Tools and Technologies for Advancing Professional Development

FitzGerald, Elizabeth; Adams, Anne; Bektik, Duygu; Bossu, Carina; Clough, Gill; Ismail, Nashwa and Sargent, Julia (2019). Tools and Technologies for Advancing Professional Development. In: CALRG Annual Conference 2019, 17-18 Jun 2019, The Open University, Milton Keynes.


A large number of professional development studies have focused on the possible impact of professional development activities to improve practice and learning; for example, the impacts of the professional development on the learner (Buczynski & Hansen, 2010; Desimone, 2009; Ingvarson, Meiers, & Beavis, 2005). Other studies have looked at developing and implementing evaluation models to improve practice and learning (e.g. Guskey, 2000; Van Veen, Zwart, & Meirink, 2012). However, these approaches tend to focus on the end outcome of a process rather than a continue cycle for improvement, change and reflection. As Merchie et al. (2018) state, investigators and practitioners have been working towards making more innovative, thoughtful and informed ways to develop relevant, updated and personalised professional development initiatives that goes beyond processes (Desimone, 2009; King, 2014).

Professional development can be viewed from both a top-down, organisational perspective and also from a bottom-up, life-long learning view. This presentation will show how these perspectives can be related through 3 key factors: Context, Philosophy and Delivery (CPD), which through a connection of top-down and bottom-up, leads to what we describe as the CPD2 cycle. A number of different delivery tools, methods and approaches have been used in the CPD2 cycle through the work of colleagues at the OU, such as games-based learning, evidence cafés, tricky topics, social media, video conferencing, personalisation and multimodal delivery.

We focus on games-based learning, social media and multimodal delivery as examples of technologies that have produced positive impacts on professional development and professional digital learning.

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