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Abstract

It is uncommon for an academic to be asked to review ideas developed in his own books (with a particular focus on Loughran, 2006, 2010; Loughran, Berry, & Mulhall, 2012). However, considering the focus of the journal, the editor was interested in pursuing the theme encapsulated in these works—the notion of pedagogy. As this review illustrates, pedagogy is a major construct in education that has been defined, interpreted and used in many ways in the educational literature. In much of the literature, pedagogy is portrayed as a synonym for teaching; something this article suggests is narrow and superficial. In this article, pedagogy is understood as being embedded in the relationship between teaching and learning. Therefore, how the teaching–learning relationship is understood, recognized and developed in the educational enterprise is important. Two examples of how the complexity of pedagogy plays out in practice become starkly evident when considering pedagogical content knowledge and a pedagogy of teacher education. As this article explains, through a deep and rich understanding of pedagogical content knowledge and a pedagogy of teacher education, our understanding of pedagogy is substantially enhanced. The article concludes that pedagogy needs to be conceptualized as rich, complex and sophisticated, and in so doing, highlights why it must be viewed as much more than a synonym for teaching.