Innovative Teaching for Effective Learning


General Objective

The Innovative Teaching for Effective Learning (ITEL) project focusses on the pedagogical core of the teaching profession, namely, the pedagogical knowledge base of teachers, and questions whether this knowledge base is still in tune with recent advancements in learning research and with new skills demands society expects from students. In recent years, the interdisciplinary field of the learning sciences, including the neurosciences, has made huge progress in understanding how the human brain processes and retains information. The potential of the learning sciences to inform the pedagogical knowledge base of teachers and, hence, to improve pedagogical practice is significant. In addition, the policy imperatives for the teaching and learning of 21st century skills (e.g., problem-solving, collaboration, communication, creativity) might entail a re-skilling of the current teacher workforce and upgrading of the knowledge base of the teaching profession. Thus, a knowledge-intensive profession such as teaching can be expected to process new knowledge relevant for its core professional practice and to regularly update its knowledge base.

In order to answer the question of whether the teaching profession has been regularly updating its knowledge base, ITEL project activities to date have been concentrated on reviewing the literature in order to develop a conceptual understanding of teacher pedagogical knowledge. Future ITEL work is planned for developing a conceptual framework for profiling that state of pedagogical knowledge in the profession.

Current Activities

The conceptual work currently undertaken is comprised of four themes that together build the research base for the future profiling work. These papers will be made available as they are completed:

(1) A review of the literature on how pedagogical knowledge is conceptualised;

(2) A review of emerging research in the field of cognitive neuroscience that may have implications for pedagogical practice;

(3) A critical review of how teacher knowledge has been codified in the profession; and

(4) A review of how pedagogical knowledge has been measured.


Upcoming Events

Symposium on "Teachers as Learning Specialists - Implications for Teachers' Pedagogical Knowledge and Professionalism"
Brussels, 18 June 2014

Conference on the "Science of Learning: How Can it Make a Difference? Connecting Interdisciplinary Research on Learning to Practice and Policy in Education"
Shanghai, 1-4 March 2014



New publications

Teaching Practices and Pedagogical Innovations | OECD Free preview | Powered by Keepeek Digital Asset Management Solution >> Publication: Teaching Practices and Pedagogical Innovations: Evidence from TALIS - This new informative publication clearly identifies and arranges profiles in relation to two connected areas of professional teacher practices: classroom teaching practices and participation in professional learning communities.   >> Blog: A Window into the classroom.  An excellent teacher is what makes students learn and succeed in school. Everything else – standards, curricula, assessments, resources, school leadership – come second. Yet, what do we actually know about what teachers are doing?


Related Projects


Innovative Learning Environments


For more information, contact:

Sonia Guerriero, Project Leader
Leonora Lynch-Stein, Assistant