Online Education

“Being a teacher”: for the love of the profession

Faced with a shortage of primary and secondary school teachers that has accelerated with the pandemic, Maurice Tardif, a professor in the Department of Administration and Foundations of Education at the Université de Montréal and a specialist in the history of educational ideas, wanted to help promote the profession. “They have all passed the school desks, but this experience remains partial as it only involved the student side. It must also be said that people quickly forget,” recalls the man, who is also the director of the Center for Interuniversity Research on Education and the Teaching Profession. So he jumped at the chance when the Quebec Ministry of Education launched a call for proposals for the design of massively open online courses (MOOCs).

Lifting the veil on know-how, life skills and knowledge of the profession

Online course Being a teacher: a profession with a future to explore wants to shine a light on a profession that ultimately remains little known. For about a year, the professor worked in collaboration with Delphine Tremblay-Gagnon and Simon Parent, doctoral students in pedagogical sciences, Bong-Sou Moulinet, techno-pedagogue, and Frederico Bellini, videographer, on this online training, which is now available on the EDU platform.lib.

The training consists of six modules, each lasting 75 to 90 minutes, for a total of nine hours. Each module revolves around one of the 13 essential skills for teaching practice, created in the new professional skills framework for teachers. “The ministry published this benchmark last year, which defines what a teacher does, why he does it and what he needs to know,” explains Mr. Tardif, who is also the editor-in-chief of this benchmark.

By registering for this completely free training and following its modules step by step, you will get access to the certificate, but it is possible to consult the videos out of sequence and individually. “The certificate can be interesting for young people who want to submit a file for admission to university,” suggests Mr. Tardif.

Share your passion

MOOC Being a teacher: a profession with a future to explore it is intended for young people who are finishing high school or studying at CEGEP and are thinking about the professional path to take, or also newcomers who are reorienting their career. The MOOC is based on video capsules where speakers share their passion. “We invited the best experts in each field and some teachers to talk about the profession,” says Mr. Tardif. For example, Pascale Lefrançois, dean of the UdeM Faculty of Education and former winner of the Bernard Pivot dictation, testifies to her proficiency in French.

Maurice Tardif would like to improve the content of the training, especially by adding more video clips. “The pandemic has complicated the filming, but I would like to add more testimonies from teachers, young and old, and students in training, who would say what it is to teach and how they live the profession,” says Mr. Tardif.

Eventually, he would like to distribute the training outside of the university setting and is considering applying for a grant to make the videos available outside of the EDU.lib. “We are competing with social networks and video games,” argues the researcher.

Maurice Tardif thus wishes to introduce the teaching profession, which he describes as fascinating, to as many people as possible. “Teachers are at the center of what is most important in society: growing children,” he says. Many also have a moral and emotional relationship with the profession. “Teaching is a profession of human relations. It is extremely gratifying to see how the children develop,” he concludes.

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