Research into teaching and training role and its responsibilities

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The first section of my discussion will explore the teaching and training role and its responsibilities, as well as its limits. I will specify my role as an art teacher. Then, all aspects of the teaching cycle will be examined. After that, I will emphasise the importance of tutors keeping records. The second section of the essay will cover three examples of legislation relevant to teaching art. This will be supplemented with the importance of the Equality Act 2010. Taking this a step further, I summarise the codes of practice for equality and diversity for the Lancashire Adult College. And finally, I will apply this equality and diversity policy to my teaching situation.

2) Roles and Responsibilities

I am Christie, and I plan to show how role and responsibility will allow me to teach arts and crafts, in non-compulsory education. A role can be defined as "The function assumed or part played by a person ... in a particular situation" (Oxford, 2010). Also, I would add that it is wide ranging. Table 1 (Appendix 1) provides a brief outline of roles that an effective tutor has, but this list is non-exhaustive. Table 1 derives from me attending a Taste of Teaching workshop, at Lancashire College (2010). Each workshop attendee added their own definition of a tutor's role, evidently dependant on personal experience. As Wilson (2008) states, 'The role and responsibility of the teacher is a complex one.' The teacher's roles and responsibilities are essential for the tutor to effectively use the assessment framework of the teaching/training cycle.

The Teaching Cycle

All aspects of the teaching cycle are important. It is a process of planning, teaching, assessing and reviewing. Figure 1 (Appendix 1) further illustrates this process. There are six elements to the teaching cycle - and the cycle starts with the reason or requirement for the course, set out in the rationale. As part of this, the main aim or goal is to meet the requirement or standards of the awarding body. An example of a rationale is Government regulations from 2007 that require further education tutors to have a minimum qualification in the Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector (PTLLS). Other requirements may be outlined by a Head of Department such as Art, or a community organisation requesting a course. Wilson (2009) ensures that teaching should be a structured process following a cycle which is utilised to ensure achievement. Once the rationale has been established, the core of the teaching cycle rotates in the order in Figure 1, i.e. next is the learner needs, and so on. However, at any point the tutor will review and change as needed. For example, a student may bring up an issue that has been missed in the lecture, and the tutor may incorporate this change immediately. Figure 2 (Appendix 1) is an adaptation of the teaching cycle in Figure 1, and clearly illustrates the review process, with the central circle labelled 'ongoing evaluation,' radiating to all the surrounding circles.

Next, the second stage of the teaching cycle is identifying learners' needs. This would include an initial assessment by form filling or informal interview to determine what stage of development a student is at and individual needs, such as adaptations for a disability like repetitive strain injury. A learning artist needs to have the practical skills to create, and they need to have confidence in their own ideas. Key roles for teaching art are to give confidence, develop skills and to be non-judgmental. I must also inspire creativity that will facilitate an individual's ideas and design solutions.

Background experience is important for the third teaching stage - lesson planning. My background is in graphic design, and my arts and crafts hobbies provide practical experience. My lesson planning role would be to ensure that all activities are relevant to learning that art form. I will need to apply my technical knowledge to any arts medium being taught, such as the correct adhesive for mosaics. Once the lesson planning has been established, it is a case of knowing the best way to deliver the lesson.

To deliver a lesson effectively, an arts tutor has the right skills, attitude, knowledge, and teaching experience. For teaching mosaics, a small presentation on health and safety is a priority, plus a bit of history. Then, a practical demonstration of how it is done comes next and this will include all the methods and materials. I will supplement this with written instructions to help students who may learn more effectively though written learning.

The fifth part of the cycle is the assessment of learning against outcomes, and my role is to ensure that my instructions have been clear enough for the student to make a mosaic, as outlined in the learning outcomes. This assessment is used in the sixth part, where I need to evaluate my own teaching, through student feedback and learning outcomes. For teaching mosaics, I would handout a feedback form, and look at the art to see how the student understood my instructions, and developed their own ideas.

This teaching cycle is an effective process, but I have other roles that indirectly affect learning, such as completing my own development, and attending meetings. However, outside of my role are students' personal issues. Examples include student assistance for finances, counselling, hearing, English language, or dyslexia. Within the Lancashire Adult Learning College, I would refer them to one of the teams, such as Learner Support Team, Skills for Life Team, Counselling staff, or Information, Advice and Guidance staff.

3) Keeping Records

There are various records and data a teacher must maintain, but I will explain the most relevant to teaching mosaics in a one day workshop. Records can show proof of progression, such as exams, class and workshop activities, or assignments, but I would prefer to use photos of how mosaic work was completed, and fill in a learning outcomes form. Lesson plans are important for clarity on materials and methods, but other records are useful, such as venue information, and register of attendees. Arguably, the most important record is the Health & Safety risk assessment, outlining methods to ensure risks are managed, such as glass cuts. This relates to Health and Safety Legislation discussed below.

Part 2: Legislation Requirements and Code of Practice

1) A Summary of Specific Legislation

Table 1 (Appendix 3) outlines the legislation relevant to tutoring. This legislation will affect how I conduct myself in class and how I will expect the learners to behave.  The legislation that would be most important on my role of teaching mosaics is on health and safety, care standards, and vulnerable groups. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 requires an employer - to take all practicable measures to manage risks. In the Lancashire College Health & Safety Policy, staff have a duty to use personal protective equipment provided, and ensure appropriate use by learners. Working with glass creates risks, and my risk assessment mentioned above will be required, along with a tool talk, demonstration, and checking students' tool use. The remaining legislation I have chosen relates to how students are treated. For example, there may be special needs students wishing to do art and craft activities at a local community venue. The Care Standards Act 2004 ensures high standards of care and protection of vulnerable people. In a similar vein, the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 ensures my background is checked and I am safe to work with vulnerable people. The above are all necessary pieces of legislation to ensure the wellbeing of students, as is the legislation below.

Equality Act 2010

As seen in Table 2 (Appendix 3), this new legislation incorporates many previous separate acts. I would be mindful that it is illegal to discriminate against the following 'protected characteristics': age, disability (including mental health and people diagnosed as clinically obese), race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, as well as pregnancy, breastfeeding, and maternity. Also, it clearly defines the various forms of discrimination, such as direct, indirect, and by association, to name a few. I will focus on two elements of this Act: disability and age. As I have a type of disability known as repetitive strain injury, I understand that it can be painful to do write notes. In the enrolment form, I would look out for any special needs and would provide handouts, etc. to people whose handwriting or other ability is affected. I also understand that taking regular breaks from writing, computing, or mosaic tile nipping helps control the pain. I also have a special pair of tile nippers requiring less grip strength. Age discrimination should not be an issue with teaching art to adults, but health and safety can limit minimum age and ability. In young or vulnerable adult students, there must be a minimum age - or mental or physical ability - to be able to cut glass or use hazardous substances such as cement based grout.

2) A discussion of equality/diversity issues

The Lancashire College operates an Equality and Diversity Policy with the key aims outlined in Table 4 below. My interpretation of the policy into my role is outlined in the second column.

Table 4

Lancashire College Equality &Diversity Policy Aims

My Role as a Tutor

To entitle everyoneto equal rights and opportunities

I would set out boundaries or ground rules to ensure a level playing field.

To identify and eliminate all forms of discrimination

I would use and expect language, attitudes and actions that are free of bias, stereotyping and discrimination.

To respect different cultures, lifestyles, abilities and views.

I would encourage and show mosaic art examples from various religions and countries

To encourage learners to reach their potential

I would teach art that is very focussed on encouragement and confidence to create a design solution

To use a diversity of resources

I would use a mix of resource material like handouts, presentation, demonstration, discussion to teach mosaics.

I would agree with Kelley-Browne (2007), who emphasises that the core value expected of teachers is "... demonstrating awareness and consideration for the social, cultural, linguistic, religious and ethnic backgrounds of the pupils they teach."

All of the above aspects in my discussion have helped me identify my priorities and limiting factors, such as health and safety, but also how to tackle different learning styles, abilities, as well as diversity and equality. As a result, I am better prepared to structure my scheme of work. It could be argued that a teacher has many roles, perhaps even as a guide, a mentor, and a provider of inspiration and imagination.


Curzon, L.B. (2003) Teaching in Further Education: An Outline of principles and Practice. London: Continuum. 6th Edition

Government Equalities Office (2010) Equality Act 2010: What do I need to know? A summary guide for public sector organisations. Government Equalities Office. (accessed 29.1.11)

Kelley-Browne, L. (2007). Training to Teach in the Life Long Learning Sector. Essex: Pearson Education Limited. 1st Edition

Minton, D. (2003) Teaching Skills in Further and Adult Education, London: Thomson (2nd edition)

New South Wales Department of Training and Education (2010) (accessed 30.1.11)

Oxford Dictionary (2010) "role". Oxford Dictionaries. April 2010. Oxford University Press. <>. (accessed 9.1.11)

Reece, I, and Walker, S (2003) Teaching, Training and Learning: A Practical Guide. Sunderland: Business Education Publishers Limited.

Wilson, L.(2008) 'Practical Teaching: A guide to PTLLS & CTLLS,' London: Cengage Learning EMEA

Appendix 1

Table 1: Roles of the Teacher

A) Share knowledge

G) Prepare learning

B) Develop skills

H) Create fun learning atmosphere

C) Motivate learners

I) Create progression

D) Bring knowledge

J) Set boundaries

E) Give confidence

K) Facilitate and listen

F) Involve everyone

L) Be non-judgemental

(Source: Taste of Teaching, Lancashire College 2010)

Appendix 2

Figure 1 The Teaching Cycle

(Source: Lancashire Adult Learning, PTLLS course 2011)

Figure 2: The Teaching and Learning Cycle

(Source: New South Wales Department of Education and Training, 2011)

Appendix 3

Table 2 Relevant Legislation for Tutoring


Brief Description                                                      

Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 

This states that an employer must do everything reasonably practicable to provide a safe and healthy workplace

Equality Act 2010

(incorporates many previous Acts)

The Act protects people from discrimination on the basis of 'protected characteristics' (formerly called 'grounds').The relevant characteristics for services and public functions are:

disability (definition changed)

gender reassignment (definition changed)

pregnancy and maternity

race -including ethnic or national origins, colour and nationality

religion or belief

sex, and sexual orientation.

Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006

Relates to the way employers recruit people to work with vulnerable groups, and particularly the way background checks are carried out. This pertains to individuals who want to work or volunteer with children or vulnerable adults and to bar unsuitable people from doing so.

Children's Act 2004 (Child Protection) - Every Child Matters - but changing to Every Citizen Matters

To promote good health, safety, enjoyment, achievement, positive contribution and economic well-being.To give boundaries and help for local authoritiesand/or other entities to better regulate official intervention in the interests of children. Includes changes to laws relating to children, notably on foster homes, adoptionagencies, babysittingservices, and the handling of child-related crimesand crimes against children.

Care Standards Act 2004 (Protection of Vulnerable Adults)

A major regulatory framework for social care to ensure high standards of care and will improve protection of vulnerable people.

Data Protection Act 1998 and 2003          

Personal data must be: 1. Processed fairly and lawfully. 2. Obtained for specified and lawful purposes. 3. Adequate, relevant and not excessive. 4. Accurate and up to date. 5. Not kept any longer than necessary. 6. Processed in accordance with the "data subject's" (the individual's) rights. 7. Securely kept. 8. Not transferred to any other country without adequate protection in situ.

Freedom of Information Act 2000

It gives you the right to ask any public body for all the information they have on any subject you choose, within certain limits.

Education and Skills Act 2008

This raises the minimum age at which a young person can leave learning. All young people will be required to continue in education or training post-16. The age is being raised in two stages, to 17 from 2013 and to 18 from 2015.