Why is there so much resistance to Direct Instruction?

Fiona McMullen, Alison Madelaine*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Direct Instruction has been the subject of empirical research since its inception in the 1960s and has garnered a strong research base to support it. Despite its proven efficacy, Direct Instruction is not widely implemented and draws much criticism from some educators. This literature review details the components of Direct Instruction, research to support it and reported attitudes towards it. The aspects of Direct Instruction that attract the most criticism are broken down to determine just what it is that educators do not like about it. In addition, this review attempts to outline possible ways to improve the landscape for Direct Instruction by reviewing research on how best to achieve a shift in beliefs when adopting change in schools. This includes pre-service teacher education and professional development and support for practising teachers as a means of improving rates of implementation of Direct Instruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-151
Number of pages15
JournalAustralian Journal of Learning Difficulties
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2014


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