© A. Etges/Mercator-Institut

Staff development for teachers

working in a multicultural society

In a multicultural and multilingual society, teachers need important skills – especially in the area of language education – if they are to support their pupils in the most appropriate way. Their university degree and subsequent period of work experience as a trainee teacher provide a foundation for appropriate monitoring of the language development of pupils and for targeted language support in heterogeneous learning groups. This professionalization is deepened on-the-job, and ideally will be accompanied by effective staff development programmes.

A critical view is taken of the current practice of staff development in education. It is currently the case that staff development courses tend to be more individual in nature, spotlighting a particular area. There is little content that is stipulated, with teachers making individual choices that reflect their own needs or interests. Staff development frequently takes place outside lesson time and outside the school; as a result it lacks direct relevance to educational practice in the school and content is often not passed on to other colleagues.

The goal of the project is to compile an overview of staff development programmes currently available nationwide, to classify them appropriately against the backdrop of the research findings obtained so far, and to work out practical action recommendations on this basis. In cooperation with the research section of the Expert Council of German Foundations on Integration and Migration (SVR), the Mercator Institute is conducting a Germany-wide survey of the staff development courses currently on offer to teachers in the area of language education and support, as well as in the field of linguistic and cultural heterogeneity.

At a glance

Objective

The objective of the project is to compile an overview of staff development programmes currently available nationwide, to classify them appropriately against the backdrop of the research findings obtained so far, and to work out practical action recommendations on this basis.

Partners

Expert Council of German Foundations on Integration and Migration (SVR)

Duration

April 2015 until September 2016

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