The importance of environment for teacher professional learning in Malta and Scotland

Michelle Attard Tonna, Rachel Shanks* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
17 Downloads (Pure)


Current reforms in the Maltese and Scottish educational contexts can only be fully implemented if teachers radically transform the way they teach. Teacher professional learning is an important mechanism that policy-makers, school leaders and administrators have to achieve this. Teacher professional learning is, above all, situated within the specific social workplace environment of teacher practice. Thus, schools need to be recognised as important sites of professional learning for teachers. In Malta and Scotland teachers were asked about their professional learning to identify how the learning environment within individual schools affects professional learning. In both countries, collaboration and school leadership were key components in determining a school’s learning environment. Data analysis led to the production of examples of expansive and restrictive features. Policy-makers, school leaders and administrators can use these features to examine how schools operate in terms of helping or hindering professional learning in the school environment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-109
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Journal of Teacher Education
Issue number1
Early online date24 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2017


  • professional development
  • professional learning
  • learning environment
  • workplace learning
  • school leadership


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