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Revolutionising teacher professional development

School of Education, Southern Cross University

Tuesday, 24 September 2019 from 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm (AEST)

Revolutionising teacher professional development

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Event Details

SCU School of Education DVC Keynote Series

Title: Revolutionising teacher professional development 

Speaker: Professor Jen Gore

Location: GC B5.40; via vid conf. LIS R1.06 and Coffs A1.20


Abstract: While calls for the improvement of teaching permeate public, policy and academic arenas, achieving wide-scale improvement remains elusive. In this presentation Jenny Gore will explore why many approaches to professional development fail to make a substantial difference. First, she will outline how some of the field’s most time-honoured approaches to improving teaching might actually be impeding growth, because of the multiple ways in which they position teachers as inadequate, inexpert, and uninformed. She will go on to outline some of her own research on pedagogy and teacher development, which has been achieving promising signs of real change – with demonstrated substantial improvements not only to the quality of teaching but also to teacher morale, teacher relationships and school culture. These positive effects have been found across grade levels and subject areas, and for both beginning and experienced teachers. Finally, she will discuss how even such rigorous empirical evidence provides no guarantee of wider influence and impact. Complex processes of representation and recognition, on the one hand, and institutional integration, on the other, will continue to thwart the fundamentally complex quest for better teaching. Rather than feeling paralysed by this complexity, Jenny embraces its liberating warrant for ongoing creative struggle. If revolutionary change is to occur, however, a much broader conversation about how it can happen is needed.

Bio: Laureate Professor Jenny Gore is Director, Teachers and Teaching Research Centre in the School of Education at the University of Newcastle and Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford. In November 2017, Gore was named University of Newcastle’s first female Laureate Professor and first Laureate in the humanities and social sciences. She was Co-Editor of the prestigious international journal, Teaching and Teacher Education for four years, and has won more than AUD$23.6 million in research funding including 10 grants awarded by the Australian Research Council. Her recent grant from the Paul Ramsay Foundation totals AUD$16.4 million over five years (2018-2022). Widely published, her research centres on quality and equity, teacher development, pedagogical reform, and enhancing student outcomes. Her current agenda focuses on the impact of Quality Teaching Rounds on teachers and students and the formation of educational aspirations during schooling. In 2016, she delivered the Radford lecture, the most prestigious honour bestowed by the Australian Association for Research in Education. In 2017, she received the Australian Council for Deans of Education award for outstanding contribution to education reform. In 2018, she was awarded the Paul Brock Memorial Medal for outstanding contributions to social justice and evidence-informed policy, practice and research.

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