Teacher V’s Coach

Some people may think that a teacher and a coach are the same thing when they are not. Teaching is focused on acquiring new knowledge and skills, whereas coaching is focused on refining and developing existing knowledge and skills. Ownership and responsibility for success are placed on the teacher. Where with coaching, both parties have a responsibility, and it opens up a communication pathway. Coaching often happens when dealing with real-life, on-the-job problems. Teaching is a theoretical situation that may or may not arise. Teaching also usually has a defined timeline with an end goal or deadline in place. Coaching will happen over an undefined period of time.

Teaching is used when someone has no previous knowledge. Communication differs when coaching assumes a level of knowledge to be built upon. A teacher will be one-sided and instructional, whereas a coach is two-way, with the emphasis being on the person being coached to come up with their own conclusions.