One of the most important issues in education is how to increase the quality of teaching, improve the effectiveness of classroom-level processes and develop teachers’ practical knowledge. Almost all curriculum development interventions aim at improving teacher learning, as this is the most important tool in supporting teachers to cope with new challenges, a process that has implications on individual, institutional and national levels.
We are interested in understanding how teachers learn about the learning of students. Thereby it will be necessary to pay attention to (1) the nature of teachers’ professional knowledge, (2) the collective or social nature of teacher learning and (3) the role of teacher research. A range of (qualitative and quantitative) research approaches will be used to find out more about teacher learning in the participating countries.
According to research results, innovative learning environments, typically found in “knowledge-intensive” schools, could serve as the most inspiring context for teacher learning. In a dynamic context organizational structures are favourable to achieving the enrichment of applied methodologies, launching local-level innovations, developing organizational culture, and increasing students’ learning motivation and outcomes.
To contribute to this innovative perspective, we understand teacher learning as “transformative learning” (when teachers understand their students’ learning to which they adapt their teaching, which in most cases involves a radical change in their professional conduct). This transformative learning does not only happen during teacher education, but during their whole professional life, a great part of which is work-based. Teacher learning has to be connected to student learning. This is more than a learning theory, teachers and students belong to a community/communities of practice.