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Teacher development in primary schools: some other lessons from Taiwan

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Following reviews of international surveys of educational achievement, policy-makers in England have looked to Taiwanese whole-class teaching methods as a useful way forward for English primary schools. Brief observations of classroom practice in five Taiwanese schools, together with discussions with Taiwanese educationists, are used here to raise critical questions about the usefulness of such comparisons. It is argued that the lessons for teacher development to be derived from the experience of schooling in other countries and cultures are much more complex than policy-makers often recognise. What works in one culture is unlikely to work in another, unless very careful attention is paid to contextual factors. Consequently, we are in danger of repeating mistakes made by developing countries in the past who uncritically looked to Western models of teacher development.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of York, United Kingdom

Publication date: March 1, 1998

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