Publication Date



Australia, Casual employment, Early childhood education, Geographic isolation, Preschool teachers, Professional continuing education, Professional development, Rural areas, Teacher attitudes, Teacher effectiveness, Teacher improvement


This literature review summarises evidence from education research to describe and compare different modes of professional learning. It applies the findings to the question: ‘what works best, and for whom’ in terms of modes of professional learning for Australian teachers, with particular focus on early childhood teachers, casual relief teachers and teachers in rural and remote teaching contexts. A key professional learning challenge common to these teachers is isolation – which can be physical, pedagogical, technological and/or social isolation. The review sought to identify research on modes of professional learning and in particular any studies that compared different modes of professional learning. The reviewers were interested in evidence pointing to the circumstances in which a particular mode of professional learning might have the most impact on teaching practice or school culture, as well as whether particular modes, or combination of modes, had greater impact for specific cohorts of teachers.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Place of Publication

Camberwell, Victoria


Australian Council for Educational Research