Pakistan Perspectives on the Challenges Associated with the Standards of the Quality Assurance for the Teacher Education Programs - A Critical Review
The study highlights the challenges associated with the quality assurance standards/indicators of Teacher Education Programs (TEP) in Pakistan. Within the qualitative research paradigm, a phenomenological approach parallel with the document analysis is undertaken. Experts’ opinions on teacher education standards, set by the National Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (NACTE) are gathered from forty-five university teachers. It is supported with document analysis of the National Standards for Accreditation of Teacher Education Programs. Findings unveiled a lack of integration of contextual trends in the professional teaching standards. The accrediting body greatly relies on manual documentation with superficial observation. The overall mechanism is not consistent to ensure quality improvement. Participants identified a gap in taking ownership by teacher education institutions and NACTE for teachers’ professional development. It is suggested to take an action-research oriented approach parallel with traditional quality assurance mechanism; revise documents in light of accreditation models of the Asian countries; replace hefty paperwork with digital documentation; encourage research-based evidence; promote open educational practices, and share the quality assurance report to the global community as an open educational document. It is proposed to design contextual open online courses on the standards and accreditation documents. Besides, each institution should take ownership to strengthen internal quality mechanisms.