Teaching in Latin America

There is a renewed interest in improving the preparation of teachers in Latin American countries. First, the idea that the quality of a country’s education system depends in great part on its teachers. Second, an understanding of the correlation between the professional preparation of teachers and their practices in the classroom.  And third, a belief that teachers’ practices have a significant effect on students’ academic performance and learning.

All the countries in the region agree that the state of teacher preparation is quite poor. Studies report that teachers are aware of their own poor preparation and of the poor performance of their students. Recent statistics show that 50% of the fourth grade children in Latin America are not able to report what they have just read, even though they are able to decode the word.

The reasons for the poor quality of teacher preparation are varied. One of them is the timing of the reform. That is, teachers with an inadequate preparation are asked to implement new curricula and use new methods. Another problem is that teaching is not selected as a profession; most students select the teaching profession because they see no other option. This self-selection brings to the field poorly prepared students who have no motivation or dedication.

We share this infographic that shows the current status of Latin American teachers and their impact on students:

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Tertiary Education in LATAM

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The development of the innovative university is necessary for the modern paradigm of knowledge to become a reality in universities and consequently in our societies. This modern paradigm would be characterized by the fact that the teachers shall equip students with learning instruments and methodologies. To be able to transform higher education and society internationally and in particular in developing countries, it is necessary to go from the traditional university based on classical teaching methods to a participative university based on teaching-learning, and reach an innovative university with a modern paradigm of knowledge.

 In Latin America higher education has undergone an astonishing transformation in recent years, highlighted by the private sector’s growth from 3 to 34 percent of the region’s total enrollment. Private equity is growing fast in Latin America, bringing capital, professionalization and consolidation to a number of markets. These sectors include traditional areas such as retail, banking and infrastructure development – but perhaps more surprisingly, private equity funding is getting actively involved in the education sector as well.

Several trends have contributed to making the education market attractive for investors. First, demand has been increasing not only for access to, but also quality of, education Second, Latin America has seen the growth of a middle class with the necessary resources to consume higher quality education and a better understanding of its importance in the struggle to move up the economic ladder. Finally, the education markets are realizing the need for better and more efficient management.

Latin American universities are characterised by the greater weight of the social sciences and humanities. In fact, the distribution of university students in the region is concentrated mainly in these disciplines, while there is a smaller proportion in science and technology. This pattern differs considerably from that of the OECD economies, where we see cases such as Korea and Finland with a greater concentration of graduates in the fields of engineering, science and technology. This is consistent with the strategy in these countries to increase human resources in disciplines with applications in sciences and technology, as they look to develop a productive system based on the development of manufacturing value added.

Teaching with technologies

“Teachers will not be replaced by technology, but teachers who don´t use technology will be replaced by those who do”

Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach

ImageTechnology is changing education offering new resources to engage students in learning and giving them an opportunity to learn about new technological fields, leading to jobs and to a greater understanding of how these fields affect the world.

Technology can benefit learning in so many ways, for instance, it can illustrate procedures, equipment, or situations that students many not have the chance to experience firsthand. The use of gadgets stimulate learner participation because encourage students to interact with material, it extend information access, increase communication among teachers and student, provide feedback, bring the World into the Classroom and Eliminate the need for extensive photocopying and give students more access to classroom materials by managing information.

However, Technology can be used well, or it can be abused. The technology-enabled classroom offers access to information, but it also offers many more distractions. Games on devices, text messaging, email and websites all compete for students’ attention, taking that attention away from the subject on which they are supposed to be focusing.

However, Technology can be used well, or it can be abused. The technology-enabled classroom offers access to information, but it also offers many more distractions. Games on devices, text messaging, email and websites all compete for students’ attention, taking that attention away from the subject on which they are supposed to be focusing.

So, technology can be a great addition to the classroom when it is used to improve student learning and help students reach their goals. The range of technologies is great and increases every day. Of course, teachers have to evaluate the potential effectiveness of a particular technology for each course and students