Teacher reform in Indonesia: can offshore programs create lasting pedagogical shift?

Document Type

Journal Article



Place of Publication



School of Education


Originally published as: Allen, W., Hyde, M., Whannel, R., & O’Neill, M. (2018). Teacher reform in Indonesia: can offshore programs create lasting pedagogical shift?. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 46(1), 22-37. Original article available here.


Regional and national interest in reforming teaching in Indonesia has seen governments, NGOs and education specialists combine to drive pedagogical changes among school teachers there. Results of these programs have been indifferent at best. This paper reports on teacher reform programs in Provinsi Papua, one of the most marginal societies in Indonesia. The Papuan Provincial Government, AusAID and an Australian University focused on bringing cohorts of secondary teachers and Principals for professional development to Australia. An evaluative, survey inquiry was conducted into the effectiveness of a series of AusAID (now DFAT Australian Aid) Scholarship programs on changing capacities and approaches of teachers and Principals at least eighteen months after their off-shore experience. Findings revealed significant changes in teaching practices, improved quality of teacher-student relationships and improved interactions with colleagues. We argue that our findings demonstrate an appetite for student-centred approaches to teaching and that off-shore programs may have important outcomes that larger scale, in-country programs fail to realise.