THE role of teachers should be in line with the development of today’s educational environment.
This requires the commitment of teachers who are willing to face change in the 21st century.
The role of teachers is increasingly challenging and they need to prepare for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR4) or risk being left behind.
Students are exposed to a digital world, where the Internet, cloud computing and social media challenge the formal education system.
The rapid development of technology requires a paradigm shift among teachers. Are teachers ready for this generation of students?
How do we produce versatile students in solving complex, creative and innovative issues?
We need teachers who are committed to forming new pedagogical tools and adapting to new teaching methods.
Technology has become an integral part of society. Some even say that the skills we pick up in formal education are irrelevant for the future. Is this true?
Terms like robots, artificial intelligence, disruptive innovation and technology often crop up in IR4 discussions. Are teachers willing to integrate augmented reality in their teaching?
The integrity of reality in teaching allows students to better understand concepts.
The role of teachers as the main source of knowledge and information may be irrelevant today. Teaching and learning now emphasise creativity and innovation.
Active learning, project-based learning, problem-solving and inquiry with opportunities to engage with the real world should be a practice.
With the development of open-source content and easy access to online content, teachers are no longer the primary source of information.
This, however, does not mean teachers are not required, but their role as dispenser of information has changed to facilitators and the nurturer of creative thinking.
Students are given the freedom to customise their learning process through blended learning, flipped classroom and Bring Your Own Device.
Good teachers adapt what they are teaching to students’ interest and abilities. Learning is not only concentrated in the classroom, but can also happen anywhere — at home, workplace and even at the bus stop.
The things mentioned above require changes in the role of teachers as educators. The country’s teacher training programmes need to be in line with current developments and updated to equip our teachers with tools to face this new revolution.
ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR DR EFFANDI ZAKARIA
Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi,