The Expert Learner: Challenging the Myth of Ability
What do Amadeus Mozart, David Beckham, Marie Curie and Bill Gates have in common? Answer: all excel in their diverse areas of music, sport, science and computing. The Expert Learner looks at what we know about acquiring such expertise and seeks to apply it to education, particularly to classroom teaching. Challenging the widely held belief that excellence is the result of innate ability, it shows how ability is developed through applied learning and deliberate practice.
Drawing on studies about expertise The Expert Learner highlights the importance of:
With its rich source of ideas for expert teaching and learning, this book looks at some of the ways we can achieve 'wide-awake' thinking in the classroom.
"Highly readable, plenty of examples, and packed with the power of thinking about learning in a way that can make the difference.
This is a book full of optimism - it offers a way to positively think about learning and schools. We are not determined by birth, social status, poverty, wealth ... but we can invest in our learning if we "think" appropriately. Stobart emphasizes not just practice, but deliberate coached practice, he shows the multiplier effect that comes from seizing opportunities or someone creating opportunities, and he shows the importance of risk taking, deep knowledge, creativity, and developing talk about progress."
"If I were to recommend just one book that all teachers, parents, employers and politicians who are interested in education should read, it would be this one. Not only is it full of engaging stories, underpinned by important research, but it goes to the very heart of what it is to be a successful learner and effective teacher. It demolishes the myth of inherited ability as the overriding determinant of achievement and provides an alternative account by unpacking the opportunities, experiences and practices that lead to the development of true expertise. Read it and use the ideas to challenge backward thinking."
"With clear arguments and ample research evidence, Stobart dispels the myth of ability and shows us the harm of society's persistent reliance on repackaged IQ tests. He advocates, instead, for teaching methods and schools that open up rather than close down opportunities. Using research on expertise and compelling examples from sports, science, medicine, and music, this book shows us how good teaching practices - such as rich questioning and supportive feedback - can engage students in the kinds of deep and purposeful practice needed for adept, expert learning. All students can benefit from this model of teaching, not just an elite few."