Educators' Professional Development Institute


In order to transform education we need to transform ourselves as educators.  We need to start off by examining our actions and beliefs about teaching and learning.  Here is a sample of Contemporary Education's Educators' Professsional Development Institutes.

What are dominant teaching-and-learning approaches?

There are basically 3 major teaching-and-learning approaches dominant in education today.  The first is a traditional-behaviorist approach, based largely on the work of Skinner; the second is a constructivist, or cognitivist, approach, based largely on the work of Piaget; and the third is a social-historical-cultural approach, often referred to as a social constructivist approach, based largely on the work of Vygotsky. 


Aim for Human Beings’ Development
Roles of Teachers 
& Students
View of Learning 
& Development
Behaviorist Approach
To be well-behaved, obedient citizens and workers
-Teachers as controllers of behavior and transmitters of knowledge
-Students as passive recipients that need to be conditioned
-Learning and development as controlling behavior through rewards and punishments and training for good habits
Constructivist/ Cognitivist Approach
To be independent thinkers, developing cognitively over time as individuals that question and make their own meaning of things
-Teachers as observers of stage of students’ development and problematizers 
-Students as the constructors of their own learning
Learning following development through activities appropriate for each student’s developmental stage so that they progressively develop
Social-Historical-Cultural/ Social Constructivist Approach
To be the co-creators of ourselves and the world – to question the world and transform it together with others
-Teachers are more experienced participants in the teaching-and-learning activity and mediators of the critical co-production of knowledge
-Students as active participants in their own and others’ teaching-and-learning
Pushing development through learning by presenting situating teaching-and-learning in the   activities of the real world taking into account the multiple perspectives afforded by different social, historical and cultural contexts

Here is a video I’ve prepared on Behaviorism, Cognitivism and Social Constructivism:





Image Source: Composition 8 by Vasily Kandinsky
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To transform education in order to move humanity forward to face the challenges of the 21st century, increasingly globalized world in a collaborative, creative, critical, connected and caring way.

The founder and primary contributor to Education for Contemporary Times is Sarah O. Weiler, long-time educator with a M.A. in Global Education from the University of Illinois and a M.A. in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Education at the prestigious Institute of Education at the University of London in the UK.
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