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What makes a great learning environment?

Resources - References


This space contains resources and references (usually not web based) supporting the concepts of good teaching practice.

Educational Studies Journal cover

I did a google search in February 2008 for the phrase "essence of good teaching" and the first hit was Robert R. Sherman's paper "The Essence of Good Teaching" from the March 1986 edition of Educational Studies, A Journal of the American Educational Studies Association (ASEA).


In this paper Sherman reviews four books:

  • Diana Dubois (ed), (1982). My Harvard, My Yale: Memoirs of College Life by Some Notable Americans. Random House, NY.
  • Ken Macrorie, (1984). Twenty Teachers. Oxford University Press, NY.
  • Louis J. Rubin, (1985). Artistry in Teaching. Random House, NY.
  • Stanford C. Ericksen, (1984). The Essence of Good Teaching: Helping Students Learn and Remember What They Learn. Jossey-Bass, San Francisco.

Sherman is a Professor at the University of Florida, and concisely picks the best out of these four books and finds the common strands.

Book CoverStanford C. Ericksen's 1984 book contains many enduring examples of what constitutes good teaching practice. I found my copy through a link from Amazon to one of their supporting second hand bookstores. I purchased my copy for ONE CENT! The shipping to New Zealand cost $12 US!


Stanford C. Ericksen was professor emeritus of psychology and founding director of the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT) University of Michigan, he died April 10, 2000, aged 88 years.

Tapu Misa is a journalist who wrote about the 2008 'crisis' within teaching in New Zealand. I enjoy her writing and sense of humor. It is a refreshing contrast to academic writing, and well researched. She has given her permission to place a PDF of the article here. There is a link to the article in the NZ Herald as well, however they have been known to move their older material so it sometimes disappears!

"To get better teachers, we need better conditions"