Observing and recording classroom processes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


Classroom observation as a research approach has a long and interesting history. This chapter presents a review of approaches that have been to study classrooms since the start of the 20th century. The methods of data collection and analysis, and methodologies they draw upon, are discussed together with changes and continuities in practices over time. The chapter argues that classroom observation has made an important contribution to our understanding of educational processes by enabling the study of pedagogic process in the naturalistic setting of the classroom. Such research has provided detailed and precise evidence about the extent to which educational innovations and policy reforms have resulted in changes in classroom practices and student learning outcomes. The chapter concludes with a discussion of recent developments in the field of classroom observation and ways in which it might usefully develop over the coming years.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBritish Education Research Association/SAGE Handbook of Educational Research
EditorsDominic Wyse, Larry Suter, Neil Selwyn, Emma Smith
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9781473918917
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • classroom observation, classroom interaction, classroom discourse, mixed-methods

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