ERRR #014. Jennifer Gore on Quality Teaching Rounds and Quant vs. Qual Research

Listen to all past episodes of the ERRR podcast here.


This month our guest is Professor Jenny Gore. Jenny Gore is a Laureate Professor in the School of Education at the University of Newcastle, Australia, where she was Dean of Education and Head of School at the University of Newcastle for six years (2008–2013). She completed a Master’s degree at the University of British Columbia, Canada (1983), and PhD at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA (1990), and has held executive roles for the Australian Association for Research in Education, the Australian Council of Deans of Education, and the NSW Teacher Education Council. Currently Director of the Teachers and Teaching Research Centre and Co-Editor of the international journal, Teaching and Teacher Education, Jenny has won more than AUD $7 million in research funding including several grants awarded by the Australian Research Council. Her educational and research interests consistently centre on quality and equity, ranging across such topics as teacher socialisation, reform in teacher education, pedagogical reform, teacher development, and student aspirations.
Jenny’s decade-long program of work on Quality Teaching (a framework developed with James Ladwig in 2003) has had significant impact in government, Catholic, and independent schools throughout Australia, especially in NSW and the ACT. This work subsequently led to the conceptualisation of Quality Teaching Rounds (with Julie Bowe), an innovative approach to teacher professional development. Widely published and cited (more than 9,000 citations), her recent major research projects include a longitudinal study exploring the formation of educational and career aspirations during schooling and a randomised controlled trial investigating the impact of Quality Teaching Rounds on teaching quality. Regarded as one of Australia’s leading teaching and teacher education academics, Jenny is deeply committed to supporting teachers in delivering high quality and equitable outcomes for students.

The articles: In the heated debates that exist in and around education approaches and policies, it can often be tempting to take sides and to preference certain approaches to education research over others. Jennifer Gore’s experience spans the entire spectrum of approaches to research, from poststructuralism to randomised controlled trials, and finding a nuanced way to draw from the multiplicity of research traditions is what the first half of this month’s ERRR will be all about. In the first reading for this episode (download here), Jennifer sketches how different research approaches can be combined in order ‘to enrich the analysis and the potential impact of the work’ and argues that ‘reconciling differences within educational research is critical to ensuring the strength of the field and supporting the next generation of researchers to have a deeper impact on schooling and society’.

In our second paper (download here), we’ll hear first hand of of how Jenny has applied her diverse skills to the study of teacher professional development. This highly successful ‘Quality Teaching Rounds’ approach to lesson observations and teacher PD has now been undertaken by around 200 teachers from 24 schools. We’ll hear about the ins and outs of this observation-based approach, as well as speaking about teacher development more broadly. This will be an invaluable discussion for anyone with an interest in education research approaches and teacher professional development.

Links mentioned during the interview