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Understanding student motivation a key to raising academic standards

Media release 2 minute read

MEDIA RELEASE For immediate release Monday 13 August 2007 Understanding student motivation a key to raising academic standards Contemporary research on human motivation and learning is enabling schools to understand better students’ reasons for learning and in turn, how they can raise academic achievement according to a visiting international expert on educational leadership. Professor Elizabeth Leo of the University of Dundee, Scotland is in Melbourne to speak at the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) annual conference. In her keynote presentation to be delivered today Professor Leo will present evidence from a longitudinal research study of an Academy school in England that has moved from being in the country’s lowest 10 per cent on academic achievement to the top 10 per cent without a change in student profiles. The school achieved this remarkable turnaround through a series of research-led intervention strategies. “School leaders who focus the organisation on learning and learners, as opposed to simply performance can transform motivation learning and subsequently, achievement,” Professor Leo says. “Teacher and student motivation and learning are inextricably linked. The leadership challenge of improving learning in school then becomes a question of student and teacher learning. “School leaders need to understand how motivational processes can be optimised at all levels in schools and what forms of leadership promote adaptive motivation to learn and achieve in and beyond school.” Elizabeth Leo is Professor of Orgnaisational Leadership and Learning and Dean of the School of Education, Social Work and Community Education, University of Dundee, Scotland. She has worked successfully with schools and local education authorities to promote research-led educational reform that inspires leadership for inclusion and learning and in turn promotes student motivation and achievement. ACER Research Conference 2007 The Leadership Challenge: Improving Learning in Schools takes place in Melbourne today and tomorrow. ****************ENDS*************

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