Many teaching professionals spend their entire careers in search of teaching excellence. This search
may be even more important when students are underprepared adults. As teachers we help our
students understand pedagogical concepts and go beyond the knowledge level to higher levels of
thinking. We help them analyze and synthesize concepts thus creating new knowledge and solving
new problems. So, too, as teachers, we need to recognize our challenge to go beyond knowledge
about effective teaching. We need to apply these strategies, analyze what works, and take action to
modify or synthesize our effectiveness to help our students learn in a way that works for us as
individuals and teams of teachers. The learning community consists of both students and teachers.
Students benefit from effective teaching and learning strategies inside and outside the classroom.
This present work focuses on teaching strategies one can use in the classroom to foster effective
learning. Our challenge as teachers is to help students learn. Identifying effective teaching
strategies, therefore, is our challenge as we both assess the effectiveness of our current teaching
style and consider innovative ways to improve our teaching to match our students' learning styles.
The mission of the Pedagogic University is to create, integrate, transfer, and apply knowledge. The
strategic plan sets forth three broad aims to achieve and maintain, namely:
• Educational excellence
• Research leadership
• Data transfer leadership.
Volkwein and Cabrera (1998) suggest that the single most important factor in affecting multiple
aspects of student growth and satisfaction is the classroom experience. The key to teaching
developmental students successfully is to assure that teaching practices are consistent with the
characteristics of successful programs and the principles of effective teaching.
To know the most significant ways to become an effective teacher.
To describe the characteristics of becoming an effective teacher.
To identify the qualities of an effective teacher.
To overcome the shortcomings of ineffective teachers.
To make teaching a more effective and heartfelt career rather than just a mere profession.
What is an Effective Teacher? Definitions
An effective teacher is a good person who meets the community ideal for a good citizen, good
parent, and good employee. He or she is expected to be honest, hardworking, generous, friendly,
and considerate, and to demonstrate these qualities in their classrooms by being authoritative,
organized, disciplined, insightful, and dedicated; Muelenberg (1986). However, this definition lacks
clear objective standards of performance.
Silverman, C. (1996) undermines the idea that an effective teacher is one who has an achievement-
motivated personality with a strong commitment and rich teaching experiences. He or she is
expected to have a motivation to teach, empathy towards children, and good records at college
results and student teaching.
However, this definition does not reflect a teacher's day-to-day work in the classroom, does not
include the most important and obvious measure of all for determining good teaching: the
performance of the students who are being taught.
An effective teacher is one who concerns students' learning outcomes. He or she is expected to
demonstrate five key behaviors and five helping behaviors in teaching. Five key behaviors are: 1)
lesson clarity, 2) instructional variety, 3) task orientation, 4) engagement in the learning process,
and 5) student success. Five helping behaviors are: 1) using student ideas and contributions, 2)
structuring, 3) questioning, 4) probing, and 5) teacher affect.
However, there can be no single definition of the effective teacher because there is no simple
definition. The effective teaching varies with the age of the student population, background, subject
matter etc. The multiple definitions will be more accurate to describe what the effective teaching is;
claims Borich G. (1992) in Effective teaching methods (2nd Ed) New York: Merrill).
According to Jeremy Harmer (1998:6) an effective teacher has an ability to give interesting, using
the full range of their personality, the desire to empathise with a student, treating them all equally
however tempting it is to do otherwise, and knowing all their names.
Effective teaching can be seen as teaching that successfully achieves the learning objectives by the
pupils as identified by the teacher. In this way there are essentially two simple elements to effective
A major responsibility of classroom teachers is to maintain a good learning environment for
the entire class
The teacher sets up and provides a learning experience that enables this to happen.
Research has shown that there are five attributes that have been identified as important
factors in the classroom in relation to effective teaching. The strength of each attribute
determines how receptive pupils are to learning and has been identified in research as a key
cause of success in the classroom. The five attributes are:
Personality and will
Sympathy and tact
A sense of humor
Studies, which attempt to relate these teaching attributes to educational outcomes, have sometimes
referred to them as „black-box‟ research. The point of which is that such research on effective
teaching in the past has completely ignored what actually happened in the classroom. Instead,
studies simply looked at the input characteristics such as attributes of the teacher and pupils, looked
at the output such as the examination results and then tried to relate the two.
However, more recent research on effective teaching has focused on activities in the classroom. In
particular, research has looked at the interaction between the teacher and pupils to which this
personality attributes help. As a result, there is a good understanding regarding the basic thinking of
effective teaching within which we can identify three main classes of variables.
How to Be an Effective Teacher
To be an effective teacher is to do more than just give information. It is to give information in a way
that promotes the very best learning.
To be an effective teacher, teach to every learning style (including auditory, visual, tactile, and
kinesthetic or hand-on). Knowledge of whether students are visual, auditory, or tactile learners and
whether they prefer to work individually or in groups should shape the instructional delivery system
and learning materials offered. Boylan and Bonham (1998) cite several studies which reveal that
many developmental students are hands-on learners.
Some of us learn better when we hear things, others of us need to see things or actually get up and
move and do things. Everybody has a style that works best for them. However, the best teaching
will address every style. A really good teaching technique to is say it (the information), show it in
writing, show visuals of it, model it (for example demonstrating mapping an item or solving a
problem), give opportunities for students to practice it in real life situations, and then check for
understanding. The students will hear it, read it, say it, see pictures/visuals of it, write it, and
practice it both on paper and in real life situations. For example, when teaching diameter, the
student would solve for it on paper but would also actually find the diameter of objects in the home
or classroom. For tactile opportunities, a young student might trace letters with finger paints but an
older student might paint or make a visual representation of an atom.
Understanding requires that things are not presented in isolation. Learning will be increased when
critical connections are made. For example, when teaching fractions, be sure to point out the
concepts of division, sharing, etc. and how this relates to real life like knowing how to cut a pizza in
the right number of slices so they everyone gets an equal number. Better, yet, actually practice on a
pizza (like showing the 1/2, 2/4, and 4/8 are equal amounts) and then eat it as a reward.
Teach in Cycles.
Do not teach one thing, and then move on to another and on and on. Every time you teach
something, constantly go back and review prior skills or knowledge. This may only take a minute.
For example "remember ..." Being presented with information that is spaced out over time like this
helps really plant it into long-term memory. This is learning theory that is research based.
Do not Wear Yourself Out.
Focus most of your energy on good teaching techniques and the rest will follow. Even the best
lesson plan may not be effective if it is not taught using good teaching techniques. Always have a
good lesson plan in place, but you do not have to recreate the wheel. The internet is full of great
lesson plans. I am including a couple of helpful links below in the resources section.
Tips and Warnings
The more excited and energetic you are as a teacher, the more apt you will be to capture your
student's attention and be an effective teacher. Cross (2000) reports that students are well-motivated
to get involved in learning when they are faced with peers who depend on them and, in turn, nurture
them in challenging learning tasks.
Students learn better when they're motivated internally, such as by their own curiosity, rather than
by punishments and rewards. A teacher's enthusiasm or boredom in the subject is usually obvious to
students, and it's likely to "rub off" on them.
Go for Novelty
This could mean using colored paper, dressing the part, anything to capture their interest and help
you to be effective. (Jennifer Burger, 1989)
There are some principles of effective teaching that can be applied in virtually any educational
situation. However, you'll need to implement them differently, based on whether you're leading a
first grade classroom, teaching a neighbor a new skill, homeschooling your children, or teaching a
Develop an understanding of the topics you will be teaching. You have to know more than your
students do if you're going to present material to them. In addition, you should be willing to admit
when you don't know the answer to a question. Help the student research the answer if possible, or
look it up on your own and answer it later. Earn the trust and respect of your students. This is
essential to getting them to listen to what you have to say and follow your guidance. Try to connect
with students on an appropriately personal level. In a school setting, this can be as simple as asking
a child about his pets after class. It may be harder, but even more important, to do with resistant
students, Ritson (1986) says. Understand your students' learning styles. Moreover, tailor your
teaching methods to students as much as possible. This is much easier in a small group or one-on-
one than it is in a classroom, but it can still be done. Provide visual, auditory, and hands-on
activities to meet your students' needs. Have a variety of tools and resources available to them.
Provide individual attention to students. This is the best way to assess their levels of understanding
and find out which ones are having problems and why. Individual guidance can also help to keep
advanced students from getting bored if they're provided with more challenging activities.
Learn and implement positive methods. This will keep the classroom environment running
smoothly. Keep learning materials organized. Have a plan in mind and, in a classroom, make sure
that students know what's expected of them. It is much more difficult to learn in a disorderly
environment. Try to handle disruptive students in a positive manner, and figure out what the
underlying issues are. In addition, Hutchison (2002) demonstrates that an effective teacher must be
willing to change their schedule to meet the needs of students. People of all ages learn much more
easily when they're both interested in and ready to learn about a subject. Don't be afraid to let them
take the lead, if possible. Get creative and have fun with the material.
Qualities of an Effective Teacher
Teaching is more than a job.
When University students at Fort Hare, South Africa were asked what they thought an effective
teacher was, this is what the survey got as feedback:-
An effective teacher is someone who has the ability to establish positive realistic expectations for
success of their students and themselves.
An effective teacher is someone who is organized and able to maintain a well-ordered environment,
from the paperwork and deadlines, to the behavior of students. They should be able to walk away,
so to speak, and learning should continue.
An effective teacher knows how important it is to reflect, not necessarily on what they plan to do,
but how they will carry out that plan.
An effective teacher is someone who knows how to create interesting lessons. These lessons must be
captivating, reach all students, and ensure mastery.
An effective teacher is kind and fair.
An effective teacher does the right thing.
An effective teacher is consistent.
Effective teachers do not overlook the small acts of kindness they perform every day. They do not
think they are of no benefit. Even tiny drops of water - in the end - will fill a huge vessel.
Effective teachers do not overlook any negative actions they may perform just because they appear
small. However small a spark may be, it can burn down a haystack as big as a mountain.
Effective teachers must be open to the possibilities of the teaching and learning experience by
always challenging their own assumptions.
Effective teachers must find joy in the unanticipated.
The Difference between Effective and Ineffective Teachers
The present work compares descriptions of effective and ineffective teachers given by prospective
teachers (beginning a teacher-education program), novice teachers (finishing the student-teaching
experience), and experienced teachers (teaching in public schools). The participants‟ descriptions
focused on what their best and worst teachers did. The themes that emerged from their verb-referent
statements were (a) emotional environment, (b) teacher skill, (c) teacher motivation, (d) student
participation, and (e) rules and grades.
The affective domain figured prominently in the descriptions of all three groups. The overall
emotional environment was a dominant theme. „While Jones (1982) argues that caring about
students was particularly prevalent in the descriptions of effective teachers and they were described
as warm, friendly and caring Smith (1990 ) conversely claims that ineffective teachers often were
said to create a tense classroom and were described as cold, abusive, and uncaring. A greater
proportion of these emotional-environment responses, however, described their best teachers.
In the category of teacher skill, effective teachers were said to know how to create an effective
learning environment. They were organized, prepared, and clear.
Ineffective teachers consistently were indicted for their inept pedagogy, boring lectures, and
unproductive learning environment. A higher percentage of statements were devoted to describing
their best teachers.
In the category of teacher motivation, effective teachers were described as caring about learning and
teaching. “Enthusiasm” or “enthusiastic” often appeared in these descriptions. In contrast, a
common statement was that their worst teachers hated teaching. Some were faulted for being
burned-out or just going through the motions. Overall, more verb-referent statements about teacher
motivation were written for best teachers than for worst teachers.
In the category of student participation, the descriptions of their best teachers emphasized activities
that involved the students in authentic learning, interaction, the characteristics of effective and
ineffective teachers questioning, and discussion. Their worst teachers were characterized as
requiring isolate behavior with little interaction, activity, or discussion. Some participants
complained that their most ineffective teachers were intolerant of questions asked by students.
Again, however, a greater proportion of student-participation descriptors were written about their
most effective teachers than their least effective teachers.
Their care about student accomplishment and advocacy for student success set the tone for fair rules
and grading. Such teachers frequently were depicted as requiring and maintaining high standards of
conduct and academic work. Ineffective teachers were faulted for unreasonable or unfair
assignments, tests, and grades. Opposite poles in classroom management were expressed, in which
the ineffective teacher either was a dominating ogre or had no control. This category of rules and
grades was the only one of the five categories in which greater proportions of verb referent
descriptors were expressed for ineffective teachers than for effective teachers.
The literature on expert versus novice performance suggests that experts rely more on procedural
knowledge, and those less apt in the particular professional field or task depend more on declarative
knowledge. Expert teachers would appear (a) to have better developed schemata for classroom
teaching with strong links between subject matter and ways to teach it, (b) to be more effective
lesson planners and implementers, and yet (c) to be more flexible and reflective in meeting student
needs and facilitating student social and academic growth (Gallagher, 1994.)
The present results were remarkably similar for the written descriptions by prospective teachers,
novice teachers, and experienced teachers. The exceptions were that the experienced teachers
dwelled less on teacher motivation and more on rules and grades. Even in light of more complete
descriptions of effective and ineffective teachers, however, a problem for educators who are
committed to the preparation of teachers is that knowing how effective and ineffective teachers
behave does not provide a prescription for shortening or easing the route to proficiency and
excellence in teaching. However Leinhardt, (1993) states that simply copying the external
characteristics of effective teachers without building complementary rich, underlying knowledge
structures is likely to result in a conservative mimic lacking in adaptive innovation. The challenge is
to find an initial balance between formal knowledge of educational practice and the application of
concepts of effective teaching and then to progressively shift that balance to move teachers-in-
training toward expert thinking and action as rapidly as feasible. By giving pre-service teachers
multiple opportunities to teach in progressively more complex, multidimensional, and realistic
environments, progressive shifts and refinement from declarative “what to do” to procedural “how
to do” knowledge structures occur. The present results demonstrated that prospective teachers,
novice teachers, and experienced teachers have almost identical perceptions. They know what
effective teachers do and what ineffective teachers do. All of the participants had strong views
about what constitutes good teachers versus bad teachers, and the two are by no means mirror
images of one another. More verb-referent statements about emotional climate care about students,
interaction with students, learning activities, discussion, and teacher or student questions were
reported for effective teachers than for ineffective teachers. Further, there was evidence of more
focus on tests, feedback, grades, assignments, and homework when participants described their
The present research builds on previous findings to provide a more complete picture of the positive
and negative teacher procedures and behaviors as perceived across the teacher-preparation-
Principles of Effective Teaching and Learning
Principle #1: Demonstrate Good Command of the Subject Matter
Tiberius & Tipping, (1990 p.15), investigates the idea that teachers' knowledge of the subject matter
is essential to the implementation of important teaching tasks. Teachers who know their subject
matter thoroughly can be more effective and efficient at organizing the subject matter, connecting
the subject with the students' previous knowledge, finding useful analogies and examples,
presenting current thinking on the subject, and establishing appropriate emphases. Unfortunately,
many new teachers try to employ the same teaching techniques their graduate professors used
successfully, since this is their most recent experience with the teaching/learning environment. This
is one of the biggest mistakes teachers can make, especially with developmental students who may
have had little academic success, clearly stated (Boylan & Bonham, 1998).
Principle #2: Address Non cognitive Issues that Affect Learning
Interaction between teachers and students is the most important factor in student motivation and
involvement. Teachers indicate that motivating students to learn and to participate in learning
activities may be the most difficult task, especially in working with developmental students. Related
affective characteristics, such as self-regulation and academic procrastination, can be influenced by
motivation. Scholars have reported that procrastination “compromises an individual‟s ability to set
and achieve personal, academic, and career related goals” through self-regulated behavior. Further,
Wambach (2000) states that students who can self-identify skill areas that need improvement seem
more motivated to pursue assistance to gain appropriate skills are more than self-regulated. “The
conscious development of self-regulation is the task that might distinguish developmental education
programs from other post - secondary education programs” (p.3). Some teachers, especially those
with graduate school mentalities, declare that it is not their responsibility to motivate students.
These teachers need to engage in professional development quickly. It is, indeed, the responsibility
of developmental education and all education to help students sustain the motivation that led them
to enroll in courses at the beginning of the semester and strengthen that motivation as the term
progresses. Teachers are challenged to try to determine how and when students lost their motivation
and help them regain that initial vision. Of course, motivation is a team effort: No teacher can
motivate a student who does not want to join the effort. McCombs (1991) and the Stanford
University Newsletter on Teaching (“Speaking of,” 1998) recommend these strategies for
Principle #3: Engage in Ongoing Evaluation and Professional Development
Boylan and Bonham (1998) and Roueche and Roueche (1993) both examined successful
developmental programs and identified program evaluation as a key element. However, program
evaluation does not always include faculty evaluation and subsequent improvement in faculty
performance. Faculty improvement is usually achieved through professional development activities
that include reading professional journals, writing professional articles, taking courses, and
attending professional workshops and conferences. These activities are time-consuming, but
effective developmental educators make this a part of their continuing education.
Baiocco and DeWaters (1998) contend that professional development is the key to helping effective
teachers manage change that is inherent in the 21st century. Effective teachers are constantly
embracing change in their quest for improvement and also applying findings from evaluation
outcomes to enhance teaching effectiveness and student success.
Principle #4: Provide Open and Responsive Learning Environments
Cross (2000) reports, “Research clearly shows that students who are most likely to drop out of
college are students who are not connected with the people and events of the college” (p. 1). She
notes that the connections need not always be face-to-face. They can be electronic via email or chat
rooms, telephone calls, or letters, but humans need some way to feel that they belong. It is easy for
developmental students to convince themselves that they are so far behind that the teacher would
not want them back in class. A phone call or letter can be all it takes to assure most students that
they still belong in the class and they will receive support to help them catch up. It is important for
teachers to obtain local telephone numbers, addresses, and e-mail addresses from students on the
first day of class. Tinto (1993) reports that being connected to the classroom and college has a
significant effect on retention. Students need to know that teachers recognize them as individuals.
Goodman (2001) has found those simply calling students‟ names aloud when checking attendance
has a positive effect on attendance. We have concluded that teachers could enhance retention and
attendance by orally calling the class roll and making individual comments when returning papers
Another strategy to promote feelings of belonging is for the teacher to arrange to meet with
individual students during office hours. Although office hours are posted and announced, many
students will not take the initiative to go to the teacher‟s office without a personal invitation or
Ironically, teachers often feel rejected when students don‟t respond to their open announcement of
office hours. This feeling of rejection may create a barrier between the teacher and student.
Pascarella and Terenzini (1991) report, “The educational impact of a college‟s faculty is enhanced
when their contacts with students extend beyond the formal classroom to informal non-classroom
settings” (p. 620). Such interaction gives the teacher the opportunity to get to know students better,
and it helps students learn the value of using office hours that teachers set aside for them.
Experience is associated with increasing teacher effectiveness for some teachers, probably for those
teachers who obtain feedback about their teaching and who are flexible enough to modify their
methods in response to the feedback. As was mentioned in the introduction to this section, teaching
can help you develop a variety of skills that are valuable in a multitude of careers. The following
ideas summarize some of the strategies we have discussed in this section:
Practice - Try out some of the grading or discussion techniques that have been presented in this
present work. Use different adaptations until you find a collection of techniques that are effective
for you and your students. Remember that experience is one of the key components that positively
impacts feelings of effectiveness.
Ask for feedback. Remember that you will probably get a range of responses from your students.
Try to identify the major issues and ways you can work to improve those areas.
Learn from the best. Think back to some of the "great" teachers you have had. What made them
effective? Go and observe some outstanding teachers in your department or the University. Talk to
them about their teaching style and the techniques they find effective.
Complete self-scoring inventories. Use lists of best practices to help you reflect on your strengths
and areas for improvement.
Tips in Becoming an Effective Teacher
Lela Iskandar Suhaimi (1992:22) undermines the position that being a teacher is no easy feat. "You
have to put up with a lot of things. You have to bear tons of burdens, sometimes with very little
rewards in exchange". That is why many say it is a noble job. However, instead of focusing on the
negative, just think that you are one of those chosen to serve. You have been given this opportunity
to open doors for young ones, to shape values, to sharpen minds, to be a second parent. While you
are in the teaching profession, make the most out of it.
Establish your Authority
From the very beginning that you step into a classroom for the first time, it is important that you
establish your authority so that students will know and feel that you are the one in charge. This is
essential for students of different levels, because throughout a school year, students will keep trying
to challenge you or to test your authority. If you let them know from the start that you are the
"boss", then it will ascertain respect already which can help limit their misbehavior and tendency to
be defiant and disobedient. However, Taylor (2001) argues that this does not mean that you have to
have "military rule" or you have to be very rigorous and stringent. Make sure to still be friendly to
the students, but firm in implementing rules and in disciplining the students. In addition, you need
to be consistent and fair when doing these things.
Have a Sense of Humor
Students love a teacher who has a sense of humor, who can turn an ordinarily boring lesson into an
interesting one and can crack jokes and tell funny anecdotes while teaching, recent research by
Oxford University students has shown. Having a sense of humor makes the class lighter and not
such a burden to students. Also keep in mind that they learn better and are able to retain information
more easily when they are relaxed and having a good time. A sense of humor can help you become
a successful teacher. Your sense of humor can relieve tense classroom situations before they
become disruptions. A sense of humor will also make class more enjoyable for your students and
possibly make students look forward to attending and paying attention. Most importantly, a sense of
humor will allow you to see the joy in life and make you a happier person as you progress through
this sometimes stressful career.
First, when working with at-risk students, teaching and learning activities must be highly structured,
with all requirements and standards clearly stated (Boylan & Bonham, 1998). Developmental
students need to know exactly what is expected of them and when it is due. Teaching students how
to pace their work is one of the most important things a teacher can do. Students often
underestimate the amount of work required and the time required to complete it, so teachers need to
help students develop specific plans. A helpful strategy is to require students to turn in drafts or
small segments of their work as they proceed toward the final product. Second, many
developmental students require a lot of time-on-task. Scheduled and supervised activities in class, in
labs, and with tutors facilitate the “pacing skills” often lacking for at-risk students. Third,
developmental students perform better when the curriculum they are studying relates to the real
world and their specific interests (Cross, 2000). Fourth, information should be presented in small
chunks that allow students to link new material to something they already know. Fifth, since
developmental education is providing the foundation for more advanced learning, mastery of the
content is important. If students fail to master one set of skills, concepts, or knowledge before they
move on to the next level, gaps similar to the problems the students are already experiencing are
created. Finally, frequent testing and immediate feedback are critical for developmental students.
Wambach, Brothen, and Dikel (2000) report that many developmental students lack the ability to
provide their own feedback. These authors note, "highly" skilled students are better able to know
they have understood what they have read, to know whether they are prepared for an exam, and to
evaluate how well they have done on exams". They know the difference between simply doing and
actually learning assignments” (p. 8) Therefore, early, frequent, meaningful, and clear feedback is a
major factor in helping students hone their metacognitive skills.
Inspire your Students
In Becker‟s view (1997, p. 9) veering away from the curriculum once in a while, just to share words
of wisdom with your students can be fruitful. Be a good listener and friend, as well as a counselor.
Leave them with inspiring stories that they will remember forever, and that they can apply in their
lives. Research has shown that as a teacher, you are a leader, and you should be setting an example
worthy of following. Being an effective teacher advisor to your students will help them immensely
later on in their lives. There are several things that you can do to achieve this; be memorable, be
confident, fair, consistent, and be a role model. The role of the teacher is to nurture the mind of the
youth, and to leave an indelible imprint upon their memory. Becoming an effective teacher advisor
to your students is simple, provided you carry yourself in an appropriate manner at all times. Being
a good teacher is not nearly enough; you must transcend boundaries and become something more to
the impressionable youth that infiltrate your classroom.
You must also give them hope that they are on the right path in life, and that you are willing to help
guide them whenever they find themselves going astray. Teaching is a tremendously rewarding
experience, and a vocation that requires a certain type of personality to flourish. As advisor to the
youth of today that will lead the future, a teacher should always model appropriate behaviour, and
always display fairness and consistency.
Top 4 Keys to Being a Successful Teacher
The most successful teachers share some common characteristics. Here are the top four keys to
being a successful teacher. Every teacher can benefit from focusing on these important qualities.
Success in teaching, as in most areas of life, depends almost entirely on your attitude and your
1. A Positive Attitude
A positive attitude is a great asset in life. You will be thrown many curve balls in life and especially
in the teaching profession. A positive attitude will help you cope with these in the best way. For
example, you may find out the first day of school that you are teaching Algebra 2 instead of
Algebra 1. This would not be an ideal situation, but a teacher with the right attitude would try to
focus on getting through the first day without negatively impacting the students. For example,
Roueche and Roueche (1993) have suggested that because teacher attitudes are probably related to
student achievement, no teacher should be arbitrarily assigned to teach a remedial class if he or she
would rather not teach that class, nor should any teacher be assigned who is only mildly interested
in doing so: uninterested teachers cannot be expected to motivate students who are typically
characterized by a lack of motivation. (p.58).
2. High Expectations
An effective teacher must have high expectations. You should strive to raise the bar for your
students. If you expect less effort you will receive less effort. You should work on an attitude that
says that you know students can achieve to your level of expectations, thereby giving them a sense
of confidence too. This is not to say that you should create unrealistic expectations. Chickering &
Reisser, (1993) .The guidelines suggest that good practices encourage student-faculty contact,
promote cooperation among students, encourage active learning, give prompt feedback, emphasize
time on task, communicate high expectations, and respect diverse talents. However, your
expectations will be one of the key factors in helping students learn and achieve.
In order to create a positive learning environment your students should know what to expect from
you each day. You need to be consistent. This will create a safe learning environment for the
students and they will be more likely to succeed. It is amazing that students can adapt to teachers
throughout the day that range from strict to easy. However, they will dislike an environment in
which the rules are constantly changing. Taylor, D. (2001).
Leithwood, K. (2006), claims that many people confuse fairness and consistency. Therefore he
differentiates simply stating that a consistent teacher is the same person from day to day and a fair
teacher treats students equally in the same situation. For example, students complain of unfairness
when teachers treat one gender or group of students differently. It would be terribly unfair to go
easier on the football players in a class than on the cheerleaders. Students pick up on this so quickly,
so be careful of being labeled unfair.
Teachers need to sell education to their students, and therefore they must walk their walk and talk
their talk. Teachers are a constant role model and a parent during the course of the school day. If, as
a teacher, you are able to deliver your messages in a clear and concise manner, and have the
students buy what you're selling, then you have done your job correctly. If the democratic ideals of
our educational mentality are to be supported by Mozambican higher education, it is essential that
higher education is truly open to all interested citizens. But, in order for higher education to serve
the needs of our general populace, quality teaching in higher education is imperative. Faculty at
postsecondary institutions must recognize and embrace the importance of developing teaching skills
that enhance learning for all types of students in tandem with continuing development of their
content-area knowledge. Advising students is not necessarily part of the job description, but it is an
essential and crucial aspect of the teacher's duties. In becoming a responsible and effective teacher
advisor to your students, you must believe in everything that you are saying, and must convince the
students of this fact. Mentoring is a lifelong process, and the impact that you have upon your
students can last forever. An effective teacher will incorporate many different methods to help their
students to reach their academic and personal zenith. As educators, teachers are bound to become
advisors to students, and this needs to be nurtured in an effective manner. As a teacher, the main
priority is to provide a learning environment that is non-exclusionary, and that enables all students
to feel welcome, respected, and smart.
1. Boylan, H.R., Bonham, B.S., Jackson, J., & Saxon, D.P. (1998). Staffing patterns in
developmental education programs: Full-time, part-time, credentials, and program
placement. Research in Developmental Education, 11(5), 1-4.
2. Chickering, A.W., & Reisser, L. (1993). Education and identity. San Francisco: CA Jossey-
3. Cross, P. (2000). Collaborative learning 101. The Cross papers # 4. Mission Viejo, CA:
League for Innovation in the Community College, Educational Testing Service.
4. Hanushek, E. A. and Rivkin, S. G. “Pay, Working Conditions, and Teacher Quality”
(Spring2007), The Future of Children, Vol. 17, No. 1, pp. 69-86.
5. Harmer, Jeremy, How to teach English, Addison Wesley Longman Limited, 1998
6. Hirsch, E., Freitas, C., et. al.. Massachusetts Teaching, Learning and Leading Survey:
Creating School Conditions Where Teachers Stay and Students Thrive (2009), Santa Cruz,
CA: New Teacher Center Lankford.
7. H., Loeb, S., and Wyckoff, J. Teacher Sorting and the Plight of Urban Schools: A
Descriptive Analysis. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis Spring, (2002): Vol. 24,
No. 1, 37-62.
8. Leithwood, K. Teacher working conditions that matter: Evidence for change (2006),
Toronto, ON, Canada: Elementary Teachers‟ Federation of Ontario.
9. Pascarella, E.T., & Terenzini, P.T. (1991). How college affects students. San Francisco:
10. Roueche, J.E., & Roueche, S.D. (1993). Between a rock and a hard place: The at-risk
student in the open-door college. Washington, DC: The American Association of
Community Colleges, The Community College Press.
11. Roueche, J.E., & Roueche, S.D. (1999). High stakes, high performance: Making remedial
education work. Washington, DC: American Association of Community Colleges, The
Community College Press.
12. Taylor, D. (2001). Writing a Literature Review. Accessed 17/4/2003 from,