STEM Professional Development
From the initial training of teachers to the continuous updating of new information and skills, quality STEM-Professional Development (PD) begins with a commitment to exploring new ways of learning and doing. Education professionals constantly look for the best opportunities to gain rich PD sessions, yet the unique aspect of STEM-PD lies within the interdisciplinary-approach and real-world applications that are integral within STEM curriculum. Teachers need to understand the different roles as investigators, creators and inventors to effectively understand the interconnectedness of the classroom and the broader workplace community.
The publication, “Effective STEM Teacher Preparation, Induction, and Professional Development” presented at the National Research Council Workshop on Successful STEM Education in K-12 Schools (Wilson, 1991) highlights the need for “...providing teachers with Professional Development which promotes life long learners and creative out of the box thinkers. However, it was widely accepted that not all professional development is created equal, and there is an emerging agreement on the characteristics of effective professional development.
In any discipline, effective professional development should:
focus on developing teachers’ capabilities and knowledge to teach content and subject matter,
address teachers’ classroom work and the problems they encounter in their school settings, and
- provide multiple and sustained opportunities for teacher learning over a substantial time interval.”
“Effective STEM Teacher Preparation, Induction, and Professional Development”
The state of Arizona has many professional organizations that offer STEM-Professional Development along with the many schools and districts that offer targeted training for their particular community.
The following state-wide organizations can be contacted for additional information and a menu of upcoming classes:
Regional Education Centers, including:
Maricopa County Education Service Agency (MCESA) serving Maricopa County
Northeast Arizona Regional Service Center (NEAZRC) serving Apache County, Coconino County, Navajo County
Southern Arizona Regional Education Center (SAREC) serving Cochise County, Pima County, Santa Cruz County
East Central Regional Service Center (ECRSC) serving Gila County, Graham County, Greenlee County, Pinal County
West Central Regional Service Center (WCRSC) serving La Paz County, Mohave County, Yavapai County, Yuma County
General STEM PD Resources: