Busy times in the TEPATE-project – many activities ongoing

A fruitful, intensive week in Mozambique included workshops on TEPATE project activities at the Pedagogical University Maputo (UP) and ISET One World; an international conference; and courtesy visits and meetings with the UP’s and ISET One World’s top management, the Finnish ambassador and education counsellor at the Finnish embassy, and the Mozambican Vice-Minister of Education, in May 2023.

Important steps were taken concerning the accreditation of the three newly developed study modules as in the meeting with the Pedagogical Directorate of UP the process of accreditation was discussed and agreed. For the accreditation process, an external committee will be established. The committee will evaluate the developed modules that are targeted to be implemented at all eight faculties at UP. At ISET One World, the accreditation process will be easier as there is only one faculty.

In the workshops, also the plans for trainings and workshops for school managers were prepared and preliminarily scheduled. Also an outline for the refresher course materials for in-service teachers was carried out in the key experts’ workshops. At the moment, the idea is to develop three a different types of ways of delivering content/material for in-service teachers:

  • firstly, producing brochures and leaflets based on the TEPATE project development activities that can be circulated to teachers across the country as such
  • secondly, designing in-service training processes that utilises also other suitable materials such as films and books
  • thirdly, organising workshops where the materials will be utilised.

Regarding the teaching practice component of the TEPATE project, meetings with student teachers were held to hear students’ experiences and ideas about the development of teaching practice. Also a visit for the TEPATE project team to a secondary school was organised to observe teaching in the classroom. In addition, key experts further developed the idea of an e-guidebook on teaching practice for teacher students, teacher educators and host teachers in the secondary schools. Going beyond the project’s actual activities, there are also several articles under writing about teaching practice by the experts involved in the TEPATE project. The key experts of the project work on a joint publication consisting of articles that relate to the activities of the TEPATE project.

ISET One World has a key role in disseminating the modules and developments of teaching practice to the teacher training colleges under the Ajuda de Desenvolvimento de Povo para Povo (ADPP). Altogether 11 teacher training colleges in different provinces will get the information about and benefit from the materials developed in the project. Further, ISET One World will also involve local schools to train school managers and teachers on student-centredness and theory-practice balance in teaching.

An international conference was held at UP on May 24. Altogether 60-70 people participated in the conference, and some of them followed the conference online. Also the Finnish Ambassador to Mozambique, Anna-Kaisa Heikkinen, spoke in the conference. Mr. Remane Selimane from the National Director of Teacher Training at the Ministry of Education provided insights on bilingual education in Mozambique. Dr. Erika Sarivaara from the University of Lapland held a presentation on “Bilingualism in teacher education: what competence teachers should gain to be able to work with multilingual pupils?”. Further, Dr. Leena Kaikkonen from Jamk presented a current view of teacher competences with the focus of ‘future thinking’. In addition to these, interesting presentations by Adriano Niquisse from the ISET One World on teacher education, and other key experts of the TEPATE project on the development of three modules and teaching practice were heard. Besides the interesting official talks, the conference also provided a great possibility to discuss, share knowledge and experiences during the breaks.

After the intensive, joint week in Mozambique, the project activities continue. For example at the end of July, the Southern key experts conducted professional development workshops for all academic staff of the eight faculties at UP. Similarly, ISET One World will organise workshops for teacher educators of the teacher training colleges and neighbouring schools. The contents and teaching methods of the workshops will be based on the developed modules. This process enhances the capacity of different faculties to implement the modules with their students later.

The activities at the UP campus in May 2023

Besides the conference, many project activities were implemented at the UP campus during the week . The key experts from UP and ISET One World partly worked all together and partly in smaller, development team-based groups. There are two campuses at UP, and the workshop type activities took place at UP-SEDE Campus. To work in smaller group, we used three rooms: the library, one small classroom and the TEPATE room which is a facility dedicated to the project already in the beginning of the project. In the TEPATE room, there is now a newly acquired smart board in addition to computers, which helps the key experts to work together. The conference was held at the Campus de Lhanguene where the auditorium for larger groups is. In the conference, there were photographers and video cameras recording the speeches and presentations.

The activities at ISET One World in May 2023

On 25th May 2023, the key experts from UP and Finland travelled from Maputo to ISET-OW by bus. Even though the road has been fixed since we were over last time, rains had damaged the road so that we had to get off the bus in order to pass the most difficult parts. At ISET One World, the staff and students welcomed us by singing. The beautiful campus with its unique architecture and scenery is an experience in itself. In addition to the ISET One World staff, there were teachers from the teacher training colleges and primary school as well as ADPP personnel invited to the workshop. It was very interesting and useful to hear all of their insights about the teacher education. After the workshop, we visited the Alto Enchisa Primary School on the way back to Maputo.

High level meetings in May 2023

We also had an honour to meet the top management of UP and ISET One World. The rector of UP, Jorge Ferrão, is well aware of the project activities and gives his full support to the TEPATE project. The meeting with the director of the Pedagogical Directorate held on 23rd May was also very important to ensure the successful accreditation of the three study modules and their offering to students at the university.
The meeting at the Finnish embassy was important to inform where we are with the development activities, and what the steps are. The ambassador Anna-Kaisa Heikkinen, the education specialist Anna Pörsti and the coordinator Cláudia Ferreira Da Costa arranged their valuable time for us for discussions.
The courtesy visit at the Ministry of Education with the Deputy Minister of Education and Human Development Manuel Bazo and other representatives at the ministry was very valuable as it enabled us to inform the deputy minister about the project and the plans for collaboration in the future. His excellency expressed his view on the high importance of the good relationships and collaboration between Mozambique and Finland.

What are the developed modules?

The three modules of five credits (ECTS) each are ready for the students soon. The modules form a ‘family’ of studies that all relate to each other. All the modules have been co-created by the key experts that represent ISET One World and UP and its six faculties. Further, the teacher students have piloted parts of the modules and given feedback for further development. The development of the modules has involved also reviewers from other UP personnel.

First phase: All units completed, next: Pre-testing with students, next: Improvement based on the feedback, last phase: implementation with teachers and professionals
Figure 1. The main phases of the development of modules.

The module “Constructivism in the Educational Practice of Training Trainers” aims at elucidating a proven useful theoretical approach in the professional practice of teachers and students, conditioned by so many interfaces that go back to the history of psychopedagogical science, and it is organised from four points of theoretical-practical reflection in the classroom.
The module consists of four units:

  1. Constructivism
  2. Social constructivism
  3. The teacher’s role in classroom
  4. Evaluation

The units include lessons with the contents for learning, assignments, and assessment activities. The materials will be on an online platform for the students.

The module “Assessment of learning from the constructive perspective” lies and leans on the principle of theory-practice balance in learning process. The module discusses assessment from the constructivist perspective in the teaching-learning process. Further, the module gives theoretical-methodological support on how to conduct the assessment based on the constructivist approach, proposed in the module “Constructivism in the Educational Practice of Training Trainers”. In addition, the module promotes the use of alternative assessment tools.

The module “Teacher as a change agent” focuses on analysing the role of the teacher as an agent of change in society, committed to ethical and moral issues, working with student-centred methodologies.
The preliminary specific objectives of the module are to:

  • Describe the profile of the Mozambican teacher;
  • Discuss the role of the teacher as an agent of change and construction of students’ identity;
  • Reflect on the moral and ethical behaviour of the teacher during the exercise of teaching practice and in society
  • Know the different forms of interaction and ways of being that characterize the Mozambican teacher
  • Discuss the difficulties related to cultural diversity, large classes, working conditions
  • Analyse the process of inclusion, equity and gender in the teaching and learning process
  • Reflect on the construction process of the teacher’s professional identity
  • Thinking about education and the educator from the perspective of the teacher.

The module is still under construction as this module was the last one to start.
More information about TEPATE project on our website.


Irmeli Maunonen-Eskelinen
JAMK University of Applied Sciences