ERIC Number: ED369181
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
Professional Development in Education: In Search of the Optimal Mix.
Guskey, Thomas R.
All proposals for education reform include professional development as a significant element in promoting change. Questions have been raised about the effectiveness of professional development and its role in educational reform. Consequently, evaluation of professional development programs is increasing and expanding to include student achievement. Professional developers also are looking more closely at research on professional development. Research on professional development has focused mostly on its shortcomings and, in some cases, proposed solutions. Because of the variability between different educators' situations, it is difficult to know exactly what makes an effective professional development program. However, there are some guidelines. Change is both an individual and an organizational process. In planning and implementation, it is important to work for incremental change. Working in teams maintains support for change. It is necessary to include procedures for feedback on results. Continued followup, support, and pressure are necessary in professional development. Innovations presented in professional development must be integrated into existing educational frameworks. While professional development can be complex and difficult to measure in student achievement, it is possible to tailor programs to specific contexts. (Contains 109 references.) (JPT)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 4-8, 1994).