Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

EdD Doctor of Education


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Manning, JoAnn

Committee Member 1

Raivetz, Mark

Committee Member 2

Ferguson, Sarah


millennials, professional development


Teachers--In-service training; Generation Y


Teacher Education and Professional Development


The purpose of this grounded research study is to answer the question: How should professional development be designed to best meet the preferences of educational professionals of the millennial generation? As the workplace, including the field of education, becomes more generationally diverse, it is education leaders who must learn the unique needs of their staff members and develop meaningful professional development opportunities that meet these requirements. Both generational cohort theory and transformative learning theory became the underpinnings of the research. The research was conducted primarily through qualitative interviews at an educational services commission in New Jersey. A theory about millennial preferences for professional development was generated: Millennial educational professionals prefer a multimodal style of learning through interactive workshops that focus on relevant material to their current assignment, taught by someone with applicable experience, during the course of their day, and at a reasonable cost. Educational leaders should find this information helpful in planning effective and fiscally responsible professional development opportunities to better support their youngest educational professionals of the millennial generation.