Classroom of students with their arms raised.
Key players from the past 20 years discuss the intent and implementation of the QT Model along with teachers and school leaders who have experienced its impact first hand.
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Pre 2002


The QT Model is derived from a long history of research into classroom practice that makes a difference for students. Predecessors of the QT Model are:

  • Professor Fred Newmann and associates on ‘authentic pedagogy’ (1990- 1995) as part of the Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools (CORS) research agenda
  • Associate Professor James Ladwig, Professor Bob Lingard and their colleagues on ‘productive pedagogy’ (1998-2000) as part of the Queensland School Reform Longitudinal Study (QSRLS).



In 2002 the NSW Department of Education approached Associate Professor James Ladwig and Laureate Professor Jenny Gore to develop a pedagogical framework using the best available evidence of teaching that makes a difference to student learning.

Along with senior department executives, Jenny and James spent days and weeks pouring over research, discussing key elements of pedagogy, debating clear articulations of classroom practice, and undertaking hours of lesson observations.

From these discussions, the Quality Teaching Model was born.

The QT Model centres on the three key dimensions:

  • Intellectual Quality: Developing deep understanding of important knowledge
  • Quality Learning Environment: Ensuring positive classrooms that boost student learning
  • Significance: Connecting learning to students’ lives and the wider world

Under these three dimensions are 18 elements of pedagogy which treat teaching holistically and attend to matters of curriculum, student engagement and equity with classroom and assessment practice.

Front cover of the 2003 Classroom Practice Guide - purple with a white arch from bottom left corner to top middle



In 2003 the QT Model was launched across the more than 2,000 NSW government schools along with a suite of resources, including the QT Classroom Practice guide, a discussion paper, research material and accompanying video material.

Immediately, teachers responded positively about having a framework which provided a conceptual lens and common language with which to discuss and analyse classroom practice.

Video: Archive material from the launch of the QT Model through to today.



Following the launch of the QT Model, Jenny Gore, James Ladwig and colleagues set out on the first major research project to understand the impact of the QT Model.

Systemic Implications of Pedagogy and Achievement in NSW Public Schools (SIPA) was a longitudinal study of 36 schools over four years, involving 660 lesson observations and analysis of 522 assessment tasks, which investigated relationships among pedagogy, professional development, and student achievement.

The project made a significant contribution to the field’s understanding of schooling, school reform and educational research. The study used the QT Model to examine classroom and assessment practice and found that while there was lots of good teaching, there was also significant room for pedagogical improvement.

Another insight from this study was that a pedagogical framework like the QT Model was unlikely, on its own, to make a significant difference to teaching practice – teachers needed a way to use it and embed it in their practice.

Original QT in NSW schools logo. Blue diamond over a purple square in a roughly drawn box



Following the SIPA study, Jenny Gore and Dr Julie Bowe set out to develop a way of supporting teachers to work with the QT Model.

And so Quality Teaching Rounds was born.

The first study of QTR, Effective Implementation of Pedagogical Reform (EIPR), took place in 2009 with 16 schools from the Parramatta Catholic Education Office.

Strong positive results from this study supported the implementation of pedagogical reform, through QTR. By changing teachers’ understanding of pedagogy and providing a powerful and structured teacher learning framework, the EIPR project demonstrated that QTR is an effective and valuable approach to professional development.

Two teachers engaging in a QTR discussion, with more teachers in the background.



Following the positive results from the EIPR study, Jenny, Julie and colleagues, set out to further investigate the feasibility of Quality Teaching Rounds across diverse school settings using design experiment methodology.

A study, Investigating QTR to Support Teacher Professional Learning, was undertaken with 18 government schools in the ACT.

This study provided further evidence that QTR is a positive experience for teachers. It led to a series of modifications, further honing the QTR process into the version that is used today which typically involves groups of four teachers undertaking four days of in-school QTR.

Cover of "Continuing the discussion about classroom practice: Quality Teaching in ACT schools" cover. Colourful squares and rectangles in a grid.



It is widely understood that the quality of teaching is the most important in-school factor influencing student academic achievement.

Between 2014 and 2015, Jenny Gore and colleagues at the University of Newcastle’s Teachers and Teaching Research Centre set out to gather empirical evidence on the impact of Quality Teaching Rounds on teachers.

Robust evidence of the effectiveness of any professional development for teachers is limited. A clustered randomised controlled trial involving 192 teachers from 24 NSW government schools demonstrated for the first time that participation in QTR leads to a measurable improvement in the quality of teaching and teacher morale across both primary and secondary schools and schools in metropolitan and rural areas. The effects of QTR in this study were sustained six months later.

Teachers sitting at a table in a QTR discussion



Impressed by the findings from the first randomised controlled trial, the philanthropic Paul Ramsay Foundation engaged the Teachers and Teaching Research Centre in a major five-year program of research and scaling.

The Building Capacity for Quality Teaching in Australian Schools project was launched in 2018 and had three core aims:

  1. Undertake a rigorous program of research
  2. Scale QTR, making it widely accessible for teachers across Australia
  3. Develop a non-profit social enterprise to ensure long-term sustainability

Building Capacity for Quality Teaching in Australian Schools has been described as a 20-year program of research undertaken in just five years.

Jenny Gore with key stakeholders at the launch of the Building Capacity project



The sheer scale of the Building Capacity program of research, investigating the impact of QTR on teacher and student outcomes, makes it unlike anything undertaken in Australian education. It comprised four randomised controlled trials (which effectively became six due to two split cohorts), including the largest randomised controlled trial in Australian  education research history. Several related studies have provided rich data and valuable insights into the impact of QTR in a range of contexts.

The evidence collected to date on the impact of QTR is compelling – demonstrating that  QTR improves teaching quality, improves teacher morale, improves teacher efficacy, and school culture.

Robust evidence of the impact of professional development on student outcomes is elusive on the world stage. The Building Capacity project demonstrated for the first time that participation in QTR leads to improved student academic achievement.

Three RCTs have produced robust evidence demonstrating that QTR produces statistically significant positive effects on student achievement:

  • in two subjects (maths and reading)
  • in two stages (Years 3-4 and Years 5-6)
  • in two states (NSW and QLD)
  • in two modes (face-to-face and fully online PD) and,
  • in an independent trial conducted by the University of Queensland.

While not every RCT undertaken in the program of research produced statistically significant results, the scope of the findings are particularly impressive in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and analyses from the US and UK which found fewer than one-quarter of RCTs in education produce positive effects.

Smiling teacher with long red hair helps a young student with their writing.



From the beginning, the Building Capacity project had three interrelated goals: undertaking extensive research, taking QTR to scale and ensuring the sustainability of QTR.

The sustainability goal was realised in 2020 when we launched the Quality Teaching Academy – a nonprofit social enterprise designed to support teachers in delivering quality teaching for every student, every day.

The QT Academy delivers powerful professional development, translates rigorous research into practice, advocates for the profession, and connects educators who share a vision of quality teaching.

QTR in its current form has been offered since 2014. The launch of the QT Academy in 2020 turbo-charged uptake of QTR around Australia by making it more accessible through a program of face-to-face workshops in major east coast cities and across rural and regional NSW. The development of QTR Digital and online QTR workshops has enabled more and more teachers from across Australia (and the world) to engage with the QT Model.

Since 2014, more than 4,700 teachers from 1,300 schools have participated in QTR delivering benefits to as many as 785,000 students in that time.

2023 and beyond


The QT Model has resonated with teachers throughout the past two decades. Teachers tell us they value that the Model builds on a solid research foundation, honours the complexity of teaching, and respects what teachers already know and do.

At its core is a simple premise to provide teachers with a conceptual lens and common language to guide discussions and analysis of pedagogy.

The research into and scaling of QTR continue.

In 2023 the federal government announced a national program to expand QTR as part of its National Teacher Workforce Action Plan. Strengthening Induction through QTR seeks to support 1,600 beginning and experienced teachers over the next four years, aiming to improve retention, teaching quality and student outcomes.

You can find out more and sign up to this project here.

Additional research projects continue to investigate the impact of the QT Model and QTR in various contexts including for higher education, initial teacher education, inclusive education, hospital schools, in assessment practice, and supports required to enact positive school change in disadvantaged communities.

Two teachers talking

  • New Release

    Quality Teaching: Classroom Practice Guide (hard copy)

    The Classroom Practice Guide articulates the QT Model to support teacher professional learning and dialogue.
    The guide is intended to structure planning, reflection and analysis in order to build capacity for quality teaching.

    $25.00 Purchase
  • New Release

    Quality Teaching: Assessment Practice Guide (hard copy)

    The Assessment Practice Guide supports teachers to analyse assessment materials and can be used to guide the planning and redesign of assessment materials.

    $25.00 Purchase