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Durham University

School of Education

Staff Profile

Publication details for Prof Joe Elliott

Elliott, J.G. (2009). The nature of teacher authority and teacher expertise. Support for Learning 24(4): 197-203.

Author(s) from Durham


The so-called 'soft skills' utilised by teachers – including relationship building, awareness of the pupil's context and background and the demonstration of authority – to develop an appropriate learning culture in their classrooms have long been recognised as being a major contribution to effective promotion of positive behaviour. This article considers some of the dimensions of these, focusing on how these help in contributing towards 'teacher authority'. The article draws on the parallel experiences of teachers and researchers in England, Russia and the United States to illustrate some of the international dimensions of this theme.