Top 20 Most Influential Education Professors

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Teachers teaching future teachers is what educational professorship is about. New methodologies, awards, publications and work beyond the campus often are the marks of what makes an education professor stand out. The following top 20 most influential education professors.

The rhythm of modern world requires a professional in virtually any area to learn constantly. This reality of contemporary life makes the demand for qualified teachers higher than it has ever been before. At the same time, teachers are no exception for the rule that everybody needs to learn something new constantly. The logical question that arises in this regard is: who will teach the educators how to teach the rest of the world well? In an attempt to answer this question, we present to you the list of 20 influential education professionals who make the difference for the world by enhancing the teaching capacities of their colleagues.  

Diane Ravitch

Diane Ravitch is one of the most renowned historians of education. She supported her theoretical knowledge with hands-on experience in reforming the public education sector on the border between centuries. Having a wealth of experience as an education administrator, she continues to impact American and global educational landscape through her popular blog publications and highly acclaimed books on the relevant issues concerning teaching in the public education system. Her insights into the matter provide hundreds thousands of teachers with valuable knowledge and inspiration.

David Anderson

 David Anderson is commonly recognized by education professionals as a guru of E-learning. His contribution to the area is twofold. On the one side, he is renowned as the developer of E-learning tools for large corporations such as Mercedes, NASCAR, and so on. On the other side, he also contributes to the online education industry by providing valuable advice through his social media and blog. Therefore, he impacts the area in terms of both theory and practice of the educational process since teachers across the globe use the software he develops by applying his own hints and lifehacks.

Baruti Kafele

 Principal Kafele is one of the most renowned urban school educators in North America. His experience as both teacher and field administrator make him a desired speaker at events dedicated to the topic of school reform and improving the quality of education. In addition to public speaking, he shares his valuable experience of transforming several public schools through his bestselling books. Principal Kafele’s contribution has also been recognized through several prestigious awards he received at both professional and community levels.

Bonita Thompson


Bonita Thompson may appear a odd inclusion in the list since she is not an educator per se. She has achieved recognition as a talented manager capable of bringing the best out of her employees. Yet her valuable insights help educational specialists in professional settings. In other words, Thompson’s example educates managers on how to develop and empower the available talent to pursue ever growing levels of achievement. In other words, she is an inspirational example of a lifelong learner who finds the way to obtain new expertise.

Cami Anderson

As the superintendent of the Newark school system, Cami Anderson is under spotlight due to her bold (and quite successful) campaigning aimed at fundraising for reforming the school system. Although the end results of her work are still to be seen, the energy and dedication with which she approaches the task at hand makes her a prospective role model for the future superintendents desiring to bring their districts to a new level. Even if the project will not bring the desired results, it might serve as a valuable blueprint for analyzing mistakes.

Susanna Loeb

Susanna Loeb has been recognized for her efforts in bringing the communications at Brown University to the next level. As the head of the Annenberg Institute for School Reform, she aims at establishing dialogue between the public school system and the university to ensure smooth transition of students between the institutions. Another important venue of her work is establishing fruitful cooperation with the policymakers through effective and timely communication of concerns that may arise in any aspect of educational policy.

Barbara Blackburn

The focus of Barbara Blackburn’s career has been on promoting rigor among both educators and their students. Her impressive portfolio consists of 28 books and a wide array of public lectures and workshops. Her ideas are based on her hands-on experiences as teacher and consultant. Currently she has retired from teaching career to focus on writing and sharing her wide array of experiences through live events. Blackburn’s accolades include Ph.D. in Curriculum and Teaching as well as the honorary title of Outstanding Junior Professor at Winthrop University.

Salman Khan

Another entry in the list who is by no means a professional teacher. Nevertheless, Salman Khan’s impact on global education and the way it is perceived by professional teachers is impossible to overestimate. By founding the free online educational platform, Khan has opened the door to knowledge in mathematics and sciences for people all around the world. An important aspect of Khan Academy as an open platform is that it provides teachers with the opportunity to shine by providing educational videos for the platform. As a result, it enhances professional growth of educators in addition to spreading knowledge worldwide.

Joseph Renzulli

Dr. Joseph S. Renzulli is among the most renowned education psychologists in the world. To be precise, his largest contribution to the field of teaching lies in his theory of gifted education. However, his most remarkable activity is the constant promotion of the idea that gifted education methods and strategies should be applied to the general population of students. His impact on education of both gifted and general categories of students has been recognized by both pedagogical and psychological communities.

Deborah Meier

Deborah Meier’s career in public education began in the end of 1960s and she is still an active advocate for public school reforms aimed at cancelling state mandated curriculums and high-stake tests. She is recognized by the teaching community for her immense contribution to the development of elementary schools in Harlem serving primarily children from minority populations. In addition to that, she guides the teaching community through her numerous books and articles concerning the burning issues in the public school system. Her guidance and advocacy inspires the new generations of public educators to work hard for bringing democracy and justice to public schools.

Bryan Goodwin

Bryan Goodwin capitalizes on his experiences as both educator and journalist to promote positive change for teachers across the world as the CEO and president of McRel International, a nonprofit organization aimed at promoting research on education-related issues. In addition to his managerial duties, Goodwin contributes to the global discussion of education through authoring numerous books and conducting a monthly research column through which he shares various research findings with public educators across oceans.

Robert Marzano

Co Founder and CEO of Marzano Research Laboratory based in Colorado, Robert Marzano is a prolific theoretic and researcher of educational practices. The area of his scientific interests entails issues such as instruction, assessment of students’ progress, designing and implementing performance standards, and effective leadership both within pedagogical community and when acting as the leading figure for the students. As well as it is the case with many educators from this list, Marzano combines writing with lecturing and giving workshops at various live events.

Jose Ferreira

Jose Ferreira has founded and currently leads Knewton, an online educational platform aimed at personalizing educational content for students from various backgrounds and educational levels. One of the focuses of the platform is helping students prepare for standardized tests. Statistics show that the programs offered by the platform are helpful. This finding appears especially promising when bearing in mind that test preparations do not utilize the whole variety of functions offered by the service. The platform is likely to influence both online and in-class teaching strategies by providing educators with a useful case of applying innovative approaches towards instruction.

Angela Maiers

A vocal advocate for change, visionary leader, and entrepreneur, Angela Maiers is another example of an influencer that combines teaching experience with public activism to improve the quality of life for teachers and their students. Maiers founded Choose2Matter, a global coordination platform that supports and empowers educators, students, and their parents to cooperate for improved educational outcomes. Maiers combines benevolent activism with rich practical experience in education which means that she stands as a figure of authority both for practicing teachers and her colleagues from the entrepreneurial world.

Sugata Mitra

Prof. Sugata Mitra from Newcastle university is best known for his innovative experiments in the field of young children instruction. His Hole in the Wall experiment provided the basis for the concept of the Minimally Invasive Education that he himself later transformed into Self Organized Learning Environments. Thus, Mitra’s contribution to teaching globally lies in proposing thought-provoking ideas on how the instruction process for young children can be enhanced to boost academic performance and problem-solving skills later in life.

Michael Fullan

Michael Fullan is a prominent education researcher and advocate for educational reforms that would ensure equal access to quality public education and improved educational results across the board. After retiring from his research post at the University of Toronto, Fullan focused on writing. He is an award winning author. One of the remarkable things about Fullan is that most of his best recognized books are written in collaboration with other experts in the field of education. This fact signifies Fullan’s commitment to the exchange of ideas, an ideal he promotes in his proposals concerning the adaptation of the school system to the needs of students.

Rachael Mann

With 14 years of teaching experience behind her shoulders, Rachael Mann has a lot to share with her fellow educators during the numerous live events she participates in. The key message she delivers to her audiences is that the future of education is impossible without careful implementation of technology. She advocates for creative implementation of STEM into the classroom through experiments with space. Mann also pursues the goal of motivating her readers and listeners to think beyond the usual ramification in an attempt to promote progress in teaching.

Mike Kim

Arguably the world’s leading authority when it comes to designing LSAT courses and preparing students for successful passing of the test, Mike Kim has accumulated his expertise on the issue in The LSAT Trainer. By modelling Kim’s approaches, educators across the world can achieve better results for their students when it comes to passing standardized and semi-standardized tests. 

Elizabeth Ross Hubbell

Elizabeth Ross Hubbell currently supervises students’ affairs at Academic Impressions. Having experience of teaching at different levels of the education system she currently focuses on supporting female students and the ones coming from marginalized backgrounds succeed in higher education. Her experience with the K12 system makes her understand what it takes for an underserved student to achieve a successful transition to higher education institution. Most importantly, Hubbell is willing to share this experience and knowledge.

Pasi Sahlberg

 Pasi Sahlberg is a researcher and advocate for large scale improvement of educational systems globally. He is a welcome guest at live event due to his engagement in global research and direct contacts with numerous local communities undertaking ambitious experiments with their education systems.

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