This website collects a number of cookies from its users for improving your overall experience of the site.

Research School Network: What makes great teaching – a visual summary


What makes great teaching – a visual summary

by Unity Research School
on the

It’s fantastic when you open an email that starts like this:

Hi Andy,

We looked at the Sutton Trust report What Makes Great Teaching’ in our teaching and learning meeting yesterday so I made this one page summary to go with it.

Thought I’d share in case it is useful.


Opening the attachment then revealed this great dual coded summary she had created, which I was very keen to share:

So, to put in context from Emma’s perspective as a teacher at Newmarket Academy, one of the schools of the Unity Schools Partnership, she says that:

Why: As we know that teaching in the school is strong we are looking for marginal gains to be made in improving existing practice. We believe these must be evidence led as we don’t want to waste time on dead ends. We chose to start with the Sutton Trust report as it draws so much other research together.

How: In half-termly sessions we will briefly introduce a piece of research with the widest possible application (nothing too subject specific). We then give teachers a chance to read the article on their own in some silent reading’ time. After this, teachers in subject teams have the opportunity to discuss how this relates to their own practice. This might be anything they do well they want to share or anything they do but this report shows is ineffective or counter-productive. We also ask teams to give us a little written feedback on their thinking. The idea is to give teachers the freedom to follow avenues relevant to them and so make the most productive use of the research.

Reflections: Overall feedback was very positive. A few people did not like the silent reading time as it is not something adults usually experience but most very much appreciated what we were giving them – uninterrupted time to just engage with some research. There were lots of positive comments on things that were personal to their teaching style that this report had made them think twice about. Several days after the session I am still having conversations with colleagues about it so it seems to have been thought provoking.

Thanks Emma for sharing and the leadership of evidence-informed teaching you are inspiring within your colleagues.

We look forward to the next share!

More from the Unity Research School

Show all news