Council of Chief State School Officers (2009). Meta-Analysis Study of the Effects of Teacher Professional Development.
Findings from the report “Effects of Teacher Professional Development on Gains in Student Achievement: How Meta Analysis Provides Scientific Evidence Useful to Education Leaders” show important cross-study evidence that teacher professional development in mathematics does have significant positive effects on student achievement. The analysis results also confirm the positive relationship to student outcomes of key characteristics of design of professional development programs, particularly on duration and frequency of professional development activities.
Teacher professional development is critical in the current accountability environment. Is the professional development funded in local school districts really accomplishing its purposes? Are teachers actually learning the mathematics and science they need to know to teach their students?
Council of Chief State School Officers (2007). Does Teacher Professional Development Have Effects on Teaching and Learning?
This final report covers the review of 41 evaluation studies from a sample of 25 professional development initiatives across the U.S. The report primarily addresses evaluation findings from professional development activities conducted during the period 2004 through 2007.
The professional development of early childhood teachers is of critical importance to the young children in our country. Enrollment in pre-primary education for ages 3 to 5 has increased 37 percent between 1984 and 1995, with the greatest increase in the four-year-old population. It is clear that both pre-service and in-service teachers will require specialized training to help them understand and instruct the increasing number of children with a variety of needs, children from various socioeconomic backgrounds, exceptional children, and children who are enrolled in state-required, pre-kindergarten programs.
Bettina Dembek (2003). Professional Development for High School Science Teachers: Views from the Field.
This report is a synthesis of the information obtained through interviews with professional development providers and high school science teachers who shared their experiences with providing and attending professional development.
Nancy Love (2009). Using Data to Improve Learning for All: A Collaborative Inquiry Approach.
Real-life success stories from districts in Tennessee and Nevada help contextualize an intensive set of practical methodologies that educators can use to collectively question and analyze student achievement data in order to improve student learning. The editor and chapter contributors show school and district leaders how to; Implement collaborative inquiry to meet accountability mandates, Build and support a high-performing data culture, Establish a school climate characterized by collective responsibility for student learning and a respect for students' cultures. The user-friendly overview and step-by-step guidelines help educators develop and refine the skills, knowledge, and dispositions needed to use data effectively and significantly improve teaching and learning. To order a copy, please see Corwin Press.
This study focused on two middle schools in the central US who participated in collaborative, sustained, whole-school professional development in implementing inquiry as part of National Science Education Standards, or standards-based instructional practices. Participants were involved in their second year of the professional development experience. The research question explored was, "What barriers do science teachers encounter when implementing standards-based instruction while participating in effective professional development experiences?" Qualitative data collected in the form of teacher interviews and classroom observations were utilized and were analyzed using a barrier to reform rubric. Findings indicate that even with effective professional development, science teachers still encounter technical, political, and cultural barriers to implementation.
National Research Council (2012) Education for Life and Work: Developing Transferable Knowledge and Skills in the 21st Century.
Americans have long recognized that investments in public education contribute to the common good, enhancing national prosperity and supporting stable families, neighborhoods, and communities. Education is even more critical today, in the face of economic, environmental, and social challenges. Today's children can meet future challenges if their schooling and informal learning activities prepare them for adult roles as citizens, employees, managers, parents, volunteers, and entrepreneurs. To achieve their full potential as adults, young people need to develop a range of skills and knowledge that facilitate mastery and application of English, mathematics, and other school subjects. At the same time, business and political leaders are increasingly asking schools to develop skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and self-management - often referred to as "21st century skills."
William Arthur Ward