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Evidence-based Practice: Teacher coaching and professional development


Professional development and coaching interventions generally focus on improving teacher-child interactions and instruction. A review of multiple studies suggests that these programs—which take many forms, but typically offer individualized coaching or mentoring from a more experienced individual—can improve the quality of pre-K instruction, as well as children’s learning and development outcomes.  Early research suggests that technology and assessment data may play a role in effective teacher coaching and professional development. For example, MyTeachingPartner, a web-mediated feedback and consultation program that uses data from the Classroom Assessment Scoring System, was associated with improvements in the quality of instructional support for pre-K students. (However, no studies of MyTeachingPartner have met WWC standards.) The National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) benchmarks for high-quality pre-K recommend that both lead and assistant teachers receive at least 15 hours of approved professional learning activities per year, and that all lead teachers receive coaching. Further research is needed to understand the types of professional development and coaching that are most effective, as the overall effectiveness of ECE professional development programs is mixed.


The framework's recommendations are based on syntheses of existing research. Please see the framework report for a list of works cited.

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