Using student voice, videorecorded classroom interactions and teacher feedback to develop positive learning environments

A significant proportion of young people still do not complete Year 12, and a high proportion of these will not be in further education, training or employment at age 24. Common to this group is a history of negative educational experiences, including conflictual teacher-student relationships and disrupted learning due to chronic absenteeism coupled with disciplinary absences.

This pilot project will use student voice, video observation of classroom interactions and teacher feedback / professional development to promote positive learning environments in schools serving high numbers of learners with challenging behaviours.

Funded by the Queensland Government’s Education Horizon scheme, this project commenced in February 2017 with three secondary state schools serving disadvantaged communities.

The project began with surveys of teachers and students in Grades 7-10, followed by semi-structured interviews with students with a history of challenging behaviour.

The aim of the project is to identify and promote practices that positively contribute to student engagement.

Video-recorded observations will capture classroom interactions to use as stimulus in reflective interviews with participating teachers.

Four whole-school professional development modules are in development using the research literature as a foundation and informed by aggregated data from each participating school.

The focus of the professional development is to provide teachers with proactive strategies to prevent or deescalate classroom conflict and to maintain control in challenging contexts. Teacher wellbeing and emotional health is a key interest going forward.

Findings from this research will be used to develop a large-scale intervention study for application across one or more school regions.


The views expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the Department of Education and Training or the Queensland Government.

Funding / Grants

  • Education Horizon Grant, Department of Education (2017)