Framework for Dialogue About Teaching

Subject Knowledge

This addresses all aspects of the trainee’s subject knowledge and encompasses:

  • Academic knowledge - knowledge, understanding and skills of the subject.
  • Pedagogic knowledge - how to teach the subject.
  • Curriculum knowledge - the relevant Foundation Stage/National Curriculum, frameworks and examination specifications.

Generic questions you could ask regarding this are:

  • Having taught that lesson, is there any aspect of your academic subject knowledge that needs development?
  • What’s the difference between what you needed to know for this lesson and what you wanted the pupils to know?
  • Explain to me how you are teaching this topic? Why?
  • How might you explain this concept to a low ability class?
  • How have your resources for this lesson taken account of social and cultural diversity?
  • What approaches does the KS3 Strategy suggest about teaching this topic?


Select a topic that the trainee is likely to teach within the first couple of weeks of their school-based work and list some questions that would apply to their academic, pedagogic and curriculum knowledge of that topic.