15th May 2015 at 01:00
We bring you discussion, debate and issues from around the web and around the world by focusing on the most popular educational hashtags on Twitter

There is a wealth of education research out there and the popularity of conferences such as ResearchED is proof enough of teachers' interest in improving their practice. But how does education research actually affect what happens in the classroom?

This is the question that a recent #edchat sought to solve by asking educators on Twitter to share their experiences.

Research could have a mixed impact, according to @artFling, who said: "Research affects both positively and negatively. Lots of misinterpreted research = poor ed practices encouraged."

@cybraryman1 also sounded a note of caution, warning teachers that "it is important to know who is funding the research and their motives".

However, the general consensus was that research can and does prove useful in improving teaching practice. @jenn_lavanchy said it "inspires me to try new things".

@TeachingFactor emphasised that all evidence should be scrutinised - "just like we ask students to check validity of research, as teachers we need to do the same". But as well as pointing towards more effective methods, research could help with existing practice, they said. "Sometimes we do things without knowing why and that's where research can benefit our understanding."

Sarah Cunnane

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