(GOPIO International Excellence Award 2015 –TAMIL SCHOOL TRANSFORMATION)
Rajendran brings with him almost 40 years of experience working at various levels in the field of education. He is a Professor of Pedagogy and Thinking Skills at the Sultan Idris Education University (Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris). Since May 2012 he has been on secondment to the Prime Minister’s Department, and currently, he is the Director of the Unit for the Socio-Economic Development of Indian Community and the Coordinator of the Action Plan for Future of Tamil Schools under the Prime Minister’s Department. He was a member of the Independent Review Panel of the National Education Review.
Rajendran obtained his Certificate in Education from Seri Kota Teacher Education College in Kuala Lumpur. He obtained his bachelor’s degree and his Masters in Education degree from University of Malaya. He received his Ph.D. in Curriculum, Teaching and Educational Policy from the College of Education, Michigan State University, USA in 1998.
Rajendran has conducted various workshops and seminars for teachers and ministry of education officials, both locally and in Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong, Maldives, Bangladesh and Nepal. His expertise 33 covers in educational psychology, pedagogy, qualitative research methodology and teacher education.
Dr Rajendran expertise in education is well recognized in both local and international education institutions. One of his biggest research project is Teachers’ pedagogical decision making qualities: The need for transformation of teaching is practice funded by Malaysia’s Eight Malaysia Plan. He is a member of the research team which conducted a study “Education For Children in Plantations: An Assessment”, a research funded by UNICEF Malaysia to evaluate the quality of education provided to children in plantations in Sabah.
He has written numerous papers on various issues concerning the teaching of higher-order thinking skills and students of multi-cultural background in classrooms. His publications include, Teaching and Acquiring Higher-Order Thinking Skills: Theory and Practice (2008:2010), Teaching thinking skills at institutions of higher-learning: Lessons learned. Pertanika Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, 18(3). (2010), Pedagogical Decision-Making as a Basis for Transforming Teaching and Learning: Practices and Challenges of History Teachers (2008) and the enhancement of higher-order thinking skills published in Language curriculum and instruction in multicultural societies.
He has been actively involved in public service for more than 30 years. He served as the president of Malaysia Hindhudharma Mamandram for 12 years and currently the advisor. He served as the Secretary of the Third International Skanda-Murugan Conference held in Malaysia in 2003. He was the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the 7th World Tamil Teachers Conference held in Kuala Lumpur in June 2006