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28 Oct 2019

Using classroom observation to understand and improve teaching and learning: Moving from the performative to the informative

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Date:Saturday 16th November
Time:2pm GMT
Speaker: Matthew O’Leary
Title: ‘Using classroom observation to understand and improve teaching and learning: moving from the performative to the informative’

Recent research has revealed that assessment-based models of observation can often be a deterrent to developing innovations in classroom practice, provoking counterproductive consequences and ultimately failing to improve the quality of teaching and learning. This raises the question, how best might we make use of observation to further our understanding of teaching and learning and subsequently improve what teachers and students do? This talk will focus on the work I have been involved in at Birmingham City University over the last 4 years in developing an innovative model of observation. In reconceptualising and reconfiguring the application of observation as a method by removing it from an assessment domain, our innovative approach has uncovered new opportunities for using observation as a tool of educational inquiry for professional development purposes and improving teaching and learning.

Matthew O’Leary Bio

Matt O’Leary is Professor of Education and director of the education research centre CSPACE at Birmingham City University. With over 25 years’ experience in education, he has worked as an English language teacher, teacher educator, head of department, principal lecturer, educational researcher and director of research in colleges, schools and universities in England, Mexico and Spain. Matt is well known internationally for his extensive body of work on the use of classroom/lesson observation in understanding and improving teaching and learning. His research has had significant impact in the UK and internationally on education policy and the thinking and practice of education leaders, practitioners and researchers working in all education sectors. His books include Classroom observation: A guide to the effective observation of teaching and learning (Routledge 2014), Reclaiming lesson observation: supporting excellence in teacher learning (Routledge 2016) and Teaching Excellence in Higher Education: Challenges, Changes and the Teaching Excellence Framework (Emerald 2017).

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