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Is there a relationship between teacher resistance and reform failure?
It is a matter of great concern that quality of education in India has hit low on the whole barring a few handful exceptions. It is being said often now that most teachers resist change and reform aimed at classroom practice. We can say that it is a matter of concern that Indian universities have not been able to make it the top 100 list in QS Raking this year. Many think that Indian teachers have let the country down.
If only teachers were dynamic, reflective and change-enthusiastic, not change-resistant, innovations would not fail. Seemingly, the initial stages of introduction of an innovation in an institution are a matter of great struggle and wrought with teething problems.

I tried a reality check by interacting with a teacher in the neighbourhood whose institution was trying to introduce an innovation in self-study skills. The account of reality check goes as follows.

A reflective review meeting after about two months of an innovation in science instruction at undergraduate level to promote self-study through the use of worksheets and guided learning material was held. The secondary analysis of the discussion during the meeting revealed that about 50 per cent of 14 teachers involved in the implementation of the innovation reported success and acceptance of the innovation by students.

On the other hand, about 25 per cent teachers blamed students' mental inertia for non-acceptance of the innovation since they feared that the course would not be covered by the innovation. Other 25 per cent teachers said that students have rejected the innovation and were persistently demanding that notes should be given so that they could do well in the examination.

Since students' reactions to innovation fell into three categories, the further analysis of teacher and student characteristics revealed that innovation was good and teachers who had mastery over the content, good rapport with students and proficiency in interactive communication could realize the worth of innovation and make students to see its strengths and subscribe for it.

It was felt that, there is a need to develop a faith among teachers and students in the innovation selectively along with capacity building of teachers to make an innovation succeed. Innovations are never bad since teachers' competence is central to success of the innovation.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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