Teacher Learning and Policy Intention: Selected Findings from an Evaluation of a Large-Scale Programme of Professional Development in the Republic of Ireland

Nov. 28, 2009

Source: European Journal of Teacher Education, Volume 32, Issue 4 (November 2009), pages 455 – 471.

The study reported on in this article is set in the context of a national programme of professional development for primary teachers in the Republic of Ireland. This programme has been in operation since 1999 and finished in 2008. The article investigates the acquisition and interpretation by teachers of the elements of the reform.

The authors consider the extent to which the professional development experiences facilitated change in teachers' knowledge and if the teachers interpreted this in the way expected by policy-makers.

The theoretical basis to the study draws on previous research that conceptualises teacher learning/knowledge acquisition and the change process as being dependant on an interwoven mix of factors, including teacher, school and policy-level contexts and characteristics.
To a large degree the findings of this study do not deviate wildly from this prior work, which suggests that policy-makers and planners of CPD programmes, despite their best intentions, still need to be cognisant of such factors.

Updated: Jan. 31, 2010