David Leat was appointed in 1989 as Geography PGCE tutor at Newcastle University and continued in this role until 1999. Between 2001 and 2004 he was on leave of absence, working for the DfES in the KS3 Strategy as a Regional Director, putting research into practice. Since his return to the university he has taken over as Director for the Research Centre for Learning and Teaching.
Prof Leat is interested in the teaching of thinking strategies as a route to school improvement. One of his key research interests is coaching. He wrote the research-based materials which are now in every secondary school in England to train teacher coaches. He researches the impact that coaching is having on professional learning, relationships, management systems and school improvement processes. His other key research interest is “Learning to Learn”. Learning2Learn is a popular phrase covering a multitude of teaching innovations designed to make students more motivated, independent, flexible, knowledgeable learners.