Research as a core practice of a teacher learning community

Year: 2005

Author: Thompson, Jean, Haslam, Filocha

Type of paper: Refereed paper

Teacher learning and subsequent enhancement of practice through evidence-based innovation is the most significant factor in improving student learning outcomes. This learning requires teachers to work in professional learning teams and to be at the centre of the change process. The Boys' Education Lighthouse (BELS) cluster projects provide examples of evidence-based practice in schools where teachers learn from each other, assume responsibility for each other's professional growth, and share the responsibility of the learning of all students supervised by schools in the cluster. The South Eastern MAPS cluster in Victoria incorporates knowledge arising from research and more tacit professional knowledge. It adopts a version of evidence-based practice in which teachers make systematic use of data collected in their practice to inform decisions about what needs changing, and whether the changes introduced do in fact work.

The cluster's project draws on current research on boys' education; teachers' experience and expertise in the classroom; knowledge of the needs of the cohort of boys being targeted; and the internal and external resources available to the project.