Science teachers in northern Scotland: their perceptions of opportunities for effective professional learning

Stuart Farmer, Ann Childs

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This research investigates the perceptions of a group of secondary science teachers (26) from six schools in a remote part of northern Scotland of the opportunities afforded to them for effective professional learning. Focus groups of science teachers were conducted, and the findings identified a number of key areas they perceived as effective professional learning, including the availability of a wide range of opportunities for professional learning from a number of providers, the professional learning in their own schools and collaboration with colleagues. However, they also identified a number of key barriers including their remote location from the Central Belt of Scotland, which they perceived to be the key source of effective professional learning in Scotland. They also identified lack of time, workload and initiative overload as key barriers. Finally, implications for further research are explored.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalTeacher Development
Early online date31 Oct 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 31 Oct 2021


  • professional learning
  • collaboration
  • remoteness
  • discourse community
  • science education

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