Research on Life-Changing Teaching

Colorful art representation of a teacher celebrating life-changing teaching.

The Research on Life-Changing Teaching

The Research Is In! Teaching Is Life-Changing

What really moves the needle for educators and, by extension, their students?

Being an effective teacher is about more than just improving test scores—it’s also about making a difference in students’ lives. When we asked our readers to describe the traits of a life-changing teacher, they said that great teachers make their students feel safe and loved, possess a contagious passion for learning, believe their students can succeed—and always know when to be tough to help students reach their full potential.

But does the research agree? What are the fundamental levers that teachers can pull to refine their practices, improve their craft, and make a significant—or even life-altering—contribution to the lives of their students?

We reviewed nearly two dozen studies in compiling this piece—so let’s get right to it.

Yuoki Terada, Stephen Merrill, The Research on Life-Changing Teaching, Edutopia
children in a classroom
Children Teaching Children

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