Bill Gates’ TED Talk: Teachers Need Real Feedback

I’ve always enjoyed hearing Bill Gates give a lecture. Despite his being immensely successful in the technical world of software, he has a casual and down-to-earth style that’s engaging and easy to understand. I’ve also admired his passion for improving education globally through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

In this TED talk, he focuses on the idea of improving education through a simple yet effective mechanism – teacher feedback.

Gates points out that among countries whose students perform better than the U.S. (ranked 15th) in reading, 11 out of 14 have systematic teacher feedback systems in place as way of improving teacher performance. The U.S. does not. Teachers in many of those nations routinely get together to talk about what’s working, and many are also required to observe and offer feedback to their peers.

In one of his latest projects called “Measures of Effective Teaching,” Gates is exploring the notion of formalizing teacher feedback systems right here in the U.S.