The Centrality of Teaching Practice in the HCT Bachelor of Education

Introduction

Teaching Practice (TP) is an integral part of the Bachelor of Education program at the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT). This paper describes the overall structure of the program and the way it links the theoretical aspects of the course to best practice. As the program has developed, there has been a growing appreciation of how central TP is to the successful development of teachers. The program emphasizes the implementation of current educational theory, taking into account local context. The paper outlines some strategies trialled at Dubai Women’s College (DWC) over the four years of the B.Ed program, including the placement of students in private schools during their first semester. This is seen as a key for the success of graduates in a context where there is acknowledgement that an enormous amount of change needs to take place to improve educational outcomes for the local population. One crucial aspect of this emphasis is on HCT faculty acting as mentors while student teachers are in the classroom. This shifts the focus of class observations from assessment to reflective practice, which is a skill that needs time and practice.

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