by emphasizing on the role and functioning of school leadership and pedagogical practices. Under this perspective, the aim of this work is to underpin the importance of the Emotional Dimension for future generations of teachers and, in consequence, for recruitment and selection policies.
In concrete terms, the Emotional Dimension has been defined as the combination of capacities related to self-improvement —self-knowledge, (self)-motivation, capacity for change, decision-making, etc.—, and the establishment of positive relationships —empathy, assertive communication, mediation, etc. — (Corcoran & Tormey, 2012; Bisquerra, 2015; Oberle, Domitrovich, Meyers, & Weissberg, 2016; Greenberg, Domitrovich, Weissberg & Durlak, 2017). The following factor, “personal dispositions which have determined the teaching career decision”, has been added to the aforementioned capacities (Pérez & Pérez, 2015). Some educational systems, such as the Finish, Canadian, South Korean, or Singaporean could be suitable role models of assessing the candidates’ Emotional Dimension through specific attitude tests or interviews (OECD, 2014). The aforementioned policies aimed at limiting access to initial training institutions as well as preparing a small number of teachers. On the contrary, a big number of educational systems tend to train a large number of students and selecting some of them for the teaching profession afterward. In these terms, Emotional Dimension could be an interesting way for recruiting the proper candidates for teaching.
Taking the possibilities of comparing different educational systems focussed on TALIS, examining its evidences and relationships between inputs and outputs, several questions arise: how important is the Emotional Dimension of initial teacher preparation candidates; what links can be found between the demanding recruitment and selection processes and the systems with the best teachers; what pedagogical possibilities are presented as a result of this analysis; or which political challenges raise regarding recruitment and selection processes.
Analyzing international policies and its pedagogical implications need some empirical and theoretical shreds of evidence. Due to this nature and intentionality, this work is framed within a mixed methodology based on the Grounded theory (Strauss & Corbien, 2002). The Teaching and Learning International Survey is an international, large-scale study that provides comparable information about diverse educational policies aimed at primary and lower secondary teachers and school leaders. Cross-country analyses provide the opportunity to compare a considerably amount of countries facing similar patterns. TALIS is presented as a meaningful opportunity to construct educational theory emanated from quantitative data. First, a descriptive analysis of the TALIS 2013 & TALIS 2018 results concerning recruitment and selection processes is going to be done. It is remarkable that the schools' sample of the survey is representative, with a target of 38 countries in 2013 and 47 countries in 2018 (OECD, 2016). Teachers and school leaders are assessed by different questioners, arising different dimension, such as pedagogical resources, initial preparation, school climate, collaborative work, etc. Both questioners are used for analyzing which indicators of Emotional Dimension are present on them. Once the data has been described and analyzed, a conceptual approach prevails in the second part of the study, in order to conceptualize the teacher candidates’ Emotional Dimension. This method aims at entitling the aforementioned dimension with a sufficiently consistent and valid framework to substantiate educational processes. To that end, this part seeks a review of the most relevant international literature about emotional skills in order to consider which measures could be implemented to select the proper candidates on recruitment process (Palomera, Fernández-Berrocal, & Brackett, 2008; Goleman, 2012; Domitrovich, Meyers, & Weissberg, 2016). Lastly, the paper has a critical perspective towards international policies regarding recruiting and selecting teachers for a high-quality initial training. The manner Emotional Dimension is evaluated and considered in TALIS as an international assessment reference could point out some educational systems shortages. Through this analysis, some measures would be present as challenges for the actual policies by comparing international outcomes. The present methods aim to offer a new approach under the relevance of including Emotional Dimension in the mechanisms of selecting the best candidates for teaching.
What is mainly intended to show through the paper is the relevance of considering and evaluating Emotional Dimension in teaching candidates processes. Emotional skills are essential today for teachers and school leaders to prepare students to become lifelong learners. Furthermore, training those abilities related to self-improvement and positive relationships is an increasing demand in teaching community (OECD, 2015). Due to this issue, Emotional Dimension needs to be measured at initial teaching processes and to be developed during the formation. Regarding TALIS, the results seem to show a lack of stringent recruitment selection procedures which transcend cognitive and generic skills in the most of the participant countries. As a consequence, less than 10% of teachers believe that teaching is valued due to social status, poor work environment, sense of personal contribution, or financial rewards (OECD, 2014). This means that the quality of teaching is strongly affected by the adequacy of recruitment and selection. Challenging procedures is a quality indicator itself. Countries with demanding measures seem to achieve better goals and future prospects. The way they select post-secondary students suppose a “filter” for ones who are not truly interested in teaching or do not have the necessary qualification. Specifically, some selection measures are shown, such as a letter of motivation from the candidates, the participation in some educative activity, or an aptitude test might be useful for evaluating social skills, In essence, incorporating Emotional Dimension into the recruitment and selection teaching processes could be a way to know the candidates’ suitability, motivation, and compromise with teaching. After the improvement of the selection policies demand, it is meaningful to develop emotional skills during the initial teacher education. The qualities, capacities, and competencies we required teachers should determine the pedagogical formation they received.
Bisquerra, R. (2015). Universe of Emotions. Valencia: PalauGea Corcoran, R. P., & Tormey, R. (2012). How emotionally intelligent are pre-service teachers? Teaching and Teacher Education, 28, 750-759. doi: http://dx.doi. org/10.1016/j.tate.2012.02.007 European Commission. (2015). Teacher profession in Europe. Practices, perceptions, and policies. Eurydice Report. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union. Retrieved from: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/education/eurydice/documents/thematic_reports/184EN.pdf Goleman, D. (2012). The development of emotional intelligence, in D. Goleman (ed.), Brain and Emotional Intelligence: New breakthroughs (93-99). Barcelona: Consell de Cent. Greenberg, M. T., Domitrovich, C. E., Weissberg, R. P., & Durlak, J. A. (2017). Social and Emotional Learning as a Public Health Approach to Education. The Future of Children, 27 (1), 13-32. Retrieved from: http://www.jstor.org/stable/44219019 OECD. (2016). TALIS 2018. Teaching and Learning International Survey. Paris: OECD Publishing. Retrieved from: https://www.mecd.gob.es/inee/dam/jcr:ce30a67e-d262-4d62-ae6c-abe77f969d3a/talis-2018-brochure-eng.pdf OECD. (2015). Skills for Social Progress. The power of Social and Emotional Skills. Paris: OECD Publishing. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264226159-en OECD. (2014). TALIS 2013 Results: An International Perspective on Teaching and Learning. Brussels: OECD Publishing. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264196261-en Oberle, E., Domitrovich, C. E., Meyers, D., & Weissberg, R. (2016). Establishing systemic social and emotional learning approaches in schools: a framework for schoolwide implementation. Cambridge Journal of Education, 46 (3), 277-297. doi: https://doi.org/10.1080/0305764X.2015.1125450 Palomera, R., Fernández-Berrocal, P., & Brackett, M. A. (2008). Emotional Intelligence as a basic competence in teaching training: some evidence. Electronic Journal of Socio-educative Research, 15 (6), 436-454. ISSN. 1696-2095 Pérez, L., & Pérez, A.I. (2011). Finish Criteria in Students Selection Test for Initial Teacher Training in Spain. Revista Interuniversitaria de Formación del Profesorado, 83 (29.2), 119-141. ISSN 0213-8646 Strauss, A. & Corbin, J. (2002). Fundaments of qualitative research. Techniques and procedures for developing the Grounded Theory. Bogotá: Editorial University of Antioquia.
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