Author(s)

Janine Anderson

Date Approved

5-31-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ed.D. Educational Leadership

Department

Educational Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Manning, JoAnn

Subject(s)

Professional learning communities | Adult learning

Disciplines

Elementary and Middle and Secondary Education Administration

Abstract

The purpose of the study investigated a shift in professional development program delivery that incorporated adult learning theory and PLCs. The study included opportunities for collaboration, self-reflection, and empowerment of teachers, intended to improve attitudes and increase classroom quality. The research questions tested these outcomes along with the impact of the researcher's leadership. The participants were a sample of preschool teachers in a large urban school district. The data were collected through quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The data resulted in favorable attitudes towards the program model and increased classroom quality was reported. Finally, the participants indicated the leadership style contributed to these outcomes. Research that identifies best practices for professional development can allow for policies that lead to implementation in school districts. Continued studies with various grade levels and diverse school districts will continue to affirm these findings. Keywords: professional development, adult learning theory, professional learning communities

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