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Topic 1 : Concept Teaching As A Profession

Learning Outcome

Elaborate the characteristics as a professional.



Teaching profession is the oldest profession in the world and is now entering another
new era. The role of the teacher before was only as a transmitter of knowledge.
Compare to the present education system, teachers play more role as facilitator of
knowledge which should be more prepare and aware in the delivering and use the
learning situations sufficient and effectively. In tune with the changing role of
educators, teachers need to be more innovative, creative and effective in its delivery
and always think of new approaches to adapt their practice to the will of the students
as knowledge workers in the information revolution era of the 21st century.
Teachers in the new millennia should be professional and its professionalism
is the key to improvement of qualities (Jemaah Nazir, 2001). Qualities refer to the
qualities of the process and more importantly are the qualities of the product
(output). Therefore, human resources (human capital) need to be interestedly
develops through training to ensure every individual can develop to the optimum
level potential. Professional development programs can certainly pursue teacher to
enhance the qualities of education in the country. In order to explore the role of
teachers in its profession, this chapter will discuss the concept of profession,
professionalism and the characteristics of professional teachers.

1.1 Concept Profession and Professionalism

Profession refers to a job that performs an important social function. In order to
achieve these functions, certain level of proficiency and systematic experience
knowledge based on the theory that hold by an individual are required. In short, a
profession is a field which has characteristics such as intellectual finesse interests,
adequate qualification training, solemn needed by the community, enjoy individual
and group autonomy, quality service concerned, service manners or code of ethics
and have a separate organization to manage matters relating to education
(Lieberman, 1956).
According Kamus Dewan (2005), ' profession' is a distinctive line of works that
requires education and efficiency as well as high proficiency and specifies training.
(For example: law, medical, teachers and others). Values of a profession are
regulations set by the organization so that every professional expert will follow in
order to control the qualities and value of the service. Generally, we should consider
teaching as a profession and teachers are professional experts in that profession.

Professional concept also refers to the characteristics or attributes in expert

circles of a profession. According to Ornstein and Levine (1993), there are four
attributes in a profession, namely experts need to master in-depth content of
knowledge, efficiency and expertise in a particular field, the presence of ethics code
to control behavior experts and truth/ approval was given to a profession by society
to operate.

Based on the above attributes, a professional need to master the content

knowledge in depth the same as where teachers went through formal education until
first degree, master degree and doctorate of philosophy. There are standards set for
teachers to get training in the subject of specialization before being recognized as a
professional. Moreover, teaching profession has code of ethics in order to control
their behavior and this code of ethics is a guide to the teachers grip during their
service in teaching profession.

When Hoyle (1980) elaborates professionalism as an attitude and action that

touches aspects such as work-related matters concerning the terms of employment,
salaries and wages, schedule tasks and other things related to it. Everything is
always matters related with concern by unity of the workers.
All this while, a question arisen, which is; ' Are teachers a professional?
Common assumption is teacher is a professional including teacher training has
provides them with in-depth knowledge of the subject, pedagogy and students as
well as their position as a teacher giving an autonomy to them. Issue whether
teachers are professional or not have long risen. By tradition, a professional is
different than others because he has (a) in-depth knowledge of the principles, (b) a
commitment to meet the needs of the client, (c) strong identity collectively
(professional commitment ) and (d) professional autonomy (Talbert & Mc Laughlin,
1994) . According to Etzioni (1969), if the teachers do not have control on their
professional standard, then the teachers is considered as semiprofessional. This is
because; teachers do not have the full authority to make decisions on various
aspects of the profession. According to Lilia and Norlena (1998), depreciation power
to perform tasks in a professional manner causing teacher profession image
decreased in the eye of the public. However, nowadays teacher has the autonomy in
making decisions in the classroom. Furthermore, intake for Untrained Teachers
(GSTT) to the pre-trained and certified to the profession is also another issue.

However, regarded as one aspect of teacher profession if teachers acquire

knowledge or proficiency through the entire training in a period of time, increase
professionalism, committed to clients and has the power of autonomy in making
(a)Knowledge of the subjects taught
Before a person becomes a trained teacher, he needs to receive teacher training in
terms of in-depth knowledge of the subject matter, pedagogical content knowledge,
and techniques in delivering lessons and acquire good moral values as a results
from the training to allow them to carry out the teaching and learning effectively.
According to Shulman (1987), the knowledge that needs to be mastered include :
(i) Knowledge contents of the subjects.
(ii) Knowledge of the basic pedagogical principles such as the classroom
management strategy.
(iii) Knowledge of curriculum, including lessons syllabus, textbooks, study guides and
teaching materials for the subjects.
(iv) Acquire pedagogical content knowledge, which is the combination knowledge of
content subjects and knowledge about pedagogical principle for specify subject. In
addition, this knowledge allows teachers to teach a specific topic with the goal of
promoting student conceptual understanding. This knowledge is unique to the
profession and also a professional understanding (Lilia & Abdullah, 1999).
(v) Knowledge of school administration, school culture and working style as a force
within the organization.
(vi) Knowledge about the purposes, value, philosophy and history of education.

(b) Knowledge of the learner

Effective teaching requires teachers to have knowledge about the development of
children and teenager from the perspective of cognitive, social, physical and
emotion. An understanding of the diversity of student intelligence, individual
differences in terms of cognitive, culture and emotion help teachers to develop
students potential to the optimum. In addition, teachers need to have knowledge on
how students learn and the need of students that teachers can provide teaching
approaches and appropriate task and how to motivate students after identifying the
strengths and weaknesses of their students. In the process of evaluating students,
teachers must be able to analyze and make the best decisions for the students.
Teachers need to evaluate student understanding, making reflection on practice of
teaching and improve the planning and process of teaching.

(c) Increase the professionalism of teachers

As a professional teacher, skills and knowledge of techniques and methods of
teaching need to be streamlined from time to time. Teachers need to complete
themselves to the self-renewal and changes in the curriculum in order not to miss the
rapid development prevailing in the world of education. Therefore, the teaching
profession is expected to make to the cultural paradigm displacement based on
knowledge and thought (Rohani Abdul Hamid, 1998). In addition, teachers must
strive to make decisions in classroom matters in teacher profession. Teaching
profession is definitely careers that not only teaches or educate the nation's children,
even administrator should be allowed to make a decision to implement action and
assess the results of the matter that had been implemented. Now, administrator and
teachers have endeavored to make decisions critically and creatively inside and
outside the classroom for the sake of improvement of effective implementation in the
school management.
Never the less, for one teacher who was always trying to increase the
qualities of teaching and was always concerned with achievement and wealfare of
his students said to have a high level of professionalism. In other words, teachers
looking at his works and duties not merely as a job but as a profesion (Omar
Hashim, 1993).

1.2 Characteristics of Professional Teacher

Based on research on teacher professionalism, we can summarize that professional
teachers need to be knowledgeable, skilled in pedagogical knowledge and
pedagogical content knowledge in teaching and learning. In addition, teachers'
professional needs to have a good attitude and be exemplary to the students.
According to Mohamad Sani (1998), professional teachers have attributes such as a
commanding teacher:



Good moral values
Positive attitude

T & L Planning
T & L Managing
T&L Choosing Strategy
T & L Stimulating
Technology proficiency
Generic proficiency
Counselling proficiency
T & L evaluation

Content of lesson
Content knowledge

Aligned as professional teachers, characteristics of an effective teacher which

are as follows:

Act professionally
Display strength characteristics theory.
Rich with knowledge.
Acting upon a foundation of ethics and fame of work.
Immoral firm.
Always trying to improve the qualities of teaching.
Concerned with the discretion of students and parents.
Able to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of students.
Complete itself with skills that align with recent demands.
Showing commendable character, image able, noble and insightful as excel
educators excel at all time.
Ensure 'teachers teach pupils to learn' situation exist in the classroom.
Attempting to create ' schooling in character ' so that students have the power of
knowledge, healthy personality and permissiveness.
Attempting to build a student brilliant mind in academic performance.
Attempting to establish dispositive students with various firmness values themselves
(moral value, noble, outstanding and able to adjust and adapt in situations).
Obey and be faithful to and maintain the profession dignity and service.
Demonstrate loyalty to the government, the establishment of free and not parted.
Professional and devote attention to teaching and learning (T & L) at the school.
(Abdul Shukor Abdullah, 1998)

While McEwan (2002) states, there are ten trends of effective teachers. This include;
encouragement and passionate, positive and true, teacher as leader, with-it - ness,
style, expertise in motivation, instructional effectiveness, book learning, street smart
(intelligent) and mental life,

(a) Encouragement & passionate

Effective teachers were driven by a mission, as if it is a call to teach in addition has a
passion for helping students learn and develop. They have a high commitment and
willingness to accept additional tasks. After determining the mission, the teacher
should strive to achieve the goals as outlined in Teachers Code Of Ethics.
(b) Positive and true
This type of teacher displays qualities such as respect, compassion, empathy and
fair in their relationship with students, parents and friends. They are more
democratic, easy to connect with students, more open and adaptable to changes. It
is they who form the students, strengthen the power of students and identifying
student issues. The teacher was always looking positively in every challenge faced
and sincere in developing the noble personality human capital.
(c) Teacher as leader
The teacher is a leader who can influence students to change, learn, and develop in
doing something differently, independent, responsible and achieving purpose. As a
leader, teacher are the role model to the students, lead parents through active
partnership and lead their colleagues through mentoring, collaboration and sharing
new ideas in teaching. Effective teachers have an impressive moral proficiency
moral, intellectual and social leadership to use for the benefit of students, colleagues
and parents.

(d) With- it- ness

Effective teachers complete themselves with the knowledge and have full control
with the classroom management, student involvement and management of time.
They may teach, move around the classroom and knowing all that is happening in
the classroom. Effective teachers can carry out their duties in the classroom perfectly
and act wisely in solving any problems which nevertheless form during his teaching.
Teachers can create reflection during teaching in order to take action spontaneously
without interruption prevails in the teaching process.

(e) Style
Effective teachers displays its own unique style, full of interest, excited, charisma,
humor, creative and bring renewal in teaching. Each teacher cannot replicate or
being taught on style of teaching but he must form his own style and be accepted
and exampled by the students.

(f) Expertise in motivation

Effective teachers are a motivated and confident with themselves to change the lives
of their students and motivating them to master the academic standards and the
highest behavior. Teachers can motivate students through personnel teaching
efficacy with a mission statement that 'all students should learn', believing that they
can get the results because they teach indulge with different sets of mind and
physical energy/ mentally and strong courage. In addition, effective teachers are not
only as a motivator of behavior, but they also acted as an instructional managers and
not the disciplinarian.

(g) Instructional effectiveness

Effective teachers do not teach only by following one way but they have various
techniques, teaching behavior and skills that depend on the students need, subjects
and learning outcomes complexities. Components in effective teaching includes the
ability to communicate and teaching skills such skills to design and provide lessons,
explaining clearly, preparing conducive environment, managing classroom using
optimum period, dealing with conflict and evaluate their own teaching achievements.
Slavin Model (1989) suggests there are four main elements influence effective
teaching, namely teaching qualities (various teaching methods and teaching
materials), suitability level of teaching (updated content and assessment systems
according to student ability), incentives (designing instructional content and provide
the same motivation either reward or punishment) and time (engaged time and time
on task).

(h) Book learning

Effective teachers need to have a complete knowledge about the content and was
always lifelong learner.
In this context teachers faced with two main content every day, namely ' What shall
be taught? and 'how is to teach?'. In this matter, the teacher needs to have a
thorough knowledge on of how to deliver the content, the principles of classroom
management, curriculum materials, students, purpose and value of education.

(i) Street smarts

Effective teachers have knowledge of students, school and local community, which
teachers teach and use this knowledge to solve problems of teaching in the
classroom. Teachers always investigate and collect information on the causes of
students behave in order to as to devise an effective T & L.

(j) Mental life

Effective teachers are an active learner and have individual direction. Effective
teachers mind always active and focused on the given task. They see something
thoroughly and have ability to think and make reflections on teaching behavior, and
able to explain various ideas, issues and values on teaching it to others as well as
proactive profession needs.
As a whole, effective teachers displays impressive characteristics of a professional
teacher. To what extent do people perceive teachers as a professional? It could not
be deny that the role of the teacher is crucial in bringing various changes and
innovations in the educational system of the country as a result from the era of
increasingly rapid technological developments.

1.3 Conclusion
The education system in our country is very dynamic and always moving forward to.
The changes and transformations in the educational curriculum aim to meet the
country needs in realizing a developed country in the future. Every change and
transformation of the education curriculum is introduced into a form of challenge in
teacher profession. Thus, it is important for individuals working in this field always try
to increase efficiency, skill and achievement of skills from time to time in order to be
able to compete in an era of rapid technological development. If it exists, the
demands of the curriculum transformation then can be handled. However, to what
extent do we verified and value teacher as a profession rely on community feedback.
Is the role of the teacher is getting lost in as the public authority view has transferred
to professionals such as doctors, lawyers and architect?

In this context, the Ministry of Education have sought earnestly to make

teaching profession as superior and respected by all. It is enshrined in the five
strategic terraces in the Pelan Induk Pembangunan Pendidikan (PIPP), namely
verify teaching profession. The teachers actually have a great responsibility in
improving and completing their professionalism with various types of knowledge and
skills aligned with the needs of PIPP terrace.

Join activities
Does a teacher is a professional? Discuss it with your partner.

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