Investigating the Enablers and Barriers of Professionally Certified Teachers of English in Enacting the Professional Standard Competencies in a Polytechnic in Indonesia

Author: Sri Gustiani

Gustiani, Sri, 2016 Investigating the Enablers and Barriers of Professionally Certified Teachers of English in Enacting the Professional Standard Competencies in a Polytechnic in Indonesia, Flinders University, School of Education

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This study investigates the perceived issues of certified teachers of English at a Polytechnic, particularly with regard to their perspectives concerning enablers and barriers of the development of their pedagogical and professional competencies. The pedagogical competency refers to their capability to develop appropriate teaching and learning techniques for the delivery of effective and efficient learning processes, while professional competency relates to having a level of content knowledge that identifies them as ‘specialists’ or ‘experts’ in a particular subject area. This study also focuses on exploring the possible ways to deal with the issues and the supporting factors that would improve professional performance.

The purpose of this study is to develop an understanding as to why the quality of teachers is consistently reported as low quality in many studies, despite the Government of Indonesia’s intensive efforts to improve the quality through a professional certification program. In the plethora of studies investigating this subject however, attempts have been made to uncover the underlying reasons that have led to this recorded low performance. However, relatively little effort has been sought from the educators’ perspectives concerning the challenges facing them during their efforts to meet pedagogical and professional competencies. This gap in the literature has justified the significance of this study.

The study applies a case study approach to explore a deeper understanding of the participants’ perspectives. Such an in depth exploration and the final results provide an explanation for the phenomena being investigated. The data has been collected through individual and focus group interviews. Both the in-depth individual interviews and the focus group interviews have been conducted using semi-structured interview questions. Twenty-four certified teachers of English, at a polytechnic in Indonesia, were invited to participate in this study. The data has been analysed inductively using a thematic analysis approach to construct the final answers to the inquiries posed in this study.

The findings of this study have indicated that the certified teachers of English face three key issues relating to their pedagogical and professional competencies, as required in the standard of the professional certification program: organisational policies, their self-capacity, and the support via teaching and learning facilities. The findings have illuminated the domains that need to be focused on if the higher education institutions are to improve teachers’ performance in terms of the professional standards. Some of the possible ways for teachers to deal with the issues they are facing have been constructed based on the results; this approach has provided a novel contribution via this study.

Keywords: Teachers of English, Teacher Certification, Professional Standard Competencies, Indonesian Politechnic,

Subject: Education thesis

Thesis type: Professional Doctorate
Completed: 2016
School: School of Education
Supervisor: Marietta Rossetto