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Appears in:
Pages: 3906-3916
Publication year: 2012
ISBN: 978-84-615-5563-5
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 6th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 5-7 March, 2012
Location: Valencia, Spain

RESHAPING PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR LEADERS AND EDUCATORS: THE VPLD ONE YEAR ON

H. Owen

Ethos Consultancy NZ (NEW ZEALAND)
Learning is a social phenomenon, and education practitioner professional development is gradually being re-shaped to reflect this phenomenon. Shifts toward contextualised, personalised, self-paced learning, underpinned by the development of an online professional social identity are arguably challenging notions of what actually comprises PLD provision. This challenge means that the shift is not a simple process because it requires wider understandings around expectations of what PLD should be and what it should provide (JISC, 2009), as well as discussions as to how education institutions are going to support and recognise practitioners who wish to participate in it.

The findings from a pilot of Virtual Professional Learning and Development (VPLD) programme in 2010 indicated that when professional learning was situated within the practitioner's context, but with complementary, easily-accessible opportunities for sharing of practice within an online Community of Practice, the participants demonstrated high levels of engagement as well as shifts in their own teaching practice. Benefits reported by participants included a change in their own role as teachers, as well as improvements in student achievement of learning outcomes, and increases in the quantity and quality of collaboration and communication between learners.

The VPLD Programme has been facilitated and researched again during 2011, building on the findings from 2010. This paper provides an insight into the features of and results from the VPLD programme to date. The providers have worked mainly with primary and secondary school leaders and teachers, although one tertiary teacher has participated. The VPLD has been designed to exploit a range of affordances that in turn provide flexibility of choice, time and approach for participants, enabling them to build and shape their knowledge and skills.

The paper illustrates some of the dynamics and possible results of the VPLD programme by presenting two vignettes (in part drawn from the associated research study). The first vignette is a primary school teacher working in a small rural school, who has been participating in the VPLD since its inception. The second is an Assistant Principal at a Secondary school, where she also teaches Horticulture, who started participating in the VPLD in 2011. These vignettes clearly indicate the value of the VPLD model by demonstrating changes in the practitioners' roles, which have resulted in, for example, increases in the development of students' metacognitive skills, as well as anecdotal evidence of improvements in student achievement of learning outcomes.
@InProceedings{OWEN2012RES,
author = {Owen, H.},
title = {RESHAPING PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR LEADERS AND EDUCATORS: THE VPLD ONE YEAR ON},
series = {6th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2012 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-5563-5},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {5-7 March, 2012},
year = {2012},
pages = {3906-3916}}
TY - CONF
AU - H. Owen
TI - RESHAPING PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR LEADERS AND EDUCATORS: THE VPLD ONE YEAR ON
SN - 978-84-615-5563-5/2340-1079
PY - 2012
Y1 - 5-7 March, 2012
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 6th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2012 Proceedings
SP - 3906
EP - 3916
ER -
H. Owen (2012) RESHAPING PROFESSIONAL LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR LEADERS AND EDUCATORS: THE VPLD ONE YEAR ON, INTED2012 Proceedings, pp. 3906-3916.
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