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Teaching models

                                                        TEACHING MODELS

Dr. N.V.S.Suryanarayana

Teaching is often thought of as something that comes rather naturally to people who know their subject.  In general, it is thought that it is a simple process that produces simple outcomes.1 But teaching is an intriguing, important and complex process.2 It takes place in a complicated social institution, which is filled with diverse people.  It is a fluid interplay of events.  One can just know the subject and teach it, because the subjects themselves are ever changing.  It is true that teaching is a process by which teacher and students create a shared environment including sets of values and beliefs which in turn color their view of reality.3  The teacher must learn to control five processes of teaching; firstly, making and using knowledge, secondly, shaping the school, thirdly, teaching with strategy, fourthly, creating interpersonal climates and fifth and lastly controlling a teaching personality.4  Bruner also emphasized four major features of theory of instruction in effective teaching (i) predisposition toward learning, (ii) structured body of knowledge, (iii) sequences of material to be learnt, and (iv) the nature and pacing of reward and punishment.5  It means that a theory of instruction in teaching is concerned with how what one wishes to teach can best learnt, with improving rather than describing learning.

Research on Teaching

            Research on teaching styles demonstrate vigorous changes during the past decade.  As with any developing field all stages of the movement are visible simultaneously, but there appears to be a clearly discernible pattern to the development.

Phase I Validation of Theoretically Derived Teaching Construct

            In the first phase during the 1960s and early 1970s, a flurry of studies attempted the validation of theoretically derived teaching construct, usually dichotomous variables that carried on implicit, if not explicit, value preference.  Several instrumentation break through (Medley and Mitzel 1958,6  Flanders 1960) allowed the dominative versus integrative construct of Anderson (1939)7 and the teacher centered versus learner centered notion of Withall (1949)8 to be examined in classrooms.  The research for the most effective teaching style was pursued with much excitement during this period.

Phase II Specific Behaviour of Pupils

            The next phase focused on specific behaviours that are related to learning outcomes of pupils rather than on global teaching styles.  This phase continues actively today as specific teacher  variables are tested in various settings to determine the utility.

Phase III Research-Based Teaching Pattern

            A third critical, bur rather rudimentary, phase has just begun to emerge from the research base.  The development of research derived teaching patterns or styles has started to occur, at least for children of a particular age in particular settings.  Only a few patterns have been identified, but the ones that have emerged are firmly rooted in empirical research rather than derived from theory.  Within this phase, there is an attempt to develop generic patterns or styles that have broad utility as well as the possibility of synthesizing specific patterns effective for particular Children in specific settings.

            The research on teacher effectiveness has been consistently set in the framework developed by Mitzel (1960)9 and elaborated by Dunkin and Biddle (1974).10  Mitzel sketched four categories of variables: presage, context, process and product.

            Presage variables include all the knowledge, attitudes, values and personality characteristics that teachers and students bring to the classroom.

            Context variables include, but are not limited to, building facilities, programme materials, classroom aids and psychological climate.

            Process variables are the actual behaviours and interactions that occur in the day to day instructional activities of the school.

            Finally, product variables are the measures of the pupil changes on a dimension of interest, such as academic achievement or self-esteem.11

Methods Based Teaching

            Teaching methods inevitably constitute significant aspects of the human effort to erudcate.  These are the patterns of teacher behaviour that recurrent, applicable to various subject matters, characteristics of more than one teacher and relevant to learning and may be considered a sub-category of educational methods which also include instructional devices such as teaching machines, conventional and programmed textbooks, simulations, films and others such as inductive and deductive method, heuristic method, lecture method, discussion method, discovery method, problem-solving method and project method, etc.12

            The origin of methodology in education can be traced to the ideas of Rousseau, who himself was influenced by Locke and others.  Earlier writers like Comenius, rebelled against the formal education of their day and suggested better principles of teaching but without any tangible results because of the turmoil of the times.  In the eighteenth century, Rousseau provided some of the ideas for reforms in taching which others developed and put into practice.

            Herbart recognized the need for adopting instruction to fit the capacities of the child, his chief concern was with method and with the work of the teacher.

Models Based Teaching

            We can refer Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives which are categorized into three domains.  These are cognitive, effective and psychomotor.14  To achieve these educational objectives or goals, different teaching strategies must be practiced by the teacher.  Model approach to  teaching was proposed by a number of educationists and psychologists.  Flander15 put his interaction analysis as a model of teaching and for this approach he categorized the statements of students and teachers into ten categories.  Glaser developed his stripped down model of teaching which after some modification is well known as basic teaching model.  He divided instructional material in his model into four components.  These are instructional objectives, the entering behaviour of the students, instructional procedure, and the performance and assessment.16

Definition of Model of Teaching

            From the dictionary meaning the model is a pattern of  something to be made or reproduced17 and means of transferring a relationship or process from its actual setting to one in which it can be more conveniently studied.18  In the point of view of teaching, a model of teaching is a plan or pattern that can be used to shape curricula, to design instructional materials and to guide instruction in the classroom and other settings.19  The most important aim of any model of teaching is to improve the instructional effectiveness in an interactive atmosphere and to improve or shape the curriculum.

Families of Models of Teaching

            Jyoce and Weil organized the alternative models of  teaching into four families, these are information processing, personal, social, and behavioural.  They stress that the different instructional goals would be realized by putting these models of teaching into action.

A. Information Processing Family of Models of Teaching

            The models of teaching of this family are concerned with the organization, presentation verbal and non-verbal symbols in a way that helps in the formation of concept and solution problem and development of social relationship and integrated personality.

I.                    Inductive Thinking Model of Hilda Taba

It proposes to process the information through inductive process.

   II.           Scientific Inquiry Model of J.Schwab

                  It is designed to teach the method employed by the subject for solving

                  scientific and social problems.

  III.          Concept Attainment Model of J.Bruner

                 It proposes to develop concept inductive reasoning i.e., developing a concept

                 after presenting its examples and non-examples.

  1. IV.                    Advance Organizer Model of David Ausubel

It proposes to increase the capacity of learner to absorb and relate bodies of knowledge.


V.            Cognitive Growth Model of Jean Piaget

                It has been designed to increase general intellectual ability specially logical


V.                       Memory Model of Henry Lorayne

It is designed to increase the capacity to memorise concepts, facts etc.

B. Personal Family of Models of Teahing

            The models of this family are intended to develop the unique personality of the learner.  These models pay more attention to the emotional life of the person and also focus on helping individual to develop a productive relationship with their environment.  Some of the important models of this family are as follows:


(i)                 Non-Directive Teaching Model of Karl Rogers

It aims at the development of the personal self in self awareness, autonomy and Self-concept.


(ii)               Synectics Model of William Gorden

It is designed to develop creativity and creative problems solving in the learner.

(iii)             Classroom Meeting Model of William Glasser

It aims at the development of a sense of responsibility and self-confidence is one’s social group.

C. Social Family of Models of Teaching

            The models of this family are concerned with the social relationship of the individual with others in the society.  These models aim at the development of social relationship, democratic processes and work productivity in the society.  This is not to say however that these models restrict themselves to the development of social relationship.  They are also to concerned with the development of mind and the learning of academic subjects.  Some of the important models of this family are as follows:

(i)                 Group Investigation Model of Herbert Thelen and Jon Dewey

It aims at the development of skills for participation in democratic social processes through interaction skills and inquiry skills.

(ii)               Role Playing Model of Shaftel and Shaftel

It aims at motivating students to inquire into different personal and social values.

(iii)             Social simulation Model of Seren Boocock and Harold Guitzknow

It is designed to help student to experience various social processes and to examine their own reaction to them and also acquire concept and decision making skills.

D. Behavioural Family of Models of Teaching

            The main thrust of these models is modification of the visible or overt behaviour of the learner rather the underlying psychological structure and unobservable behaviour.  The main psychological bases of these models are stimulus control and reinforcement as put forward in B.F. Skinner’s theory of operant conditioning and Bundras theory of social learning.  The common characteristic of these models are that they break down the learning task into series of small sequences of behaviour.  Each behaviour is so designed that success is ensured; the learner actively responds to the situation to the problematic situation and gets reinforcement and feedback.  Some of the important models of this family are as follows:

(i)                              Contingency Management Model of B.F.Skinner

It proposes to teach facts, concepts, and skills.

     (ii)               Self-Control Model of B.F.Skinner


                         It is designed to develop social behaviour and social skills.

(iii)            Stresss Reduction Model of Rimm and Masters

                         It aims at reduction of stress  and anxiety in social situation and their

                         substitution by relaxation.

       (iv)            Desensitization Model of Walpe

                         It is designed to reduce anxiety through pairing deep muscles relaxation

                         with imaginative scenes that the student had said cause him or her to feel


            The above mentioned models under different families of models of teaching aim at the development of different aspects of human personality that the social, personal, informational and behavioural.  Since education is meant for all round development  of child’s  personality, no single model can be selected for his or her development.  All of them will have to be employed according to the requirements of the situation, that is, if some information is to be given, models of the first family would be required; if creativity is to be developed in the child, synectic model would be needed; if objective is to eliminate anxiety and stress, Desensitization model of Walpe would be needed, and if the objective is the development of the social skill then model like Group Investigation Model of Herbert Thelen would be required.

            The Selection of model also can be dependent on curriculum requirement, for example a biology teacher may need the Inductive Model of Hilda Taba and Concept Attainment Model or Bruner and social studies teacher who proposes to teach about values would need Role Playing Model of Fannie Shaftel and GeorgeShaftel, which motivates to inquire into personal and social values.  Some situation would require an application of a combination of model, that is, in social studies class, the teacher may have Inductive Thinking Model to help children master-map-skills and Group Investigation Model for criticizing social issues.

Components of Models of Teaching

            The model of teaching consists of the following components:


(i)                 Syntax

It describes the phases of the model.  Each model has different strategies.

(ii)               Social System

It describes the students and teachers roles and relationship and the kind of norms that are encouraged.

(iii)             Principles of Reaction


It explains the procedure in which the teacher deals with the reactions of the students.

(iv)              Support System


It deals with the use of other teaching aids, human skills and capacities and technical facilities.

(v)                Instructional and Nurturant Effect


It describes the direct and implicit results of instructions.

(vi)              Application


It deals with the further applicability of the model for different curriculum and classes.


  1. Gage, N.L. (Ed). “Handbook of Research On Teaching”, American Educational research Association, Third Printing, Rand Mcland and Company, Chicago, 1964, pp. 43-46.
  2. Joyce, Bruice R. and Marootunian.  “The Structure of  Taching” ,  Science Research Associates, INC, Chicago, 1967, pp. 1-5.
  3. Joyce, Bruice and Weil, Marsha, “Models of Teaching”, Printice Hall India Limited, New Delhi, 1985, pp. 1-20.
  4. Op.cit. pp. 1-5.
  5. Bruner, Jerome S. “Toward a Theory of Instruction”.  The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1972 Ch.3, pp. 37-72..
  6. Medley, D.M. and Mitzel, M.W. “A Technique for Measuring Classroom Behaviour”, Journal of Educational Psychology, Vol. 49, 1958, pp. 86-92.
  7. Anderson, H.H. “The Measurement of Domination and of Socially Integrative behaviour in Teachers’ Contacts with Children”, Child Development.  1939, 10, pp. 73-89.  Quoted by Encyclopaedica of Educational Research.  Fifth Edition 1982.
  8. Withall, J. “The Development of a Technique for the Measurement of Social Emotional Climate in Classroom” Journal of Experimental Education, 1949, 17, pp. 347-361.
  9. Mitzel, M.E. “Techer Effectiveness in C.W. Haris (ed.) Encyclopaedia of Educational Research (3rd Ed.), New York, Macmillan. 1960.
  10. Dunkin M.J. and Biddle, B.J. “The Study of Teaching”, New York, Holf, Rinehart and Winston, 1974.
  11. Mitzel, M.E. “Encyclopaedia of Educational Research”, Fifth Edition, Vol.4, Macmillan, London, New York, pp. 1927-1933.
  12. Ebel, Robert L. “Encyclopedia of Educational Research”, Fourth Edition, Macmillan Company,. London, 1969, pp. 1446-1458.
  13. Bining, Arthur and Bining, Divid H. “Teaching the Social Studies in Secondary Schools”, McGraw Hill Book Company, INC, New York, 1952, Ch.3, pp. 46-62.
  14. Bloom, B.S. et al. “Taxanomy of Educational Objectives”, A Classification of Educational goals handbook II, Effective  Domain, David MCKAY Company, INC, New York.
  15. Flanders, Ned A. “Analysing Teaching Behaviours”.  Massachusetts, Adisa, Wesley, 1970.
  16. Glaser, R. “Training Reserch and Eduction”, Pittsburgh University Press, 1962.
  17. Good, Carter. V. “Dictionary of Education” McGraw Hill Book Company, New Delhi, 1973.
  18. Page, G.Terry and Thomas, J.B.International Dictionary of  Education, Koyan Page Limited, 1978.
  19. Op.cit. Joyce and Weil, pp. 1-20.
  20. Lindgren, Henry Clay. ‘Educational Psychology in the Classroom’.  John Wiley and Sons, INCK. New York, 1960.
  21. Thompson, George G. and Others.  Educational Psychology  Appleton-Century-Crofts, INC. New York. 1959.