Professional Development for Teachers: What Do You Want to Accomplish
Professional development for teachers is available in a number of formats, covering a vast range of topics. At times, just the sheer number of PD choices can seem overwhelming. How can you decide what type of professional development is right for you?
You can start by deciding what you’d like to accomplish, and that act alone can help you become more clear on what might work best for you.
Professional Development for Subject Matter Knowledge
If you’d like to expand your knowledge of the subject matter that you teach, professional development can be an easy way to do this. Particularly if you’re teaching a subject that is changing rapidly (such as technology or business), professional development courses or workshops can help expand your subject matter expertise and ensure that you stay up on the latest trends.
Professional Development for Classroom Management Strategies
Managing a classroom has never been more challenging – for teachers of all grades – as students become more distracted and classroom sizes grow. Most teachers would agree that “teaching” is the easy part, yet something that’s almost impossible to do without effective classroom management strategies. If you feel like you’re too soft (or too hard) on students, or often feel disconnected from individual students or the class as a whole, professional development could not only increase your effectiveness, but also restore joy to your teaching.
Professional Development for Personalized Learning
“One size never fit all” in teaching, but today, more than ever, students need teaching that’s individualized and personalized. If you never learned personalized teaching methods or need a refresher, there are a number of online professional development courses, workshops, and conferences that focus on adapting your teaching to each student.
Professional Development for Personal Skills Advancement
If you consider yourself great at teaching, but not so great at organization, time management, interpersonal communication, or other necessary traits, professional development can help you develop and/or improve these competencies.
Professional Development for Pay Raises
If earning more money – now and in retirement – is one of your priorities, professional development provides a clear path to that in many schools and districts. Most teachers are compensated based on their education (e.g. bachelor or master degree), number of years of experience, and continuing education. As an example, in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), as soon as you earn 14 professional development “salary points,” you advance to the next pay level. Higher pay levels mean more take-home pay now, and they also impact how much you’ll earn in retirement. Only teachers – not other professionals – have the ability to directly impact how much they earn, by how much they learn. If this is important to you, make professional development a priority. The sooner you earn credits, the more you increase your lifetime earnings.
Education 4 Equity Online Professional Development Courses
At Education 4 Equity, we have a wide range of online professional development courses for teachers, including 1-credit, 2-credit, and 3-credit courses. All of our classes qualify for LAUSD salary points and graduate credit.