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The Four PLC Driving Questions

Adapted from

DuFour & DuFour, by ETSB


This downloadable tool can be used to assist teachers in answering the four essential questions of a Professional Learning Community (PLC). It can also be used by a team of PLC teachers who have decided to focus on subject area content.


The document is divided into four sections. Each section corresponds to an essential question, providing a quick explanation and examples. The four questions are:

  • What is it we want our students to learn? 
  • How will we know if each student has learned it?
  • How will we respond when some students do not learn it?
  • How can we extend and enrich the learning for students who already know it?

Context For Use

This can be used during a one-hour PLC meeting. However, time spent on this document may vary depending on the level of knowledge, experience  and involvement of participants. It can be used with teachers at a PLC meeting at the beginning of a learning cycle, or as a reflective tool to support ongoing planning.


  • Knowledge acquisition - This document provides educators with a new way of planning the learning for students.
  • Knowledge mobilization - Taken from research by DuFour & DuFour, the four driving questions document turns available knowledge into a practical tool to improve outcomes for both educators and students.


Present this tool as a means for building common understanding before you form a PLC. It can be used with various clientele.

Find Out More

Learning by Doing, Dufour, R. & Dufour, R. (2006).