UAE gets more teacher training options
With the introduction of teaching licences in the UAE, all teachers will now be expected to show proof of professional development in order to renew their licences. Some teachers may even choose to take a short course or two before going through the TELS process, especially those who may not have a teaching qualification.
Given the focus on teaching practice mandated by the government, there are now several teacher training institutes and universities offering programmes.
The School of Education at the University of Birmingham has a long-standing reputation as a centre of excellence for teaching and research in a wide range of areas of educational practice, and its bringing this expertise to the UAE by offering postgraduate teaching certificates when its branch campus in Dubai launches operations in September.
The University of Birmingham Dubai will offer a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary English Education, a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Science Education, a Postgraduate Certificate in Secondary Maths Education, and a Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Education.
The programmes are all designed to meet recognised teacher standards in the UAE and UK, and time is spent in placement schools to develop the necessary experience and skills.
Tes Global opened its offices in Dubai in early 2017 not only is it one of the biggest recruitment companies in the education sector, but the Tes Institute also offers teacher training options. In addition to offering the QTS (Qualified Teacher Status), Tes Institute will also work with regulators in the UAE to match teacher licence requirements.
Speaking to Education Journal Middle East earlier this year, Tes Global CEO Rob Grimshaw said: "Tes Institute is a fully-fledged teacher training business and we have been working for some time to get permission to offer our training services in Dubai. In fact we've just been given our licence and we will be offering a range of teacher training and CPD in Dubai and we'll be doing that in very much a digital focused way."
To deliver the training, Tes Institute will use a blended approach. Grimshaw explains: "A lot of the content is online, the process is overseen by tutors who interact with the students, both virtually and in person, and we always work in partnership with schools. So all the candidates going through the training are backed by a school, and we work hand in hand with them to make sure they get the right quality. We're looking at the possibility of an IPGCE (International Post Graduate Certificate in Education); we are working in partnership with the University of East London on setting one of those up."
Abu Dhabi University is also introducing new teaching qualifications, which will meet the teacher licensing standards that will be rolled out from September.
The university will offer a Professional Diploma in Teaching in Arabic or English, Master of Education in Educational Leadership, and Master of Science in Special Education across its three campuses in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Al Ain, with scholarship opportunities available.
ADU is also expanding its micro-teaching laboratory that was launched three years ago, to introduce education students to innovative educational applications and experiences, along with the latest technologies and models that are implemented to develop education and learning. These additions help them utilise technology to improve educational outcomes, encourage students' creative thinking, and help students to select promising professional careers in support of the National Innovation Strategy
Additionally, TELLAL Institute, whose trainee teachers were part of the TELS UAE pilot in Dubai, offers various streams through its Teach Best programme, a teacher training apprenticeship programme for those with no teaching experience, and the Teach Up route, which offers training and qualification enhancement for teachers trained overseas.
Under the Teach Best route, teachers can earn an Applied Graduate Diploma in Teaching Practice (ATP), endorsed by KHDA and Tellal. This School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT) route prepares brand new trainee teachers to sit the UAE's Licence to Teach examination and qualify with a National Vocational Qualification.
Qualifications earned under the Teach Up route include an International Professional Certificate in Professional Practice (iPgCPP) and an Applied Graduate Diploma in Teaching Practice (ATP), dual award endorsed by KHDA and Tellal.