Having been a teacher in a vocational college for many years in China, I have encountered a range of issues and problems in my career practice. Some of them were solved, but some are still in my mind, which often make me feel upset about my limitation of capability and knowledge to deal with them. This situation makes me consider looking for a further education opportunity.
The issues and problems have arisen from the changing educational system in China. The rapidly economic development has led to the burgeoning boost in higher vocational education due to the sharply demand for qualified and skilled workforce for manufacturing industry and the desire of the public for the good quality of education. During the last decade, from the top-down to bottom-up, Chinese education system and policies have been changing continuously. In Ningbo Polytechnic College. which I work in, even the college’s mission and program objectives has been adjusting gradually. The main purpose of this transformation change is from traditional interpret theoretical teaching to authentic task learning and instruction to assist students in establishing competence in order to accommodate the new economic environment. The teachers are required to cooperate with the govenment transformation. Therefore, each program group has investigated and analyzed the industry demand for graduates from their program aspect and field and then based on the findings to revise the program objectives, the curriculum, the subject syllabus and the teaching contents. The change and new curriculum have affected teaching and learning in many ways.
In the process of exploring , my colleagues and I have always discussed how to achieve the overall subjectives during the implementation of the new syllabus in teaching and learning activities, how to design authentic learning task in working setting, how to select and develop new content material, how to evaluate students’ performance. I feel so difficult and confused. Sometimes I doubt what I have done is right or not because we have few guideline documents and case studies which can be evaluated and referenced. We lack the support from consultants and experts because our authorities are officials, not educators or experts. In addition, I believe that teachers’ abilities and roles are crucial.
I often have a very strong desire to study in an academical organization. I should have further study about academic research methodologies, update the knowledge in learning and teaching sciences, enhance the ability in evaluation and assessment. I should widen and deepen my own education philosophy and vision because they influence how I support, understand, and assess student learning, direct my own learning, and design the curriculum. I have read some research articles from OISE and I have fully studied OISE Bulletin about the program and courses in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Development Program. I have found CSTD program at CTL is what I am interested in exploring. My academic interests are studying in the strategies and techniques in the evaluation of curriculum program, using a framework to examine the implementation of a syllabus, developing student performance assessment, date collection applying to research designs.
I hope when I have finished the study of master degree at CTL, I could review the issues and problems which I have encountered in more broadest sense. When I come back to work, I could share more responsibilities to support the administrators to develop and complete curriculum reformation. I hope I could be more expertise to dedicate to the teamwork.