Mapping of Seminal Reports on Good Teaching

Rebekah Wilson, Anne Wilkin, Naomi Rowe

26 June 2012

This review is one of a pair of reviews that collectively consider creating change in schools through workforce development. Its focus is to establish the key features of 'good teaching'. The review explores what the best available research tells us about what 'good teaching' looks like, if there are any contradictions and if there are any gaps in the literature.

A number of recent reports have emphasised effective teaching as a crucial element in securing positive outcomes for young people. In order to assess 'effective teaching', it is important to consider what is meant by the term. It is not just about individual teachers' practices and values but includes issues surrounding curriculum and assessment, as well as the social, cultural and policy aspects of learning.

This review has identified many areas in which there is consistent evidence of what constitutes good teaching. It highlights a number of key features of effective teaching as well as a number of extrinsic factors that are seen to impact on pupils' experiences and outcomes. However, while it is important to identify features, strategies and principles that enable 'good teaching', they are not enough, in themselves, to change practice.

As well as being provided with useful strategies, teachers need to understand the principles that underpin their practice so that they can adapt and refine successful strategies to suit the particular needs, context and experience of their school, and its teachers and pupils.

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