Professors & Teachers Alike Continue Using Professional
Development Plans To Keep Them Ahead Of The
The purpose of a professional development plan is to provide for
continuing improvement in teaching, in other student
interactions, in the quality of scholarly activity and other
service to the university and community. The purpose of
evaluation is to provide faculty with new information which will
contribute to their teaching abilities. The professional
development plan is intended to be supportive of a faculty
member's and their desire for continuing trained growth and
academic excellence. This process contributes to various
personnel activities and supports the interest of each faculty
member to achieve continuing professional growth and to pursue
the highest possible level of academic excellence. Project
activities included reading and discussing pieces of fiction and
history, developing an interdisciplinary humanities curriculum,
and video-taping and viewing classroom instruction. It's helpful
when knowledge is shared equally between colleagues within and
across different departments; reduced teacher isolation; and the
development of an intellectual community for teachers within
high schools and universities. However, teachers at different
points in their career trajectory were differentially affected
by this project.
A good professional development plan is an important part of
effective technology use, and only high-quality professional
development plans can ensure the maximum benefits from the time
and money spent. Educational technology requires educators not
only to become familiar with the technology available in their
schools but also to totally transform the teacher role.
Professional development plans help teachers learn new roles and
teaching strategies that will eventually improve their students'
achievement. Professional growth occurs in areas such as
effective teaching, scholarly or creative activity, and active
involvement in the high school and university community and
professional organizations. Faculty scholarship and current
knowledge of the discipline, together with a desire to improve
pedagogy, are instrumental to good teaching.
Formative evaluation is used to modify or improve a professional
development plan. It is conducted throughout the plan to provide
feedback and to determine changes to be made during the program
to make it more valuable to participating educators. There are a
number of ways to collect information for the formative
evaluation. Educators can be asked to think about their own
goals for personal and professional growth; then, at various
times throughout the professional development plan, they can be
asked to evaluate the program's value in meeting those goals.
Finally, and most important, is the effect on student learning.
Test scores are not the only source of information on this
point. Some technology use is reflected in ways not readily seen
on test scores, such as increased time spent on writing, better
inquiry skills, or more collaboration among students. The
ultimate value of a professional development plan is their
ability to transform the learning environment. The purpose of
evaluating professional development programs is to determine if
that transformation is happening and to specify what changes
need to be made to ensure that transformation does occur.