Research Center to Lead Teacher Development Study
Team to Determine Impact of Training on Instructors and Student Achievement
Sep. 2, 2010
The University of Texas at Dallas Education Research Center (UTD-ERC) will lead a research team charged with measuring the effectiveness of professional development academies for Texas teachers.
The researchers will assess content and participation in the academies, and then take a look at the training’s effect on instruction practices and student achievement.
The academies are designed to improve student achievement in the core subject areas of math, English/language arts and science.
Texas legislators reserved funds last session to implement research‐based instructional strategies in schools where students are struggling to meet state education standards in third, fifth and eighth grades.
These strategies will be disseminated to teachers during the next two years through a wide array of professional development academies developed by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).
“What's exciting about this study is that, because we are involved in the beginning stages of content construction and initial implementation, our research team will be able to focus on the process of the professional development and identify conditions and best practices that support successful development and, ultimately, have a positive impact on student achievement,” said Dr. Anne Ware, who is the project’s principal investigator and assistant director of Texas Schools Project, the managing organization of the UTD-ERC.
The UTD-ERC has teamed up with Gibson Consulting Group Inc. and its research partners, ICF International and Learning Point Associates, to collaborate on planning and executing the study.
Reviewers now are analyzing the professional development curriculum, and researchers are collecting teacher-participation data, conducting session observations and designing surveys. Ware expects the first report on the academies to be complete next fall.
UTD-ERC is managed by Texas Schools Project, one of the most comprehensive education research institutions in the country, which is part of UT Dallas’ School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences.