1st Edition

The Power of Expert Teaching Lessons for Modern Education

    192 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    192 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Throughout the world, the challenges facing modern education are formidable. Although some of the challenges facing are unique to each educational jurisdiction, there are also some important commonalities that transcend jurisdictions. Irrespective of the nature of these challenges, there is an increasing focus on teacher quality – what it is and how to enhance it. To date, research tells us what expert teachers should be doing in their classrooms. This approach is based on the idea that teaching expertise is nothing more than the accumulation of specific skills and knowledge, and as teachers acquire these skills and knowledge most of our educational challenges can be overcome.

    This book questions this idea by asking 37 teachers who are already recognised as experts to share their classroom secrets. Importantly, the teachers come from diverse cultural contexts, including Australia, Finland, Hong Kong and the US, and they share:

    • how they became expert teachers;
    • their expectations for every student when they enter their classroom;
    • how they view and encourage teacher–parent partnerships; and
    • what skills and knowledge they consider important for expert teaching.

    To our knowledge, this is the first book that compares and contrasts the approaches taken by expert teachers from four very different cultural groups. The book helps to demystify the work of the modern teacher – what they do and the challenges they face.

    If you aspire to be an expert teacher, this book provides a clear model of how to approach the process. If you are an education researcher searching for ‘impact’, this book outlines what are some of the emerging hot topics in education research. If you are involved in teacher education then this book offers some new approaches to initial teacher education. If your focus is on educational policy, this book helps make sense of the links between the classrooms of expert teachers, education research and academic achievement. Finally, this book will help parents understand how best to partner with their child’s teacher in order to enhance their learning.

    1. Making sense of teacher expertise 2. Introducing expert teachers: Their contexts and challenges 3. Balancing expectations in motivating student learning 4. The link between student intelligence, thinking and learning 5. Constructing knowledge and student learning 6. Teaching students, not subjects: How expert teachers plan and implement successful learning 7. The professional learning of expert teachers 8. Pathways to teaching expertise 9. ‘I’m not starting until five different people say one good thing’


    Shane N. Phillipson has worked at Monash University (Australia) for 10 years and previously at the (now) Education University of Hong Kong. To date, he has over 100 research publications, focusing primarily on conceptions of giftedness, underachievement and effective pedagogy for gifted students. His work crosses over into initial teacher education and how parents can support their children’s academic achievement. Shane is married to the co-author of this book and together enjoy a happy professional and personal life. Outside of research, Shane likes blues music and running.

    Sivanes Phillipson is Dean International and Professor of Education at the Faculty of Health, Arts and Design, Swinburne University of Technology. She is the Routledge Editor for Evolving Families, a series that focuses on issues, challenges and empirical best practices surrounding evolving families that impact upon their survival, development and outcomes. Sivanes has over 100 publications including books, peer-reviewed journal articles, conference papers and book chapters. She has seven published books focusing on teacher education and parent engagement with the latest three books published with Routledge, and they are Early Childhood Education and Care in the 21st Century vols I–III (2018–2020, Routledge).

    "This book is a delightful read. As a researcher and teacher-educator, I have always wanted to get inside the classrooms of the best teachers around the world and this book helps me do just that. I hear clearly the voices of 37 expert teachers and what they say is both surprising and reassuring!

    The authors have taken me on a wonderful and inspiring journey. They have skillfully explained the commonalities and differences in these teachers across four different educational systems! This book contains some important lessons for those who want to understand what teacher expertise means, for those who want to be expert teachers and for those who educate them."

    -Albert Ziegler, Professor of Educational Psychology and Research on Excellence, Department of Psychology, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany and Chairman of the European Talent Support Network (ETSN)

    "This is the book I have been searching for! The development of high performing students begins with high performing teachers and quality partnerships with parents. This book clearly distils the challenges facing teachers in the modern classroom from a teacher’s perspective. As my own experience tells me, meeting these challenges is not about teachers acquiring more and more knowledge on how to teach but more about how teachers make meaningful and significant relationships with students and their parents.

    Shane and Sivanes Phillipson have many years of experience in education research and teaching in diverse cultures, and they fully understand the important role played by the cultural context in understanding learning and teaching. Their message is clear and compelling, and so if you are even vaguely interested in modern education, either as an aspiring teacher, education researcher or parent, this book will change the way you view teachers and the teaching profession."

    -Deborah Eyre, Founder and Chair of High Performance Learning, Oxford, United Kingdom