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Evaluating Professional Development Resources: Selection and Development Criteria

This publication describes criteria and indicators that were developed to help the adult literacy field assess the quality of resources and materials used in professional development for instructors and administrators and to provide guidelines for the development of quality resources.
Author(s): 
Renee Sherman
Mike Dlott
Heather Bamford
Jennifer McGivern
Marisa Cohn
Author(s) Organizational Affiliation: 
PRO-NET 2000
American Institutes for Research
U.S. Department of Education
Published: 
2003
Resource Type: 
Product
Number of Pages: 
29
Required Training: 

None

Abstract: 

This publication describes criteria and indicators that were developed to help the adult literacy field assess the quality of resources and materials used in professional development for instructors and administrators and to provide guidelines for the development of quality resources. The criteria and indicators described in this publication were developed using a field research method that included a literature review, U.S. Department of Education criteria for identifying exemplary programs, and research on effective professional development. On a national level, interviews were conducted with content experts and staff development professionals. From these interviews, the authors synthesized their findings, vetted the draft criteria and indicators among a group of 300 of its members, revised the findings, sent the revision to a panel of experts, facilitated additional expert discussion, and finalized the criteria and publication. These criteria include:

  • Appropriateness of general content
  • Appropriateness of design and delivery
  • Quality of research base
  • Ease of adoption/adaptation

The criteria developed by the authors are drawn from theories found in: (1) the training and development and adult education fields; (2) K-12 staff development; (3) instructional systems development (ISD); and (4) instructional design.

What the Experts Say: 

The criteria outlined in this publication provide guidance for professional development staff in narrowing the wide array of professional development resources to high quality, useful resources. The authors have provided a practical and applicable set of criteria that can support professional development staff in developing a framework to use when selecting materials.



This resource is grounded in the best available research and literature on evaluating professional development resources. The selection and development criteria, in particular, could be adapted and used as an evaluation tool when creating evaluations for others to judge the quality of the resources one has developed.



“I have found this resource valuable when I was new to staff development in learning to judge what constitutes a quality resource. This resource is good to share with new staff developers to aid them in their understanding of the field and what is expected of them when they develop professional development content. I have found it useful as a touchstone when developing online professional development resources and in evaluating those resources.”

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