The imperative of evidence-based instructional leadership: Building capacity within professional learning communities via a focus on effective teaching practice


Ken Rowe, ACER

Publication Date



This paper can be purchased online from Centre for Strategic Education (Seminar series) ; Paper n.164


The author initially discusses prevailing policy contexts, and provides an outline of ongoing controversies surrounding effective teaching practice. He then focuses on evidence-based teaching strategies that are demonstrably effective in maximising the achievement progress of students during the early and middle years of schooling. Drawing from meta-analytic syntheses of more than 500,000 studies, as well as key findings from a recent national research project, he argues that since teachers are the most valuable resource available to schools, an investment in teacher professionalism is vital. Further, he asserts that such professionalism can only be achieved by ensuring that teachers are equipped with a repertoire of pedagogical skills that really are effective in meeting the developmental and learning needs of all students. Such outcomes, he argues, underscore the imperative of evidence-based instructional leadership, which maximises the learning outcomes for both teacher and student as mutual partners in professional learning communities.