Stage Theory- Piaget
Children of same age make similar errors on tests. Errors = predictable- explained by stage theory. Childrens thoughts change qualitatively as they pass through stages. Stages = biologically driven- maturation of innate forces and structures. Children actively acquire knowledge. Central to theory are 'Schemas' = units of behaviour that provide basis for mental operations. Children acquire 3 types of knowledge: Physical- about objects in the world, Logical-mathematical- 'abstract knowledge', and Social knowledge- culture specific knowledge. 3 key processes to developing knowledge: ASSIMILATION: using existing schema to deal with new object or situation. ACCOMODATION: existing schemas do not work- has to be changed to fit new object or situation. EQUILLIBRIUM: force which drives development- when existing schemas fit new knowledge, disequillibrium is when they don't. 4 stages of development: Sensorimotor stage (0-18 months)- children learn through physical engagement with environment via sense perception + development of motor skills. Pre-operational stage (18 months- 7 years)- able to represent objects/ events through symbols/ signs. Able to use language + express ideas. Developing general rules about mental operations. Concrete operational stage (7- 12 years)- more sophisticated mental operations- able to take account for more than 1 aspect of situation. Still limited- see world how it is, struggle to imaging how it might be. Formal operational stage (12 years+)- mainly formal logic- most sophisticated stage of thinking.
Social Construction Theory- Vygotsky
Individuals making meaning of knowledge within social context. Vygotsky believed children learn from MKO's (More Knowledgable Others). Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD)= starting point is childs current ability to perform activities independently, the ZPD is where the child can perform activities with the help of MKO's, and final part is where child would struggle to perform activities even with help of others (childs potential). Emphasised relationship between thought, language + conciousness- directly related to private speech- taking to themselves or imaginary friend. Provides solutions to problems + improves communication- allows thoughts + reasoning to become more complex.
From this theory, we can analyse how social settings provide opportunities for learning. 'TUTOR' will identify needs of child in social setting + then assist child in part of task they find difficult- known as SCAFFOLDING, framework which supports learning.
WOOD et al: sample = 30 children equally divided into 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds + by gender. Design = participant observation of construction task- involved connecting 21 wooden blocks to make sturdy pyramid. Tutors present to offer verbal (eg commenting on significant features of task) or 'showing' (modelling task if necessary) guidance. Tutor would allow child to complete as much of task by themselves as possible + only intervene when child got stuck. Findings = tutors responses described as scaffolding functions- children far better than expected with scaffolding.
Behaviourist explanation of knowledge acquisition
Assumes that knowledge is acquired through learning (association). All behaviour is learnt from environment appart from very basic innate responses. Habbituation = very basic form of learning to ignore something which is happening (a stimulus) which has no importance. Operant conditioning = involves voluntary responses- those under concious control. Skinner said that concepts/ principles involved in this learning apply when an individual acts on his environment to achieve a desired outcome.
Antecendents (what happens before) --> Behaviour (what the child does) --> Consequences (what the results are for the child).
EG: Interesting work set --> Pupils get on with work --> Praise from teacher.
Reinforcers are consequence that will strengthen an organisms future behaviour whenever that behaviour is preceded by a specific antecedent stimulus.
Positive reinforcement = shaping future frequency of behaviour by addition on a consequence immeditetly following a response.
Negative reinforcement = shaping future frequency of behaviour by removal of adverse stimulus.
Variations on Learning Strategies- Curry's
Everyone approaches learning in different ways. Individual preferences for learning = 'strategies for learning'.
Curry's Onion Model helps us to understand the learning process:
1: Instructional Preference: outmost layer of the onion- most unstable. Learning environment and individual and teacher expectations can influence instructional preference.
2: Informational Processing Style: middle layer of onion- individuals intellectual approach to intergrating/ assimilating information. More stable.
3: Cognitive Personality Style: innermost layer of onion- individuals approach to assimilating and adapting information. Believed to be relatively permenant.
Differences in Cognitive Styles- Riding & Raynor
Measuring styles through concept of VISUAL, AUDITORY + KINAESTHETIC (VAK) learning. All have a style that reflects preference towards 1 particular sensory modality- comes from NLP. NLP assumes info is processed via senses + that out cognitive processes are affected by particular sense used. VISUAL = learning through pictures, diagrams, demonstrations, displays, etc. AUDITORY = learning by spoken work of their own or others- sounds and noises. KINAESTHETIC = learning through touching, feeling, holding, doing- practicle, hands on experiences.
Riding & Raynor
Review article on cognitive styles- two main cognitive style approaches, 'Holist - Analytic' and 'Verbaliser - Imager'. 2 dimensions of cognitive styles exist + each operates on continuum with 2 opposing preferences. DIMENSION 1: ways of organising info- holist= read peom + understand general message, or analyst = focus on structures within poem. DIMENSION 2: ways of representing info- verbaliser = use words and language, or imager = visual representations. Possible to have 4 types of cognitive style- each influence prefered learning strategies. Learning strategies may change, but cognitive style stays the same.
Multiple Intelligences- Gardner
Stable cognitive processes that aren't effected by external world. Gardner = cognitive styles are result of each individual having range of Multiple Intelligences. These intelliegnces are linked to specialised part of brain- should be some evidence of individuals, such as prodigies, exhibiting in this area. Intelligences are independent of each other, though do interact- person could have high level of ability in some areas of intelligence, but low in others.
Gardner's Theory: based on range of research methods, including psychometric tests + case studies of people who have low IQ scores but high ability in some areas of intelligence.
7 areas of intelligence: Musical (music smart), Bodily Kinaesthetic (body smart), Interpersonal (people smart), Verbal Linguistic (word smart), Logical Mathematical (logic smart), Intrapersonal (self smart) and Visual-Spatial (picture smart).
8th area of intelligence added in 1997- 'Naturalistic'- people who can relate well to nature + animals.
Behaviourist use of objectives + monitoring of tas
Importance of 'observable outcomes'- eg when teacher sets expected outcomes for lesson- called 'Learning Outcomes' (aims and objectives). What teacher expects students to know/ be able to do + what process they expect students to go through to get to master them. Focus on students mastering (showing they've achieved outcomes) = 'Mastery Learning'. Way of controlling learning environment- observable behaviour is result of environmental stimuli: means teachers can monitor progress of individual students learning. Assumes cognitive structure = hierarchically organised- categorise info in terms of highly relevant info + discard less inclusive info. Newly acquired data are incorporated into existing cognitive structure under relevant existing categories.
Ausubel- Advanced Organisers Aim: test idea that introducing AO's with new info can improve retention + learning. Method: lab experiment. Pps matched on ability to learn unfamiliar passage- given different passage to read + set similar multiple choice test. Experimental or control conditions. All pps required to read 2500 word passage- chosen for unfamiliarity + easy to understand. Experimental condition given intro passage to help organise new info- quite abstract + discussed differences between metals + alloys. Control group given unhelpful intro passage of historical background. Both groups studied text on steel for 35 mins + tested using 36 item multiple choice quiz three days later. Results: normally distribited- experimental group mean = 16.7, control mean = 14.1.
Cognitive Discovery Learning- Klahr & Nigam
Discovery Learning (DL) = child-centred approach- children as active + independent learners- teachers facilitate learning. Students should have experiences which lead them to finding out key concepts for themselves- construct own system of understanding + didactic teaching results in limited ability to apply knowledge to knew situations. DL will automatically match learning to child's development through different stages. Spiral Curriculum: develops + re-develops at different ages + increases in complexity. Any aspect of curriculum can be taught to any child in any stage in some form. Way it is taught should reflect mode of thinking child is operating.
Klahr & Nigam
Compare effectiveness of DL + direct teaching (DT). Half pps received direct instruction about confounded experiments + other half given no instruction. Children had to design own experiments + were given score out of 4 saying how many of their experiments were confounded. More children in direct instruction group became mastery learners. Shows discovery learning could be more useful over long period of time, used alongside spiral curriculum.
Social Constructivism- Cooperative learning
Competition replaced with cooperative learning. Groups of tables not rows- ecouraged to work together + share. Shown to raise self-esteem + aid learning. Scaffolding (Wood's Study) knowledge as result of child's interactions with others. Benefits of cooperative learning at every level.
Rittschof & Griffin
Assessed benefits of cooperative learning in college students. Reciprocal peer tutoring procedure used in 2 experiments- 97 graduates + 100 undergraduates retrespectively. Previous studies- peer tutoring more benefit to tutor than learner. Because of this, reciprocal peer tutoring method adopted in study enabled both students to take turn at tutoring role. Results for both indicated reciprocal tutoring failed to improve students understanding of course material compared with individualised study task. Didn't increase: performance in final exams, feelings of self-efficacy, didn't reduce test anxiety compared with controls. Self-report showed students felt they benefitted from experience. Quantitatively not effective, qualitative self-report showed benefits.
Psychodynamic Theory of Motivation
Intrinsic = motivated by the challenge + enjoyment of task.
Extrinsic = motivated by what we gain from task- eg; grades or to avoid punishments.
Aim: explore effects of competition on intrinsic motivation of males and females. Procedure: pairs of pps (1 in each pair = confederate) working on puzzle. Stage one- pps either instructed to a) 'try to win', or b) 'do your best'. Stage 2- naive pps left to solve insolvable configuration for 8 mins- DV= no. of seconds (out of 480) pps spent alone working on them. Stage 3- questionnaire "How interesting did you find the puzzle solving?" + "How skillful did you perceive yourself to be?" 7 point likert scales. Findings: competition pps = less intrinsically motivated than pps who worked with confederate- especially true for females.
Humanistic Theory of Motivation
Maslow's heirachy of needs.
Each low level need must be met before the higher need can be adressed.
Levels (from top to bottom):
1: Self actualisation
3: Love/ Belonging
Four lower level needs = 'deficiency' needs. When these are met, motivation to fulfil them decreases. Top level needs = 'being' needs. When met, motivation does not ease, but increases to seek further fulfilment- never fully fulfilled.
Cognitive Attribution Theory (motivation)
Cognitive believes we respond to things conciously. Where do we attribute (put blame for) success and failure?
Attribution theory suggests people tend to make self-serving attributions- take credit for success + blame external factors for failure.
Following perceived success or failure, individuals experience either positive or negative emotional reaction- search through social info for causes + make attribution based on 4 factors; ability, effort, task difficulty, and luck. Can either reinforce or alter future expectations. Low expectations diminish motivation, high expectations increase motivation.
Unstable can be changed. Stable cannot be changed.
Unstable = effort "I did a lot of work to prepare for this test." Luck "The questions fell very well for me."
Stable = ability "I am very good at this topic, I completely understood it." Difficulty "The test wasn't very hard."
Importance of Play- Schweinhart, Highscope
Play = to occupy oneself in recreational activity. Hughes (1996) = 15 types of play- eg; 'Creative Play'- creative media + tools- plenty of time + mess isn't a problem. 'Dramatic Play'- drama of parents + children, TV shows, conversation, religious festival/ event. 'Exploratory Play'- engaging with object or area- manipulation or moving, assembling its properties, possibilities + content. Play in education: helps develop skills which can encourage educational engagement. Piaget + play: stages of development- Sensori motor --> mastery play. Preoperational --> symbolic play. Concrete operational --> playing with rules.
Aim: compare effectiveness of child initiated learning with other types of play in pre-school. Design: longitudinal experiment. Participants: 123 African-American children at risk of failing. Pps randomly selected for Highscope (structured play program) or no pre-school program. Pps regularly assessed as children + adults. Findings: large discrepancies between 2 groups. Mean IQ= Highscope- 95, Non-program- 84. Highschool graduates= Highscope- 71%, non-program- 54%. Earn more than $2000/month= Highscope- 29%, non-program- 7%. Arrested more than 5 times= Highscope- 7%, non-program- 35%. Conclusions: children who had child-initiated play achieved more, showing importance of play in education.
Emotional Nature of Learning- Newsome
Emotional Intelligence (EI) = ability to process emotional info accurately + efficiently. 2 aspects of EI: 1- understanding yourself, your goals, intentions + responses, 2- understanding others + their feelings. 4 key principles: 1- Perceiving ones feelings + those of others, 2- Intergrating info gained from emotions into your thinking, 3- Understanding emotions and the knowledge gained from others, 4- Managing your emotions by not letting them become overwhelming or by surpressing them. In education: to change social behaviours, explanation for low achievement with solution- improvement of academic performance, linked to truancy + high unauthorised absences- improve EI to raise attendance, tasks used by teachers to learn about pupils EI to apply to how they teach.
Aim: look at relationship between EI, cognitive ability + personality with academic achievement. Measures: cognitive ability- Wonderlick test- 50 Q's. Personality- 16PF- how true statements were of themselves. EI- EQi- calculated on how well they coped with stress, etc. Academic achievement- GPA's taken for maths after study. Participants: 180 Canadian students. Results: GPA correlated with Wonderlick test + extrovert characters from 16PF. EQi + GPA did not correlate. High cognitive ability + introverts tended to have high GPA. Conclusion: results provided no support for claims that ability of EI predicted academic achievement.
Implications of Ability Grouping- Boaler et al
Ability Grouping (AG) = controversial method, groups students based on academic ability in particular subjects, intended to benefit both students and teachers- improve effectiveness of teaching and learning. Effectiveness of AG = / limits conflict among pupils (competition), / more effective teaching from tailored lessons, X AG's could demotivate pupils by labeling, X higher groups may feel pressured, lower feel restricted. In education: most common in secondary schools where pupils grouped on predicted grades- can also be used in primary schools.
Boaler, William + Brown
Aim: investigate whether AG's had impact on academic attainment. Design: case study- 24 schools (12 primary, 12 secondary). Data gathered through existing attainment scores, interviewing teachers + policy makers and observations of classroom interactions. Findings: case study found no evidence that AG raised achievements, although it did confirm findings from previous research that is there were gains, these were from high ability groups only.
Social Roles + Academic Success- Morris
Schools expect pupils to conform to expectations + beliefs about how they should act/ behave- system would be inoperable without it. Overemphasis on conformity limits creativity + individuality? May have effect on higher-stage academic success + society which student will join after school. Upside may be academic success. Riley (1995)- prior knowledge of letter + positive adjustment to school routines = predictor of successful reading. Conformity does not always = engagement with learning- may be more important for some to be member of group that does not engage. Individuals who struggle with learning may find it easier to join subculture that doesn't value it- learning = negative to them, accuse those who want to learn as being 'creeps' or 'keens'. Morris
Explored how schools can reprodure race, class + gender inequality through regulation of students bodies. Urban school, USA. Observations. Teachers viewed African-American girls behaviour as 'unladylike'- attempted to discipline them into dress + manners considered more gender appropriate. Latino boys viewed as threatening- often received stricter discipline. White + Asian American students = non-threatening + gender appropriate- less strict discipline. Compliance to school rules may be what teacher look for in students + may be conductive to educational progress (Riley) or conformity to school rules may represent conformity to cultural values that are not shared by students + their communities- explain lower achievement of ethnic groups in exams?
Learned Helplessness- Raymond et al
Learned Helplessness (LH) in students may arise from habitual use of undesirable attributions about failure- eg student failing exam attributes to lack of revision- able to control as they can revise harder for re-sit, attribute failure to lack of ability- little they can do to correct situation- perceive themselves as doomed to failure, give up trying + accept idea that they lack ability to succeed. Undesirable attributions may come from quantity + type of feedback received- also gender differences in type/ amount of feedback + students responses to feedback- girls more likely do develop feelings of LH than boys. LH can cause 3 types of deficit: motivational (feel hopeless so unmotivated to try), cognitive (missed opportunities to practice + improve skills + abilities) + affective (depression, anxiety + listlessness).
Raymond + Watkins Aim: how LH can affect student beliefs + epectations. Tested relationship between LH, risk factors + deficits. Looked at how 741 students from Hong Kong schools all of low social class. Felt competition at school, had authoritative teachers + parents often strict = lots of pressure. Students responded at begining + end of academic year. Findings: prior academic achievement = big predictor of later achievement. Negative feedback from teachers lowered self-efficacy + self-esteem + students beliefs about ability. Higher external attributions made (linking failure to environment/ situation), more likely to have higher levels of LH. Conclusion: low achievement links to LH- lead to disengagement in school- belief they have learning difficulties- lower achievements.
Developing a Positive Self-Esteem- Pendlington
If learners feel good about themselves, should be willing to engage educational activities. Maslow's heirachy of needs- when basic physiological and social needs met, self-esteem need must be addressed. Although positive self-beliefs are related to higher academic achievement, argued that relationship is only small.
Mathematic intervention- 6 low achieving year 6 children. When task too difficult, would cry, become silent, refuse to participate or kick out. All used negative labeling to describe themselves + mathematical ability. Worked with group 60 hours over 11 weeks outside classroom. When told task was too difficult + they should expect problems they worked without behavioural problems- when succeeded, self-esteem rose + remained engaged. Came to accept struggling, getting stuck + making errors were normal part of learning mathematics + did not disengage. Findings: when children returned to class they continues to show engagement + reading also improved. 5/6 children achieved expected level in SAT's. Conclusion: raising self-esteem is not sufficent to improve educational engagement, but by changing way learners think about own ability so their beliefs and expectations are raised, which will have positive impact and ultimately raise self-esteem.
Individual Support- Lewis & Norwich
Students who received 1-2-1 support moved from 98th percentile to 50th percentile (Bloom 1984).
Lewis & Norwich
Review article into teaching strategies for students with learning difficulties. Successful teaching strategies were same for all learners- additional needs or not. Implies all learners can be taught together + all learners can participate in learning process. Being in classroom doesn't automatically mean you're engaged in learning- actually have to be able to access and use information provided. Suggests that only minor adaptions are needed to accomodate most learners, eg: use knowledge in more than one context, use examples to help learn concepts, more time to solve problems (extra time in exams), ensure students have mastered one stage before moving onto next, encourage students to think about own learning strategies and use regular, focussed assessment.
Ability Grouping- G+T- Sukhnandan + Lee
"Gifted" = particular ability in one or more statuary subjects. "Talented" = abilities/ skills in art, music, or performing arts. Those who are considered to have exceptional abilities are usually thought to be in the top 5% of the population. Despite all the positive attributes associated with being identified as G+T, there are also problems, eg; labeling, isolation from peers and challenges for teachers to meet needs.
Sukhnandan & Lee
Literature review of over 20 studies into effects of ability grouping on students. Comparing streaming, setting + within class grouping to mixed ability teaching. No significant different found between different conditions. Streaming and setting both reinforced social divisions between students + had no positive impact on achievement (negative impact on bottom set students?)
Provision of Remedial Support- Burroughs-Lange
Learning needs that don't occur all the time (eg learning to read). Differentiation = how educational experience can be changed to match students abilities. Remedial support = when a student isn't reaching the level they are supposed to. "Synthetic Phonics" = children learn to sound out each letter of the alphabet. Intervention strategies have been found useful for children whose reading age is below their chronological age.
Longitudian study. Students taken out of class for 30 minutes per day for a period of 12-20 weeks- makes a difference in long term. Study followed up on childrens literacy in London schools a year after the intervention had been received. In 2005-2006 literacy progress was compared in lowest achieving children in 42 schools. Intervention of differentiation is to modify learning experience to ensure that all learners can participate in learning event.
Differences in Ethnic Achievement
Ethnic groups identified by common cultural features + within UK tendancy to focus on immigrant communities from Europe, Asia + Africa. Nearly all ethnic groups include individuals who have been born in UK. Some do very well in education, others consistently under perform compared to English speaking majority. Difficult to separate effects of minority background + family income in explaining low school attainment in children of ethnic minority backgrounds. Issues involved in trying to ensure engagement + achievement = complex + some factors beyond reach of schools. Measures can be taken in schools to try to ensure pupils of all ethnic backgrounds are given every opportunity to engage + reach potential. Proficiency in English = important factor + is one way to tackle attainment.
Key Stage 1 (2010): pupils of Indian origin had highest proportion achieving expected level in reading (93%) followed by White British, Irish, Mixed White/ Black African, Mixed White/ Asian + Chinese (85%). Pupils of White British, Irish, Mixed White/ Black African, Indian, Bangladeshi + Chinese origin had highest proportion achieving expected level in Maths (90%+). Higher proportion of pupils whose first language is English achieved expected level.
DfES: 4 specific areas to improve achievement: 1) raise expectations (of pupils, teachers, parents), 2) Culture + ethos, 3) Parental involvement, and 4) Ethnic monitoring.
Intergroup Tasks (Culture + Grouping) - Aronson
Mixed ability teaching = more beneficial to majority of students. Teachers expectations can affect students performance. Positive peer relationship + self-esteem are related to attainment. Pupils from some ethnic backgrounds do not perform as well as others. Given these factors it is important that schools do not label pupils from ethnic minority backgrounds as under-achievers.
Aronson- Jigsaw Technique
Pupils put into groups + each pupil in group given area of topic to research. Pupils researching same area join together + help each other become experts. Then return to original group and teach areas to each other. Effective because it encouraged pupils to work with other students + make students feel more important/ part of the team as no one in their group will learn their section if they do not do their bit. Can be put into groups for range of reasons (eg; age, gender, ability, subject) + may be organised to improve achievement of ethnic groups.
Ladson + Billings suggest... students need to experience academic success, culturally relevant ideas/ skills should be used + developed, students should be encouraged to challenge 'social norms' that maintain social inequalities.
Role Models + Positive Support- Aim High
Concerns of underachievement of children from some ethnic minority backgrounds. Related to parallel concerns about development of anti-social behaviours among some students from ethnic minority backgrounds who become involved in gang culture. Offer role models so not always surrounded by negativity.
Aiming High: African- Carribbean Achievement Project: 30 schools- endearvoured to raise aspirations of African-Caribbean students by encouraging schools to adopt whole school approach.
Role Models --> teachers = positive role models. Black or African teachers who encourage + celebrate cultural diversity are viewed positively. Giving students positions of responsibility = good for individuals. Rold models from family are also important- eg fathers discouraging bad attitude.
Gender Differences in Educational Achievement
In past, males had more opportunities for education than women. Now females tend to do better than males: Pre-school- girls have better communication, social + cognitive skills + more likely to be read to. Boys improve understanding of number more than literacy. Foundation: girls better in English + slightly better at Maths, minimal difference for science. GCSE: female gain more A*-C's (around 10% more). AS/A2: females gain more A-Level passes. Males: type of work- logical, spatial, sequential, physical (Maths, Physics, ICT), Females: type of work- verbal, imaginative, emphatic (Psychology, English Lit/Lang, Art & Design). Very small differences in IQ- males more likely to achieve extreme scores. Must be other factors involved in differences. Consider: females must also be encouraged, getting 'low-score' doesn't necessarily mean low achievement.
Self-report, volunteer sample- undergraduates. To examine effect of individual differences on final exam results at Oxford. Only major factor predicting educational achievement = verbal ability- no significant differences found between males and females. Conclusion: gender gap in degree results was more likely to be related to nature of academic assessment system (situational factors) at Oxford, rather than individual differences between genders.
Biological Differences in Brain Structure- Kimura
Suggested that biological differences in males and females brains = cause of differences in cognitive abilities between gender: Hormones- male (testosterone) + female (oestrogen) hormones influence brain before birth + during puberty. Weight- male brains weigh 1400g/ female brains weigh 1250g. Tissue- males have more grey matter (info processing) / females more white matter (connections between processing centres). Females tend to have larger corpus callosum- able to make faster connections from verbal side to other areas? -higher verbal test scores. Lateralisation of function- left hemisphere responsible for logic + analytical thought (male trait), right hemisphere controls emotional + creative thought (female trait). Language in left, numerical in right. Evolutionary: male (hunter gatherer) logical, spatial, sequential + physical skills. Female (homemaker) verbal, imaginative + empathetic skills.
Kimura- Review Article
Suggests sex hormone exposure early on is important factor in differentiating between genders. Can influence structure of brain. Consider brain plasticity- effects of this much harder to measure. Sex differences in intelligence reflect different types of ability rather than different levels of ability- outcomes effect of sex hormones. Women excell on word recall tests + rapid identification of items tests- link to corpus callosum? Animal research shown female rats tend to use similar navigational strategies to women (land) whereas males use geometric shapes.
Strategies for Enabling Learning of Boys and Girls
Issue of narrowing gender gap in education = constantly worked on. Big focus on boys underachievement. Gender affects education in many ways: preferred learning styles (males kinaesthetic, females auditory), behavioural reactions to school setting (opting out = passive + non-aggressive for females, more active + aggressive for males), peer group norms/ level of influence = females - encourage work + praise for success, males devalue education. Response to task types= females- better at coursework tasks (deadlines + open ended tasks), males- better in exams (pressure + last minute approach). Boy friendly education: EG's- competitive, short, structured chunks, kinaesthetic learning, analytic approach. Girl friendly: EG's- group work, discussion tasks.
Younger & Warrington: Schools successful in raising achievement over 5 years- 8 primary, 8 secondary- wide range of methods: focus groups, semi-structured interviews w/ students + staff, obs, photos, analysis of student writing. Aimed to identify core strategies successful in raising boy's achievement + transfer to other schools + monitor effectiveness. Strategies which raised boys achievement likely to raise girls. 4 identified: pedagogic (short, focussed, interactive), individual (realistic + challenging targets based on expectations), socio-cultural (team building, encouragement to engage in extra-curricular activities, raising self-esteem) + whole-school (single-sex classrooms- no conclusive positive evidence). Conclusions: strategies can improve learning for all, but maintains gender gap.