Mount Carmel Training College, Kottayam volunteered to get assessed and submitted a self-study report as per the requirements of the National Assessment and Accreditation Council. NAAC constituted the Peer Team of Prof. S. Lakshmi, formerly Vice-Chancellor of Mother Teresa Womens’ University, Kodaikannal as Chairperson and Prof. D. S. Shivananda, formerly Professor of Education, Bangalore University as Member. The team visited the college on February 01, 2000. The Peer Team extensively interacted with the Management, the Principal, teaching Staff, non-teaching staff, students, alumnae and parents. The Team went through the all necessary documents and visited the classrooms, departments, facilities, laboratories etc. and the assessment report of the Peer Team is as follows.
Mount Carmel Training College, Kottayam is a womens’ college of teacher-education, at the secondary level and is affiliated to the Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam. The college has adequate infrastructure and necessary facilities for teacher-education. There is a High School, a Junior College, in the same campus. The college follows the curriculum, as per the university stipulation. The college enjoys good atmosphere and discipline and instill the relevant values, relating to the teacher and teacher education. The Management and the Principal are in total charge of the college and the student-teachers are periodically examined, for their progress in teacher-education.
It is a 47 year old grant-in-aid college affiliated to Mahatma Gandhi University. The college has the University Grants Commission(UGC) recognition under 2f. It is a recognised minority institution situated in a semi-urban area. Its campus area is 3 acres.
The college offers only one course(B.Ed.) with 5 special methods namely English, mathematics, physical sciences, natural sciences and social studies. There are 8 teacher-educators, of these only one possesses M.Phil. degree and the rest have postgraduate degrees. Besides they have 4 technical staff and 4 administrative staff. The percentage of results is 95 and some get university ranks.
Infrastructure facilities available are used optimally. But in the context of teacher-education today, further facilities such as a separate computer room, better-equipped psychology laboratory and educational technology laboratory and audio-visual section are needed. The teacher-pupil ratio should be maintained as per NCTE norms.
The main goal of the college is the optimum development of the potential of the teacher trainee. To achieve this goal the college has good curricular and several co-curricular activities. These programmes are transacted by eight members of the staff, which includes one trained and qualified physical education teacher and the Principal.
The college does not enjoy much freedom as regards the curriculum since it is affiliated to Mahatma Gandhi University. However, it provides lots of opportunities to develop the potentialities of the trainees. The regional language of the state is Malayalam, but it is not included in the curriculum as one of the subjects of study. The medium of instruction is English. The committee suggests that methods of teaching Malayalam may be included and also that it be made the medium of instruction if students want to choose it instead of English.
The networking of the departments and monitoring of the programme of various subject-wise departments are done by the Principal of the college. There is a good support by the teaching and the non-teaching staff.
The practice teaching is the most important component in the colleges of education. This component is dealt cooperatively through practice teaching with the schools in and around Kottayam. Each student has to do the following compulsorily in addition to regular subjects he or she has to do: preparing models-4, charts, diagrams-10 and slides-3. The students will also be given training on how to use them in the classroom and also to handle the OHP, slide projector and film-strip projector etc.
The college is recognised as a minority institution and it makes admissions keeping the norms prescribed by the Government of Kerala and the University. It admits students of various cultural, economic and educational backgrounds. All of them are given equal opportunity to grow.
The college is yet to develop a method of screening students before giving admissions, it is suggested that the students must be selected on the basis of their aptitude and attitude. Since the attitude is one of the most important as regards the success of teaching, a pre and post testing may be done which also helps the college to evaluate its programmes.
The college has not developed a bridge course but informally this is being carried out by the teachers. Likewise there is no enrichment programme for academically talented students. The assessment of the trainees is being done at two levels (1) internal and (2) external. The college conducts frequent tests, terminal examinations, assignments, socially useful productive work, etc. Freedom is given to the students to interact with the teachers regarding the assessment made by them. Efforts are made to make the assessment transparent and continuous. The external examination is conducted by the university.
Full freedom is given to the teachers to plan their academic work including the method of teaching and testing. The lecture method is supplemented by discussion, seminars, assignment, workshops etc. Innovative practices in teaching like team-teaching and co-operative teaching are suggested. In testing also new techniques like open book exam may be tried.
It is recommended that enrichment programmes in curriculum transaction could be attempted. educational technology, computer and the psychology laboratories need to be better equipped and used effectively.
Research is an important activity in the educational programmes of a college of education, since more changes are taking place in the field of teaching-learning and evaluation due to the scientific and technological developments. But those aspects are not given due consideration. The members of the staff have not done any research and published any papers in any journal. However it is gratifying to note that many members of the staff have registered for Ph.D. programme and one is working at the M.Phil. programme. All of them pursue research as part-time scholars. Of these, only one is in the Faculty Improvement Programme(FIP) of the University Grants Commission(UGC). The college does not give any financial help but provides leave benefits.
The teacher-educators must establish themselves so that they will have many opportunities to serve as members of editorial boards etc. It is suggested that the college should encourage to take up individual research projects. In this context, Action Research must be made an integral part of the curriculum and students must be motivated to take some simple classroom problems for Action Research. The teacher-educators must be made to take up institutional projects and Group Research by getting financial support from various agencies. The extension work planned and executed is satisfactory. These programmes fulfil the needs of the community and enrich the learning experience of the trainees.
The college has a fairly good library and subscribs for research journals. More educational journals like Journal of Indian Education, Journal of Higher Education etc. can be subscribed for and the facilities in the library may be enriched.
The college has good infrastructure like good classrooms, aditorium, with adequate furniture. The infrastructure is maintained well and used to the maximum extent. The learning resources of the college are adequate to promote the desired quality of education. The college provides adequate facilities for sports and games. The physical education teacher is very helpful in helping the students to develop sports skills.
The institution has not developed any master plan, at least for the next five years. Such a plan gives dimensions for the development of the college to provide more facilities such as accessibility to computers to all the trainees etc.
The computer centre needs to be developed because of its role in future. There is a book-bank for the benefit of the students. The books contained in the library have not been catalogued. It is suggested that the books may be catalogued author-wise and subject-wise so as to facilitate the students to locate the books easily. The library service rendered to the student at present is satisfactory.
Student support is provided by scholarships and dissemination of information such as academic calendar, prospectus and admission policy. Holistic development of student teacher is attempted with its main focus on teacher-training.
It is recommended that student support system could be enriched by development oriented projects and others. Feedback obtained from students could help them when they leave college and this needs to be encouraged.
The goals for the college are mission oriented and system maintenance is practised in all college matters. It is suggested that the management could help the college from system-maintenance to system renewal, so as to enable the college to practise more innovations, as demanded by teacher education today. The focus on the professional atmosphere and teacher-professional atmosphere and teacher professionalism, could be given further support.
Postgraduate courses for further academic progress and professional growth of the faculty and students are also suggested.
The institution has made a beginning with respect to healthy practices, but it has long way to go. Nevertheless the Peer Team observed following healthy practices:
The institution provides lots of opportunities to develop the potentialities of the trainees.
Each student has to prepare models-4, charts, diagrams-10 and slides-3, compulsorily in addition to regular subjects he or she has to do.
Students will also be given training on how to use them in the classroom and also to handle OHP, slide projector and film-strip projector etc.
The college conducts frequent tests, terminal examinations, assignments, socially useful productive work, etc
The college has good infrastructure like good classrooms, auditorium, with adequate furniture, which have been optimally utilised.
Student support is provided by scholarships and dissemination of information such as academic calendar, prospectus and admission policy.
Holistic development of student teacher is attempted with its main focus on teacher-training.
The college maintains the necessary atmosphere for teacher-education at the secondary level. Educational innovation, such as the credit system, modular syllabi and others may be attempted, so as to facilitate system-renewal.
The peer team would like to commend the institution for the following:
· The college has the atmosphere necessary for teacher education.
· Inputs such as Guidance and Counselling Units, Parent-Teacher-Association and Job Placement Service are functioning.
The Peer Team would like to suggest the following for further improvement of the institution:
· The latest trends in teacher education could be incorporated into the college system to make it further growth oriented and progressive.
· The college could also strive for autonomy and work towards becoming the Centre for Teacher Education(CTE).
· Methods of teaching Malayalam could be reintroduced.
· The college may initiate an association for all the teacher training colleges of Mahatma Gandhi University for better interaction regarding (a) academic programmes such as innovative practices; (b) examination reforms and (c) administrative concerns
· Computer education may be provided for all B.Ed.s.
· Malayalam as a medium of instruction could also be tried.
· A master plan for the next five years may be attempted taking into consideration the needs of the society.