Improving impacts of classrooms: Professional development and observation of teacher-student interactions

Deans lecture series 2013

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About the lecture

Presented by Professor Robert Pianta
Dean, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia.

Teachers are perhaps the most important element of educational systems and a key ingredient in the success of students. How to best understand and improve teachers' impacts on students is a question of considerable importance, not only to educators and those who prepare them, but also to society at large.

This lecture will describe research focused on defining, measuring, and improving features of teacher-student interactions. This research found that models of professional development that explicitly target teachers' interactions and the processes that regulate them can not only improve the quality and impact of classroom practice, but also improve students' social adjustment and academic achievement. Implications for teacher preparation, policy, and scale-up will be discussed.