Contextual Factors that Foster or Inhibit Para‐Teacher Professional Development: The Case of an Indian, Non‐Governmental Organization

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The appointment of para-professionals to overcome skill shortages and/or make efficient use of expensive resources is well established in both developing and developed countries. The present research concerns para-teachers in India. The literature on para-teachers is dominated by training for special needs settings, largely in developed societies. Little has been published about para-teachers working in developing countries with children without disabilities, despite this being a common occurrence. The present research investigates how contextual factors influence the design and implementation of professional support for para-teachers. The research participants were 12 para-teachers and five management and administrative staff. Contextual factors included characteristics of para-teachers, classrooms and students from under-resourced settings; and the practices and policies found in a non-school educational setting, here a non-governmental organization. The study indicates that each factor has potentially enhancing and hindering effects which need to be taken into consideration when designing and implementing professional development work.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-38
Number of pages16
JournalInternational journal of training and development
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012



  • IR-86953
  • METIS-284203

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