Research shows that the teacher is the single most important in-school variable influencing student achievement. This holds true even as our education system is realizing the potential of technology to transform learning.

While teaching can be supported and enhanced by technology and sophisticated algorithms, a high-quality learning environment requires skilled professionals with deep understanding of their individual students and a uniquely human touch. People learn in different ways and at different rates, and numerous social and emotional variables can affect students’ progress on any given day.

Skilled teachers carefully plan but also pivot to alternate pathways based on students’ interests. They watch for serendipitous moments when students become captivated by a discovery, event or challenge, and engage with an intensity that could not have been foreseen.

And, as technology and the Internet provide opportunities for learning through online courses, communities of practice, videos of expert teaching, teacher resource libraries and more, it is critical that these emerging resources are harnessed as legitimate and beneficial learning opportunities
for professional educators as well. To take full advantage of these opportunities, teachers also need new ways to document, share and be recognized for what they learn, including using these new methods.

How can we clearly articulate existing and emerging competencies and support and recognize the accomplishments of educators as they develop throughout their careers?

How can we clearly articulate existing and emerging competencies and support and recognize the accomplishments of educators as they develop throughout their careers? How can we better connect educators with peers so they can share and more quickly adopt best practices? And, what are ways teachers can be supported while driving their own learning? As an emerging professional learning strategy for educators, micro-credentials show great promise.

This study provides an in-depth exploration of teachers’ attitudes toward professional development and competency-based microcredentials. The results of this study, along with reader feedback, are essential for the design and development of a comprehensive and effective educator micro-credential system that supports the advancement of teachers as well as the teaching profession.

Download file:
Making Professional Learning Count