JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Sir Patrick Allen is urging teacher training institutions to prepare graduates to adapt to the dynamism of the digital revolution.
  • Many textbooks and theories, which were valid and considered essential for certain specialised studies a decade or two ago have already been discarded.
  • The Governor-General said the days of the chalkboard are rapidly drawing to a close and are giving way to interactive whiteboards.

Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, is urging teacher training institutions to prepare graduates to adapt to the dynamism of the digital revolution.

This, he argued, will maintain their relevance in the classroom, while producing a cadre of intellectual researchers that will ultimately redound to the benefit of the country.

“It is essential in today’s dynamic global environment, where knowledge is not static, that you traverse new paths to excellence,” the Governor-General said.

He was addressing the launch of the Institute of Technological and Educational Research (ITER) on Thursday, November 28, at the Mico University College premises in Kingston.

According to the Governor-General, many textbooks and theories, which were valid and considered essential for certain specialised studies a decade or two ago have already been discarded.

“With all the information that is available on the worldwide web, is there a risk that teachers could also become irrelevant? What is clear is that pedagogy must prepare teachers to readily adapt to the dynamism of the digital revolution,” he stated.

The Governor-General said the days of the chalkboard are rapidly drawing to a close and are giving way to interactive whiteboards.

“More research is being done on the internet than in the library. Students in some developed countries are doing scientific projects or medical research in 3-D animation, which is also being used by engineering and architectural students,” he pointed out.

He noted that the Government is striving to keep up with the digital revolution in schools, citing initiatives such as the E-learning programme, through which institutions have been provided with computer laboratories; the distribution of tablet computers; and the introduction of interactive whiteboards.

“All this means is that teacher training institutions must not only prepare their students to effectively use these devices but they must also research their usefulness and the content to be uploaded on them,” the Governor-General stated.

The Governor-Governor commended the conceptualisers for the ITER, and encouraged the new institute to collaborate with animation company – ToonBoom to develop softwares to enhance teaching and learning in schools.

The mission of ITER is to build a research culture that enables the Mico University College to undertake high quality research in areas of educational policy, development and management with special reference to Jamaica and the Caribbean region.

It is hoped that overtime ITER will provide research that will engender the qualities and effectiveness of the teaching professional.

Through ITER, the Mico University College will actively participate in policy dialogues, provide consultancy services and generate solutions to the issues that face the education sector backed by solid research findings.

During the ceremony the institution also presented its scholarly work entitled: ‘Journal of Education. Institution Building Through Research: Responses in a Time a Crisis’.