A comparative study of revision models of teacher education curriculum in Australia, Singapore and Turkey: New Pattern for Iran

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

1 PhD student of Curriculum, Isfahan (Khorasgan) Branch, Islamic Azad University, Isfahan, Iran

2 Health Management and Economics Research Centre, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

3 Associate Professor of Curriculum, Isfahan (Khorasgan) Branch, , Islamic Azad University, Isfahan, Iran.

10.22034/ijce.2020.103833

Abstract

The purpose of the present study is to investigate revision models of teacher education curriculum in Australia, Singapore and Turkey. This is a comparative qualitative research, and non-experimental research. The most different systems design (MDSD) was used while selecting countries that arecompared within the study.The research findings highlighted the fundamental similarities and differences among the countries under study in terms of different dimensions of the teacher education system including the curriculum and its revision patterns. While Singapore and Turkey follow a centralized system, Australia tends to reduce the power of States and local authorities. From other aspect, the patterns of teacher education’s curriculum revision in all three countries are influenced by local contexts and environmental realities. While the Australian teacher education system is seeking to adopt models that standardize curricula across the country, Singapore is considering the impact of future developments on the teacher education system and is seeking to revise its curricula based on “Life-long, life-deep, life-wide and life-wise." pattern. The findings also show that despite the challenges, Turkey is seeking to revise its teacher training curricula to train skilled teachers who can prepare the young generation to enter and live in Europe - as a developed society -. The research findings suggest that Singapore's experience –compare to Australia and Turkey –is more value-free and could be usebetter by the Iran teacher education system.
 

Highlights

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Keywords

Main Subjects


Article Title [Persian]

مطالعه تطبیقی مدل های بازنگری در برنامه درسی تربیت معلم در استرالیا ، سنگاپور و ترکیه: الگوی جدید برای ایران

Authors [Persian]

  • آزاده باواخانی 1
  • محمدحسین یارمحمدیان 2
  • نرگس کشتی آرای 3
1 دانشجوی دکترا برنامه ریزی درسی،دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی، واحد اصفهان(خوراسگان)،اصفهان،ایران
2 مرکز تحقیقات اقتصادی و مدیریت سلامت، دانشگاه علوم پزشکی اصفهان
3 دانشیار گروه برنامه ریزی درسی، دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی، واحد اصفهان(خوراسگان)،اصفهان،ایران.
Abstract [Persian]

هدف پژوهش حاضر ، بررسی الگوهای بازنگری در برنامه های درسی تربیت معلم در استرالیا ، سنگاپور و ترکیه است. این یک تحقیق تطبیقی کیفی و غیر تجربی است که از الگوی " نظام های با بیشترین درجه تفاوت"  استفاده می کند. در حالی که سنگاپور و ترکیه از یک سیستم متمرکز آموزشی پیروی می کنند ، استرالیا تمایل دارد قدرت دولت ها و مقامات محلی را کاهش دهد. از جنبه دیگر ، الگوهای بازنگری در برنامه درسی معلمان در هر سه کشور تحت تأثیر زمینه های محلی و واقعیت های محیطی است. در حالی که نظام تربیت معلم استرالیا به دنبال اتخاذ مدلهایی است که برنامه های درسی را استاندارد سازی می کنند ، سنگاپور تأثیر تحولات آینده را در این نظام در نظر گرفته و درصدد بازنگری برنامه های درسی خود بر اساس الگوی "زندگی پایدار، زندگی عمیق ، زندگی گسترده و زندگی خردمندانه " است. یافته ها همچنین نشان می دهند که علیرغم چالش ها ، ترکیه در پی بازنگری در برنامه های تربیت معلم برای آموزش معلمان ماهر است که بتوانند نسل جوان را برای ورود و زندگی در جامعه اروپا - به عنوان یک جامعه پیشرفته" آماده کنند. علاوه بر این ، یافته های تحقیق نشان می دهند تجربه سنگاپور - در مقایسه با استرالیا و ترکیه -  بیشتر ارزش- رها بوده و از آن بهتر می توان برای نظام تربیت معلم ایران الگو گرفت.

Keywords [Persian]

  • برنامه درسی
  • مدل های بازنگری
  • تربیت معلم
  • نیازهای محلی
  • استرالیا
  • سنگاپور
  • ترکیه

Introduction

In order to provide the human resources of each country, the education system and especially the Teacher Education (TE) system, plays a key role in the development process. In fact, the development of each country depends on the development of its education system and the effective performance of the education system dependent on the teacher education system. The teacher education system is responsible for the critical education of future teachers in today's transition world.

While rapid changes in the world have affected education, teachers are at the forefront of these changes. On this basis, it may be argued that teachers are one of the first social groups to recognize children behavioral changes and its consequences. One consequence is that the teacher must have new abilities and competencies.Based on this thought, a good teacher is not just a good expert in teaching a lesson. Nurturing a good teacher depends on a modern receptive teacher education system. Also, the existence of an effective teacher education system depends on many factors, but among them the curriculum can be considered as a most important and effective factor (Patankar&Jadhav, 2013). The rapid changes in modern life before effect on schools’ curricula make the change in the curriculum of TE inevitable. Therefore, the necessity of curriculum revisioncan be considered as one of the common concerns and challenges of educational policymakers and planners in all TE systems. This challenge is especially more evident in developing countries.

As one of the developing countries, Iran has not been immune to the consequences of timechanges. Over the past four decades, the country has seen a political shift from the monarchy to the Islamic Republic, an eight-year war with its neighbor Iraq, a two-fold increase in population from about 40 million to 82 million, a slight expansion of the education system (an increase in literacy rate from %35 to 85%) and the successive changes in the organizational structure and content of its teacher education curricula. One of the changes related to the TE was the establishment of the "Farhangian University" in 2011, gathering all teacher education centers under its supervision. Currently, Farhangian University, which is responsible for providing, training and improving teachers’ professional competencies, has more than 60 campuses with over 70,000 teacher-students around the country (Iran Universities Reference, no date). Despite changes in organizational structure, qualitative changes in the Iranian teacher education system have not been rapid. Despite of change on organizational structure, qualitative changes in Iranian teacher education system have not been rapid (Iran Universities Reference, no date)Since the goal of a successful TE is to meet the current needs and aspirations of students, developing an appropriate curriculum requires a constant review, revision, and change (Johnson, 2001). The result of these changes is development of curriculum. As Patankar, &Jadhav, (2013) point out “curriculum development is dynamic process it changes according to the need of thesociety and the stakeholders of the education system. The curriculum development processincludes several stages such as planning, preparing, designing, developing, implementing,evaluating, revising, and improving"(p.5). There are many actors involved in this process including policy makers and officials in government and the Ministry of Education, the private sector, school administrators, teachers, and parents. Although each of these stakeholders has the power to change the curriculum, none of them are as aware of the quality of the curriculum as teachers.So teachers must possess some qualities such as planner, designer, manager,evaluator, researcher, decision maker and administrator. Teachers play the respective role for theeach step of curriculum development process(Ibid, p. 6).

 

It is natural that teachers will do better in this process who benefit from a strong and effective curriculum during their training. For this reason, it can be said that the development of the school curriculum depends on the quality of the teacher training curriculum. This special place has led all educational systems - Every now and then - to try evaluating TE curricula. For example, since 1947, and for more than ten times, the National Education Commissions and Councils in India have been evaluating the curriculum of TE and published their reports (Kapur, 2018). The results of these reports show that often “the teacher training programme does not put emphasis upon theknowledge of the basic subject. The whole teaching practiceremains indifferent with regards to the subject knowledge ofthe student teacher. In schools, teachers have different subjects to teach, these include mathematics, science, social science, English, Hindi, arts and crafts, physical education, and extra-curricular activities. They are required to possess efficient knowledge of the subject matters, they are teaching. In addition to the subject knowledge, it is vital for them to possess knowledge regarding use of technology and implement proper teaching-learning methods. It is vital for the teachers to stimulate knowledge and understanding of not only the academic concepts among students, but also lead to their effective growth and development” (Ibid: 8). naturally, this challenge was not unique to India. Recently Mayer, Cotton, and Simpson (2017) highlighted that the past decade has seen increasing federal intervention in TE in Australia, and like many other countries, more attention on teacher education as a policy problem. They suggested that teacher educators currently lack sufficient evidence and response to criticisms of effectiveness and impact (p.1). Yu (2015) examined the revision of teacher training curriculum in China. His findings showed that revision is a complex process that makes it difficult to change the current centralized system. In Iran, Attaran et al. (2017) in a study entitled “A Historical Perspective of Teacher Education CurriculaRevisions in Iran” and througha historical analysis of documents, reports, library resources and personal interviews with experts of TE indicated four periods of Teacher Education CurriculaRevisions (TECR) in Iran from 1918 to 2014. According to this research, in the first period the focus was on adopting and modeling Western countries. In the second period, educational reforms focused on the realization of the three goals of modernism, nationalism and centralism. In the third period, the revision of the discipline's knowledge and scientific structure has attracted the attention of practitioners.In the fourth period, the goal of TECR was to pay attention to the interdisciplinary approach to curriculum development so that for the first time, new concepts such as thoughtful teacher, research and development, and integrated subject - learning courses are introduced in the TE curriculum.

 

Also, the report of MusaPour and Ahmadi (2016) revealed that fourth period of TECR has taken three years. During these three years, the "Teacher Education Planning Group"(TEPG) in the Ministry of Education was established with the educational experts from different universities and institutes. The outcome of the TEPG was the adoption of the “Macro Document of Teacher Education Curriculum Design". According to this document, the purpose of TECR is to identify teachers' professional competencies and its key dimensions. Now, a few years after the implementation of this document, it seems a look at other countries' experiences on TECR is important for Iranian TE policy makers and planers. According to this, the main goal of present paper is to examine differences and similarities of TECR in Australia, Turkey and Singapore.

 

Research Method

 

This research utilized case-oriented strategy in which a single country or a small number of countries are studied in asystematic way (Lor, 2017). The most different systems design (MDSD) was used while selecting countries that arecompared within the study (Landman, 2008). In MDSD, country selection depends on countries with different characteristics by sharing the phenomenon.  The data were collected through the review of national documents published by the Ministry of Education of the countries under study, national reports, international organizations, books and publications. The approach of the present researchers to analyze the data and present the results of the research is based on the proposed steps of George Bereday (Bray, Adamson, & Mason, 2014).The three countries studied in this study are Australia, Singapore and Turkey. The first two countries have excellent educational performance internationally, while Turkey strives to improve by following European standards. However, all three countries have a long history of TE. Figure 1 provides readers with brief information about the social and educational characteristics of the three countries:

 

Figure 1

Summary of Selection of Countries

Successful Education System

 

 

 

 

Australia:

Population: 24. 6 million(2017)

GDP: $1420 billion(2018)

Compulsory Education: 9-10 years

Student Teacher Ratio (Primary): 15(2017)

PISA Result: 503 Above OECD Average

Teachers: High quality, prestigious profession

Successful Education System

Singapore:

Population: 5. 6 million(2018)

GDP: $364 billion(2018)

Compulsory Education: 10 years

Student Teacher Ratio (Primary): 15(2017)

PISA Result: 549 Above OECD Average

Teachers: High quality, prestigious profession

A growing educational system

Turkey :

Population: 80.8 million(2018)

GDP: $784 billion(2018)

Compulsory Education: 8 years

Student Teacher Ratio (Primary): 17(2017)

PISA Result: 466 blow OECD Average

Teachers: Medium quality, Medium prestigious profession

 

 

Description of Countries

 

Australia

The governmental body for teachers in Australia is the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership. Registration of teachers is the responsibility of the states and territories. Each of them determines the conditions for teacher employment and qualification requirements. Selection for teacher education in Australia is based on year 12 results, or first-degree results, in the case of graduate entry programs (Aras, 2018). Teacher education is provided by universities and private colleges in Australia. In most of the states or regions teacher education programs include a four-year education. The programs include theoretical courses for pedagogical development, content knowledge, and practical education lasting from 12 to 20 weeks. All of the programs have the requirement to include information and communication technologies, education for children with special needs, and awareness studies for different cultures and native Australians (Ibid, p.237). States in Australia have different implementations and regulations for teacher training and qualifications of teachers. There are three different ways for education of elementary and secondary school teachers. One of them is a four-year undergraduate teacher education degree (Bachelor of Education), the second one is a four-year double-degree program that is a concurrent degree with one of the two subjects being teacher education (Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts with Bachelor of Teaching), and the last way is a three or four-year academic degree (Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts), followed by a postgraduate teacher training course (Rodrigues, 2005).

Although the primary responsibility for the teacher education system as well as the recruitment of teachers lies with local and regional governments, over the past two decades, the Australian federal government has been working to expand its power in these two areas.As Savage and Lingard, (2018) indicated the most significant reform promoted by the Australian federal government in teaching and teacher education has been the development of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers, a national set of standards designed to enhance and assess teacher quality by outlining what teachers should know and be able to do’ across four career stages: graduate, proficient, highly accomplished, and lead. The standards were developed by the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL), established by the federal government in 2010.  In addition Savage and Lingard, (2018, p. 65) identified two dominant and related trends on teacher education that can be observed over the past three decades. First is a progressive shift towards the ‘re-scaling’ of schooling policies to the national level, which has been strongly supported by standards-based reforms. Second is a significant increase in federal government involvement in steering national schooling reforms.  In her paper “Forty years of teacher education in Australia: 1974–2014” Diane Mayer (2014)has tried to analyses the history of teacher education in Australia and reveals thatsince the 1970s, has seen more than 100 reviews of teacher education. Focusing on the current policy moment in Australia, she positioning teacher education as a ‘policy problem’ which requiring a national solution. In this regards, Ling (2017) believes that there is ongoing centre-periphery tension between the Commonwealth government and the State governments regarding regulation and accreditation of teacher education programmes with there now being regulatory bodies at both national (Australian Institute of Teaching and School Leadership – AITSL) and state levels. Despite all of this, teacher education is still the butt of ongoing criticism and investigation and is now more highly regulated than ever. Tanya Fitzgerald & Sally Knipe (2016) highlighted that in Australia teacher education has become centre stage to a political agenda that calls for global competitiveness in the knowledge economy. The common problem is declining of educational standards linked with the quality of teaching and teacher education. To solve this problem, the Australian government arranges a set of initiatives to standardize teacher quality: the Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA), the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL), the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) and Education Services Australia (ESA) (O’Meara, 2011).

The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) is Australia’s independent national quality assurance and regulatory agency for higher education. It purposes is to protect student interests and the reputation of Australia's higher education sector through a proportionate, risk-reflective approach to quality assurance that supports diversity, innovation and excellence. All organizations that offer higher education qualifications (including teacher education certificates) in or from Australia must be registered by TEQSA. Higher education providers that have not been granted self-accrediting authority (almost all of the non-university providers) must also have their courses of study accredited by TEQSA (TEQSA, 2019). The other initiative is the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL). AITSL mission is to promoting excellence so that teachers and leaders have the maximum impact on learning in all Australian schools and early childhood settings. The Focus Areas of AITSL are: Placing impact of initial teacher education, teaching and leadership at the centre of our work;   Building, enhancing and sustaining effective teaching and leadership at every level; Advocating for quality and rigour in the design and implementation of national policies, tools and resources; Supporting the professional education community to make evidence-based decisions and Affirming the status of the profession (AITSL, 2018).

In September 2015, Australia’s education ministers endorsed the Foundation – Year 10 curriculum. The curriculum provides teachers, parents; students and the community with a clear understanding of what students should learn regardless of where they live or what school they attend. Accordingly the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) was introduced to improve the quality, equity and transparency of Australia’s education system (ACARA, 2019). Education Services Australia (ESA) also is a national not-for-profit company owned by the state, territory and Australian Government education ministers. Education Services Australia (ESA) is a sustainable education service provider, working collaboratively in the interests of all Australian education jurisdictions to provide technology-based services for education. ESA develops cost-efficient products and services that can be adapted in response to emerging technologies and changing needs of the education and training sector.ESA provides:

  • Development, sharing and deployment of nationally owned technical data and assessment systems
  • Digital teaching and learning resources, tools and services
  • Information and communications technology services (ESA, 2019).

In this way, the Australian Federal Government has sought to increase the quality of teacher education programs.

 

Singapore

The interrelated processes pertaining to recruitment, training, certification, appointment, and deployment of teachers for the Singapore schools are the sole responsibility of the Ministry of Education with relation with National Institute of Education (NIE). The NIE Undergraduate programmes provide the academic and professional development for undergraduates to become effective beginning teachers in schools. Our Undergraduate programmes areBachelor of Arts (Education) (BA[Ed]) (full-time) and Bachelor of Science (Education) (BSc[Ed]) (full-time). There are a variety of initial teacher preparation programmes offered by NIE that will lead to Diplomas for candidates who will be teaching in primary or secondary schools. There are two versions of the Diploma in Education programmes: the General and the Specialization tracks. The Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) programmes aim to prepare university graduates to become primary, secondary school and junior college teachers. Student teachers in the PGDE (Primary) and PGDE (Secondary) tracks will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to teach two school subjects (or one in the case of single-subject specialists) ( NIE, 2019). In Singapore, the admission criteria for non-graduate teachers (i.e., those without any university degree) can include Ordinary Level of General Certificate of Education, Advanced Level of General Certificate of Education or Polytechnic diploma. After getting one of those degrees candidates go into an interview process to be evaluated in terms of passion for teaching, communication skills, creativeness and innovativeness, confidence, leadership qualities, and good role model (Aras, 2018). All teacher education candidates are required to complete core courses in education studies, subject knowledge (primary only), curriculum studies, academic studies (degree only), practicum, and what are termed language enhancement and academic discourse skills (LEADS) ( Ingvarson et al , 2013. p 64).  Despite Singapore's superiority in international competitions such as the TIMSS and PIRLS, the Ministry of Education has tried to improve the quality of teacher education programs in recent years.This ministry and NIE recognize the need to achieve balance between practice-based learning and theoretical knowledge to develop teachers of the twenty-first century. In view of the above, NIE instituted the following practices to ensure robust initial teacher education:

 

E-portfolio: Building a conceptual map for learning and teaching.  This framework, which cuts across all courses, enables student teachers to record their learningwhile demonstrating their understanding of the responsibilities of a teacher.

 

• Practicum: Improving practice and developing teacher personhood.The practicum is a period of internship where the student teacher is attached to a school to prepare them for the realities of teaching. This crucial period allows student teachers to be closely mentored by their school coordinating mentors (SCMs) and provides the opportunity to address any concerns and assumptions they hold about the profession.

 

Reflective Practice: Deliberate pause for structured reflection. The Reflective Practice Model adopted in NIE programs is used in the process of coursework and put into practice after every lesson to encourage student teachers to consciously and methodically reflect on their assumptions.

 

Focused Conversation: Challenging assumptions and co-constructing knowledge.Focused conversations aim to promote student teachers’ personal philosophies towards teaching. These have been incorporated into the practicum process. They provide ideal spaces for student teachers and their SCMs to co-construct knowledge involving teaching and learning while encouraging student teachers to confront their prior assumptions and beliefs (Tan, 2019, 44-46)

 

 

Turkey

The first Turkish teacher training institution, known as the Darulmuallimin, was established around the middle of the 19th century in Istanbul. Despite the fact that many different models of teacher training have been implemented since then, the main change in the Turkish teacher preparation system occurred in 1981 when the responsibilities and activities of teacher training were transferred from Ministry of National Education (MONE) to the universities (Tarman, 2010, p. 80). In addition, in Turkey, the Higher Education Council (HEC) determines the requirements for the promotion of academic staff and the standards for university degrees besides other duties. For faculties and graduate schools of education, it also defines in some detail the structure of teacher education programs leading to qualified teacher status. The length of each program, the number of credits, the titles of courses, and a summary of the content of the courses which constitute a teacher education program, plus the qualification the program leads to, are all laid down by the HEC (Grossman, Sands, Brittingham, 2010). In line with the length of eight-year compulsory primary education, Turkish teacher education system and programs also have been restructured by the ministry and HEC. The system put into implementation in 1998 aimed:

  • Training teachers with bachelor's degree for pre-primary and primary school,
  • Training Foreign Languages, Music, Art, Physical Education, Special education, Computer Education and Instructional Technologies teachers with bachelor's degrees for secondary schools,
  • Training Science, Mathematics and Social Science teachers with non-thesis graduate degrees (Yuksel, 2012, p. 52).

 

High school teachers in Turkey are recruited from two sources; education faculty graduates, and different faculty graduates such as faculty of literature, art, science, theology, and etc. to teach particularly at high schools. A program of Education faculty takes a four year study in pedagogical preparation courses and content knowledge. Other faculty graduates must have a certification of initial teacher training program (called pedagogical formation) that takes one year (Korkmaz, 2016, p. 853). Finally, according to the Ministry of National Education (MONE) the main competence areas thatteachers should have are:

 

  • Personal and professional values / professional development,
  • Knowing the student,
  • Teacher and learning process,
  • Monitoring and evaluation of learning and development,
  • School, family and community relations, and
  • Program and content information (Erceten, et al. 2019, p. 12).

 

 

Historically, however, we have seen that since the early 1970s, stakeholders in the Turkish education system have come up with the establishment of institutions and committees seeking to implement new reforms in teacher education programs.In 1976 the length of education was increased to four year and they were reorganized under the new name as Higher Teacher Training Colleges with new departments such as Physics, Chemistry, History, Geography, Turkish language and Literature, etc. In 1982, teacher training schools and institutions were connected to Turkish Higher Education Board.  During next twenty years (1982-1998) National Committee of Teacher Training (NCTT) was set up to supervise, evaluate and analyze teacher training programs of faculties and determined the needs and expectations.

 

Figure 2:

Curriculum of Teacher Education in Turkey

 

Source: Muzamil, 2017

In continuation of these reforms, in 2003-2004, a major study of the effects of the reforms introduced of Turkish teacher education by the project was conducted under the sponsorship of the Fulbright Commission for Educational Exchange between the United States and Turkey, one portion of which included an evaluation of teacher education curriculum reform, its levels of acceptance and use by professional teacher educators, and the attitudes of the teacher education community on the changes needed in teacher education in the future as Turkey aims toward EU membership(Grossman, Onkol, & Sands, 2007). 

 

Comparison of Countries

Data analysis reveals similarities and differences among the three countries in subjects such as teacher training organizations, teacher recruitment, teacher training providers, content of teacher training courses, type of qualifications, and special emphasis on teacher education curriculum. Table 1 shows the information relevant to each country in the areas of interest:

The data in Table 1 shows that in Australia and Turkey, one governmental institution and two in Singapore have responsibility of teachers. While in Australia the States and Territories authorities have responsibility of teacher recruitment, Singapore and Turkey benefit from a similarly centralized approach. Diversity in teacher training providers is visible in Australia and universities and colleges provide training and related educational degrees, but in Singapore and Turkey a limited number of institutions are providers of TE. Although duration of teacher training is almost the same in all three countries (4 years), the content of the curriculum has made them similar too. Australia provides three and Singapore and Turkey two type of certificate degree for teachers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 1: Summary of Comparison of Countries: Teacher Education Components

Teacher Education (TE) Components

Australia

Singapore

Turkey

Governmental Body for Teachers

Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership

Ministry of Education  + National Institute of Education (NIE)

Ministry of National Education (MONE)

Teacher recruitment

States and Territories

Central Government

Central Government

Provider of TE

Universities and private colleges

NIE

MONE + Higher Education Council (HEC)

Duration of TE Programs

4 Years

2-4 Years

4 Years

Contents of TE Programs

Theoretical courses for pedagogical development, content knowledge, and practical education

Courses in education studies, subject knowledge (primary only), curriculum studies, academic studies (degree only), practicum, language enhancement and academic discourse skills

Courses in Foreign Languages, Music, Art, Physical Education, Special education, subject knowledge , Computer Education and Instructional

Type of Certificate

3

2

2

 

Table 2 examines the similarities and differences of the three countries in terms of effective dimensions of Teacher Education Curriculum Revision (TECR). While we know that only one institute in Singapore is responsible for the selection and training of teacher candidates and the content of TE curricula, Australia and Turkey have entrusted this task to various universities and institutions. For this reason, it is not possible to determine a single pattern of TECR, which may be one of the limitations of researchers to form a comprehensive picture of curriculum revision patterns. However, the data in Table 2 show that there is an active and relatively constant flow of revision of TECR in all three countries.Similarly, the diversity of national programs or national agencies to evaluate and revise teacher education curricula in Australia is greater than in Turkey and Singapore. On the other hand, it might be possible to get a better picture of the Singapore experience, as the National Institute of Education only has all roles at TECR. Regardless of these differences, what illustrates the similarities of these three countries is the emphasis ofTECRpatterns on inspirational learning, attention to new life needs, and increased efficiency and effectiveness of teacher education programs.

 

One of the main differences of the three countries is in their major policy on TECR. Australia's overall policy is to reduce the power of states and territories in relation to teachers, TE and TECR. While Singapore as an island city-state has little geographical space and naturally there is no conflict between central governments and other parts of the country; Turkey's model for TECRis geared towards facilitating EU membership. Likewise, in pursuit of these overall policy, Australia is striving to create a unified standards for TE and TECRthat can be implemented across the country; Singapore has made courses flexible by adhering to stricter standards and Turkey is seeking to establish a strong accreditation system to reach the level of European countries.

 

Table 2: Summary of Comparison of Countries: Teacher Education Curriculum Revision (TECR) Components

TECR Components

Australia

Singapore

Turkey

Responsible Organization for TECR

TEQSA

AITSL

ACARA

ESA

NIE

NCTT

National Education Development Project (NEDP)

Mission and Tasks of Responsible Organization

Set a national standards designed to enhance and assess teacher quality across four career stages: graduate, proficient, highly accomplished, and lead

Inspiring Learning, Transforming Teaching, Advancing Research

To develop a positive attitude towards quality assurance and accreditation in teachers training institutions, to raise awareness, to equip administrators and teaching staff with basic knowledge and skills.

Main Policy

Reduce Local Government Power / Increase Federal Government Authorities

Developing “life-long, life deep, life-wide and life-wise" programmes and pedagogies

Facilitating Turkey's EU membership through a modern educational system

Main tool for policy realization

Standardization of teacher education curriculum across the country

Flexible and rigorous professional learning courses and modules

Establish anaccreditation system for quality assurance in teacher training

 

 

Conclusion and Discussion

Almost a decade after the establishment of the Farhangian University, Iran's teacher education system needs to pay more attention to international experiences for its curricula revisions.The purpose of this research was to describe and compare the experiences of the three countries of Turkey, Singapore and Australia in the context of TECR. Iranian comparativits and curriculum planners’ attention to Turkey probably has two main reasons: First, the geographical and historical affinities between the two countries that make educational borrowing easier, and Second, Turkey's close relations with European countries make it possible for Iran to find out how Turkey's educational borrowing was right. Singapore, with its geographical distance from Iran, has shown remarkable educational progress over the last three decades. The lack of political sensitivity of Iranian policy makers and practitioners to Singapore has made it a suitable unit of observation and analysis for educational borrowing. Over the last four decades and due to political and economic conditions, Australia has become an ideal destination for Iranian immigrants. The presence of Iranians in Australia and its relatively balanced relations with the Iranian political system make Iranian scholars pay close attention to its educational developments. The presence of Iranians in Australia and its relatively balanced relation with the Iran’s regime has led Iranian scholars to pay close attention to its educational developments.

Despite these positive non-educational features,the research findings show that except for Australia, there is a great deal of similarity between Iran, Singapore and Turkey in terms of central government domination on teacher education system, although even the Australian federal government has begun its centralized tendency too. Iran is also more similar to Australia than the other two countries when it comes to the institutions involved in TE. Over the past hundred years, the Iranian educational system has undergone a restructuring of more than five times and teachers have been recruited and trained in various ways.

The last important findings of the study show that all three countries have a fundamentalTE policy that helps to examine and select different revision patterns of curriculum. Australia's focus is on increasing the role of the federal government in preparing, formulating, evaluating and revising teacher education programs.From this aspect, Iran's government-based system cannot learn much from Australia. Singapore has more in-depth lessons for Iran teacher educationsystem. In Singapore, similar to Iran, the TE system is heavily government-controlledbut with major differences in itsperformance. While Singapore's TE system educates highly skilled and professional teachers, Iran's TE faces numerous challenges. It is a clear recommendation for Iran to send educational specialists to Singapore studying its TE carefully. Turkey's goal of joining the European Union is not something of interest to Iranian politicians. The Iranian teacher education system (in its new organizational structure) is not yet at a stage where it can easily learn from the European model of Turkeyand Iran's TE system (in its new organizational structure) is still not at a stage to wait for lessons from the European-centric Turkish model.

 

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