Against the Odds: Professional Development and Innovation Under Less-Than-Ideal Conditions
Beverly Hunter, Piedmont Research Institute, United States
Journal of Technology and Teacher Education Volume 9, Number 4, ISSN 1059-7069 Publisher: Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education, Waynesville, NC USA
This article reports surprising accomplishments of teachers who, despite overwhelming obstacles, are creating new learning opportunities for their students and are taking advantage of electronic technologies to support those innovations. Prior research has found that certain conditions should exist in a school for teachers to pursue professional development so they can implement useful applications of technologies in their classrooms. Examples of these conditions include administrative leadership, shared vision, opportunities for reflection and collaboration, a long-term professional development plan, and other supportive conditions. However, in many schools those desired conditions do not exist and there are formidable obstacles to creating those conditions. This report summarizes some of the findings of a research project conducted over a period of two and a half years with about 100 teachers in a pre-k-12 school complex that is part of a large, hierarchical school system. Teachers having a common vision for innovative practices worked in small teams to plan, implement, and evaluate new practices in their classrooms and school community. In this article some aspects of these innovations are described. Essential elements of the strategies Vanguard for Learning used for professional development are described and factors contributing to the teachers' ability to make such dramatic accomplishments "against the odds" are described. Ways in which these strategies can be adapted in other school settings are suggested.
Hunter, B. (2001). Against the Odds: Professional Development and Innovation Under Less-Than-Ideal Conditions. Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, 9(4), 473-496. Norfolk, VA: Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education.
© 2001 Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education
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Julie Gess-Newsome, J. Michael Blocher,, Joëlle Clark, Jackie Menasco & Elizabeth M. Willis, Northern Arizona University, United States
Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education Vol. 3, No. 3 (April 2003) pp. 324–340
Joan Hughes & Ann Ooms, University of Minnesota, United States
Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2004 (2004) pp. 2262–2267
Antoinette Bruciati, Sacred Heart University, United States
Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2004 (2004) pp. 62–69
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