Pedagogical Equilibrium: The Development of Teachers’ Professional Knowledge, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Pedagogical Equilibrium

The Development of Teachers’ Professional Knowledge, 1st Edition

By Jennifer Mansfield


226 pages | 32 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780367086596
pub: 2019-01-30
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Pedagogical Equilibrium is an innovative reconceptualisation of teachers’ professional knowledge development. The book draws on interview data and in-depth analysis of situations, which challenge teachers’ sense of pedagogical equilibrium in both primary and secondary school contexts. These moments highlight the complexity of teaching and the valuable personal and professional learning opportunities afforded by experiencing and processing moments which create uncertainty during practice.

Mansfield considers a variety of aspects of teaching practice, including content knowledge, organising for teaching, organising for learning, and student attitudes and behaviours. Drawing on detailed examples, a new framework is offered to scaffold teacher thinking around moments in practice which can challenge the sense of equilibrium in the classroom.

Pedagogical Equilibrium is a highly valuable resource for educational researchers, teacher educators, current teachers and other educational stakeholders.


"In this book, Mansfield introduces her concept of Pedagogical Equilibrium which is a powerful way understanding the complex and sophisticated knowledge of teaching in, and through, practice. Her study offers insights into teaching and learning that illustrate well how teachers' professional knowledge is so richly embedded in practice. She explains the importance of understanding teaching as being problematic and how Pedagogical Equilibrium can make the tacit explicit, bringing teachers' expert knowledge to the surface and creating much deeper understandings of what they know and do, how and why." - Professor John Loughran, Executive Dean & Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor, Monash University

"In the fast-paced world of the classroom, teachers manage their daily interactions with content and students through the use of routines. But what happens when the unexpected happens? Mansfield’s book expertly reveals the challenges that teachers face and how reflection on disruptive moments results in the development of new professional knowledge and the maintenance of pedagogical equilibrium. Through the careful analysis of interviews with teachers, Mansfield reveals the growth of knowledge and the wisdom of practice while providing teachers and professional developers with tools to support teachers in articulating and sharing their knowledge." - Julie Gess-Newsome, Dean of Academic Affairs, Oregon State University

Table of Contents


Part 1: The search for pedagogical equilibrium

Chapter 1: Developing teachers’ professional knowledge

Chapter 2: Developing a professional knowledge of teacher practice

Chapter 3: The search for pedagogical equilibrium

Chapter 4: Capturing the development of teachers’ professional knowledge

Chapter 5: Regarding content knowledge

Chapter 6: Organising for teaching

Chapter 7: Organising for learning

Chapter 8: Student attitudes and behaviours

Part 2: The nature and value of considering teaching practice as the search for pedagogical equilibrium

Chapter 9: The nature of Situations

Chapter 10: The nature of Reactions

Chapter 11: The nature of Consequences

Chapter 12: The nature of Learning

Chapter 13: The construct of pedagogical equilibrium

Chapter 14: Implications for articulating teachers’ professional knowledge development

Chapter 15: Moving forward with pedagogical equilibrium


About the Author

Jennifer Mansfield is a lecturer in primary and secondary science education at Monash University, Australia. Her research interests include understanding and articulating the development and complexity of teachers’ professional knowledge.

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