A Comprehensive Research-Based Approach to Professional Development

Concurrent Session 6

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

We propose a model of continuing professional development beyond workshops that provides instructors with the ability to meaningfully integrate technology into their teaching practices.


Carl Weckerle currently serves as the Director of Instructional Technology & Online Learning at Macomb Community College where he is focused on improving the educational standard of higher education in the areas of curriculum development, technology integration, online learning and data-informed decision making. He interests are in opportunities where instructional design and technology can improve organizational and learning effectiveness. Carl received his M.Ed. in Instructional Technology and his Bachelor of Science degree in Education, both from Wayne State University. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in the Educational Psychology and Educational Technology (EPET) program at Michigan State University. He serves as Past-President of the Educational Technology Organization of Michigan, board member of the Alliance for Excellence in Online Education, advisory board member of Michigan Colleges Online and has served on various K-12 district and school improvement teams. His research interests are on effective teaching and learning in and out of the classroom in addition to faculty development and teacher education.
Sarah Dysart is the Director of Online Learning at Loyola University Chicago. She earned her Master’s degree in Learning Technologies from the University of Michigan and is currently a hybrid student pursing her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Educational Technology at Michigan State University. Sarah has over 15 years of experience working with faculty in higher education, assisting with effective integration of technology and pedagogical strategies into the curriculum. Sarah’s current research explores how preparing to teach online impacts instructors’ teaching beliefs, intentions, and practices, and what factors in online teaching create affordances that can be implemented in face-to-face environments to improve learning.

Extended Abstract

Assisting faculty with effectively integrating technology into their teaching is a top priority for many institutions in today's digital age. But where do we start when designing professional development opportunities for faculty? Many professional development programs draw on the best practices other higher education institutions have found to be successful, but how do we know these practices or programs are creating the best opportunities for instructors to learn how technology, pedagogy, and the content they are teaching interact with, constrain, and create affordances for one another?

We will discuss research-based theoretical frameworks that are easy to understand and can be applied when designing a professional development program for faculty. Based on these theories, we will propose a model that addresses the phases faculty go through as they are trained to teach with technology in higher education.

Theoretical models we will draw from include Koehler and Mishra's TPACK framework as well as Ball and Cohen's Practice Based Model for professional development. We will also discuss peer-coaching, learning by design, and communities of practice.

This presentation will use interactive questions and answers to gain an understanding of what is happening within attendees' institutions, and we will welcome audience contributions and sharing of practices regarding how institutions are effectively addressing the comprehensive needs of faculty throughout the teaching process.