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 Pub Number  Title  Date
REL 2017273 Opportunities for teacher professional development in Oklahoma rural and nonrural schools
The purpose of this study was to fill the gap in statewide information about teacher professional development opportunities in Oklahoma and compare the opportunities in rural and nonrural schools. The Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest, along with members of the Oklahoma Rural Schools Research Alliance, developed a survey that measured how professional development is structured, how it is planned, and what supports and barriers teachers may face in accessing professional development. The sampling frame was obtained from the website of the Oklahoma State Department of Education. Principals from 1,609 public elementary and secondary schools in Oklahoma were invited to participate in the online universe survey. The Office of Educational Quality and Accountability administered the survey in spring 2016, and 51.3 percent of the principals completed the survey. A nonresponse bias analysis was conducted, and nonresponse weights were created. All the results were adjusted by the nonresponse weights. In the descriptive results, Oklahoma schools are divided into rural versus nonrural schools using the urban-centric locale classification in the 2013/14 Common Core Data. The results report differences between rural and nonrural schools if they are significant at the p < .05 level based on a t-test and if the difference is at least 5 percentage points. Results indicate that the majority of rural schools in Oklahoma offer multiple types of professional development structures for teachers, such as conferences and workshops. However, rural schools offer fewer types than do nonrural schools. The biggest barrier that keeps both rural and nonrural teachers from attending any type of professional development is scheduling conflicts with other school or professional activities, and the barrier is more prevalent for rural teachers. The findings of this study show that rural schools provide a substantial amount of support for their teachers’ professional development, but the support is less likely in rural schools than in nonrural schools to be provided by peers (e.g., common planning and collaboration time, teacher-led coaching and mentoring, and collaborative learning). Rural schools could look for ways to increase collaborative learning between teachers so that teachers can support and mentor each other. Taking greater advantage of online resources could help rural schools supplement local, in-person professional development.
9/19/2017
NCES 2017072 Characteristics of Public Elementary and Secondary School Teachers in the United States: Results From the 2015–16 National Teacher and Principal Survey
This First Look report provides descriptive statistics and basic information from the 2015–16 National Teacher and Principal Survey Public School Teacher Data File.
8/15/2017
NCES 2017200 Teacher Professional Development By Selected Teacher and School Characteristics: 2011–12 (NCES 2017-200)
This Statistics in Brief provides a snapshot of the state of teacher professional development activities among U.S. public school teachers using data collected through the 2011–12 Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS) Public School Teacher Questionnaire. This report relies on data provided by public school teachers about their professional development activities during the 2011–12 school year. The report focuses on public school teachers’ responses to questions regarding the topics covered in their professional development activities; the amount of time spent in those activities in the last 12 months; the support they received for participation; and whether they engaged in less formal professional activities, such as working collaboratively with other teachers on instruction. The report examines each of these aspects of public school teachers’ professional development not only nationwide but also by the level of the schools in which they taught, their years of teaching experience, and the locale in which they taught.
5/2/2017
REL 2017270 Educator outcomes associated with implementation of Mississippi's K-3 early literacy professional development initiative
This study examined changes in teacher knowledge of early literacy skills and ratings of quality of early literacy skills instruction, student engagement during early literacy skills instruction, and teaching competencies between winter 2014 and fall 2015. During the time frame examined, the Mississippi Department of Education began providing early literacy professional development to K-3 teachers through a series of online and face-to-face workshops. Over the course of the study, average teacher knowledge started in the 48th percentile and ended in the 59th percentile. In targeted high-need schools, during observations conducted by state literacy coaches, ratings of quality increased from the 31st percentile to the 58th percentile, student engagement increased from the 37th percentile to the 53rd percentile, and teaching competencies increased from the 30th percentile to the 44th percentile. While this study was not intended to determine if the professional development was effective or caused the observed changes, the changes appeared to be associated with teachers' participation in the professional development. At the end of the study, teachers who had not yet started the professional development were in the 54th percentile for teacher knowledge, and teachers who had completed the professional development were in the 65th percentile. Similarly, at the end of the study, teachers who had not yet started the professional development were in the 42nd percentile for quality, 39th for engagement, and 38th for teaching competencies, where as teachers who had completed the professional development were in the 59th percentile for quality, 53rd for engagement, and 54th for teaching competencies.
4/12/2017
REL 2017256 Impact of the Developing Mathematical Ideas professional development program on grade 4 students' and teachers' understanding of fractions
The purpose of this study was to assess the impact of the Developing Mathematical Ideas (DMI) professional development program on grade 4 teachers' in-depth knowledge of fractions as well as their students' understanding and proficiency with fractions. The study was conducted during the 2014/15 school year. A total of 84 schools from eight school districts in three states (Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina) agreed to participate. Participants included 264 grade 4 teachers and their 4,204 students. The study utilized the "gold standard" methodology involving random assignment of schools to either DMI or the control condition. Teachers in the DMI condition participated in 24 hours of professional development on fractions during fall 2014. They attended eight 3-hour sessions conducted over four days (two 3-hour sessions per day; one day per month). DMI did not demonstrate any impact on student knowledge of fractions. Students of DMI teachers performed at almost the same level as those taught by control teachers; the difference was not statistically significant. The impact of the DMI on teachers’ knowledge of fractions was inconclusive. DMI teachers performed slightly better than teachers who did not participate in DMI, but the result was not statistically significant. It was, however, close to the threshold of statistical significance (p = .051).
3/15/2017
NCEE 20174010 Does Content-Focused Teacher Professional Development Work? Findings from Three Institute of Education Sciences Studies
Subject knowledge is widely viewed as important for teaching, and professional development (PD) often aims to build such knowledge. This brief synthesizes findings from three large-scale random assignment studies of PD that were conducted by the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance in the Institute of Education Sciences. Although the PD programs in each study were different, they all emphasized building teachers' content knowledge or knowledge about content-specific pedagogy. The programs combined summer institutes with periodic teacher meetings and coaching during the school year. These programs were compared to the substantially less intensive PD that teachers typically received in study districts. The studies found that the PD boosted teachers' subject knowledge and some aspects of instructional quality, but did not have a positive impact on student achievement. The studies also found that most of the measured aspects of teachers' knowledge and practice were not correlated with student achievement. This consistent pattern of findings suggests that future studies should seek to better understand on what aspects of teacher knowledge and practice PD should focus, and how PD can achieve a larger impact on this knowledge and practice.
11/2/2016
NCEE 20164010 Focusing on Mathematical Knowledge: The Impact of Content-Intensive Teacher Professional Development
A popular strategy for improving student achievement in math is to provide teachers with professional development (PD) that deepens their conceptual understanding of math. This report examines the effectiveness of such a PD program. The PD program included an 80-hour summer workshop (Intel Math) that focused on grades K-8 math, as well as 13 additional hours of collaborative meetings focused on analyzing student work and one-on-one coaching based on observations of teachers' lessons. More than 200 4th-grade teachers from six districts in five states were randomly assigned to either a treatment group that received the study PD or a control group that did not. The study PD had a positive impact on teachers' math knowledge and on their use and quality of mathematical explanations in class. However, the study PD did not have a positive impact on student achievement.
9/28/2016
REL 2016145 Understanding field experiences in traditional teacher preparation programs in Missouri
The purpose of this study was to describe the characteristics of field experiences in traditional teacher preparation programs completed by first-year teachers in Missouri and how experiences vary by teaching certificate type. This descriptive study is based on data from a survey administered in early 2015 to first-year teachers in Missouri public schools who completed traditional teacher preparation programs. Findings show that first-year teachers had field experiences that varied substantially in duration and diversity and that experiences varied for teachers with different types of teaching certificates. Most first-year teachers reported that their student teaching experiences aligned with their career teaching plans and first teaching assignments. Perceptions of the quality of resources and support in field experience schools were generally positive and first-year teachers reported frequent professional collaboration. Parent and community interaction during field experiences was less frequent. Observation and feedback activities during field experiences were frequent and first-year teachers engaged in a variety of instructional activities. Findings suggest that state and program administrators in Missouri and elsewhere may wish to monitor field experiences closely to ensure that expectations are met. Survey data suggest potential areas of focus including interaction with parents and community during field experiences; selection, training, and expectations of teacher candidate mentors; connections between course pedagogy to field experiences; and collaboration between teacher preparation programs and preK–12 schools. The survey developed for this study provides a data collection tool that can be adopted or adapted by state and teacher preparation program administrators and used as part of a system for monitoring program implementation. Detailed information about the implementation of teacher preparation programs may be used in future research on aspects of teacher preparation that are associated with more positive outcomes for program completers and their preK–12 students.
7/6/2016
REL 2016133 Relationship between school professional climate and teachers' satisfaction with the evaluation process
This study, conducted by the Regional Educational Laboratory Northeast & Islands in collaboration with the Northeast Educator Effectiveness Research Alliance, reports on the relationship between teachers' perceptions of school professional climate and their satisfaction with their formal evaluation process using the responses of a nationally representative sample of teachers from the Schools and Staffing Surveys. Specifically, the study used logistic regression analysis to examine whether teachers' satisfaction with their evaluation was associated with two measures of school professional climate (principal leadership and teacher influence), teacher and school characteristics, and the inclusion of student test scores in the evaluation system. The results indicate that teachers' perceptions of their principals' leadership was associated with their satisfaction with the evaluation system—the more positively teachers rated their principal's leadership, the more likely they were to report satisfaction with their evaluation process. The rating teachers received on their evaluation was also associated with their satisfaction, with those rated satisfactory or higher more likely to be satisfied. Teachers whose evaluation process included student test score outcomes were less likely to be satisfied with that process than teachers whose evaluations did not include student test scores. The findings reinforce current literature about the importance of the school principal in establishing positive school professional climate. The report recommends additional research related to the implementation of new educator evaluation systems.
5/3/2016
REL 2016125 How do school districts mentor new teachers?
This report provides a snapshot of school district policies for mentoring new teachers in five REL Central states (Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota). State education agencies collected survey data from school districts on: who provides mentoring; how mentoring time changes after the first year; whether mentors are expected to observe their mentees; whether mentors are required to get training; whether mentors are paid stipends for their work; and district barriers to implementing mentor programs. Respondents from nearly 1,000 school districts, including superintendents and other district administrative leaders, completed the survey. The report also provides suggested next steps for district and state leaders to consider in light of the survey findings and current research.
4/6/2016
REL 2016115 Teacher evaluation and professional learning: Lessons from early implementation in a large urban district
REL Northeast and Islands, in collaboration with the Northeast Educator Effectiveness Research Alliance, examined the alignment of teacher evaluation and professional learning in a large urban district in the Northeast. REL researchers examined the types of professional learning activities teachers reported they participated in, the alignment of the reported activities with what evaluators prescribed, and whether evaluation ratings improved from one academic year to the next. The study found that teachers received written feedback across all standards of the evaluation rubric. Each prescription tended to include one or two recommended professional activities, and more of these activities were professional practice activities, such as independent work to improve instruction, than professional development activities, such as courses or workshops. Teachers reported participating in more professional activities for the instruction-based standards than for the non-instruction-based standards. For all standards, less than 40 percent of teachers reported participating in all the activities their evaluator recommended. While further work may be needed to strengthen the connection between teacher evaluation and a comprehensive system of teacher support and development, this study takes the first step in illustrating the need for coherence among these related systems.
3/1/2016
NCES 2016063 Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) 2013 U.S. public-use data files and documentation
The TALIS 2013 U.S. public-use data files and documentation include the following: U.S. national TALIS 2013 data in ASCII text format, including variables unique to the United States; SPSS data files; SAS control files for reading the data and producing SAS system files; codebooks; illustrative code for merging school and teacher-level files; a Read Me file, and a Quick Guide. The U.S. TALIS 2013 data files are formatted so that they can be easily merged with the TALIS international data files, available from the OECD at http://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?datasetcode=talis_2013%20. Users of this data should also consult the TALIS 2013 U.S. Technical Report available for viewing and downloading at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2015010.
2/26/2016
NCES 2016064 Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) 2013 U.S. restricted-use data files and documentation
The TALIS 2013 U.S. restricted-use data files and documentation include the following: U.S. national TALIS 2013 data in ASCII text format, including variables unique to the United States; SPSS data files; SAS control files for reading the data and producing SAS system files; codebooks; illustrative code for merging school and teacher-level files; a Read Me file, and a Quick Guide. The TALIS 2013 U.S. restricted-use data files include NCES school IDs that facilitate merging with the Common Core of Data (CCD) for public schools and the Private School Universe Survey (PSS) for private schools. Users of this data should also consult the TALIS 2013 U.S. Technical Report available for viewing and downloading at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2015010.
2/26/2016
REL 2016127 Stated Briefly: Professional experiences of online teachers in Wisconsin: Results from a survey about training and challenges
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. REL Midwest, in partnership with the Midwest Virtual Education Research Alliance, analyzed the results of a survey administered to Wisconsin Virtual School teachers about the training in which they participated related to online instruction, the challenges they encounter while teaching online, and the type of training they thought would help them address those challenges. REL Midwest researchers and Virtual Education Research Alliance members collaborated to develop the survey based on items from the Going Virtual! survey (Dawley et al., 2010; Rice & Dawley, 2007; Rice et al., 2008). Wisconsin Virtual School administered the survey to its 54 teachers, and 49 (91 percent) responded to the survey. The responses of the 48 teachers who indicated that they taught an online course during the 2013/14 or 2014/15 school year were analyzed for the report. Results indicate that all Wisconsin Virtual School teachers reported participating in training or professional development related to online instruction and that more teachers reported participating in training that occurred while teaching online than prior to teaching online or during preservice education. The teachers most frequently reported challenges related to students' perseverance and engagement and indicated that they preferred unstructured professional development to structured professional development to help them address those challenges. Further research is needed to determine what types of professional development and training are most effective in improving teaching practice, especially related to student engagement and perseverance.
2/17/2016
REL 2016110 Professional Experiences of Online Teachers in Wisconsin: Results from a Survey About Training and Challenges
REL Midwest, in partnership with the Midwest Virtual Education Research Alliance, analyzed the results of a survey administered to Wisconsin Virtual School teachers about the training in which they participated related to online instruction, the challenges they encounter while teaching online, and the type of training they thought would help them address those challenges. REL Midwest researchers and Virtual Education Research Alliance members collaborated to develop the survey based on items from the Going Virtual! survey (Dawley et al., 2010; Rice & Dawley, 2007; Rice et al., 2008). Wisconsin Virtual School administered the survey to its 54 teachers, and 49 (91 percent) responded to the survey. The responses of the 48 teachers who indicated that they taught an online course during the 2013/14 or 2014/15 school year were analyzed for the report. Results indicate that all Wisconsin Virtual School teachers reported participating in training or professional development related to online instruction and that more teachers reported participating in training that occurred while teaching online than prior to teaching online or during preservice education. The teachers most frequently reported challenges related to students’ perseverance and engagement and indicated that they preferred unstructured professional development to structured professional development to help them address those challenges. Further research is needed to determine what types of professional development and training are most effective in improving teaching practice, especially related to student engagement and perseverance.
11/24/2015
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