Raising Standards Together

Wrong learning pack? Change pack

MEP learning pack

Masters in Educational Practice: Literacy


Lead on change: challenging current literacy practice


Implementing change

Implementing change in a successful and positive way can be problematic and yet 'changing' is a regular and fast paced demand of life in education.

A recent report commissioned by NFER (2012) suggests that implementing change in a positive way has some identifiable key features. Critically read (external link) the executive summary and key findings (external link) by clicking on the link below.

The NFER report identifies three aspects for leading positively on changes in teaching practice.

  • Leadership-led.
  • Peer-led.
  •  Self-led.

Activity 7.1

Executive summary of positive change in teaching practice

Complete the following table based on a critical reading of the NFER executive summary.

Critical reading of the NFER executive summary
Features of change Summary of key points Personal comments and reflections

This example response may help in the completion of this activity.

You can further develop your understanding of how to implement change by examining more closely the key terms identified in the following activity.


The way that you judge the quality of your current literacy practice can depend on your perspective. A consideration of other viewpoints may help to widen the overall picture and help you gain a deeper insight into the way that oracy, reading and writing is taught and learnt. This brief clip sums-up the idea of appreciating an event from different perspectives:

  • You may like to think about how you could obtain information about literacy provision from different perspectives.
  • Who might you ask? 
  • What do you need to discover?


This is a key area which relates to many aspects of learning and teaching. However, in this context you may like to consider what motivates a teacher or a staff team to make changes to provision. This PowerPoint is an introduction to the theories of motivation.


Deciding upon the right forms of action to effect change in your literacy practice can be tricky. Often, a problem is identified and you are motivated to act in order to raise standards but it can be difficult to identify what action would be most effective.

A common approach to use is educational action research. Helpful introductions to this form of research can be found at the University of Plymouth (external link) and at infed.org (external link).

The following activity seeks to consolidate your thinking and reading behind the key words of perspective, motivation and action.

Activity 7.3

Consider these two quotes:

The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them.

Albert Einstein

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Leonardo da Vinci

Consider your response to these quotes in light of the key words perspective, motivation and action.

You might like to read a response to the above quotes and compare it to your own views.


In this sub-topic you have explored some of the tools needed to lead on change in a positive and successful way. Some of these tools, for example motivation, perspective and action are the building blocks for educational research and you may want to investigate these further in support of your professional development.

For more information on critical reading, the Literacy teacher effectiveness supplement provided by the Learning Wales site provides a good starting point.

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