How do teachers and school leaders keep up-to-date in their profession?

  • Taking part in some kind of in-service training is commonplace among teachers and principals in South Africa, with 91% of teachers (OECD average 94%) and 96% of principals (OECD average 99%) attending at least one professional development activity in the year prior to the survey.
  • Attending courses and seminars is one of the most popular types of professional development for teachers across the OECD. In South Africa, 71% of teachers participate in this kind of training (OECD average 76%). At the same time 67% of teachers participate in training based on peer learning and coaching (OECD average 44%). It is interesting to note that teachers, across the OECD, report that professional development based on collaboration and collaborative approaches to teaching is among the most impactful for them.
  • Teachers in South Africa appear satisfied with the training they received, as 88% report that it had a positive impact on their teaching practice, a share that is higher than the average of OECD countries and economies participating in TALIS (82%). It is also true that teachers who report participating in such impactful training tend to display higher levels of self-efficacy and job satisfaction. The association is particularly strong South Africa.
  • On average across the OECD, among those teachers reporting that their training had a positive impact, some also reported that such impactful training tended to have four elements: 1) it built on the teacher’s prior knowledge (91%); 2) it adapted to the teacher’s personal development needs (78%); 3) it had a coherent structure (76%); and 4) it focused on content needed to teach the teacher’s subjects (72%). South Africa is one of the TALIS countries and economies with the highest share of teachers reporting these four content-related characteristics as part of their impactful training.

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