AWEJ Volume.5 Number.2, 2014                                                               Pp.153 -166

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Exploring Female Teachers’ Perceptions towards Teacher Observation: Issues and
Challenges in the Arab Context

 

Nadia Shukri
 English Language Institute
King Abdul Aziz University, Saudi Arabia

 

 

Abstract
The present study investigated EFL teachers’ perceptions towards class observations and their challenges. Teachers’ observation was clearly recognized by educational researchers’ views such as Sheal (1999) and Lawson (2011), who argue that observations can provide beneficial feedback to teachers, and can generally improve the overall effectiveness of the teaching/learning process. So, the purpose of the study is to identify teachers’ point of views about class observations, the challenges that they face and the suggestions they advise to improve. More specifically, this investigation was carried out in an attempt to promote both professional of teacher development.  Eighty teachers were selected randomly from all women’s campuses of the English Language Institute of an Arab university. The instrument used to collect data was a questionnaire based on two parts. The first part comprises 5 point Likert-scale items and the second part includes open ended questions. Data analysis was presented in terms of frequency, percentage, and interpretations of the open-ended questions.  Findings revealed that teachers agree and strongly agree with the fundamental role of class observation as a way to learning and gradual improvement in teaching. The participants also highlighted the importance of observers’ pre and post observations mainly their positive feedback in motivating them to improve the teaching practices. Besides, the majority of teachers viewed that class observation is not the only form of professional development but they are in need of training and workshops.
Keywords: Teachers’ observation, professional and teacher development.

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Nadia Shukri is currently the Head of Development Unit for the English Language Institute on
Women’s Main Campus at King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, KSA. She holds a Doctorate in
Education (TESOL) from the University of Leicester, United Kingdom. Her main research
interests: Second language writing, Teacher development and education.