Teacher Education in the Digital Transformation Process in North Cyprus: A Situation Analysis Study

From Section:
ICT & Teaching
Jan. 03, 2022
January, 2022

Source: International Education Studies Archives Vol.15, No 1

(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

One of the important points to be examined is the design of the future of education by consciously managing this process, without accepting any random change in the education process.
In the digital transformation process, teachers play a great role in the conscious management of the process.
The two important questions that come to mind at this point are as follows:
• “What is the stage of teacher education and teacher competencies in the digital transformation process?”
• “What are the trends and teacher-oriented changes in digital competencies measurement tools?”
At this point, in this research, teacher education and competencies are examined in the transition to the Digital Transformation Process in Northern Cyprus.
In addition, tools for measuring digital competencies and teacher-oriented changes will be introduced.
It is thought that determining the competencies of teachers and the tools measuring these competencies within the scope of the digitalization process will be effective in ensuring quality in education on behalf of Northern Cyprus in the future and will shed light on future research.

Research Method & Methodology
This research is an example of a literature review.
A literature review is a search and evaluation of the available literature in your given subject or chosen topic area (Arshed & Danson, 2015).
The purposes of this research:
• Questioning teacher training and competencies in the transition to the digital transformation process in Northern Cyprus and to introduce data collection tools used to measure digital competences and teacher-led changes.
The sub-purposes of the research are:
• Use of information and communication technologies and teacher competencies in education;
• Digitalization in education with ICT integration;
• Professional development programmes and teaching education in digital transformation;
• Teacher education and competencies in North Cyprus;
• Digital transformation in education in North Cyprus;
• Digital transformation and teacher competencies in North Cyprus.
• To discuss the level of digital competencies in the pre-service teacher/pedagogical student population and the ways to measure them through research conducted in the Transformation Process in Northern Cyprus (TRNC).

Result, Discussion and Suggestions
In this study, teacher education and competencies are questioned in the transition to the Digital Transformation Process in Northern Cyprus.
In addition, tools for measuring digital competencies and teacher-oriented changes introduced.
Education has an important place and importance both in the academic field and in the institutional field.
The digital transformation of education in the academic field provides the formation of a new and experiential bridge between the teacher and the student, while supporting the learning independent of time and place for professionals in the institutional field.
First of all, digital transformation, which is the keyword in the research, accompanying compulsory change in education was discussed.
The next step was the digital competencies of teachers and/or teacher candidates, who are the most important stakeholders of education with the digital transformation in our age, were questioned.
Then, mentioning the existence of globally qualified standards for digital competencies (ISTE Report; ICT Competencies Standards for Teachers by UNESCO) more specifically, in the process of digital transformation, the educational competencies of teachers and or teachers candidates in Northern Cyprus have been interpreted with relevant references.
Accordingly, the following important results were obtained in the study.
In the digital transformation process in Northern Cyprus, it has been determined by literature research that there are studies in both higher education and basic education level to interpret or determine the digital competencies of teachers and/or teacher candidates.
Related studies and their results are included and discussed in the theoretical framework of the research.
With regard to the common result of these studies, the indisputable understanding of the importance of digitalization in the field of education by institutions and organisations in the developing world and especially in the pandemic process and in order to realise adaptation to this digitisation process, it is necessary to start with teacher education, which is the most important stakeholder of education.
As common suggestions of these studies, it was emphasised that the Ministry of National Education and Culture, teachers, field experts and teacher training institutions should carry out active studies in order to strengthen the digital competencies of teachers and their competencies on acquiring information.
When the studies conducted in TRNC on the level of digital competence and measurement methods in the teacher candidate/pedagogical student population are evaluated, two measuring instruments draw attention.
When the research studies in the literature on the subject are examined, it is seen that teachers or teacher candidates attach importance to the digitalization process and emphasize the necessity of receiving in-service training to adapt to this process.

Suggestions for the research are listed below:
• In the literature review, although the existence of studies belonging to Northern Cyprus in measuring the digital competence of teachers/teacher candidates’ is remarkable, it has been determined that there are not enough numbers according to the importance of the subject.
Considering the rapid transition and adaptation to the digital transformation process, especially during the pandemic period, since teachers are the most important part of digital education, it is foreseen that more qualitative or quantitative research is needed to interpret and measure digital competencies.
• In this context, researches can be developed/supported that question teachers’ attitudes, beliefs and self-efficacy towards the digitalization process and/or educational environments.
• In addition by investigating the dimensions of digital competence, each dimension can be discussed in detail and valid and reliable data collection tools (survey, scale, interview form etc.) can be developed.
• Finally, in general suggestion, in particular, the relevant institutions in the TRNC (TRNC Ministry of National Education, TRNC Higher Education Institutions, Higher Education Planning, Supervision and Accreditation and Coordination Board (YODAK) for the professional development of teachers in every field should increase the quality standards in the profession in cooperation with each other.
Apart from these, in order to keep pace with these developments in the world of education;
• Devices or applications used in the digital transformation of education are only tools.
Transformation cannot be expected to occur only by expanding the use of these tools.
Therefore, in this context, it is necessary to focus on the content, software and the quality of the educators rather than the device used.
• Students should be encouraged in technical production and supported with positive production, digital literacy and content production skills.
• Digital transformation is not possible with tablets and applications, but with dynamics and changes on dynamics.
• Digital transformation in education should not be perceived as a revolution that will take place in a short time, but should be seen as a long-term evolution.
• The process should be managed and directed by professional/academic circles.

Arshed, N., & Danson, M. (2015). The literature review. In K. O'Gorman & R. Macintosh (Eds.), Research methods for business & management: A guide to writing your dissertation (pp. 31-49). Goodfellow.
ISTE. (2008). National educational technology standards for teachers. Eugene, OR. Retrieved from https://www.iste.org/iste-standards
ISTE. (2012). National educational technology standards for teachers. Eugene, OR. Retrieved from https://www.iste.org/iste-standards
UNESCO. (2008). UNESCO. Retrieved from https://en.unesco.org/news/dealing-obstacles-distance-learning 

Updated: Jul. 19, 2022
Digital literacy | Teacher competencies | Transformation