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Developing A School-Wide Approach to Independent Learning

How best to develop the capacity of students for independent learning is a challenge faced by many schools. Whilst the aspiration of equipping students to think for themselves is widely shared, turning this vision into reality in the face of on-going pressure to reduce real education to a routine of spoon-feeding and teaching to the test is a genuine challenge.


Dr John Taylor, who will lead the training day, has been at the forefront of the development of independent learning in schools, with extensive experience as a teacher trainer both in the UK and internationally. John co-directed the development of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) prototype Perspectives on Science course. He was involved in the development and implementation of the EPQ from its inception and has many years’ experience in supporting schools and colleges looking to promote student independence and embrace project work. He has recently written a guidebook for teachers looking to develop ‘Independent Learning’ as part of the Bloomsbury ‘Teach Yourself: Train Others’ CPD Library.


The course is designed to support teachers in primary and secondary schools, as well as school leaders and curriculum managers who would like to think strategically about the implementation of independent learning in their schools. Questions that will be explored include:


  • What do we mean by ‘independent learning’?

  • How do we move from being solely providers of information to being facilitators of research?

  • How can we stimulate students to think for themselves?

  • How can classroom discussion be managed so as to facilitate genuine learning?

  • How can project work be used to support school-wide independent learning?

  • What staff CPD is needed in the move towards greater independence?

  • What is the role of IT in supporting independent learning?

  • How can we cultivate independent learning in all aspects of school life?

Forthcoming Dates
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