научная статья по теме Extended professional education of post-graduate students: problems and solutions Биология

Текст научной статьи на тему «Extended professional education of post-graduate students: problems and solutions»

Материалы IXМеждународной научно-практической конференции студентов, аспирантов и молодых ученых «Научное творчество XXI века» (18 апреля 2015 г.)



Almurzin P.P, Bandurov V.V., Kirsanova M.V.

Samara State Aerospace University Academician S.P. Korolev (National Research University); Samara Institute (branch) of the Russian Economic University, Samara, Russia

In this article we have attempted to analyze problems of managing Extended Additional Professional Education (EAPE) ofpost-graduate students and we have suggested possible ways of solving them through structural changes in EAPE system, strengthening the relationship within its organizational structure, introduction in new training models based on the widespread use of information and communication technology and

formation of up-to-date competencies of students, active attracting of leading teaching professionals to the development of e-learning resources.

Keywords: educational business processes; extendedpro-fessional education; continuing professional development; post-graduate students competence; new models of professional development; information and communication technologies; e-learning resources.

Full-scale Russian higher education reform has been introduced over the last decade and it has set a number of priority problems of effective organization of EAPE system. The introduction of competence-oriented educational standards, level of training (now including Master's degrees based on resolutions of Bologna process, not only PhD courses as before), increasing the share of active and interactive forms of training, expansion of students' independent work, the need to develop new teaching methods and introduce other changes in the educational process require teachers knowledge of modern pedagogical approaches and educational technologies.

IT-based education is a very demanding requirement that teachers have to meet nowadays. Post-graduate teachers, irrespective of their basic education, have to have skills of delivering lectures, presentations, webinars, video conferences, simulation laboratory practical, active use of computer games in education, training, virtual tours, educational websites, developing e-learning and teaching aids, tests of different difficulty levels, using computer tools for monitoring leam-ing activities of students. Given the prospects for the development of education in the digital age, including the rapid development of online

learning, it is important for teachers to be able to develop now the author online courses and teach students in a remote mode. The rapidly expanding segment of the educational market for mobile applications facilitate using the resources of social networks, Skype, games in education also define new prospects for the transfer of knowledge to postgraduate students and enhance their learning motivation.

To successfully teach post-graduate modern teachers require developing their own competences in many areas. For smooth implementation of educational processes a teacher needs good knowledge of the subject, to have professional psychological and pedagogical, information and technological training competence, as well as to carry out research and innovation process, to develop analytical and creative abilities in students, to possess knowledge of research methodology and ways of Inventive Problem Solving. Increased competition in the field of education, increasing share of economic component in the work of higher education institutions, the need for commercialization of scientific research, implementation of productive activities, income-generating education (small businesses, engineering laboratories, patent offices, counseling centers, etc.) prioritize the role of business culture while teaching post-graduate courses. Ideally, the modern teacher should have a good understanding of the laws of market economy, understand specific business processes, know the basics of marketing, advertising and networking. For high school senior and middle management staff it is essential to know management theory and modern management technologies.

In order that formation of competencies in high schools is not carried out spontaneously, as it often happens in practice, an efficient EAPE system should be established. In accordance with Russian regu-

lations, EAPE has to include professional teachers' retraining, continuing professional development (CDP) and developmental assignment. EAPE should include teachers' training in special institutes, schools of extended professional education (CDP), engineering pedagogy, as well as targeted training at leading universities, research institutions and industrial enterprises. It is quite reasonable that universities look for less expensive forms of EAPE, therefore they tend to run their own short-term training courses for their teaching staff in relevant and up-to-date areas of professional activities.

However, current EAPE system in Russia has serious weaknesses in its structural organization and technological aspects of the educational process. First, we should note curriculum and industrial disconnection as well as the lack of effective sustainable relationships between different organizational structures within EAPE system (schools and departments). Therefore, teachers who have acquired the necessary competences and skills for training post-graduate students in a new educational environment have to be responsible for leading newly established EAPE centers. As a result Universities which play the role of industrial anchors in the region (e.g.: aerospace, automobile, oil and gas) can establish such centers as part of regional industrial clusters preparing engineering or sectoral research and development (R&D) brainpower. Unlike other EAPE and CDP training centers which are still based on common principles and standardized syllabus these newly created EAPE centers will offer flexible and customizable courses which will fit both professional interests of post-graduate students but also market demands, i.e. they will be quick to react and adapt to changing demands and environment in general. As for other independent commercial EAPE agencies and schools, they lack verti-

cal and horizontal relations within the industry or cluster, they have no ties with enterprises which are more likely to have more trust in Universities, and these agencies are unable to headhunt professionals for teaching their courses. Therefore, these factors prevent them from conducting effective courses for post-graduate students. New format EAPE system within a University is a likely solution for both training teachers and post-graduate students as it has facilities for updating training materials, case studies kits, tests, video training materials to implement targeted training of specialists directly involved in retraining and advanced training of teachers.

A serious drawback is the lack of integrity, continuity of training teachers within the EAPE system. In accordance with professional standards, every five years every teacher has to enhance his or her qualifications. It is assumed that the EAPE system should ensure a smooth transition of its attendees to a new level of proficiency while enhancing their skills and expanding professional knowledge. However, for each teacher, this process is carried out largely spontaneously and unevenly. Instead of a phased increase of the level of their skills, the teachers can only choose for themselves the course of their current training and interests in their subject courses. It should be borne in mind that in many Universities in the absence of a sufficient number of professionals who are able to be engaged in professional development of their colleagues, the choice of syllabus is very limited and the same subject courses are offered from year to year without any changes or updates, thus not contributing to overall efficient training of post-graduate students.

If we talk about University CDP systems, they often apply a so-called «gross approach» when virtually does not take into account

educational needs of teachers from different departments, different age groups and who accordingly have different teaching experience and job qualifications (in the best case, they identify two categories of attendees - young and more experienced staff). The lack of a diversified syllabus reduces the effectiveness of training of teachers and consequently of post-graduate students, as depending on the age of attendees there is change in rate of perception and assimilating of new information, training activities, innovative sensitivity. Taking into account basic education of teachers will help to reveal their real needs, to strengthen those aspects of professional competence that have not been developed well enough. Psychological mechanism of perception often leads to the fact that teachers tend to choose courses that are substantively similar to their experience and ignore those distant from it (e.g., they can diminish the significance of humanity subjects as they imply a «a lot of vain theorizing» instead of providing some practical skills). Therefore it is worthwhile to «breed» educational needs of post-graduate students and teachers by offering courses of psycho-pedagogical emphasis to technical, economic and other sectoral education, for teachers with basic pedagogical training - courses for enhancing their IT skills or other technical subjects.

The disadvantages of organizing and implementing educational process in the EAPA system could include unclear definition of goals, objectives and corresponding educational content, as well as the use of outdated technologies of training that do not contribute to the formation of competencies of current students. The lack of scientific competence model developed by teachers at each level of qualification and competence does n

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