How Can Teachers Track Their Professional Development Process?

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A Professional Development Plan is a system for teachers to track and manage their professional development. It is an organized and efficient way to become a teacher who is a life long learner.

Manage your professional growth through a PDP

Teachers are expected to continuously acquire new knowledge and skills. As a teacher the professional development process is ongoing and a lifetime practice. This is why a PDP (Professional Development Plan) is a great tool in order to manage your professional growth. This plan can help you identify areas that need work as well as track the impact of these areas on student learning.

The following are the five stages in the Professional Development Plan:

Stage 1: Background Analysis

Teachers should always aim towards professional growth and development. Even qualified and experienced teachers can develop their professional practice. Knowing your professional background as a teacher is vital in laying the foundation to recognize areas that need improvement. Teachers must analyze the background and circumstances surrounding their everyday work. This will enable them to identify their top teaching priorities and assess their training and teaching methods.

Stage 2: Self-Assessment

In the second step teachers will assess and appraise themselves and identify areas that need improvement. They may use tools such as employer review, learner feedback, teaching observations, and so on, in order to critically analyze their goals and needs for the future. Identifying these future goals and needs will help them address the priority areas they have already identified.

Stage 3: Personal Development Plan

Teachers use the data gathered from their self-assessment to formulate activities that will help them work toward their goals and needs. It is essential that they identify those activities and topics that will be most effective and beneficial to them as teachers. The Personal Development Plan is unique to each teacher and targets specific professional developments. This plan must include a short explanation of each activity, a time period for completion, perceived outcomes, and a scale to measure the success of the plan. This step is the core of a Personal Development Plan.

Stage 4: Professional Development Activity Record

All the activities identified in the third stage must be recorded in a logbook. The book should have detailed descriptions of the activities, including dates, and reflections about how the activities were beneficial for the teachers, students and colleagues. This will act as a record of all that the teachers have accomplished and, in some states, can be used as proof of completing the number of hours required for continuing professional development training for teachers. Keeping this record is also helpful in your own personal journey to becoming a better teacher.

Stage 5: Reflection and Impact Analysis

The final stage in the professional development cycle is for reflecting on the impact that the professional development plan has had on your teaching, students, and colleagues. The information collected through this reflection will be a motivator for the beginning of another cycle. It also plays a big role in setting new goals and activities for the next school year.

Like this article for teachers?

Browse the Professional Learning Board COURSE CATALOG to find related online courses for teachers in your state. Professional Learning Board is a leading provider of online professional development classes that teachers use to renew a teaching license or renew a teaching certificate.

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