© 2016 – Routledge
292 pages | 7 B/W Illus.
Much debate, research and commentary about class sizes in schools is limited because of an exclusive concern with class size and pupil academic attainment, and a neglect of classroom processes, which might help explain class size effects (or lack of them). Very little is known about the central question: how can teachers make the most of class size changes? Much of the commentary on class size effects has focused on Western and English-speaking countries but there are promising developments elsewhere, particularly the 'Small Class Teaching' initiatives in East Asia in the past decade, which have brought new knowledge and practical wisdom to the class size debate.
This book seeks to move toward a clearer view of what we know and do not know about class size effects, and to identify future steps in terms of policy and research. There is a huge and exciting potential for international collaboration on knowledge concerning class size effects which can help with research-informed policy. The book aims to draw out Eastern and Western international contexts which underpin any understanding of the role of class size in school learning.
The book has chapters by an international team of experts on class size effects, including Maurice Galton and John Hattie. Chapters are organised into four main sections:
Part I: Introduction
1. Bringing together east and west approaches to the class size issue: An introduction to ‘Class Size: East and West perspectives’ Peter Blatchford, Maurice Galton and Kwok Chan Lai
Part II: Socio-cultural and political context
2. Eastern and Western perspectives: Educational and policy contexts and how they have shaped approaches to class size Kwok Chan Lai, Peter Blatchford and Beifei Dong
3. East Asian contexts of small class teaching: Policies and practices John Chi-Kin Lee
Part III: Research evidence on class size
4. Long-term impacts of class size reduction Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach
5. Research on class size in France Pascal Bressoux
6. Is it true that class size does not matter? A critical review of research on class size effects Peter Blatchford
7. The right question in the debates about class size: Why is the (positive) effect so small? John Hattie
Part IV: Class size and classroom processes
8. Does class size (still) matter? Jeremy D. Finn and Michele E. Shanahan
9. Creating autonomous learners in small classes: The critical importance of motivation and wellbeing Maurice Galton
10. Classroom interaction in reduced-size classes: a Hong Kong perspective Gary Harfitt
11. Class size and collaborative approaches and group work Kam Wing Chan
Part V: Professional development for small class teaching
12. Teachers’ professional development for small class teaching in Hong Kong and Taiwan Kwok Chan Lai, Kuo-Liang Yen and John Chi-Kin Lee
13. Teachers’ professional development for small class teaching in Shanghai Beifei Dong, Kwok Chan Lai and Kam Wing Chan
14. Catering for diversity in small classes in Nanjing Xiaomei Wang, Jian Yang, Kam Wing Chan and Kwok Chan Lai
15. Curriculum adaptation in small class environment in Hong Kong Ellen Yuefeng Zhang, John Chi-Kin Lee and Michael Ho-Fai Chau
16. Enhancing the effectiveness of small class teaching through innovative learning environments in Hong Kong schools Kam Wing Chan
17. Utilizing pedagogical strategies of the learner-centred model in primary small class teaching settings in Hong Kong Celeste Y.M. Yuen
Part VI: Future developments
18. Eastern and Western approaches to class size: Conclusions and future directions Peter Blatchford
This Routledge book series provides a forum for dialogue on key educational issues and challenges faced by Asian and European societies. Its distinctiveness is its broad focus on Education in Asia and Europe. In essence, it will address major issues in education reform, student learning, leadership, curriculum, higher education, multicultural education, and other major educational issues affecting Asia and Europe.