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Ask A REL Response

April 2021


What research has been conducted on the impact on individuals' perceptions of the efficacy of various training modalities on subsequent professional practice?


Following an established REL Southeast research protocol, we conducted a search for research reports as well as descriptive study articles on the impact on individuals' perceptions of the efficacy of various training modalities on subsequent professional practice. We focused on identifying resources that specifically addressed the impact on individuals' perceptions of the efficacy of various training modalities on subsequent professional practice. The sources included ERIC and other federally funded databases and organizations, research institutions, academic research databases, and general Internet search engines (For details, please see the methods section at the end of this memo.)

We have not evaluated the quality of references and the resources provided in this response. We offer them only for your reference. These references are listed in alphabetical order, not necessarily in order of relevance. Also, we searched the references in the response from the most commonly used resources of research, but they are not comprehensive and other relevant references and resources may exist.

Research References

  1. Bana, W., & Cranmore, J. (2019). Elementary teacher perceptions of professional development on the neuroscience of learning. Mid-Western Educational Researcher, 31(3), 333-347.
    From the abstract: "The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore how knowledge on the neuroscience of learning may inform the practice of teaching and classroom instruction. Twelve purposively selected elementary teachers from a private school in California were asked about their perceptions of the nature of a professional development (PD) course on the neuroscience of learning and also their perceptions of the influence such training had on their practice. The conceptual framework for this study was Desimone and Garet's (2015) model of effective professional development. Themes from semi structured interviews, focus groups, and observations of the teacher participants were identified using thematic analysis. The themes identified were: (a) the structure of PD is critical to its success, (b) follow up to PD is critical to implementation of training, (c) neuroscience of learning PD is beneficial for elementary teachers, and (d) effective PD on the neuroscience of learning needs certain components. This study elucidates considerations for stakeholders in creating effective PD neuroscience courses."
  2. Boardman, K. (2020). An exploration of teachers' perceptions and the value of multisensory teaching and learning: A perspective on the influence of specialist dyslexia training in England. Education 3-13, 48(7j), 795-806.
    From the abstract: "This article reports on experienced teacher's perceptions of multisensory teaching and learning and the subsequent impact of undertaking a specialist dyslexia professional development training programme in England. The Post Graduate Certificate SpLD Dyslexia training programme aimed to increase the participation of learners with dyslexia and subsequently their overall well-being in schools. The experiences and perceptions of 213 teachers working in a variety of primary and secondary settings across England are documented as an empirical study, utilising a survey, semi- structured interviews and focus groups. The findings offer a viewpoint that teaching using a multisensory approach is of immense value for individual learners and whole class teaching. As such this paper highlights implications for practice, such as embedding multisensory training across all teacher training, which is significant for policy and provision nationally and internationally."
  3. Brown, C. S., Cheddie, T. N., Horry, L. F., & Monk, J. E. (2017). Training to be an early childhood professional: Teacher candidates' perceptions about their education and training. Journal of Education and Training Studies, 5(6), 177-86.
    From the abstract: "Professionalism in the context of early care and education has received considerable attention in recent years (Caulfield, 1997; Harte, 2011; Tigistu, 2013). According to the 2010 National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Standards for Initial & Advanced Early Childhood Professional Preparation Programs, teacher candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs should identify and conduct themselves as members of the profession, know and use ethical guidelines and utilize other professional standards related to early childhood practice (NAEYC, 2012). In their final journal entry for a student teaching practicum course, teacher candidates in an accredited early childhood program reflected on what it means to be an early childhood professional. In alignment with the 2010 NAEYC Standards, teacher candidates appeared to recognize that being an early childhood professional means having an understanding of the specialized knowledge required to be effective in early childhood education. They also appeared to be aware that providing responsive, supportive curricula, which acknowledges and respects the whole child and family and their cultural backgrounds, is an integral aspect of the early childhood profession. Implications from this inquiry suggest that the early childhood program should ensure the fidelity to the NAEYC Standards by aligning assignments that incorporate the language and expectations of the Standards."
  4. Figueredo-Canosa, V., Ortiz J. L., Sánchez R. C., & López Berlanga, M. C. (2020). Teacher training in intercultural education: Teacher perceptions. Education Sciences, 10 Article 81.
    From the abstract: "Background: The aim of the present study was to evaluate teacher perceptions on the training received in intercultural education. Methods: The article presents a quantitative, non- experimental and ex-post-facto type of research; directed to inquire about the perceptions of the teachers of primary education in Andalusia (Spain) in relation to the intercultural training received. Based on the descriptive survey method, two questionnaires were administered to a sample composed of 320 students and 80 teachers. Results: The results show certain strengths of the training teacher programs in the field of interculturality (encouragement of reflection, participation and collaboration …), as well as weaknesses (decontextualization, inflexibility, primacy of theoretical learning, non-transversal character, etc.). Conclusions: Despite strengths, intercultural teacher training continues to be a challenge in Andalusia."
  5. Hall, A. B., & Trespalacios, J. (2019). Personalized professional learning and teacher selfefficacy for integrating technology in k-12 classrooms. Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education, 35(4), 221-235.
    From the abstract: "The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of personalized professional learning in teachers' comfort level and their self-efficacy toward information and communications technology (ICT). Four hundred and eighteen teachers completed the program of study in its entirety and 247 (59%) of them completed both pre- and post-program surveys. Results showed that the personalized professional learning improved significantly teachers' perceived comfort level with ICT skills and their self-efficacy toward integrating ICT."
  6. Hu, H., & Garimella, U. (2017). Excellence in elementary school science (EESS): Teachers' perceptions & technology integration from a professional development. Journal of Computers in Mathematics and Science Technology, 36(2), 159-172.
    From the abstract: "This proceeding paper will report about a study that investigated how a group of elementary school teachers responded to a professional development training on Science and Technology as demonstrated in their perceived preparedness and comfort with teaching science, and their subsequent implementation with K-4 students. The results from the study may help K-4 teachers in schools and teacher education programs better understand how to prepare teachers to learn about Science and integrating technology into their practice with K-4 students accordingly."
  7. McGee, J. R., Wang, C., & Drew, P. (2013). Guiding teachers in the use of a standards-based mathematics curriculum: Teacher perceptions and subsequent instructional practices after an intensive professional development program. School Science and Mathematics, 113(1), 16-28.
    From the abstract: "Reforms in mathematics education call for K-12 teachers to employ standards-based pedagogies, which embody the National Council for Teachers of Mathematics' principles and standards. In order to effectively support teachers' implementation of standards-based curricula, professional development must be provided that meets teachers' needs. The professional development program in this study focused on the implementation of a standards-based mathematics curriculum entitled "Investigations in Number, Data, and Space (Investigations)." This study uses Guskey's framework as a guide to examining teachers' perceptions of the impact of the professional development that they received; their perceptions of mathematics teaching and learning; and how elements of the professional development translated into practice. Twenty-two participants were randomly selected from the 53 professional development participants to be interviewed and observed during their mathematics teaching. Using a constant comparison method, the data sources in this study highlighted themes surrounding teachers' experiences with professional development and the implementation of the curricula. The analysis of the data sources in this study highlighted themes surrounding teachers' experiences with professional development: teachers as learners, teachers as self-evaluators, shifting paradigms, enactment of professional development content into practice, and the influence of the state standardized mathematics test. The results of this study have several implications for future professional development and also highlight some of the more general issues that teachers face when attempting to enact new knowledge and skills into their practice. (Contains 3 tables.)"
  8. Murphy, C., Smith, G., Mallon, B., & Redman, E. (2020). Teaching about sustainability through inquiry-based science in Irish primary classrooms: The impact of a professional development programme on teacher self-efficacy, competence and pedagogy. Environmental Education Research, 26(8), 1112-1136.
    From the abstract: "Research suggests that innovative and engaging professional development is instrumental in supporting teachers in developing their competence and confidence in teaching sustainability. An international initiative was developed to explore whether a competencies-oriented Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) professional development model was transferable across three different international contexts (Ireland, Germany and Mexico). This paper reports on the adaptation of this model within the Irish context, through the development of an innovative professional development programme for primary teachers. Through a mixed-methods approach which gathered data via pre- and post-programme surveys, teachers' reflective journals and post-programme group interviews, the paper explores Irish primary school teachers' experiences of, and attitudes towards, teaching sustainability through science education after participation in a professional development programme. The findings suggest that this programme, structured around the existing evidence for effective professional development in science education and ESD, positively influences teachers' self-efficacy, supports teachers' critical engagement with sustainability competencies and promotes the development of transformative pedagogies for sustainability through Inquiry-Based Science Education."
  9. Parker, M., Ficklin, K., & Mishra, M. (2020). Teacher self-efficacy in a rural k-5 setting: Quantitative research on the influence of engineering professional development. Contemporary Issues in Tech ology and Teacher Education (CITE Journal), 20(4).
    From the abstract: "This study investigated the influence of Engineering Is Elementary (EiE) professional development on teachers' self-efficacy of integrating engineering into the K-5 curriculum in a rural school district in southeastern North Carolina. In fall 2016, the researchers conducted an embedded mixed-method study. The focus of this paper is the quantitative aspect of the study, which involved using the engineering components of the T-STEM survey to measure teachers' self-efficacy via Qualtrics. The survey was used to compare teachers' self-efficacy before and following EiE professional development and 4 weeks after the last EiE intervention. Forty-three teachers completed these online questionnaires. Across the three intervals, the results of the repeated measures were statistically significant. There were increases in teachers' (a) engineering teaching efficacy and beliefs, (b) engineering teaching outcome expectancy, and (c) engineering instruction. Teachers' self-efficacy toward engineering was likely influenced by EiE professional development. The findings suggest that elementary teachers' self-efficacy about integrating engineering into the curriculum can increase by offering EiE professional development over time. This study can help inform future education policy, practice, and research."
  10. Pourreau, L., & Lokey-Vega, A. (2020). Perceptions of K-12 online teaching endorsement program effectiveness in Georgia: A case study. Educational Planning, 27(2) 7-21.
    From the abstract: "This qualitative case study examined professional educators' beliefs and perceptions about K-12 online teaching endorsement (OTE) practices in the State of Georgia. The authors collected data from six one-on-one semi-structured interviews and the Georgia OTE Program standards (505-3-0.95) as set forth by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. Analysis showed that the issues and concerns participants shared about current K-12 OTE preparation practices reflected real problems and challenges related to a lack of customized virtual instructor training, educator perceptions or misconceptions about online instruction and technology knowledge, and virtual setting imperfections. Findings highlighted issues with current Georgia K-12 OTE standards that teacher educators and virtual education practitioners perceive as training issues and barriers to success for virtual instructors."
  11. Yang, H. (2020). The effects of professional development experience on teacher self-efficacy: Analysis of an international dataset using Bayesian multilevel models. Professional Development in Education, 46(5), 797-811.
    From the abstract: "This research investigates the relationship between professional development experience and teacher self-efficacy in the United States, using an international dataset, TALIS: 2013. Based on social cognitive theories and adult learning theories, this research hypothesizes that teacher self-efficacy can be enhanced by learning experience by participating in PD. To analyze the data, Bayesian Hierarchical Linear Modeling is used with a prior distribution derived from the results of analysis of international dataset. This study finds that more PD experience was significantly associated with an increased teacher self-efficacy, even after controlling for important individual and school-level characteristics. However, these associations do not hold for the most common types of PD, such as courses/workshops and conferences/seminars. In addition, rural school teachers are more likely to benefits from PD than teachers in large cities. Finally, factors of effective PD and policy implications are discussed."


Keywords and Search Strings
The following keywords and search strings were used to search the reference databases and other sources:

  • Perceptions about effectiveness of types of training on subsequent professional practice
  • Professional development, Teachers' attitudes, program effectiveness, self-efficacy

Databases and Resources
We searched ERIC for relevant resources. ERIC is a free online library of over 1.6 million citations of education research sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences. Additionally, we searched Google Scholar and PsychInfo.

Reference Search and Selection Criteria

When we were searching and reviewing resources, we considered the following criteria:

  • Date of the publication: References and resources published for last 15 years, from 2003 to present, were include in the search and review.
  • Search Priorities of Reference Sources: Search priority is given to study reports, briefs, and other documents that are published and/or reviewed by IES and other federal or federally funded organizations, academic databases, including ERIC, EBSCO databases, JSTOR database, PsychInfo, PsychArticle, and Google Scholar.
  • Methodology: Following methodological priorities/considerations were given in the review and selection of the references: (a) study types - randomized control trials,, quasi experiments, surveys, descriptive data analyses, literature reviews, policy briefs, etc., generally in this order (b) target population, samples (representativeness of the target population, sample size, volunteered or randomly selected, etc.), study duration, etc. (c) limitations, generalizability of the findings and conclusions, etc.

This memorandum is one in a series of quick-turnaround responses to specific questions posed by educational stakeholders in the Southeast Region (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina), which is served by the Regional Educational Laboratory Southeast at Florida State University. This memorandum was prepared by REL Southeast under a contract with the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences (IES), Contract ED-IES-17-C-0011, administered by Florida State University. Its content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of IES or the U.S. Department of Education nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.