Visible Learning

The work of Professor John Hattie and the Visible Learning team has been well documented among the online teaching community.  In the last 6 years Hattie has published his findings and the impact they could have on schools, teaching and ultimately children in three books. On publication in 2009 Visible Learning presented the biggest ever collection of research into what actually works in schools to improve children’s learning. Not what was fashionable, not what political and educational vested interests wanted to champion, but what actually produced the best results in terms of improving learning and educational outcomes.  In Visible Learning for Teachers he took the next step by bringing those ground breaking concepts to a completely new audience. Written for students, pre-service and in-service teachers, it explained how to apply the principles of Visible Learning to any classroom anywhere in the world. In the latest book, Visible Learning and the Science of How We Learn, John Hattie joined forces with cognitive psychologist Greg Yates to build on the original data and legacy of the Visible Learning project, showing how it’s underlying ideas and the cutting edge of cognitive science can form a powerful and complimentary framework for shaping learning in the classroom and beyond. For more details on these publications click here.


There are numerous videos available online showcasing Hattie’s work.  However, due to the ongoing nature of his research the top ranking influences on children’s achievements can vary; although they are all embedded in the Visible Learning mantra of teachers becoming evaluators; seeing learning through the eyes of students and helping them become their own teachers. Take a look at Hattie presenting, in his no nonsense style, the influences that have least (including negative) and greatest impact on children’s achievement – it will definitely make you think and question you and your school’s practice!

Unfortunately, some of Hattie’s research has been taken out of context and used as yet another checklist for school improvement. It does not work like that, so it is important to read the actual books mentioned above. Also, try watching John Hattie’s TED talk below, “Why are so many of our teachers and schools so successful”.

A further outcome of Hattie’s research has been the development of Visible Learning plus: a professional development programme for teachers. It provides an in-depth review and change model for schools.. With a seminar and support series the Visible Learning plus team helps schools to find out about the impact they are having on student achievement. Find out more at


2 thoughts on “Visible Learning

  1. David Hitchin

    I think the 8 mind frames, as Hattie calls them, are key to being an effective practitioner. How good would it be if we at Hamford could create a video of how this looks in the classroom. I would have loved to have seen it rather than read about it (or just discovering this for myself) when I was training and/or an NQT.


  2. David Hitchin

    Prizes awarded to those who spot the grammar mistake in my first comment!


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