Educator credibility is one of the most critical factors that influence students’ achievement. Educators who master the power of credibility can make a significant difference in their students’ progress.

According to researcher John Hattie’s study, educator credibility is vital as students are highly perceptive of knowing which educators can make a difference in their learning. Instilling confidence through credible teaching will give students reassurance and confidence to invest in the lesson’s content.

Tools, technology and resources are nothing without credibility, which lays the foundations for every successful lesson.

Educators who convey a credible ethos will gain the trust and respect of their students, and students who are engaged with the lessons are more likely to succeed. Educators need to show that they trust their students and genuinely care about their personal and academic development. Educators who show fairness will gain respect and trust from their students.

Students need confidence in the educators’ ability to deliver compelling and engaging information.

Educators who are organised and structured when presenting a subject and answering questions will gain credibility.

Educators need to present material with energy and enthusiasm to engage their students. When students can see that their educators have genuine passion for a subject, they will feel more excited and engaged.

Immediacy is another key dimension of credible teaching. Educators who can break down barriers between themselves and their students will help and make them feel a part of a collective group, and will promote the idea that the educators are on their side and are committed in helping them learn.

Robust lesson planning and research will put you in control of your subjects and convey confidence, which in turn will help your students to relax in the knowledge that you will deliver a strong material. Thus, a thorough preparation must be done.

Providing students with authoritative and trusted sources to back up educators’ information will make them more confident in your lessons.

Deliver lesson materials in an upbeat, engaging manner and it will make your students excited, too. Be sincere and use personal experiences where appropriate. This will help to bring your students closer to the subject. Be creative by sharing case studies or stories to bring subjects to life.

Challenge students to be critical of the information delivered and take an open and honest look at the strengths and weaknesses of the material.

Show that you are relaxed and comfortable delivering information through eye contact and body language. If your students feel at ease, then they are ready to learn.

Credibility comes with experience, confidence and learning from mistakes. Understanding the elements of credibility provides you with opportunities to boost your perceived credibility and your success.

Study the habits and behaviours of those who are well-liked in your workplace. Adopt or adapt to those who you can emulate. Review the elements and action steps in this article, and choose one action to work on at a time.

With time and consistency, you can boost your credibility at work and in your community. You need to know the definition of credibility and you need to care!

Azizi Ahmad,  Kuala Lumpur

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