Teacher Professional Learning and Development: Best Evidence Synthesis Iteration (BES)

Publication Details

The Teacher Professional Learning and Development BES illuminates the kind of professional learning for teachers that strengthens valued outcomes for diverse learners.

Author(s): H. Timperley, A. Wilson, H. Barrar and I. Fung

Date Published: December 2007

BES (Iterative Best Evidence Synthesis) Programme
This report is available as a download (please refer to the 'Downloads' inset box).  For links to related publications/ information that may be of interest please refer to the 'Where to Find Out More' inset box or visit the BES (Iterative Best Evidence Synthesis) Programme.


The purpose of the synthesis is to consolidate the international and New Zealand evidence around the emerging knowledge base about how to promote teacher learning in ways that impact on outcomes for the diversity of students in our classrooms.

Although New Zealand students typically achieve well in OECD surveys, disparities in student achievement are amongst the greatest in the OECD. Of particular concern is the extent of underachievement, and special consideration was given to this problem. Two further contextual conditions were also given specific attention: New Zealand's selfgoverning administrative structures and the education community's obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi.

Considerable effort has been directed to understanding the 'black box' between acts of teaching and associated student outcomes, and other syntheses in the Iterative Best Evidence Synthesis Programme seek to address this issue. In this synthesis we have attempted to unpack a second black box, situated between particular professional learning opportunities and their impact on teaching practice. Little is known about how teachers interpret the available understandings and utilise the particular skills offered during professional learning opportunities, or the consequent impact of these on teaching practice and student outcomes. What is known is that the relationship is far from simple. This synthesis begins to unpack the contents of that black box.

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Best Evidence Synthesis Programme (BES)
For more information visit BES on Education Counts, or email the: Best Evidence Mailbox.