Source: Issues in Teacher Education, Volume 20, Number 1, (Spring, 2011), p. 69-84.
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)
In this article, the authors explore the long-term impact of workshop series on faculty participants’ attitudes, confidence, and understanding as related to program assessment.
The authors employed a hierarchical linear model (HLM) to examine whether the immediate impact was sustained and how it evolved over time.
The assessment workshops were held in each of four consecutive months in spring 2008 in the College of Education at California State University, Long Beach.
Data were collected from surveys administered at three points in time.
Pre- and post-workshop series surveys were administered before and after the series in spring 2008.
The follow-up survey took place in April 2009.
The findings reveal that the positive impact of ongoing, focused professional development in program assessment on faculty understanding, confidence, and attitudes related to program assessment can be sustained and even improved over time.
The professional development gave faculty participants opportunities to work together during a four-part workshop series to develop program assessment plans built around shared learning goals.
Faculty understanding of program assessment grew over time, both during the workshops and then in the year of implementation following the workshops.
Moreover, as faculty engaged in collaborative program assessment activities and practices, they reported greater understanding and confidence in parallel.
This study shows that faculty confidence remained even or became stronger one year after the workshops.
Attitudes also appear to have improved over time. Faculty were more concerned about assessment requiring changes in their teaching practice immediately after the workshops than before the experience.
These findings suggest that giving faculty the opportunity and support to carry out assessment activities in the year following the workshops was important in shaping the improvements in understanding, confidence and attitudes.
The authors recommend on implementing the features that made the professional development series effective to help schools of education and teacher preparation programs to help them manage the changes appearing on the horizon.