Initial and continuing teacher education are key links of quality assurance in education system. In accordance with the Law on Higher Education, initial teacher education is the responsibility of higher education institutions.
Teaching and other educational activities in preschool and school education are carried out by:
- preschool teachers,
- preschool teachers and teachers for education of children with special needs.
Teachers can be assisted by other experts depending on the type of institution and its needs, namely by:
- school counsellors,
- speech therapists,
- special education teachers,
- social workers,
- expert associates for education of children with special needs,
- health workers,
- learning assistants.
Teachers organise and carry out educational activities and work on their improvement. Expert associates at schools (school counsellor, psychologist, special education teacher, librarian, etc.) carry out pedagogical/psychological, library-related and other tasks that are directly or indirectly related to educational activities at school. The job of a school counsellor, psychologist, special education teacher and librarian may be performed by persons with Level 7, sublevel one, qualification of the Qualifications Framework (240 ECTS points).
At preschool institutions, instruction is carried out by preschool teachers. A preschool teacher can be a person who has completed a three-year study programme for preschool education, i.e. acquired Level 6 qualification of the Qualifications Framework (180 ECTS) or Level 7, sublevel one, qualification of the Qualifications Framework (240 ECTS) for preschool education.
In the first and second cycle, instruction is carried out by class-teachers i.e. teachers of lower grades of primary school, subject teachers and preschool teachers. In the first cycle, instruction is carried out by class-teachers, i.e. teachers who have completed upper post-secondary school or a relevant Level 7, sublevel one, qualification of the Qualifications Framework (240 ECTS points). In the first grade, as a rule, a preschool teacher takes part in provision alongside class-teacher, on a part time basis. A preschool teacher is a person who meets the prescribed conditions in accordance with regulations governing preschool education and who has completed professional development training for work in primary school organised by the Bureau for Educational Services.
In the fourth and fifth grades, instruction is carried out by class-teachers, while subject teachers carry out instruction of foreign language. In the fifth grade, subject teachers carry out instruction of foreign language, basics of the technology, and two of the subjects: physical education, fine arts and music culture. At schools where teaching is conducted in language of minorities and other minority national communities, subject teachers carry out instruction of Montenegrin language as a non-native language. In the sixth grade, instruction is carried out by subject teachers with the adequate Level 7, sublevel one, qualification of the Qualifications Framework (240 ECTS points).
In the third cycle, instruction is carried out by subject teachers with Level 7, sublevel one, qualification of the Qualifications Framework (240 ECTS points) of a relevant profile.
Mathematics, physics, biology and chemistry in primary schools in Montenegro are taught by teachers who completed the adequate study group within a four-year study programme. Informatics is taught by teachers who completed four-year studies at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics or the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and professors who completed a Faculty of Teacher Education, Department of Technology and Production.
Initial teacher education for subject teachers carrying out instruction in primary education and general secondary education, includes pedagogical/psychological education, in varying degrees. Besides scientific disciplines, students of mathematics, physics and biology study a group of subjects related to teaching methods, which includes the individual subjects of: pedagogy, psychology and methods of teaching the studied discipline. Students of mathematics and computer science, who can teach informatics at schools, do not have this group of subjects. There is still no study programme for chemistry in Montenegro.
Within the study programme of Physics, there is a subject called School Laboratory and Practice, which involves attending a physics class at a school once a week, as well as periodic involvement in teaching at schools. Within the study programmes of Mathematics and Biology, students occasionally attend classes at schools, as part of studying teaching methods.
At the Faculty of Foreign Languages of the Mediterranean University, students study Pedagogy with Didactics - teaching and learning theories, as well as Pedagogical Psychology, over one semester at specialist academic studies, with 2+0 class load (3 ECTS points). Teaching methods are taught over one semester with 2+2 class load (5 ECTS points), whereas teaching practice (exemplary/demonstration class at schools, as well as exam taking) is also done over one semester with 1+3 class load (5 ECTS points).
At the Faculty of Visual Arts within the specialist academic studies, students study Pedagogy with Didactics over one semester with 2+2 class load (5 ECTS points). Teaching methods related to art subjects are also studied within specialised academic studies over one semester with 2+2 class load (5 ECTS points within the study programme Visual Communication Design, 4 ECTS points within the study programme Audiovisual Production).
In Montenegro, there is no system of initial teacher education for vocational part of vocational education programmes. Teachers of theoretical part of vocational programmes, who often teach several vocational subjects, hold higher education degree (e.g. in technology, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, health, economics, law, etc.) which does not include pedagogical/psychological education, yet it is acquired by additional education. Teachers of practical part can have higher education degree, but also two-year upper post-secondary education or Level 5 specialised education. These are mostly engineers in certain fields and their education does not include pedagogical/psychological or education in didactic methods, yet they acquire it later. Practical teaching associates have technical (four-year) education, usually work together with teacher of the certain field, but they also subsequently acquire pedagogical/psychological education and education on didactic methods. Teachers of theoretical and practical part of vocational education have pedagogical/psychological training and training in didactic methods through internship during the first year of work at school, after which they take professional exam which involves the verification of knowledge of these aspects; in that manner the acquire the license for work. These facts should be taken into account when developing the content of initial and continuous teacher education.
Institutions, level and models of training
The University of Montenegro, where future teachers are educates, has study programmes accredited according to the 3+2+3 model. After completing the three-year undergraduate studies, students who enrolled in 2017/18 academic year can continue their education in two-year master studies, and acquire a master degree and a relevant qualification to work at a preschool institution or school.
Preschool teachers, as well as teachers of lower grades in primary schools, acquire education required for work at preschool institutions according to 3+2 model at the Faculty of Philosophy. For subject teaching at primary schools and gymnasiums, and for teaching general education subjects in vocational schools, students take study programmes of Physics, Mathematics, Biology, Informatics at the Faculty of Science and Mathematics; study programmes of Preschool Education, Teacher Education, Philosophy, History, Geography, Pedagogy, Sociology at Faculty of Philosophy; study programmes for foreign languages - Serbian language and South Slavic literature, Montenegrin language and South Slavic literature at the Faculty of Philology; study programme of Painting at the Faculty of Fine Arts; music at Music Academy; and study programme of Physical Culture at the Faculty of Sport and Physical Education.
Within the above programmes, students study the group of subjects related to teaching methods: Pedagogy, Psychology and Methods of teaching only within the study programmes for education of teachers, with the exception of teachers of Informatics. The extent to which this group of subjects is represented in the programme varies from one faculty to another.
At the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, students of Physics, Mathematics (module for teaching mathematics) and Biology study Psychology over one semester with 2+0 class load and Pedagogy with 4+0 class load, whereas students of Biology study Methods of biology teaching over the one semester with 3+3 class load, and students in Mathematics study the subject Methods of mathematics teaching over two semesters with 3+1 class load.
Students of Physics study Methods of physics teaching over two semesters with 3+0 class load. The mentioned group of subjects includes the School Laboratory and Practice which students of Physics attend over one semester with 0+3 class load, as well as Selected Chapters in General Physics, a one-semester course with 3+2 class load.
Within the study programmes Teacher Education and Teacher Education in Albanian at the Faculty of Philosophy, the group of subjects related to methods of teaching makes almost half of these programmes. There are several subjects within the study programme Sociology which relate to various aspects of pedagogy, didactics and psychology. Within the study programme of Psychology, from the group methodological subjects only Methods of teaching reading and writing are taught over one semester with 2+0 class load. Within the study programmes of History, Pedagogy and Psychology, are taught over one semester one semester with 2+0 class load and Methods of history teaching, also over one semester, with 2+4 class load. Within the study programmes of Philosophy, Pedagogy and Didactics are studied over two one-semester subjects with weekly class load of 2+0 for each. The programme includes contents of psychology with the same class load. Methods of philosophy teaching are taught over two semesters with 3+2 and 3+3 class load. Within the study programme of Geography, Psychology is taught over one semester (Developmental Psychology, 2+0 class load) at undergraduate studies within the Educational Module and the same on master studies (Educational Psychology, 2+0 class load) and Didactics 2+0. Also, Didactics is taught over one semester, with 2+0 class load, and Methods of geography teaching with school work over one semester with 3+2+1 class load.
At the Faculty of Philology, this group of subjects is uniform for all study programmes, both foreign and native languages. Over one semester, students study Didactics - Teaching and Learning Theory, as well as Educational Psychology, both with 2+0 class load. Methods of teaching are taught over three semesters, in one with 2+2 class load, and in two semesters with 2+4 class load.
At the Music Academy, within the study programme General Music Pedagogy, Pedagogy and Psychology are taught over 2 semesters with 2+0 weekly class load. Methods of teaching (depending on the study programme and module) are studied at least for 2 semesters with 2+1, or 4+2 class load, but students can also select methods of teaching as electives. Within the Pedagogical module of Performing Arts study programme, Pedagogy and Methodology of teaching an instrument are studied over 2 semesters each, with 2+0 class load.
At Faculty of Fine Arts within the study programmes Sculpting and Painting, but not graphic design, Pedagogy with didactics and Methodology of fine arts are studied, one semester each with 2+0 weekly class load.
At the Faculty of Sport and Physical Culture, the following subjects are studied over one semester each: Sport pedagogy, 2+0 class load, Psychology of physical education and sports, 2+1 class load, Methods of physical education, 1+1+3 class load, Methods of teaching physical education in a school class, 2+1+4 class load.
Other faculties do not have this group of subjects. Graduate students from these faculties are employed as teachers of vocational subjects in secondary vocational schools, but also as chemistry teachers - holders of degrees from the Faculty of Metallurgy and Technology.
Admission to study programmes at higher education institutions in Montenegro, for all three study cycles, is prescribed by the Law on Higher Education. More detailed conditions and criteria, manner and procedure of admission are regulated by the higher education institutions’ acts. In accordance with the Rulebook on conditions, criteria and procedure of admission to undergraduate studies of the University of Montenegro, individuals who completed four-year secondary education are eligible to apply to the call for admission. The Rulebook regulates matters related to application procedures and the documents required, secondary schools relevant for admission to certain study programmes of the University, additional admission requirements, supplementary examinations for study programmes, evaluation of previously acquired education, scoring procedure, admission procedure for each study programme. The admission requirements for study programmes aimed at education of future teachers imply taking tests at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Music Academy and Study Programme for Psychology at the Faculty of Philosophy in Nikšić.
A person who has obtained a proper level education required for attaining IV-1 sub-level of National Qualifications Framework is entitled to enrol in Bachelor academic or applied studies. Admission is based on:
- general performance concerning the completion of individual grades for attaining IV-1 sub-level of National Qualifications Framework
- results achieved at the external exit exam, or vocational exam
- performance from two subjects of third and fourth grade relevant for continuing education
- achieved success at national or international competition in subjects of importance for continuing education
- “Luča” diploma, awarded for excellent study performance (or other relevant diplomas).
For admission in certain study programmes, applicants can take admission exam, for example:
- for study programmes of art, students take an exam for testing individual preferences for creativity in the professional and artistic field
- for study programme of psychology, a knowledge test in general psychology, general knowledge (culture) test and test of mental abilities is taken
- for study programme of Physical Culture and Healthy Life Styles, individual’s tendencies, abilities, and physical norms are tested, on the basis of which it can be determined whether the student is capable of sustaining physical efforts in teaching.
A person can enroll in Bachelor studies of professional-art study programmes at faculties and art academies before completing secondary school provided that he/she completes the admission exam in accordance with the Law on Higher Education.
The principle of affirmative action is applied in case of admission of persons with disabilities.
A foreigner is entitled to enroll in study programmes in Montenegro, under the same conditions as Montenegrin citizens, in compliance with the Law and statute of institution.
More detailed conditions and criteria, method and procedure of enrolment in the first year of Bachelor academic and applied studies are prescribed by the Ministry of Education.
Higher education is available to all persons and may not be directly or indirectly restricted on the basis of: gender, race, marital status, skin colour, language, religion, political or other affiliation, national, ethnic or other origin, financial status, disability or other similar grounds, position or circumstances, in accordance with a special law.
After the admission requirements are met, a learning agreement is concluded between the institution and the student, which closely regulates their mutual rights and obligations. In addition to the learning agreement, students also sign statements on respecting the principle of academic ethics. The content of the agreement for public institutions is determined by the Ministry and published on its website. The agreement includes the institution’s obligation to ensure the completion of education for its students in case the institution or study programme are discontinued.
Curriculum, level of specialisation and learning outcomes
Study programmes for education of teachers are organised by the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Montenegro, namely:
- Preschool Education (applied studies comprising 180 ECTS points)
- Teacher Education (academic studies comprising 300 ECTS points)
- Teacher Education in Albanian (academic studies comprising 300 ECTS points).
Upon completing the three-year Preschool Education study programme, a student will, among other things, be able to:
- recognise the latest scientific theories and findings concerning the nature of children’s development and learning in early childhood and preschool stage
- know how to apply the knowledge of basic sciences that interpret the laws of children’s development and learning in practice
- demonstrate adequate teaching, didactic and methodological strategies for encouraging the overall development possibilities of early and preschool-aged children
- systematically observe, monitor and evaluate children’s capabilities as the basis for developing an integrated curriculum corresponding to the developmental and educational needs of those children;
- understand and adequately promote a holistic approach in working with children of preschool and early school age in terms of methodology, taking into account all developmental aspects (cognitive, sensory, motor, socio-emotional, speech);
- individualise the plan of educational work at preschool institution and school (first grade of nine-year school);
- continuously promote all aspects of inclusive values in educational practice;
- build and develop positive, multi-way communication with parents through various jointly organised activities.
Upon completing the Teacher Education programme, a student will, among other things, be able to:
- prepare and carry out mainstream and other types of instruction, organise school clubs and extracurricular activities for all subjects (apart from foreign language) in the first and second cycle of primary school;
- apply the knowledge of pedagogical/psychological aspects and didactic methods when carrying out lessons in lower grades of primary school;
- use basic knowledge in social and natural sciences, mathematics, music and fine art and physical culture, and create motivating learning situations for the learning process and overall development of students’ personalities in lower grades of primary school;
- develop lifelong learning competences both for themselves and for pupils in lower grades of primary school;
- evaluate didactic methods of theory and practice in lower grades of primary school, taking into account the relevant criteria;
- plan and carry out research in the field of didactic methods;
- demonstrate teamwork skills and presentation skills;
- modify the existing teaching models (methods, techniques, learning and teaching strategies) by adapting them to new conditions of practice through teaching lower grades of primary school.
Study programmes for initial teacher education are organised in the fields offered by the Faculty of Philosophy, Faculty of Philology and Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics of the University of Montenegro.
All study programmes carried out at the above organisational units of the University are academic, structured according to the 3+2 model, i.e. include Bachelor studies taking 180 ECTS and Master studies taking 120 ECTS.
Qualifications, evaluation and certificates
The majority of first cycle study programmes (Bachelor studies) are organised as three-year programmes, comprising 180 ECTS. In accordance with the Law on Higher Education, first cycle programmes can also be organised as integrated Bachelor and Master programmes comprising 300 ECTS points (Teacher Education). Those who acquire a degree by completing an integrated programme are entitled to apply directly to PhD studies. By completing the integrated programme, they acquire a Master’s degree.
Those who complete first cycle programmes (academic and applied) comprising 180 ECTS points acquire Bachelor’s degree and can continue education in second cycle programmes, i.e. enrol in Master studies.
A study programme must include practical instruction, as well as learning outcomes for the field which the study programme belongs to, i.e. competences required to perform the activities. Practical instruction comprises at least 25% of the total student load per course, i.e. per year, depending on the learning outcomes for the particular study programme.
Diploma is accompanied by Diploma Supplement, making its integral part. Both Diploma and Diploma Supplement are issued in Montenegrin and English language. If a student acquires education in one of the minority languages, then Diploma and Diploma Supplement are issued in the language of minorities as well. The content of the Diploma and Diploma Supplement is prescribed by the Rulebook on the content and form of Diploma and Diploma Supplement, keeping the register of students, records and content of public credentials issued by universities and higher education institutions.
Qualifications acquired after completing a Bachelor academic or applied study programme comprising 180 ECTS points are classified in the level VI of the National Qualifications Framework, whereas qualifications acquired by completing Master studies are classified in VII2 sub-level of National Qualifications Framework.
Alternative training pathways
There are no alternative initial teacher education pathways.