TEACHER EDUCATION AND CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT OF TRAINEE TEACHERS: THE CHALLENGES AND SOLUTIONS
This study investigated the efficacy of teacher education for character development, its challenges and solutions. In doing this the researcher asked three questions. The population of the study comprised one hundred and fifty teachers (lecturers) and student-teachers. A structured questionnaire of thirty-seven (37) items titled “Teacher Education and Character Development Challenges Questionnaire” (TECEDCQ) was used to collect data. The reliability and validity of the instrument were established. The internal consistency measure of reliability was computed for the instrument using Cronbach Coefficient Alpha Formulae
and internal consistency rating of .88 was obtained. Data collected in answer to the research questions was analysed using Mean statistics. Findings showed that character development there justifiable ways to achieve character development in teacher education, such as taking students through situations that will expose them to judging another person who is in a grave situation; Create a situation where students can discuss their thought, feelings and beliefs freely; ask students hypothetical questions e.g. suppose a friend begged you to help him cheat in a test what would you do; Lead students into engaging in establishing group goals, decide on rules of conduct , plan activities and solve problems; organise everything in the school around the development of relationship between and among students, staff and community etc the study therefore recommend among others that a board should be constituted to evaluate the teachers in teacher training institutes character wise (most secretly of course). This will help the teachers shelve their unacceptable characters and the learners will gain.