Future directions for subject-specific professional learning for teachers: opportunities and benefits

Wednesday, 8th May 2024, 4:15 pm - 6:15 pm

Registration from 3:45 pm

Teacher professionalism is a driver for improvement in Scottish education and is underpinned by high-quality career-long professional learning.

In a period of educational reform and financial austerity, it is timely to consider how to maximise the impact of teacher professional learning.

Notably, subject-specific professional learning (SSPL) has been shown to effectively impact teachers’ practices and to aid teacher retention. However, provision of SSPL across Scotland is variable.

Hear from Stuart Farmer, Institute of Physics (IOP) and Fhiona Mackay, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages/Confucius Institute for Scotland’s Schools about the issues around SSPL. Explore how they might be improved across the curriculum.

Stuart and Fhiona will discuss key points from the Subjects Matter report, which looks at subject-specific continuing professional development (CPD) for teachers. The report is based on the IOP’s collaboration with over 50 educational organisations, subject-specific societies and individual specialists, who drew on a wide range of evidence from England, Scotland and Wales.

Following Subjects Matter, in 2021 Laura Thomas, a PhD researcher at the University of Stirling, produced a follow-up paper that summarised the policy and practice in relation to Career Long Professional Learning (CLPL) in Scotland. It went on to discuss the research on what makes high quality and effective (CLPL), particularly in relation to subject-specific professional learning (SSPL) before examining the evidence available on (CLPL) provision in Scotland.


Who should attend?

Teachers and teacher educators, professional learning facilitators, subject associations, learned societies, policy makers and other stakeholders from universities, schools, local authorities, national agencies, government, and the third sector with an interest in teacher professional learning, education improvement, and education reform.


Benefits of attending

Thought-provoking stimulus presentations and roundtable discussions provide the opportunity to:

  • Find out about the research and knowledge of the benefits of subject-specific professional learning.
  • Discover how the provision of subject-specific professional learning (SSPL) is central to education reform.
  • Explore how SSPL might be improved.



Lynne Jones
Professional Development Officer, SCILT
Aileen Chilvers-Grierson
Project and Events Coordinator, SCILT
Stuart Farmer
Learning and Skills Manager, Institute of Physics Scotland

Engage with Strathclyde is a programme of events organised by staff from the University of Strathclyde to initiate new and escalate existing relationships with external organisations. Please see our privacy note detailing how your personal information will be used.

Back to events calendar