The second phase of Digital Learning for Development (DL4D) is funded by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada and administered by the Foundation for Information Technology Education and Development (FIT-ED) of the Philippines.
DL4D Phase II focuses on teacher professional development at scale (TPD@Scale). Teachers have a pivotal role to engage all students in their learning, support them to monitor and manage their own learning, and provide opportunities for them to enhance their learning outcomes. For teachers to facilitate quality learning and enable students to develop lifelong learning skills, they have to possess the competencies to carry out such a role. High quality teacher professional development (TPD) provides teachers the requisite competencies and keeps their knowledge and skills relevant and up-to-date.
There is currently a “massive teacher shortage” around the world that acts as a critical bottleneck to achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4: to ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning. The provision of high quality teacher professional development (TPD) to all teachers, both pre-service and in-service, poses a challenge for many countries, especially those in the Global South where there are limited resources and significant rural-urban, regional, and other gaps. Addressing these gaps requires novel, high quality, and cost-effective approaches to teacher professional development at scale (TPD@Scale). Current status-quo approaches, such as the cascade model, have proven inefficient and ineffective.
TPD@Scale takes advantage of the affordances of digital technologies, informed by the principles of effective TPD, to address the tensions between equity, quality, and efficiency, and it has the potential to revolutionize professional development in the Global South.