In conjunction with the Professional Learning Cycles, the team at your school/district will receive implementation support from a PCE consultant with school and coaching experience to guide the implementation of the work in classrooms.
The PCE consultant will also provide text set recommendations for staff, customize student materials recommendations and answer any questions throughout the process.
Bransford, J. D., Brown, A. L., & Cocking, R. R. (Eds.). (1999). How people learn. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
Brookfield, S. (1984). Self-directed learning: A critical paradigm. Adult Education Quarterly, 35, 59–71.
Burroughs, S., Brocato, K., & Franz, D. (2009). Problem based and studio based learning: Approaches to promoting reform thinking among teacher candidates. National Forum of Teacher Education Journal, 19(3), 2009.
Clinton, G., Rieber, L.P. The Studio experience at the University of Georgia: an example of constructionist learning for adults. Education Tech Research Dev 58, 755–780 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-010-9165-2
Jonassen, D. H. (1991). Objectivism versus constructivism: Do we need a new philosophical paradigm? Educational Technology Research and Development, 47(1), 61–79.
Rieber, L. P. (2000). The studio experience: Educational reform in instructional technology. Teaching with technology: Seventy-five professors from eight universities tell their stories, 195-196.
Youm J, Corral J. Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge Among Medical Educators: What Is Our Readiness to Teach With Technology? Acad Med. 2019 Nov;94(11S Association of American Medical Colleges Learn Serve Lead: Proceedings of the 58th Annual Research in Medical Education Sessions):S69-S72. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000002912. PMID: 31365390.
Aruba Networks certifications
Aruba Certified Switching Professional (ACSP)
Aruba Certified Mobility Associate (ACMA)
Aruba Certified Mobility Professional (ACMP)
Established program with various learning tracks and a range of certifications.
Certifications identify technical knowledge and skills, design, deployment, and management in complex settings.
BICSI Technician (TECH)
Focused on supporting information technology systems, BICSI is a professional association with more than 26,000 members in approximately 100 countries.
The TECH credential is a midlevel certification targeting those with 1-3 years of documented industry experience.
The credential identifies professionals who understand and can apply installation-specific information, lead installation teams, perform testing and troubleshooting on copper and optical fiber installations, evaluate applications of cabling installation, make recommendations regarding codes and standards, and perform retrofits and upgrades for existing infrastructures.
Cisco Certified Network Associate Routing and Switching (CCNA)
Cisco Certified Network Professional Enterprise Certification and Training (CCNP Enterprise)
CCIE Enterprise Infrastructure Certification and Training
CCIE Enterprise Wireless Certification and Training
Cisco has a well-known and highly developed certification portfolio.
Certifications in this category are aimed at candidates interested in building careers in wired and wireless networking techniques and technologies, network design, or routing and switching technologies.
Certification paths range from entry level to expert.
Certifications are targeted to network specialists, administrators, support engineers and design engineers.
CIW (Certified Internet Web Professional)
CIW Network Technology Associate
Entry-level certification developed by CIW (formerly called Certification Partners).
The target audience includes technical sales, support engineers, network administrators, product managers and engineers.
Content focuses on mastering the basics of networking and exploring key concepts, skills and core terms to prepare candidates for job readiness in networking, internet protocols, network security, and more.
This is one of the most popular general networking certifications in the world.
It targets candidates seeking careers as network administrators, technicians or installers, help desk technicians, and IT cable installers.
Recognized or required by the Department of Defense, Dell, HP, Ricoh, Sharp and Xerox. Also required for Apple Consultants Network membership.
Certified Wireless Network Professional (CWNP)
Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA)
Certified Wireless Design Professional (CWDP)
Certified Wireless Analysis Professional (CWAP)
Certified Wireless Network Expert (CWNE)
Established certification program offering a full complement of certifications ranging from entry-level to professional career certifications.
Certifications focus on enterprise Wi-Fi skills.
CWNP also offers Certified Wireless Security Professional (CWSP) and Certified Wireless Network Trainer (CWNT) credentials.
Electronics Technicians Association (ETA) International certifications
Computer Service Technician (CST)
Information Technology Security (ITS)
Network Computer Technician (NCT)
Network Systems Technician (NST)
Wireless Network Technician (WNT)
ETA offers more than 90 certifications targeting electronics professionals.
ETA is accredited by the International Certification Accreditation Council and has issued more than 180,000 certifications.
Extreme Networks certifications
Extreme Networks Certified Specialist (ECS)
Extreme Networks Sales Specialist (ESS)
Extreme Networks Design Specialist (EDS)
These technical certifications focus on practical, hands-on training to support and optimize an organization’s networks.
Multiple concentrations are available.
Hurricane Electric Internet Services certifications
Hurricane Electric IPv6 Certification
This free online certification project validates skills in basic IPv6 concepts.
Certification exam includes IP address format, reverse DNS, localhost address, default routing, documentation prefix, link-local prefix, multicast prefix, traceroute, and IPv6 server configuration.
IPv6 Forum certifications
IPv6 Forum Silver or Gold Certified Engineer
The IPv6 Education Certification Logo Program promotes IPv6 education and helps candidates build skills to foster swifter adoption of IPv6.
Courses focus on practical application and consist of both instructor-led and hands-on lab instruction.
Juniper Networks certifications
Juniper Networks Certified Specialist Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIS-ENT)
Juniper Networks Certified Professional Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIP-ENT)
Juniper Networks Certified Expert Enterprise Routing and Switching (JNCIE-ENT)
JNCIS-ENT, JNCIP-ENT and JNCIE-ENT are vendor-specific credentials that address installation and support of LAN/WAN routers and switches in Juniper Networks’ technology-based networks.
Credential holders possess skills necessary to support large enterprise environments.
Nokia Network Routing Specialist II (NRS II)
This certification is for intermediate network professionals experienced with IP and Ethernet technologies.
NRS II certification recognizes advanced networking and service offerings that build on core aspects of Nokia service routing. The certification covers internet routing protocols, IP/MPLS networks, and implementing Nokia Layer 2 and Layer 3 services.
Note that Alcatel-Lucent operates as part of the Nokia Group. This certification was known as the Alcatel-Lucent Network Routing Specialist II (NRS II), and some study guides still refer to it as such.
Oracle Certified Expert, Oracle Solaris 11 Network Administrator
Oracle has a well-established vendor-specific certification program. This certification validates the technical skills of system administrators who work with LANs and the Oracle Solaris operating system (Oracle Solaris OS).
The credential was formerly Sun Certified Network Administrator (SCNA).
Palo Alto certifications
Palo Alto Networks Certified Network Security Engineer (PCNSE)
PCNSE credential holders possess knowledge and technical skills necessary to install, configure and implement Palo Alto Networks technologies at the advanced engineering level.
The credential is targeted to partners, system engineers, system integrators, support engineers, pre-sales system engineers, support staff or anyone using Palo Alto Network technologies.
Riverbed Professional Services (RPS) certifications
Riverbed Certified Performance Engineering (RCPE)
The Riverbed Certified Performance Engineering (RCPE) program has several tracks, including WAN optimization, network and infrastructure visibility, network configuration, and more. Courses span foundational, associate and professional levels.
RPS changed its education program from product-focused how-tos to a learning environment that teaches how to consider business needs, obstacles and solutions.
SolarWinds Certified Professional (SCP)
Credential validates skills in networking management fundamentals, network management planning, network management operations, network fault and performance troubleshooting, and Orion NPM administration.
The SCP is an accredited certification.
Vendor-specific credential for professionals who use Wireshark to analyze network traffic and then use that information to troubleshoot, optimize and secure networks.
Wireshark is considered the de facto open-source product for network protocol analysis, with more than 400,000 downloads per month.
The WCNA exam was certified by the U.S. Army in 2009 and covers Wireshark functionality, TCP/IP network communications, and network troubleshooting and security.
About Riverbed Technology
Riverbed Technology, Inc. develops applications, websites, networks, data centers, the cloud, and remote offices. It offers visibility, intelligent optimization, and simplified control for all applications. The firm's solutions include application performance monitoring, network performance monitoring, end-to-end performance management, hyper-converge branch, wide area network optimization and hybrid wide area network. The company was founded by Jerry M. Kennelly and Steven McCanne in May 2002 and is headquartered in San Francisco, CA.
Related People & Companies
When Maira Gutiérrez was diagnosed with Chagas disease in 1997, neither she nor her primary care physician had even heard of the malady. She discovered her illness only by chance, after participating in a Red Cross blood drive organized by her employer, Universal Studios.
Red Cross tests donated blood for a range of diseases, including Chagas, which is caused by a parasite and can develop silently for decades before causing symptoms. The test detected Chagas in her body, and an MRI years later, in 2013, confirmed it had reached her heart.
“They showed me the image with the trace of the parasite to my heart. It was really scary,” Gutiérrez, originally from El Salvador, said in Spanish. Now 50, she remains healthy but undergoes a battery of tests annually to monitor for heart damage.
Trypanosoma cruzi, the parasite that causes Chagas, is transmitted through an insect called the triatomine bug, known as the kissing bug because it usually bites close to the lips. The bugs defecate on the skin, and the feces, which can contain the parasite, can enter a person’s body through the nose, mouth, or breaks in the skin.
Chagas disease affects people primarily in rural Latin America, where the insect thrives in thatched roofs and mud walls. It is not transmitted from person to person, except for a mother passing it to a newborn, or through blood transfusions or organ transplants.
But it’s increasingly present in the United States, where it often goes unrecognized: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates more than 300,000 people living in the U.S. have Chagas, though lack of awareness and testing means only 1% of cases have been identified.
Doctors, researchers, and patient advocates say the nation could be doing far more to combat Chagas, which causes serious heart disease in an estimated 30% of infected people and can also lead to crippling digestive problems such as enlargement of the esophagus and colon. They are pushing for increased access to testing and treatment and are optimistic about a new drug that’s set for human trials next year. A bill in Congress to up funding for rare diseases, which supporters hope will be debated in the fall, could help too.
Still, in the U.S., there is “a tremendous lack of awareness about this disease,” said Rachel Marcus, a cardiologist and the medical director of the Latin American Society of Chagas, who runs a Chagas testing clinic in northern Virginia. “We were taught that it is something we don’t see in the United States.”
A large proportion of those with Chagas are from Latin America, and many are living in the U.S. without legal permission. Marcus notes that many of those most at risk from Chagas use community health centers that could be testing sites but have limited resources, and tend to focus on more common conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
Chagas initially produces flu-like symptoms but can then go unnoticed for decades while it reproduces in the body. Drug treatments can sometimes eradicate the parasite, especially in its first stages, but the window for early detection is short: It does not stay in the bloodstream for long, instead migrating to tissues and organs, where it is harder to detect.
Often by the time a patient sees a doctor, that person has already developed serious complications, including heart rhythm abnormalities or a dilated heart that doesn’t pump blood well. Patients may eventually need pacemakers or heart transplants.
“It is a disease resulting from systemic failures in the health care system,” said writer Daisy Hernández, author of “The Kissing Bug: A True Story of a Family, an Insect, and a Nation’s Neglect of a Deadly Disease.”
In her book, Hernández tells the story of her aunt Dora, who was diagnosed with Chagas in the U.S. Before, in her country, Colombia, she had an exploratory surgery because of a swollen stomach and the doctors told her that she had “the intestines of 10 people” due to the amount of inflammation. No one suspected it could have been caused by the Chagas parasite.
Hernández said interviews with over 70 doctors and patients convinced her that the real barrier to Chagas care is inaction.
“While a person living in Virginia who is originally from Bolivia [where Chagas is endemic] knows that if diagnosed with Chagas, they should start saving up for a pacemaker,” Hernández said in Spanish, “here, the government does nothing and doesn’t even know what the disease is.”
Between 6 and 7 million people worldwide live with the parasite. In the U.S., two long-standing drugs have had FDA approval: benznidazole and nifurtimox, which can beat back the parasite but don’t always eradicate it. The medications can have serious side effects, and are most effective if given early: Babies born with Chagas have a 90% cure rate if treated within their first year of life.
To combat the disease, doctors familiar with Chagas recommend testing pregnant women from at-risk communities and urge earlier treatments. They also advocate screening all transplant organs. In 2018, a Connecticut man died after receiving a heart infected with the Chagas parasite, prompting a lawsuit and calls for mandatory organ screening. The organization that governs transplant policies in the U.S. recently voted to require such testing.
Few facilities in the country screen for Chagas. Advocates say that with greater awareness, many healthcare providers could conduct initial screenings and, if positive, send results to the CDC for confirmation.
However, building awareness has been an uphill battle. The Center of Excellence for Chagas Disease, the only center in the U.S. dedicated to Chagas diagnosis and treatment, recently suspended operations after its longtime director, Sheba Meymandi, retired.
A pioneer in the diagnosis and treatment of Chagas, Meymandi said she is still working as a volunteer at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, where the center was based, to ensure her patients receive care.
“The political leadership has stopped supporting the center, and we no longer actively conduct tests,” Meymandi said. Now, she refers Chagas patients to the cardiology clinic.
A spokesperson for the county’s Department of Public Health wrote in a statement that the center is not technically closed, and that treatment of Chagas patients with heart conditions had been taken over by the cardiology department at the UCLA hospital. But at least for now, it is not offering general screening for Chagas infection. California has the most Chagas cases of any state.
Another hope for beating Chagas lies in new drugs. Rick Tarleton, the head of the Tarleton Research Group in the University of Georgia’s Department of Cellular Biology, said his group had collaborated with Anacor Pharmaceuticals to identify and optimize compounds that could kill the T. cruzi parasites. They had found one.
“It could completely eradicate the infection in mice and in nonhuman primates,” Tarleton said.
The team tested the compound on 19 macaques at a research center in Texas that had acquired the parasite naturally. The infection was defeated, the monkeys had no significant side effects, and they are still clinically healthy after more than five years.
Tarleton’s team also observed that some of the parasites can become dormant, making them resistant to drug treatment. As a result, Tarleton said, it’s critical not only to develop more effective drugs but to optimize timing of treatments.
Tarleton and his team hope to launch a clinical trial of the compound next year.
There is also some hope on the political front. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) reintroduced the Study, Treat, Observe, and Prevent (STOP) Neglected Diseases of Poverty Act in February to address the growing health problem posed by maladies like Chagas spreading in low-income communities. The list also includes dengue fever, leprosy, and chikungunya.
“Whenever we go into low-income communities and look for these illnesses, we usually find them,” said Peter Hotez, who worked with Booker’s office on the legislation and is the dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. “Tragically, too often our nation ignores or neglects these communities, and we fail to look.”
Meanwhile, Maira Gutiérrez, the patient who was lucky to have a diagnosis and a consistent treatment, has some advice for them: “Donate blood; at the very least, you’ll know if you have the parasite, and it’ll cost you nothing.”
Copyright 2023 KFF Health News. To see more, visit KFF Health News.
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Employees and Supervisors should collaboratively identify the most relevant and applicable learning for an employee’s role with the University. The following learning opportunity resources can be used as an idea starter to assist in determining appropriate learning as it pertains to professional development and job growth. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of resources. The guidelines have been updated with a JEP Learning Plan Process.
Academic courses offered by Miami University as well as other educational institutions may be eligible for Job Enrichment credit.
Access: Follow the application/registration process specific to the institution offering the course.
Testing: Obtain a passing grade if taken for credit.
Cost: All costs associated with academic courses are the responsibility of the employee (tuition fee waiver benefit may apply for Miami University courses).
Chefcertification.com is an online learning portal providing access to online training courses specific to nutrition, cooking, and the culinary fields. Chefcertification.com provides user-friendly online courses that help aspiring chefs reach their ACF Chef Certification goals. By taking courses using our self-paced online service, staff earns the required credit hours for initial certification or certification renewal, all from the comforts of home or the confines of work. There are no term schedules; students may register online at any time.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Cost: Campus Services centrally covers the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for a Food and Beverage Team Member and approved by the area Director. Average cost for a preliminary course is $150. Average Cost range for a refresher course is $25 - $65.
American Management Association (AMA) courses are self-study books designed to enhance your professional development skills.
Access: Department approval required prior to ordering. Ordering and payment process
Cost: All costs associated with AMA books are paid for by the employee's department budget and retained by the department. The current retail price averages $159; Miami University receives a 50% discount off retail prices.
CE Direct provides online learning opportunities for allied health professionals and nutrition professionals. ContinuingEducation.com/cedirect is an online learning portal providing access to online training courses specific to nutrition, dietetics and the restaurant field.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Testing: Obtain a grade of 75% or greater on the overall assessment.
Cost: Campus Services centrally covers the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for a Food and Beverage Team Member. Average cost for one person to have unlimited access is $12.25 per year.
Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) is a Custodial Technician self-study book that is split into two levels, Basic and Advanced. The Basic Level includes six modules, and the Advanced Level contains three modules. Each module covers a different cleaning subject and each has a corresponding proctored, certification exam.
Access:Contact your JEP Administrator
Cost: Campus Services and Physical Facilities centrally cover the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for staff within their respective department and approved by the area Director. Cost for a Basic or Advanced CMI test is $54.99. Cost for a Basic or Advanced retest is $24.99 per module. Cost for a study guide is $54.99 for Basic, and $99.99 for Advanced.
The American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) offers more than 30 hospitality management courses, available through traditional home study (correspondence courses called “Distance Learning” Opportunities) or online through our “CourseLine®” program. Take individual courses or work toward earning Areas of Specialization certificates, a Hospitality Fundamentals certificate, a Hospitality Operations certificate, a Hospitality Management Diploma or a Food and Beverage Management Diploma.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Submission Requirements:Cost: Campus Services centrally covers the cost for certifications listed on a Professional Development Plan for a Campus Services Team Member and approved by the area Director.Average cost range for a certification is $125 - $180.
Continuing Education in Global Initiatives, in collaboration with ed2go, offers a wide range of interactive online courses. The online courses are affordable, convenient, and may qualify for Miami’s Job Enrichment Program. These classes are not for college credit and may require additional supplies, computer software, and texts. The Professional Development Online Instruction Center offers a wide range of courses from computer applications such as Microsoft Word and Excel, to website development, and language courses to name just a few. The Career Training Online Instruction Center provides a robust learning center where you can learn specific trades such as computer science, construction & trades, and computer applications. Most of these courses provide the required education needed in order to take certification exams in the specific field.
For the professional development courses, you must pass the final exam with a 65% or higher in order to receive a certificate of completion. Each career training course has its own final exam policy.
Cost: Professional development courses range from $105–$129. Career training courses range from $499 to $5,495. Since these are non-credit bearing, the Miami tuition fee waiver does not apply. However, some departments have covered the cost of the courses when they pertain directly to the staff’s job duties, some departments have not. Be sure to speak with your supervisor regarding payment prior to enrolling.
HR Staff Development offers a wide array of learning opportunities, programs and other resources that support employees in their efforts to develop professionally and enhance their skills. These workshops are designed for faculty and staff at all levels within the University who are interested in developing skills for professional growth. Learn more about Staff Development current offerings.
Access: Miami Learn
Testing: Courses may include prework, in-class participation, postwork and course evaluation.
Cost: All costs associated with HR Staff Development workshops are paid centrally through Staff Development.
Innovation Educators provides access to over 300 professional development training courses, as well as access to unlimited webinars for faculty, administrators and staff. This valuable resource is available at no cost to members of the Southwestern Ohio Council For Higher Education (SOCHE) and Miami University is a member!
Testing: All course content must be viewed.
Cost: Innovation Educators webinars are available at no cost to Miami University employees using the SOCHE17 coupon code.
Linkedin Learning has more than 6,600 courses, ranging from computer programming to project management including instruction on various computer software, programming languages, and business topics.
Cost: Linkedin Learning is offered through Lane Library at no cost to users.
The training programs offered by NCCER meet national industry standards. Individual modules may be completed at home and at the participant’s pace. Course completion timeframe may vary for each module. Points do not expire for participants in the Apprenticeship Program.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Cost: Physical Facilities centrally covers the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for staff within their department and approved by the area Director. Average cost range for a course is $79 - $122.
Percipio is a digital learning platform that engages and inspires staff to learn. It's micro-learning videos provide quick, targeted learning focusing on specific tasks delivered in real-time. It will create new ways of thinking about improving performance and skills.
Cost: All costs associated with Percipio are paid centrally through Staff Development.
Develop your skills with accredited, trade-specific training from Penn Foster. This program provides hands-on training and practical exercises that will allow you to receive a career diploma. The coursework may be completed at home, and at a pace that’s right for you. The completion timeframe varies for each program. Points do not expire for participants in the Apprenticeship Program.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Testing: Obtain a passing grade for the course.
Cost: Physical Facilities centrally covers the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for staff within their department and approved by the area Director. Average cost to complete coursework for a career diploma varies by trade.
TPC Training consists of self-study books designed to enhance industrial, maintenance, and business skills for service and maintenance professionals. Each course consists of multiple lessons, programmed exercises, and self-check quizzes for optimal learning. All courses include a final exam proctored by the appropriate Job Enrichment Administrator.
Access: Contact your JEP Administrator
Cost: Campus Services and Physical Facilities centrally cover the cost for courses listed on a Professional Development Plan for staff within their respective department and approved by the area Director. Average cost range for a course is $57 - $85.
Universal Class is an online learning program offered through local public libraries that provides a diverse offering of intellectually stimulating courses for people interested in the lifelong pursuit of knowledge for either personal or professional reasons.
Access: Universal Class (new users must register to create an account)
Cost: Universal Class is offered through Lane Library at no cost to users.
University Sponsored Non-Academic Learning Opportunities can change from year to year. As a result, the points you can earn from completing them may vary. Please contact your Job Enrichment Administrator for eligible points.
Access: Responsibility of employee and/or supervisor
Testing: Varies per learning opportunity
Cost: Costs associated for these events are the responsibility of the employee and/or department.
It is recommended that JE participants seek out learning resources that would be most relevant for their role and provide the best opportunity to develop skills and grow professionally. Collaborate with your supervisor to list the areas you want to focus on for your development and then identify relevant and applicable learning opportunities to achieve your goals. These learning opportunities might include webinars, conferences, specialized training, certifications, and product/vendor training.
Feel free to explore these professional organization sites to discover other learning opportunities!
Access: Responsibility of employee and/or supervisor
Testing: Varies per learning opportunity resource
Cost: Costs associated for these learning opportunities are the responsibility of the employee and/or department.
It’s lauded by some as one of the best ways to Excellerate teaching and learning, scorned by others as a complete waste of time. It’s something that teachers might have access to weekly, or barely get once or twice a year.
Professional development will be part of almost every teacher’s career. They will take district-provided training, participate in collaborative learning groups, or seek out seminars and conferences.
When professional development is done well, it provides an opportunity for teachers to grow their knowledge and sharpen their skills, which can lead to better student outcomes. It’s a way for teachers to collaborate with their colleagues, and one avenue through which administrators can support their teachers.
That’s the goal. But it’s not always the reality.
The K-12 professional development landscape is diffuse and highly local, with offerings varying from district to district and even school to school. Teachers have long said that the PD they receive often isn’t relevant to the subject or grade level they teach, that it doesn’t provide tips for practical application in the classroom, or that its goals are vague.
And research on the subject is mixed, with studies demonstrating that some approaches work well—and others don’t have any effect.
Read on for an overview of the field: what options exist, what research shows can Excellerate student outcomes, and how teachers say professional development could be improved.
Professional development, or professional learning, can refer to any kind of ongoing learning opportunity for teachers and other education personnel.
Some professional development is required—for example, a state law could mandate that all elementary school teachers undergo training in early literacy instruction, or a school could host a mandatory workshop on a day reserved for in-service teacher professional development.
Most states require that teachers complete a certain number of hours of professional development to renew their teaching licenses or to receive salary boosts. Usually, teachers can meet these requirements by taking continuing education classes through colleges and universities, or by taking professional development courses from state-approved providers.
A host of organizations provide these PD sessions, including teachers’ unions, subject-specific professional associations, education companies and publishers, museums, government agencies, and nonprofits.
Exactly how much teachers pay for PD varies, too. Districts and unions will offer some options to teachers for free, or deeply discounted. But often teachers pay out of pocket, especially for opportunities hosted by outside organizations.
The stereotypical PD session is the “one-and-done.”
A group of teachers gather in a classroom or an auditorium to listen while a consultant delivers a scripted presentation on a general topic. It’s then up to teachers to figure out how to apply that information to their specific classroom contexts—if they choose to do so at all.
Teachers, policymakers, and education researchers have criticized these kinds of one-off workshops for their lack of continuity and coherence, but they’re still very much a part of the PD landscape (see the next section).
Still, the suite of options is much broader than just workshops. Here are some of the other types of professional learning that teachers could have access to:
Teachers say that the type of PD they participate in most often is collaborative learning, according to a 2023 study from the RAND Corporation that surveyed a nationally representative sample of 8,000 teachers.
This includes work time with colleagues or more structured meetings, like professional learning communities. Thirty-nine percent of teachers said they did this at least weekly.
Still, workshops and short trainings are still part of many schools’ approaches.
The federal government provides funding that districts and states can use for professional development through Title II-A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Data from the 2020-21 school year show that 90 percent of districts that used some of this money for PD spent the funds on trainings that lasted three days or fewer, or on conferences.
Districts spent on other types of PD too. Eighty percent of districts said they funded longer-term professional development lasting four or more days, and 55 percent supported collaborative or job-embedded professional development.
Research from the past decade shows that much of the professional development that teachers undergo doesn’t meet the federal standard for “high-quality.”
The Every Student Succeeds Act, the federal K-12 law that replaced the No Child Left Behind Act, defines high-quality professional learning as meeting six criteria: it’s sustained (meaning not a one-off workshop), intensive, collaborative, job-embedded, data-driven, and classroom-focused.
But most offerings don’t meet all of these benchmarks. A 2016 study from the Frontline Research & Learning Institute examined 3.2 million PD enrollments between 2011 and 2016, and found that 80 percent of them didn’t meet the federal standard in full.
Most professional development is locally provided, from school districts, regional offices of education, or teachers’ unions. Quality control is often lacking: Some states have hundreds of approved providers, and only audit a small sample each year.
Hard data on which professional-development models lead to better teaching are difficult to come by.
In part, this is because professional development relies on a two-part transfer of knowledge: Teachers need to learn new knowledge and skills such that they change their behavior, and those changes must subsequently result in improved student mastery of subject matter. Unsurprisingly, the complex nature of those transactions renders the field of professional development a challenging one to study.
Still, research reviews conducted over the last five years or so have provided some insights.
In a brief published in 2022, researchers at Harvard Graduate School of Education and Brown University reviewed dozens of studies on professional development to identify some commonalities in successful programs.
They found that professional development that focused on instructional practice—identifying key teaching strategies and providing support for carrying out those changes in the classroom—was generally more effective for improving student performance than professional learning that focused solely on building teachers’ content knowledge in their subjects.
This instruction-focused PD is most effective when it’s tied to materials that teachers are going to use in the classroom, an approach also known as curriculum-based professional development. The paper cites two metanalyses—one of coaching programs, and one of science, technology, engineering and math instructional improvement programs—that both found PD had larger effects on student outcomes when it helped teachers understand how to best use their classroom materials. Other research reviews have identified the importance of providing teachers with models and examples.
Adding follow-up sessions was helpful too. They provide opportunities for teachers to share their experiences implementing new information and get feedback from peers.
Coaching is also powerful. A 2018 meta-analysis of 60 studies on instructional coaching found that it can Excellerate teachers’ practice, so much so that in some cases a novice teacher performed at the same level as one who had been in the classroom for 5 years. It improves student performance, too, as measured by standardized test scores.
Still, the results came with a caveat. Coaching programs became less successful as they got larger, involving more teachers. Recruiting, developing, and supporting a large staff of coaches can be costly and challenging to districts to implement, the researchers said.
Other types of professional development also have stipulations.
Adding collaboration time for teachers to work together can be very effective—but only if that time is well-used. One 2022 study, for example, found that teachers reported participating more—and perceived collaborative time to be more useful to their practice—when it was focused on a specific goal, rather than swapping general strategies to Excellerate instruction.
Because professional development varies so widely in type and in quality, teachers’ opinion of it varies too. But in general, teachers’ critiques of PD line up with research findings about what is, and isn’t, best practice.
Teachers have said they want professional development to be more practical and directly connected to the work that they’re doing in the classroom. A common complaint is that PD is not tailored to teachers’ needs—for example, mandatory seminars that often have no relevance to their particular subject area or cover skills that they mastered years ago.
Teachers want time to apply what they’ve learned with students and then follow up with PD providers and their colleagues to evaluate: Did this go well? Why or why not? And is it helping students?
Finally, teachers have also identified a need for more support in reaching certain student groups. In the 2023 RAND survey, most teachers said their professional learning offered no access to expertise, or only slight access to expertise, in supporting students with disabilities or English learners.
Employees can use Miami Learn to discover learning opportunities, register for learning, access online content, and view and maintain learning history. Search the library for relevant learning activities to help strengthen and build new skills. The learning library will grow over time with the addition of events such as interactive face-to-face training, engaging webinars, virtual learning, interesting videos, as well as access to numerous curated learning resources.
Contact Human Resources Staff Development at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire about adding content to Miami Learn.
To cancel your registration in Miami Learn:
1. Click on About Me and then Development Plan
2. Click on the course title and then scroll down and click Remove
Users who anticipate or experience a disability-related barrier to registering for training in Miami Learn should contact Staff Development at email@example.com for assistance.
Users who anticipate or experience a disability-related barrier to accessing Miami Learn content should contact firstname.lastname@example.org to request an accommodation.
Stress is a biological response to what your brain perceives as a threatening situation. Neurotransmitters within the brain activate the amygdala, which is responsible for the flight-or-fight response, notes Yale Medicine. Typical causes of stress include major life changes like a divorce or a medical diagnosis, work-related pressure or financial issues.
Stress is a part of life but prolonged periods of stress can lead to negative physical health effects such as a weakened immune system. “A person who is constantly stressed can suffer from consistent headaches, gastrointestinal issues and even muscle pain,” says Kaur. “Our bodies are usually first to tell us that something is wrong and we need to slow down to decrease our stress levels. It’s one of the reasons taking time to relax or meditate can be so helpful.”
If stress overtakes your life, or that of someone you know, it may make sense to see a psychologist, psychiatrist or licensed professional counselor, who could develop a treatment plan that works for your needs.
Anxiety is similar to stress, as it’s your brain’s response to a perceived threat. Symptoms may include increased heart rate, difficulty breathing and feeling nervous, notes the National Institute of Mental Health. Anxiety is often experienced as a result of a tense or stressful event and resolves over time. However, an anxiety disorder involves repetitive worry when the threat is no longer present, according to Kaur. “When the anxiety has manifested itself to a point where you are unable to function, it’s important to seek help,” she says.
Depression is a common mental health disorder that negatively impacts your ability to function. Neurons are not able to connect as easily with other neurons in the brain as depression occurs, as noted by Yale Medicine. Symptoms of depression may include social withdrawal, poor sleeping, weight changes or aches and pain. Someone who is depressed will also experience feelings of sadness, guilt and loss of previously enjoyed activities.
There are multiple treatments that can help, but it’s important to talk to a professional who can determine if a poor mood is fleeting or a sign of clinical depression.
Mania is characterized by extreme emotional highs or lows, where a person can become uncontrollable. Symptoms can include racing thoughts, rapid speech, irritability and paranoia. Manic episodes are an indicator of mental health conditions such as bipolar I or schizoaffective disorder.
“Mood swings can be triggered by stress, but if a person is cycling between a high (manic episode) and a low (depression) consistently, it’s a definite sign to seek help from a provider,” says Kaur.