Helen Timperley

Helen Timperley
University of Auckland · School of Learning, Development and Professional Practice

About

92
Publications
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Publications

Publications (92)
Article
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore how perceptions of risk influenced teachers’ sensemaking and actions during a professional learning and development (PLD) initiative where teachers were expected to change their practices. Design/methodology/approach A risk perception lens, focussed on uncertainty, was used to capture the on-going...
Article
Full-text available
This paper describes a national, school-based professional development intervention in which large student achievement gains were previously signaled using single-level regression analyses and effect sizes. However, such analyses can be misleading since educational data typically do not meet independence assumptions. The current study investigates...
Book
Full-text available
This book is the first book to explore assessment issues and opportunities occurring due to the real world of human, cultural, historical, and societal influences upon assessment practices, policies, and statistical modeling. With chapters written by experts in the field, the book engages with numerous forms of assessment: from classroom-level form...
Article
Challenges in education are rising with expectations from policy makers about what teachers can do to meet them constantly increasing. Continuing professional development for teachers has been promoted as the multimillion-dollar solution, but unfortunately most approaches have little demonstrated its impact on teachers' ability to meet these demand...
Article
This article reports different ways researchers work with stakeholders in national projects targeted at raising achievement of students. Specifically, New Zealand has a persistent high performance-low equity profile in international tests, with indigenous Māori students and immigrants from the Pacific Islands most at risk of underachievement and of...
Article
This paper discusses the emergence of assessment for learning (AfL) across the globe with particular attention given to Western educational jurisdictions. Authors from Australia, Canada, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, Norway, and the USA explain the genesis of AfL, its evolution and impact on school systems, and discuss current trends in policy dire...
Chapter
Assessment for learning is not a tool; it is a shift in thinking about what matters in schools. It involves conceptual change on the part of teachers and leaders as they rethink what assessment is for and how to do it. This chapter focuses on how establishing the conditions for powerful interactions among professionals in assessment communities rev...
Chapter
If assessment information is to enhance teaching and learning, many teachers will need to shift their focus about what it is telling them. Traditionally, assessment information is seen as being solely about students, their capabilities, what they know and do not know. The shift that is needed is to think of assessment information as reflecting the...
Article
Full-text available
One of the key findings from decades of educational effectiveness research is the importance of the classroom level as a predictor of pupil outcomes. In this review, we therefore look at synthesising our best evidence from research on effective teaching, and its corollary, teacher development. In the 1st section, we will look at key findings from 3...
Article
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If formative evaluation is to foster school improvement, it must integrate evaluation rigour with rich opportunities for learning and development. This is true whether formative aspects of school self-evaluation are conducted entirely by the school's own personnel or in partnership with external evaluators. For formative evaluators, therefore, tech...
Article
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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to evaluate two recent examples of the New Zealand Ministry of Education's approach to reducing the persistent disparities in achievement between students of different social and ethnic groups. The first example is cluster‐based school improvement, and the second is the development of national standards for li...
Article
This empirical study of the practice of five elementary school principals whose student achievement gains were three times the expected rate of progress redefines some capabilities identified in the literature as central to leadership for learning. These principals were a source of knowledge about teaching and learning and assisted their teachers t...
Article
In New Zealand, decision makers are more and more focusing on teachers’ professional development and the way it improves student learning. This approach allows to develop collaborative teaching practices, asking teachers to inquire about their own practices. Professional development programmes have real effects on the improvement of students’ asses...
Book
Bringing together internationally recognised scholars such as Andy Hargreaves, Megan Crawford and Lorna Earl, this book focuses on the relationship between leadership and learning. It draws together a wealth of knowledge and evidence in the field, including: Effective leadership practices across a variety of contexts, such as system leadership, pro...
Article
Traditionally, feedback to writing is written on drafts or given orally in roving or more formal conferences and is considered a significant part of instruction. This paper locates written response within an assessment for learning framework in the writing classroom. Within this framework, quality of response was defined in terms of providing infor...
Article
This article develops the analogy of the ‘black box’ in relation to different levels of a professional development project to understand the nature of learning that results in higher student achievement. Principles of formative assessment are used to frame the on-going, evidence-informed inquiry into learning that operated at each level of the syst...
Article
Every school leader and teacher knows that the challenges of change are constant and ongoing. Expectations have risen. The material for "Weaving Evidence, Inquiry and Standards to Build Better Schools" is based on the authors' involvement in research and development projects that have successfully accelerated students' learning and achievement thro...
Article
New Zealand’s literacy strategy seeks to translate into reality the broad policy goals of equipping all New Zealanders with the knowledge, skills and values to be successful citizens of the twenty‐first century. The central policy concern is reflected in international surveys showing that although the country’s student achievement is above the inte...
Article
Increasing attention is being paid to professional development as a way to improve outcomes for students but its promise has not always been realised. Broadly speaking, approaches to professional development have either focused on developing better prescriptions for teaching practice or on collaborative reflective inquiry into practice. Neither app...
Article
Three organizational learning mediation processes are proposed as mechanisms for organizational change in this article. These include instructional leadership, tight coupling and boundary spanning. Whilst each of these processes has received attention in the research literature, we propose that their power arises from their particular combination r...
Article
This article examines the extent to which classroom instruction conveyed challenging learning goals in writing through a range of teaching activities and how well the participating students understood those goals. We report an empirical study that examined the quality of writing instructional goals, how well they were conveyed to students through l...
Article
Schooling improvement initiatives have demonstrated that moderate but significant achievement gains are possible with well designed interventions, but there is little research into whether these gains can be sustained. The present study examines the extent to which acceleration in achievement made during a three-year literacy intervention and the a...
Chapter
Innovation has become an increasingly important theme in education. Improving student achievement through school-based innovations has been as challenging for New Zealand as many other countries in the Asia-Pacific region. There are few options for state imposition within the self-managing schools framework of New Zealand's education administrative...
Book
This volume provides informed arguments, theory and practical examples based on research about what it looks like when educators, policy makers, and even students, try to rethink and change their practices by engaging in evidence-based conversations to challenge and inform their work. It allows the reader to experience these conversations. Each sto...
Article
Full-text available
Despite assessment being viewed as integral to practice, there are questions about schools’ preparedness to engage in this process. Data from three studies conducted in New Zealand primary schools explore whether use of student achievement data is part of the professional canon or skill set. (1) When implementing new literacy materials, evidence of...
Chapter
In this chapter Helen Timperley illustrates some qualities of conversations that were differentially effective in focusing teaching practice in ways that impacted on student learning in New Zealand. The qualities of the more effective conversations between these leaders and their teachers demonstrated an urgency to solve the achievement problems of...
Chapter
This book emerged from our interest in seeing how evidence is being introduced and used in education and, more particularly, understanding how educators at all levels actually use evidence in their thinking and their decision-making. Our work over the last decade, across several continents, has focused on how educational practitioners, leaders and...
Chapter
The education systems that form the context for the chapters in this book are all awash with increasing amounts of data. Much of the data are collected at national and statewide levels. Other data are collected in and about schools, teachers and students. The stated purposes for all this activity are typically couched in some kind of rhetoric about...
Article
This article seeks to understand the potential impact of the complexity of the university entrance criteria on students' opportunities to qualify for entry through the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA). The exploration of this issue was undertaken through an analysis of 'chokepoints' experienced by students who potentially were...
Article
Full-text available
he purpose of this study was to examine how leaders foster school renewal by facilitating and participating in the types of teacher professional learning and development that improve student academic and non- academic outcomes. The methodology involved a backward mapping strategy that takes as its starting point, not theories of leadership, but pro...
Article
A national literacy professional development project reduced the achievement gap for students experiencing difficulties in reading or writing in 91 of New Zealand's schools. It was based on two premises: coherence within and between the multiple levels of the schooling and educational administration systems, and a focus on evidence-informed inquiry...
Article
Feedback is one of the most powerful influences on learning and achievement, but this impact can be either positive or negative. Its power is frequently mentioned in articles about learning and teaching, but surprisingly few recent studies have systematically investigated its meaning. This article provides a conceptual analysis of feedback and revi...
Article
Increasingly, the school sector is encouraged to use data to inform decision making. This article discusses issues associated with achievement measures, particularly the use of scores from commonly used normative measures in reading, to set targets, monitor progress, inform teaching or to make decisions about programme or practice efficacy. To illu...
Article
This paper will examine how the settings in which midwives practice (the birthplace) and models of care affect midwives' decision making during the management of labour. One-hundred-and-four independent, team and hospital based midwives and 100 low obstetric risk nulliparous women to whom labour care was provided were surveyed. These midwives and w...
Article
The study in this article seeks to understand the learning challenges involved in developing learning-centred leadership in schools. It is based on Southworth’s (1998, 2004) ideas of leadership for improving schools, which comprise promoting learning-centred improvement at all levels through professional development and a focus on the quality of te...
Article
Full-text available
The reasons why many educational change initiatives have little impact are often framed in terms of either a poorly designed process on the part of the change initiator, or in terms of problems with the attitudes, skills and/or knowledge of those responsible for implementation. In this paper, we seek to integrate these two perspectives more closely...
Article
Hopes that the transformation of schools lies with exceptional leaders have proved both unrealistic and unsustainable. The idea of leadership as distributed across multiple people and situations has proven to be a more useful framework for understanding the realities of schools and how they might be improved. However, empirical work on how leadersh...
Article
Full-text available
Increasingly school leaders are being challenged to take a more instructionally focused role in their schools. This paper tracks the leadership challenges through a change process involving an assistant principal and a group of teachers, supported by a consultant, through four phases of an action research project. During the project the participant...
Article
to examine whether equal power is essential to the perceptions of partnership in midwifery practice and to propose an alternative model of how power might best be shared. a cross-sectional design was employed using the predominant methods of interview, questionnaires and thinking aloud tape recordings as triangulation of data. two large metropolita...
Article
Full-text available
This paper reports a series of three studies on the challenges schools face when reporting to parents. The studies are underpinned by an assumption that parents/whānau should be given accurate information about their child's current level of achievement and an understanding of how that achievement relates to their expectations, so that they can tak...
Article
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The alternatives of taking over failing schools or handing over resources for them to develop their own improvement strategies are recognized as ineffective in achieving improvement. When deciding how best to intervene in 26 self-managing schools, the Ministry of Education in New Zealand attempted to avoid the negative consequences of these alterna...
Article
The problem of entrenched low teacher expectations of student achievement for children in low-income communities is well documented. In this paper we examine the ways in which teachers’ expectations of student achievement in two such communities changed over the course of 6 months’ professional development in literacy, and how well those changed ex...
Article
Full-text available
The public sector reforms broadly known as New Public Sector Management (NPM), have had a substantial impact on the way schools are governed in both England and New Zealand. One assumption of this approach is that local communities can carry out the complex responsibilities of governance in a way that serves both state and local interests. In this...
Article
Children's experience of the transition between early childhood education and school can have a long-term impact on their school achievement and retention. Although both practitioners and researchers often describe ideal transition arrangements in terms of collaboration between families and teachers in the two sectors, little is known about what th...
Article
Full-text available
Many school reform initiatives now require school leaders to make curriculum and resourcing decisions on the basis of evidence about their likely impact on student achievement. In this paper, we discuss the implications of this policy demand in the context of a descriptive study of schools' capacity to collect, analyze, and use collective achieveme...
Article
Full-text available
The importance of changing teachers' beliefsand practices in school improvement efforts iswell accepted but little empirical work hasbeen reported on the micro-processes involved.In this paper, we use schema theory to examinehow the teachers in three schools changed theirbeliefs about the causes of low academicachievement from external factors, suc...
Article
Concern has been expressed in recent research about the preoccupation by school-based mentors and student teachers with immediate issues of practical performance, rather than inquiry into, or expansion of, a rationale for that performance. This paper reports on a training programme in mentoring conversations that was designed to achieve the latter...
Article
Full-text available
An increase in teacher workload and stress has been identified as an undesirable consequence of sitebased school management. We argue that this increase can be attributed, in part, to the ways in which teachers organize themselves. Organizing principles developed to meet the challenges of managing single-cell classrooms, such as autonomy, collegial...
Article
Greater collegiality among teachers is frequently suggested in the research literature as one way of improving decision making and problem solving in schools, In this article, we argue that this claim cannot be sustained without more sophisticated theorizing about the attributes of collegiality that promote quality decision making and problem solvi...
Article
Performance appraisal and teacher evaluation systems in schools have been subject to criticism in many countries because they have not met perceived requirements of educators and/or the state. This study sought the views of New Zealand secondary school principals to whom responsibility for developing appraisal systems has been devolved since 1989....
Article
Nowhere are the micropolitics within schools more evident than in staff appraisal. Currently, the New Zealand government is attempting to shift the evaluation of teachers from a predominantly professional form of accountability to a more democratic form in which teachers are held accountable for their performance to both central government and loca...
Article
Nowhere are the micropolitics within schools more evident than in staff appraisal. Currently, the New Zealand government is attempting to shift the evaluation of teachers from a predominantly professional form of accountability to a more democratic form in which teachers are held accountable for their performance to both central government and loca...
Article
ABSTRACT National policy initiatives frequently suffer from slow and sporadic implementation, with requirements for school staff to be appraised being no exception. In this paper we identify how policy implementation might be improved if policy formulation was informed by a more detailed understanding of the local conditions which policy is designe...
Article
Collegiality can effectively address complex schoolwide problems requiring shared expertise or cohesive schoolwide action for resolution, but traditional teacher autonomy may inhibit such collegiality. Two New Zealand schools used collegial processes to develop solutions to schoolwide problems. Forest High was worried that staff failure to meet par...
Article
Radical changes in the administration of New Zealand education in the late 1980s were motivated, in part, by the desire to make schools more responsive to the communities in which they were located. The principal mechanisms intended to enable this were, first, setting up of Boards of Trustees and, second, the gradual relaxation of restrictive polic...
Article
New Zealand schools are now managed by parent-elected trustees whose role is to work in partnership with school staff to formulate and monitor aspects of school policy. A sample of those involved in the partnership (principals, teachers, chairpersons and parents) were asked what role they thought the Board should play in three different types of sc...
Article
Sending books home is a distinctive practice in beginning reading instruction in New Zealand. There has been little systematic description of how the practice typically operates. As part of a larger study of collaboration between communities and schools, information was collected from interviews with J1 classroom teachers and parents in 19 primary...
Article
Fundamental to teachers becoming responsive to student learning needs is the availability of detailed information about what students know and can do. High-quality assessment data can provide that information, but much more is needed to improve teaching practice in ways that have a substantive impact on student learning. A set of conditions are ide...
Article
Changes recently introduced in the administration of New Zealand education were intended to ensure that schools would become more responsive to their communities. Many aspects of school governance were devolved from a central government bureaucracy to Boards of Trustees at each school and greater choice of school was given to parents. In this thesi...

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