Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Paper presented at the 42nd annual meeting of the Northeastern Educational Research Association Annual Conference, Rocky Hill, CT. October 21, 2011.


The purpose of the qualitative phase of this study was to investigate teachers’ perceptions of professional development and the extent to which teachers believe it expands their knowledge and skills and improves student learning. Teachers from an urban ring district in Rhode Island were asked to participate in a focus group discussion. A thorough analysis of the content of the responses to focus group questions was completed. In general, teachers felt that the most effective professional development experiences had been on topics of their choice and those facilitated by teachers. According to focus group results, collaboration and relevancy were two additional characteristics of effective professional development. The results may assist districts, policy makers, and designers of professional development in the quest for more personalized professional learning.

Included in

Education Commons



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