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Alternative forms of early grade instructional coaching: Emerging evidence from field experiments in South Africa

Janeli Kotze, Brahm Fleisch and Stephen Taylor

International Journal of Educational Development, 2019, vol. 66, issue C, 203-213

Abstract: Structured pedagogic programmes are emerging as a promising approach to address low learning outcomes in developing countries. The delivery model of these programmes matters, and on-site instructional coaching has been shown to be a key component. In this article, we report on a series of government-led randomised experiments in South African primary schools, which evaluates the efficacy of different aspects of instructional coaching as part of structured learning programmes. In the first multi-year on-site coaching study, we found that the structured pedagogic programme combined with coaching was substantially more cost-effective than the structured pedagogic programme that used conventional centralised teacher training. The ability to scale up on-site coaching, however, is an open question. In the current experiment, a virtual coaching model that includes provision of a tablet with additional electronic resources was tested. The article reports on the midline evaluation results, which show that after one year of intervention, virtual coaching was no less effective than on-site coaching at improving both the instructional practice of teachers and the targeted literacy outcomes. This points to the potential for technological innovations to enable wider rollout of coaching programmes, even in contexts where teachers are not familiar with new technologies.

Keywords: Early grade reading; Coaching; Structured pedagogic programme; ICT (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ijedudev.2018.09.004

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