The challenge of providing successful STEM PD of high quality for teachers is often underestimated. STEM PD Net is working towards offering answers and guidelines for PD providers to questions like:
- How much theory and practice in a PD course do teachers need to be best supported?
- How well can a PD provider understand the practical challenges teachers are facing in the classroom reality?
- If we want a PD course to be as close as possible to teachers’ day-to-day teaching practice, then how can we achieve this in a very concrete way?
- What examples exist in relation to this? When can we say, a PD course was successful?
- Also, nowadays, we know that PD has to be long term, but what does “long term” mean in a concrete way: Three day courses or seminars that run over several months or even years?
So far comprehensive ready-to-use guidelines to answer these questions do not exist. STEM PD Net takes up the challenge and will provide ready-to-use guides for PD providers which will for example:
- outline current problems with providing PD in the area of STEM education;
- provide research-based quality criteria for high-quality PD;
- provide concrete examples on how to implement these general recommendations in day-to-day PD practice (giving concrete tasks, methods, teaching approaches).
- present innovative, feasible methods for evaluating the impact of PD courses on all levels is imperative.
These guidelines will be of great use for STEM PD providers within and beyond the partnership and also be transferrable to other subjects.
First versions of the guidelines will be available in autumn 2018.