Teaching Aptitude Among Prospective Teachers


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TEACHING APTITUDE AMONG PROSPECTIVE TEACHERS
By
DR. KULDEEP SINGH CHANDEL Assistant Professor
Swami Vivekanand P.G. College of Education, Tarkwari, Tehsil: Bhoranj,
District: Hamirpur (H.P.) India.
And
DR. RAJ KUMAR DHIMAN Associate Professor,
Swami Vivekanand P.G. College of Education, Tarkwari, Tehsil: Bhoranj,
District: Hamirpur (H.P.) India.
Abstract
This study aims to find out the teaching aptitude of prospective teachers towards teaching profession with regard to teaching variables viz. Teaching Profession, Interest towards Students, Social Contacts, Innovation Regarding Activities of the School, Professional Ethics and Teaching Potentialities and Current Knowledge. The sample comprised 200 B.Ed. Students drawn from 10 Colleges of Education in District Hamirpur of Himachal Pradesh through simple random sampling technique. The teaching aptitude test developed and standardized by Dr. S.C. Gakhar and Dr. Rajnish (1971) was used for data collection. The study reveals that male and female prospective teachers differ significantly in their overall teaching aptitude as well as in four areas of teaching aptitude but not differed in two areas, viz. teaching profession and interest towards students.
Key Words: Teaching Aptitude, Prospective teachers, Gender
Teaching aptitude refers to the qualities, traits and skills pertaining to teaching which a person possesses naturally or acquires through self-effort and which gets reflected in his inclination towards teaching and are helpful to him in performing his job dexterously (Srivastava). So, teaching aptitude is a specific ability, potentiality, interest, satisfaction and fitness in teaching profession.
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Academic Discourse: An International Journal
Education is the foundation stone of nation’s intellectual power which shapes the power profile of a nation in the community of world nations, thus, it is rightly said that progress of a country depends up on the quality of its teachers and for this reason teaching is the noblest among all professions, therefore, the education commission recommends the introductions of “A sound programme of professional education of teachers”. In the words of Prof. Humayun Kabir, “Teachers are literally the arbiters of a nation’s destiny. It may sound a truism, but it still needs to be stressed that the teacher is key to any educational reconstruction”. Teacher is very important person in the field of education. It is on him that the organization of education is based. His scholarship, conduct, behavior have a permanent effect on the students because the student imitates the teacher. For young children he is the hero of ideal. It is necessary for the teacher to be intelligent in his subject, polite nature etc. Teacher is the main pillar in the process of education. In case he is halfhearted in doing the job, he cannot deliver the good expected of him. All the duties and responsibilities of the teachers are limited theoretically in books. It would be the endeavor of the world to find whether the teacher feel that they are true towards their duty. The role of teacher in moldings the personality of the students depends on the aim of education. Education is to aim at wholesome progressive, harmonious and spontaneous growth and development of personality. Nunn, T. P. agreed “The primary aim of all education is that the efforts should be made to help boys and girls to achieve the highest degree of individual development of which they are capable of”. It is universally accepted and established fact that academic growth and intellectual advancement of a nation is shaped by the quality of its citizen and this quality is inseparably linked with the quality of education imported to them and it depends upon several factors for example; home, inherited traits, parental attitude, financial support, material equipments, curriculum and method of instruction in schools. The identification of qualified and able teaching personnel constitutes one of the most important of all educational concerns. The role played by the teachers in the growth of civilization is of great significance and worth assuring recognition. A teacher is a highly valued personality in a society and teaching is considered to be the most sacred and distinctive profession. Teachers have brought laureates to nations. The profession of a teacher has never been so challenging and demanding as it has become now. Global emphasis on literacy shows the world’s concern for the teacher’s role in the development of society (Saxena, N.R.1998).
Due to knowledge explosion, there is a spread of education not only in India, but all over the world. Due to this change, social needs have changed accordingly. A teacher is expected to face the new changes by undergoing through training for new trends in education. Such training - needs are satisfied by following National level agencies of teacher education programmes viz. NCERT and NCTE. Ministry of Education of Indian Government established NCERT in 1961. NCERT is an
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Teaching Aptitude among Prospective Teachers - Dr. Kuldeep Singh Chandel and Dr. Raj Kumar Dhiman
autonomous organization, working as an academic wing of the Ministry of Education. It assists the said ministry in the formulation and implementation of its policies and programmes in the field of Education. It is expected to encourage student teachers and teacher educators to conduct educational research. In order to fulfill these main objectives, it has established National Institute of Education (NIE) at Delhi and 4 regional colleges of education at Ajmer, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar and Mysore. It also works in collaboration with the departments in the states, the universities and institutes, following the objectives of school education. It also maintains close contact with similar national and international institutions throughout the world. It communicates results of its researches to a common man by publishing books and journals. In teaching profession a teacher has to perform multiple activities like teaching, evaluating, communicating, guiding and counseling the students, organizing co-curricular activities, participate in community programme, diagnoses and provides remedy to students problem etc., together with activities which are intrinsic to teaching and learning. This needs perfection in academic and professional of teachers and teacher educators. So the need and importance of teacher education is: 1. To educate teachers in organizing learning resources so that they can identify and
design how to use a variety of appropriate teaching learning resources from the environment, community, media and self-learning material. 2. To qualify them to conduct effective interaction during class room teaching to promote individual and group learning. 3. To educate them to evaluate the outcomes of learning by planning and conducting a continuous comprehensive evaluation of the teaching learning process through appropriate tools and techniques. 4. To make them sufficient to implement compensatory education programmes for the disadvantaged learner through organizing and participating in remedial instruction, tutorials, special coaching etc. 5. To make them competent to cater to the special needs if disabled and gifted children. 6. To educate them to organize and guide a variety of co-curricular activities designed to facilitate the all round development of learner. 7. To make them adequate to guide students in solving their learning, occupation and personal problems and also participate in other student support activities. 8. To prepare them to participate in and contribute to parallel and adult literacy, workers education etc. 9. To make them proficient to develop in students the quality of democratic citizenship like tolerance, concern for others, corporation, responsibility commitment to social justice etc. 10. To make them with the quality to organize and participate in programmes of community service and development.
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Academic Discourse: An International Journal
It is well known that the quality and extent of learner achievement are determined primarily by teacher competence, sensitivity and teacher motivation. The National Council for Teacher Education has defined teacher education as – A programme of education, research and training of persons to teach from pre-primary to higher education level. Teacher education is a programme that is related to the development of teacher proficiency and competence that would enable and empower the teacher to meet the requirements of the profession and face the challenges therein. According to Goods Dictionary of Education teacher education means, “All the formal and non-formal activities and experiences that help to qualify a person to assume responsibilities of a member of the educational profession or to discharge his responsibilities more effectively”. In 1906-1956, the programme of teacher preparation was called teacher training. It prepared teachers as mechanics or technicians. It had narrower goals with its focus being only on skill training. The perspective of teacher education was therefore, very narrow and its scope was limited. As W.H. Kilpatrick put it, “Training is given to animals and circus performers, while education is to human beings”. Teacher education encompasses teaching skills, sound pedagogical theory and professional skills as shown in Fig. 1. The figure clearly illustrates the relationship between teaching skills, pedagogical theory and professional skills.
Teaching skills: It includes providing training and practice in the different techniques, approaches and strategies that would help the teachers to plan and impart instruction, provide appropriate reinforcement and conduct effective assessment. It includes effective classroom management skills, preparation and use of instructional materials and communication skills.
Pedagogical theory: It includes the philosophical, sociological and psychological considerations that would enable the teachers to have a sound basis for practicing the teaching skills in the classroom. The theory is stage specific and is based on the needs and requirements that are characteristic of that stage.
Professional skills: It includes the techniques, strategies and approaches that would help teachers to grow in the profession and also work towards the growth of the profession. It includes soft skills, counseling skills, interpersonal skills, computer skills, information retrieving and management skills and above all lifelong learning skills. An amalgamation of teaching skills, pedagogical theory and professional skills would serve to create the right knowledge, attitude and skills in teachers, thus promoting holistic development (Martin, R.J.,1994).
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Teaching Aptitude among Prospective Teachers - Dr. Kuldeep Singh Chandel and Dr. Raj Kumar Dhiman
TEACHER EDUCATION

TEACHING SKILLS

PEDAGOGICAL THEORY

PROFESSIONAL SKILLS

Fig. 1: Teacher Education
Aptitude refers to a natural or acquired capacity or ability especially a tendency, capacity or inclination to learn or understand (Webster's Medical Dictionary, 2002). It refers to part of a person's mental equipment which gives him a special fitness for any kind of endeavour. Such an aptitude may be the result of either an innate endowment or of special training or both. The mental and physical qualities giving rise to differences in aptitude are difficult to distinguish. According to Warren's Dictionary, "Aptitude is a condition or a set of characteristics regarded as symptomatic of an individual's ability to acquire with some training, some knowledge, skills or set of responses such as ability to speak a language". When we refer to a person's aptitude for mathematics or music we are referring to his future too. But his aptitude, however, is a present condition having something to do with the future. Bingham makes a careful analysis of the term aptitude and confines its use to prognosis. According to Bingham, an aptitude involves: (a) Ability to acquire skills, knowledge, attitudes, etc. (b) Readiness to acquire. (c) Satisfaction in the job. Bingham again explains, "Aptitude is a measure of the probability of success of an individual with training in a certain type of situation". He points out that aptitude is abstract in nature. It can be further explained as: (a) It is symptomatic or indicative of one's ability for particular work or job. (b) It has predictive value. (c)Training facilitates this capacity to become the actual ability. (d) This is not a single factor but a composite of several elements.
According to Thorndike, there are three types of aptitudes, viz., abstract or mechanical, concrete and social. Aptitude is further classified as verbal, numerical, spatial, motor, musical, social, intelligential, natural, mechanical, teaching, academic, learning, etc.
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Academic Discourse: An International Journal
Aptitudes stabilize in the early years of life, but there is no time of demarcation after which there is no effect on the formation of aptitudes. Generally it is considered that aptitudes are formed up to puberty. Aptitude is thus a present condition with a forward reference. It is a condition or set of characteristics regarded as indication of potentialities, but we can't be very sure that a person possessing a particular aptitude is going to succeed later in a job or occupation calling for the use of aptitude, because, aptitude as stated is a present condition and it may be influenced by other factors.
Teaching includes all the activities of providing education to other. The person who provides education is called teacher. The teacher uses different method for giving best knowledge to his students. He tries best to make understand students. His duty is to encourage students to learn the subjects. Teaching means interaction of teacher and students. They participate for their mutual benefits. Both have their own objective and target is to achieve them. Teaching is a form of interpersonal influence aimed at changing the behavior potential of another person. Teachers are highly conceived as the real nation builders, hence they should play the roles that are expected of them and also ponder the responsibilities that the society places on their shoulders with right earnestness and utmost sincerity. A teacher has to play a variety of roles during the course of his career. He may act as instructor, motivator, examiner, guide and counselor. These functions are discharged by creating a conducive, creative, inspiring, purposeful and favorable classroom environment which may be broadly classified under two categories-physical and emotional. Physical environment is the frame work of learning. It depends on the teacher’s resources power and his personal capacity. This involves arranging, organizing, utilizing teaching aids; audio-visual equipment, display tables, library and laboratory the nature of the environment may contribute towards the attainment of success in the teaching and learning process and the development of human relationship. The Rabindra Nath Tagore has rightly remarked, “A teacher can never truly teach, unless he is still learning himself. A lamp can never light another lamp unless it continues to burn its own flame”. The idea is amply clear that new experiences of teaching should be gained in every walk of life and form every new sphere, it must be realized that experience needs to be supplemented by experiment before reaching its fullness. The education of a teacher should not end with his obtaining a degree but the professional growth of a teacher requires that he should continue to learn through the period of his stay in the profession. Therefore, it is quite essential that the countries, developed or developing should have well articulated plans for teacher education; particular attention should be paid to the relationship between the teacher educational institution, the school and the community as a whole. Therefore, teaching aptitude is a person’s capacity to acquire proficiency in the teaching under appropriate conditions. A person may be said to process teaching aptitudes, if he has a good proportion of characteristics required for effective teaching, the magnitude of such traits may differ from individual to individual.
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Teaching Aptitude among Prospective Teachers - Dr. Kuldeep Singh Chandel and Dr. Raj Kumar Dhiman
A variety of factors seems to go along with teacher’s aptitude and depends upon certain personal traits, intellectual and temperamental and these often will enable the teacher to get over even drastic constraints imposed on his performance. Teaching needs three qualities. Knowledge is the first, communication skill is the second and aptitude is the third. "A poor teacher tells; a good teacher teaches; an excellent teacher demonstrates; an outstanding teacher motivates". Time and again we hear these proverbial sayings from various sources at different occasions. Good teaching is, in fact, complex and challenging, and even the best teachers face difficulties translating formal knowledge into effective practice. Teaching has to be a dialogue, not a monologue. Teachers have to find innovative and effective technologies to present new concepts for motivating children. The classes have to be interactive with dialogue and sufficient learning materials. A teacher with good teacher aptitude must be aware of the following essentials of teaching viz., plan a lesson, motivate students, curricular statements related, learning materials, teaching-learning strategies, essentials of the content, consolidation, elaborations, group activity, continuous and comprehensive evaluation, discipline, multi-level and multi grade activities, effective communication and interaction, etc. From the past to this technological era itself, a teacher has to face so many problems inside or outside classrooms. They are related to cognitive, methodological, parental, societal, administrative, managerial, communicative and interactive and also student based. A creative teacher can solve problems which are new to him, in a divergent manner. A teacher with creativity can arranged and implemented new ideas and technologies in the teaching-learning process in a different way. According to Hadfield, "mental ability is the full and harmonious functioning of the whole personality". A mentally able teacher can teach, guide and inspire his students properly to attain the goals of life. Each generation of pupils grow up in a new context of patterns of interactive with others and in dealing with information technology. The learning experiences set up by teachers now must be tailored to the needs of pupils as they exist now; otherwise school will be experienced as an unreal world with outdated activities and knowledge. Teacher Aptitude is not something a teacher acquires at one moment in his professional development and then maintains in that same form thereafter. Rather it is an ever-changing requirement based on continuing professional development and critical reflection about one's own teaching.
Review of Related Studies Dave (1983) revealed in his study that male and female teachers do not differ
significantly in their aptitude towards teaching profession. Rawat and Sreevastava (1984) found significant differences between male and female teacher trainees in their aptitude towards teaching profession. Beena (1995) indicated in her study that teaching aptitude is a significant predictor of teaching effectiveness. Sajan (1999) found significant difference in teaching aptitude between male and female student teachers. The study also revealed that the level of achievement in degree examination has no
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Academic Discourse: An International Journal
influence in predicting teaching aptitude. Kaur (2002) found that female teachers are more effective in their teaching than male teachers. Rodger (2007) in a study examined a possible aptitude treatment interaction between teaching clarity and student test anxiety. Results revealed significant beneficial main effects for high vs. low teacher clarity for both achievement motivation measures, but no aptitude treatment interaction between teacher clarity and student test anxiety. Ranganathan (2008) found that there is a significant positive relationship between high self-esteem and teaching aptitude and there is no significant difference between males and females and the level of self-esteem and teaching aptitude. Usha (2010) revealed a significant difference between teaching aptitude of effective and ineffective male and female teachers. Rajasekar and Seetharaman (2013) found that B.Ed. student teachers were below average in their teaching aptitude.
Studies reviewed reveal that in majority male and female teachers differ significantly in their teaching aptitude has been reported by the studies conducted by Rawat and Sreevastava (1984), Sajan (1999), Kaur (2002), Usha (2010). However, Dave (1983), came out with opposite results. Ranganathan (2008) found no significant difference between males and females when compared level of self-esteem with teaching aptitude.
Need and Justification of the Study The effectiveness of the education depends upon quality of teachers working in
an institution. The quality of teacher’s depends upon the quality of training received by them in different training institutions. Further, it is quite evident from the various studies that most of the people join teacher education when not get job anywhere. For any change, every nation has expectation from its teachers and the citizens. Obviously schools and teachers are the crucial agents for bringing out the desirable changes in the system. Therefore, teachers have the fundamental concerns and moral responsibilities to gear all the activities of the school in the positive direction. For this they have to attain the attitude, aptitude, interest, values and certain competences of teaching profession to ensure the fulfillment of expected assignments.
Teacher education is going much significance and relevance in the present scenario where prospective teachers presently need proper guidance and counseling on various issues pertaining to their profession. Prospective teachers have teaching aptitude but have been expected from them. It is not only to improve the knowledge and teaching competency of the prospective teachers but also to inculcate in them desirable teaching qualities. It was in this context that teacher education has gaining momentum. The present study is a humble effort to assess to which extent the prospective teachers has teaching aptitude towards teaching profession in relation to certain variables associated with teaching. Further, the review of the related literature also reveals that
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Teaching Aptitude among Prospective Teachers - Dr. Kuldeep Singh Chandel and Dr. Raj Kumar Dhiman
the studies of this nature are very rare. Hence, to study the teaching aptitude among prospective teachers on certain variables in the proposed study is very much needed and is quite justified.
Objectives of the Study 1. To study the overall teaching aptitude of prospective teachers on the basis of
gender. 2. To study the gender wise teaching aptitude of prospective teachers on the
following areas: (a) Teaching Profession (b) Interest Towards Students (c) Social Contacts (d) Innovation Regarding Activities of the School (e) Professional Ethics (f) Teaching Potentialities and Current Knowledge
Hypotheses of the Study 1. Gender wise there will be no significant difference in the overall teaching aptitude
of prospective teachers. 2. There will be no significant difference in the teaching aptitude of male and female
prospective teachers on the areas: a) Teaching Profession b) Interest towards Students c) Social Contacts d) Innovation Regarding Activities of the School e) Professional Ethics f) Teaching Potentialities and Current Knowledge
Sample In the present study 10 B.Ed. Colleges of district Hamirpur of Himachal
Pradesh were selected randomly out of 16 B.Ed. Colleges and 20 prospective teachers were taken randomly from each selected colleges, in all 200 prospective teachers were taken in the sample. While selecting prospective teachers from the 10 B.Ed. colleges care was taken to give due representation to Male and Female Trainees and 100 male and 100 female trainees were selected.
Tool Used The teaching aptitude test was developed and standardized by Dr. S.C. Gakhar
and Dr. Rajnish (1971) was used in this study. This test is divided into six areas and comprehensive in nature and does not discriminate between Rural/Urban, Arts/Science/Commerce and Male/Female subjects. The first area deals with ‘Teaching Profession’ and it consists of 06 items ranging from 01 to 06, the range of score is 0-6.
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Academic Discourse: An International Journal
The second area deals with ‘Interest Towards Students’ and it consists of 06 items ranging from 07 to 12, the range of score is 0-6. Third area deals with ‘Social Contacts’ and it consists 05 items ranging from 13 to 17, the range of score is 0-5. Forth area deals with ‘Innovation Regarding Activities of the School’ and it also consists 05 items and ranging from 18 to 22, the range of score is also 0-5. Fifth area deals with ‘Professional Ethics’, it consists 06 items ranging from 23 to 28 and there range of score is 0-6. Sixth area deals with ‘Teaching Potentiality and Current Knowledge’ and it consist 07 items ranging from 29 to 35 and the range of score is 0-7. The test retest reliability was 0.76, while the Validity co-efficient of the test was found to be 0.68.

Statistical Techniques Used Since the data from the aptitude test was available in the form of scores, so to
find out the significant difference between various groups mean, S.D. and ‘t’-test was applied.

Analysis and Interpretation of Data

Table -1: Comparison on Overall Teaching Aptitude among Male and Female Prospective Teachers

Sr. No. Gender

Mean

S.D.

df

‘t’ Value

1.

Male

25.74

4.20

2.

Female

23.31

5.95

198

3.28**

**p<.01

The perusal of the above table shows that the calculated‘t’ value 3.28 is greater than the table value 2.95 at 0.01 level of significance. It means male and female prospective teachers differ significantly in their overall aptitude towards teaching. Further, the higher mean score (M=25.74) in favour of male prospective teachers, shows their better teaching aptitude in comparison to female prospective teachers (M=23.31) as shown in Fig. 2 as follows.

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Teaching Aptitude Among Prospective Teachers