The Visible Classroom Intervention: Can Feedback about Teacher’s Classroom Practice Influence Children’s Learning Outcomes?

Year: 2016

Author: Clinton, Janet, Hattie, John

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Teacher’s instructional practice –how content and skills are taught - plays a critical role in influencing students’ short and long-term academic achievement. The quality of instruction is associated with student engagement levels, critical thinking and learning progression. Therefore, it is important to support teachers in the development of their classroom instruction through effective and timely feedback so they can provide ‘value add’ to their student’s ongoing learning. However, few interventions exist that aim to support teacher’s professional practice development in this area via personalised feedback that encourages teachers to reflect critically on their teaching and develop their classroom practice, which would be expected to have flow on effects for their pupils’ learning and attainment. Importantly, few studies have aimed to examine whether providing such an intervention is able to lead to better student academic achievement. This presentation will present the rationale and early findings from the Visible Classroom (VC) intervention that is funded by the UK Education Endowment Fund. The purpose of the intervention is for teachers to be reflective about their practices and to improve their teaching through personalised feedback. This randomised controlled trial will be conducted in 140 primary schools across England. The intervention involves the teacher audio recording lessons and receiving detailed feedback on their teaching practices. Teachers use a smartphone or tablet app to record lessons and upload them to their own personal profile. Once uploaded, teachers receive a transcript of their lesson along with some high-level descriptive statistics of their lesson. Teachers then work with mentors to reflect and develop their practice so they can better equipped to influence the academic outcomes of their students. The trial’s objective is to test whether providing feedback to teachers on their audio recorded lessons has an impact on student outcomes in Year 5 and 6 of primary school in maths and English attainment.