The Learner’s Perspective Study provides a vehicle for the work of an international community of classroom researchers. The work of this community is reported in a series of books of which this is the fourth. International comparative and crosscultural research has the capacity to inform practice, shape policy and develop theory. Such research can reflect regional, national or global priorities. Crosscultural comparisons of social practice in settings such as classrooms can lead us to question our assumptions about what constitutes desirable learning or effective instruction. International comparative research offers us more than insight into the novel, interesting and adaptable practices employed in other school systems. It also offers us a new perspective on the strange, invisible, and unquestioned routines and rituals of our own school system and our own classrooms. In addition, a crosscultural perspective on classrooms can help us identify common values and shared assumptions across geographically disparate social settings, which in turn can facilitate the adaptation of practices from one classroom for use in a different cultural setting. The identification of structure and recurrence within cultural diversity can help us to distinguish between fundamental commonalities and local conventions. Research into the phenomenon of student voice in different classroom settings can provide profound contrasts and unexpected similarities, supporting the constructive interrogation of entrenched practices and established theory.
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