ERIC Number: ED422442
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
A Qualitative Analysis of Teacher Professional Learning and Teacher Work in Urban High Schools.
Scribner, Jay Paredes
"Professional development" has become the panacea of 1990s reform efforts. However, understanding of the breadth, depth, and nature of teacher learning experiences remains limited. Using an embedded case study design, this paper examines the factors that motivate teachers to engage in development activities, the ways they experience professional learning, and most importantly, how work context influences their learning experiences. Interviews were held with 45 teachers and 7 school administrators in an urban high school. It is suggested, that while teachers view professional development broadly, a complex nesting of work contexts limits the types of learning activities and the knowledge available to them. Steps that school leaders and education policy makers can take to broaden and enhance professional learning opportunities are discussed. It will be important to pay more attention to: (1) the multiple contexts that define teacher work; (2) the types of teacher learning activities that are privileged in different contexts; and (3) the consequences that engaging in certain learning activities have on the types of knowledge acquired and used in practice. An appendix describes the teacher and administrator interview protocols. (Contains 1 figure, 1 table, and 36 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (San Diego, CA, April 13-17, 1998).