ERIC Number: EJ993901
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
Do Less Effective Teachers Choose Professional Development Does It Matter?
Barrett, Nathan; Butler, J. S.; Toma, Eugenia F.
Evaluation Review, v36 n5 p346-374 Oct 2012
Background: In an ongoing effort to improve teacher quality, most states require continuing education or professional development for their in-service teachers. Studies evaluating the effectiveness of various professional development programs have assumed a normal distribution of quality of teachers participating in the programs. Because participation in many professional development programs is either targeted or voluntary, this article suggests past evaluations of the effectiveness of professional development may be subject to selection bias and policy recommendations may be premature. Research Design: This article presents an empirical framework for evaluating professional development programs where treatment is potentially nonrandom, and explicitly accounts for the teacher's prior effectiveness in the classroom as a factor that may influence participation in professional development. This article controls for the influence of selection bias on professional development outcomes by generating a matched sample based on propensity scores and then estimating the program's effect. Results: In applying this framework to the professional development program examined in this article, less effective teachers are found to be more likely to participate in the program, and correcting for this selection leads to different conclusions regarding the program's effectiveness than when ignoring teacher selection patterns. (Contains 1 figure, 9 tables, and 31 notes.)
Descriptors: Teacher Effectiveness, Program Effectiveness, Faculty Development, Professional Continuing Education, Partnerships in Education, STEM Education, Academic Achievement, Predictor Variables, Standardized Tests, Probability, Program Evaluation, Statistical Bias
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://sagepub.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Elementary Secondary Education; Grade 3; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6; Grade 7; Grade 8
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Kentucky