Educators Could Become the Champions of Education Research
Any classroom teacher, when asked, will tell no training can prepare them for their first day as a teacher. Though their trainers are intelligent and experienced professors engaged in University classes, they just can’t imitate the everyday real-life situations and challenges faced by the educators.
For a beginner teacher, it’s often trial by fire. The experienced ones who have been to school and studied pedagogy can surely confirm that. The research these people studied in school didn’t help them much when they came to a class packed with living, breathing children.
Ever wondered why the research doesn’t help teachers in the classroom much?
Education theories are directly related to the fields in which researchers are interested. Some excellent research gets overlooked, while some other more dubious work (or has even been discredited) gets loads of publicity. A lot of teachers feel new concepts and strategies are enforced upon them by the administration without thinking about how realistic they are in the classroom. These teachers are searching for concrete impact in the classroom and coming up short.
Sadly, several teachers feel inadequate attention is given to the requirements and skills of students and educators in the real world and on a bespoke level. Since teachers are extremely busy, irrelevant staff development is a waste of their precious time, which they could have otherwise spent on things significant for their students.
Perhaps you’re now thinking about the importance of this research for you and your students and if it deserves your time. These are reasonable questions to ask.
Though comparing education and war may appear to have a negative implication, teachers indeed stand on the front lines every single day. On the contrary, several researchers may have never had the experience of what it truly means to be a teacher and might not know the challenges faced and things needed to teach on a daily basis effectively. This disconnection between theoretical work and the teachers’ real-life requirements continues to expand.
In general, teachers are inclined to feel that educational research neglects or disregards their professional knowledge. Research that should have informed and helped in their work doesn’t even take them into consideration. This is frustrating for sure.
New research is altering the way we view educational theories. Some researchers are trying to change things by actually sitting down with classroom teachers and trying to understand their thoughts. It’s vital for researchers and teachers to step out into the broader community and participate in public discussions and debates. They need to break their image of sitting in an “ivory tower,” detesting the actual schools, and being aloof of understanding the real-world challenges faced by the teachers every day.
School-led researches also have advantages. When teachers are given the responsibility of gathering data, it ensures an impartial conclusion. This makes it appear that research could, and should, be included in schools’ standard functions.
Teachers should be appreciated and encouraged to participate in educational research. Until that becomes the standard, the impact of academic research will never reach the level we hope it to.