Behind the Headline: What Makes a Great Teacher?

By 01/06/2010

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On Top of the News
What Makes a Great Teacher?
January/February 2010| The Atlantic

Behind the Headline
The Mystery of Good Teaching
Spring 2002| Education Next

For a decade, Teach for America has been analyzing which of its teachers are most effective, in an effort to determine which traits to look for in prospective teachers and what behaviors to encourage among current teachers.  They find that great teachers have a track record of perseverance, high levels of life satisfaction, and experience running things and producing results, among other things, and that once they start teaching, they constantly reevaluate what they are doing in the classroom and they plan exhaustively. An article by Amanda Ripley in the new issue of The Atlantic describes these efforts. An article by Dan Goldhaber that was published in Ed Next in 2002 summarized peer-reviewed research on which teachers were most likely to be effective.

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