This article describes the characteristics of the action-related content of education in the context of a person-oriented approach to education. The action-related content includes methods of cognition specific to each educational field and methods of students' activity. The research shows that education is perceived by most students as a sphere that is disconnected from real practice, as well as from the life goals and plans of the students themselves. We assume that the decline in the quality of education is largely connected with a set of characteristics, including the action-related content of education. The teacher should organize the educational process in such a way that the student is the creator himself, and is not just the host country of the training. The creation of appropriate motives should be considered as a necessary condition for mastering professional competence by students. However, in our opinion, not enough attention is paid to the formation of responsibility among students. We consider the concept of responsibility as a key element when forming students' action-related motives. The data obtained in the course of the research indicate that students do not have a clear understanding of the content of the responsibility concept. The purpose of this work is to consider the characteristics of the action-related content of education in the context of a personality-oriented approach and to determine the ways of forming action-related motives in students. The formation of responsibility can become an important direction of qualitative change in modern Russian education.
Distinctive features of specific types of activity can include their form, methods of implementation, emotional tension, spatial and temporal characteristics and so on. Leontev (1975) considers activity as a form of active purposeful interaction of a person with the surrounding world, including other people.
The specifics of the professional activity of a humanitarian specialist is most clearly revealed in the conditions of the division of labor based on cooperation.
In contrast to material production, in the process and in the result of which wealth is created in the outside world, in the activity of the teacher spiritual benefits are created in the inner world. They are expressed by the education level of the students, which is originally developed under the guidance of the appropriate specialist, and then as they gain experience – by themselves. Therefore, in conditions of shared activity, there is a need for teachers who are ready and able to think and act not according to traditional schemes and patterns of behaviour but based on the current situation in the conditions of digitalization of education and taking into account their experience. It is important that the professional competence of teachers characterizes the readiness and ability to create conditions for a full transition of students from participation in a shared activity to self-expression.
Currently, foreign and domestic scientists are conducting research and implementing modern educational psychological and pedagogical technologies, including active teaching methods: situational tasks with vital and practical content; simulation of various social and professional functions – business games; information and educational technologies based on modern computer audio-visual equipment and so on. These innovations can and should become the norm for a wide range of educational institutions (Shishov, 2012).
However, as the complex of the above theoretical and practical methods and techniques of our research shows, 59 % of boys and girls say that the knowledge received in the university do not meet their life goals and plans, and 64 % of students believe that during classes they work a little on their own, mostly under the guidance of a teacher, and the motivation of cognitive activity is supported in the classroom due to the stimulating students' sense of duty, responsibility and fear of possible trouble. A large number of boys and girls (48 %) do not consider professional growth prestigious since the problem of employment of young professionals has not been solved. The research was conducted at the Institute of social and humanitarian technologies FGBOU VO «MGUTU of K.G. Razumovskii (PKU)» in 2018. 856 undergraduate students took part in the survey.
Based on these reasons, as well as the experience of working with students, it can be assumed that the decline in the quality of students' education depends largely on the action-related content of education itself.
The action-related content of education includes methods of cognition and methods of activity specific to each educational field, as well as methods of publishing educational products by students, ways of organizing their work, methods of analysis, understanding and evaluation of their activity. The value of the action-related content of education is extremely high, and it has the property of transferring to almost any educational field or training course (Artemeva et al., 2013).
Action-related content has the following sources:
- General scientific and private-subject methods of activity established by educational standards as mandatory for assimilation.
- General educational methods of activity that differ from scientific ones in their focus not on scientific achievements, but on the student's educational increments. At the same time, the student comprehends his initial level of knowledge and each of the studied educational objects and, comparing it (through self-testing) with the final level, determines what and how much (qualitatively and quantitatively) changes have occurred to him.
- Reflexively displayed and recorded by the student ways of his educational activity. Reflected knowledge of a student includes the following components:
«know that» (information about the content of your knowledge and ignorance);
«know what» (information about the acquired actions related to methods of development and transformation of knowledge);
«know why» (understanding the meaning of information and how to get it);
«I know» (self-determination about this knowledge and related information).
The first source of action-related content of education is used as a necessary component of students' reproductive assimilation, as well as a cultural and historical analogue of the ways of activity already learned by students.
As far as the content of the sciences includes not only obtained knowledge, but also methods of obtaining it, both components are also present in the content of education. No wonder L. N. Tolstoi claimed that it is important to know not only that the Earth is round, but how people found out about it.
The following source is a set of methods and types of activities, as well as educational technologies that correspond to the specifics of educational goals and objectives at each stage of students' education by the dynamics of their age and individual development (Karavanova et al., 2020).
The third source of the activity-based educational content is the ways of students' educational activity that they have realized and learned. Getting and arranging their cognitive results, comparing them with the results of other students, the student performs a lot of imaginative, logical and genetic actions, which together represent the technology of his training. The ways of a student's activity revealed by reflection are a full part of the content of his/her education. For example, the method of sensory empathy applied by students during the training is not only a tool of cognition but also a conscious result of it, included in the content of personality-oriented education.
Purpose of the Study
The study aims to consider the characteristics of the activity-based educational content in the context of a personality-oriented approach and to determine the ways and stages of the developing of activity motives in students. We seek to identify the needs of the modern social environment concerning the development of education and moral guidelines of the younger generation.
When the study was carried out, the surveys and the methods of analysis and synthesis were used to identify the students' attitude to the considered categories. The study considers the active teaching methods: situational tasks based on practical life, simulations of various social and professional functions – business games, information and educational technologies based on modern computer equipment.
The personality-oriented type of education provides the insight into all its components based on the student's personal and semantic essence, his interests, desires, feelings, motives of activity, and not only knowledge, skills and abilities, as defined by Bondarevskaya (2000). The content of education must be transferred from the level of values to the level of personal meanings so that it is perceived by students as a social, directed aesthetic value or others.
According to Leontev (1975), personal meaning is a meaning mediated by a motive. It follows that the meaning-forming motives of the student's education, affecting his worldview and life positions, are more effective and significant than the stimulus motives encouraging the specific actions. The personal meaning of education, for example, of its part – the exam – may not coincide with its objective meaning – the way to determine the level and assessment of the student's training. The personal meaning of the exam for a student can be completely different – to get a good grade, to prove the ability to friends, to meet the expectations of the parents, etc.
The personal meaning of education depends largely on the motive that governs the student. Therefore, the main function of the personal-oriented content of education is to provide and reflect the formation of a system of students' educational meanings. Such meanings can be formed based on its interaction with the deep foundations of the world and itself. Khutorsky (2001) notes that if the content of education is focused mainly on the knowledge, this is not covered its value. Therefore, the task is to ensure that the content of education is aimed at the development of students' personal and semantic sphere, which is characterized by their attitude to the perceived reality, its experience, and awareness of values. When organizing and managing such activities the student acts not only as a subject of learning but also as a subject of life. And this can be achieved when the modern educational process is based on such principles as:
- developing the creative potential of an individual as a subject of mastering and applying professional competence;
- training the independent thought, confidence in own abilities;
- formation of abilities and the need for self-education and self-development.
It should be noted that the ability to implement the professional knowledge and skills in a particular activity largely depends on responsibility as the most important component of professional orientation. The formation of responsibilities is primarily the formation of motives that determine the moral orientation of an individual (Abylkasymova et al., 2018).
Not without reason, Bakhtin (1986) wrote: For all that I experienced and understood in the art, I must be responsible for with my life, so that all that I have experienced and understood does not remain inactive in it. But with the responsibility comes guilt. Not only life and art should take mutual responsibility, but also the guilt for each other. The poet should remember that the vulgar prose is to blame for the undemanding and carelessness of his life issues.
Responsibility should be understood as a clear awareness of the dependence of their actions and consequences on the decision and management and the readiness to be responsible for them within a social or organized structure.
The studies of domestic psychologists and teachers (Leontev, 1975) allow confirming that the activity acquires a truly moral meaning and forms the required moral properties in the individual only when it is performed voluntarily and is caused by moral motives. Bozhovich (2004) notes that the structure of stable forms of personal behaviour includes not only the established and habitual behaviour but also the established system of its relations to reality, i.e. a certain system of its motives. It is obvious that only by forming strong moral methods in students' activities we can consider the responsibility as a stable characterological trait, as an essential component of professional competence.
Summarizing the results of the performed study, we can identify the following main stages of responsibility formation in the personality structure:
1. Developing a stimulus. The stimulus can be the activity of the individual or its separate property, generalized and fixed in the form of a moral rule, consciously organized and planned pedagogical image. The stimulus is perceived and reflected in the inner world of the individual, getting a particular assessment.
2. Forming a motive. Based on awareness and acceptance of the stimulus, an internal impulse develops, which can turn into external action.
3. Choosing a program of action and behaviour. The motive performs its function in the formation of a personality property in that case if an adequate form of behaviour is found for it.
4. The implementation of a motive in behaviour and the transition of the latter into a habit. It is made in real practical situations, in the process of performing personality-forming activities. The consolidation and strengthening the chosen form of behaviour, turning it into a habit is possible only as a result of multiple repetitions.
5. The integration of a habitual form of behaviour into a personality trait. A habit becomes a personality trait when it is combined with several similar habits. This transformation occurs not only in strictly defined but also in varied, gradually changing students' lives and activities.
The mechanism of responsibility formation can be represented in Figure 1:
The suggested scheme reflects the dynamics and sequence of responsibility formation as the most important component of professional competence of the future teacher. In complex contradictory conditions of the pedagogical process, some individual stages may be shifted, but the development of motives and the usual forms of their implementation will always be of a permanent nature. But no matter what sphere of human activity we analyze, it is found that the need for self-education, self-realization, and achievement of the maximum fullness of life depends on the active, purposeful and responsible actions of the future teacher.
However, the research findings produced from observing the students evidence that 54 % of boys and girls do not clearly understand such an important personality trait as "responsibility"; a high degree of overestimation of their responsibility when doing educational and other activities, and a significant discrepancy in the assessment of the manifestation of this quality in themselves and other people (Abylkasymova et al., 2019).
At the same time, 25 % of students believe that the level of formation is restricted by their lack of preparation, and the most of them do not want or cannot take any personal actions to change the situation. Approximately 68 % of respondents believe that it is difficult to adapt to changing living conditions and solve the problem of employment.
The study considers an important view of the philosopher Frank (1999) to be quite relevant for the research findings. Frank (1999) says that when a person is confused and has come to a standstill, he should not continue to go at random, relying only on the nearest environment: he should stop, go back, think about it, to reorientate himself generally, to overlook all the area through which his life path passes. When a person already knows what to be started and where to go, he should think about what he is striving for... (Frank, 1999).
The philosopher believed that in this way one can acquire positive faith, meaning faith in God, and an understanding of the actual goals and tasks of human existence. The direct meaning of human existence can be realized in the borders and cooperation, the preservation of independence and responsibility of a personality.
In the modern educational system, there is a question of reviewing the content and technologies of education, how the process of transmitting and forming the values of the younger generation should be carried out. The main trends of modern society are the change of the technological paradigm and, as a result, the change of the communication platform, as well as the lack of time due to the information boom and rapid development of technologies.
The study identifies three key characteristics of the activity content of education.
1. A personality-oriented approach that proclaims a personality as the goal and meaning of the educational process. Since this process is mutually dependent, the result of personal development must have an activity orientation.
2. The creation of appropriate motives should be considered as a necessary condition for mastering professional competence by students. To do this, various active teaching methods are being introduced into the educational process everywhere.
3. The study considers responsibility as the most important activity motive of the individual, as well as as the most important psychological feature of the professional competence of the future teacher. However, it should be understood that responsibility is formed depending on all other qualities of the individual.
The formation of responsibility opens up new horizons in solving the problem of qualitative changes in modern Russian education, which in the future will have a positive impact on the training of specialists who are competitive on the world market.
Abylkasymova, A. E., Kalnei, V. A., & Shishov, S. E. (2018). Formation of Public Consciousness, Spiritual and Moral Culture of Students in the System of Continuous Pedagogical Education. Tarih Kültür ve Sanat Araştırmaları, 7(1), 26–33.
Abylkasymova, A. E., Popei-ool, S. K., & Shishov, S. E. (2019). On the Theory of Personal Identification in the System of Continuous Pedagogical Education (Analysis of Foreign Experience). Bull. of the National Acad. of Sci. of the Republic of Kazakhstan, 3(379), 186–198.
Artemeva, S. I., Rabadanova, R. S., & Yulina, G. N. (2013). Scholarship Support for Students of the Russian Universities: Main Trends. Bull. of the Moscow Reg. State Univer. Ser. Psychol. Sci., 4, 62–66.
Bakhtin, M. M. (1986). Ethics of Verbal Creativity (2nd ed.). Art Publ.
Bondarevskaya, E. V. (2000). Theory and Practice of Personality-Oriented Education. Bulat.
Bozhovich, L. I. (2004). Developmental phases of personality formation in childhood (III). Journal of Russian & East European Psychology, 42(4), 71-88.
Frank, S. L. (1999). Spiritual Foundations of Society. Progress Publishing house.
Karavanova, L. Z., Shishov, S. E., & Rozhnova, T. M. (2020). Development of Students' Creativity in Higher Education Institutions: Project-Based Learning. Universidad y Sociedad, 12(2), 380–384.
Khutorsky, A. V. (2001). Modern Didactics. Peter Publ.
Leontev, A. N. (1975). Activity. Consciousness. Personality. Politizdat.
Shishov, S. E. (2012). Determination of the Purposes of Education in the Knowledge Economy from the Position of Competence Approach. Europ. J. of Contemporary Ed., 1(1), 58–67.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
About this article
17 May 2021
Print ISBN (optional)
Science, philosophy, academic community, scientific progress, education, methodology of science, academic communication
Cite this article as:
Bikbulatova, V. P., Rabadanova, R., & Yulina, G. N. (2021). Activity Content Of Education As A Prerequisite For Students' Professional Competence Mastering. In D. K. Bataev, S. A. Gapurov, A. D. Osmaev, V. K. Akaev, L. M. Idigova, M. R. Ovhadov, A. R. Salgiriev, & M. M. Betilmerzaeva (Eds.), Knowledge, Man and Civilization - ISCKMC 2020, vol 107. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1327-1333). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2021.05.175