Professional Development

Observation Platform Adds New Graphing Tool for PD Trendspotting

Edthena has added a new feature to its classroom video observation platform that is designed to enhance the feedback loop it provides for teachers' professional development.

The new Comments Stats tool organizes comments made by both teachers and coaches into a visual form in an effort to better see patterns over time and throughout a school or an entire district.

With Edthena's existing platform, teachers upload video of their classroom practice, allowing it to be reviewed not only by themselves but by their professional development coaches. Then both they and their coaches can insert comments divided into four categories: questions, suggestions, strengths and notes.

The new Comment Stats tool now automatically generates reports and graphs that show comments by their type and by tags that users like to use. Teachers can, at once, look across comments made by themselves or coaches over time for more insight into their practice. At the same time, coaches and administrators can use the tool to look at comments across multiple teachers in a program or school to identify trends.

The stats can be calculated on a whole-group and a teacher-by-teacher basis. Aggregating data at the group level offers decision makers the ability to analyze their overall PD program.

For example, if a school is prioritizing the use of academic language in the content areas this year, but they only have a few comments where this is noticed throughout the fall, it would indicate that more attention is necessary.

Simple averages can also be calculated across the group to help understand any individual teacher's data in a comparative context of the whole group. Finally, the Comment Stats can be used retroactively, allowing input from video and comments made before the tool was installed.

"The Comment Stats tool allows comment data to be used in even more meaningful ways so educators and coaches can identify trends, lead professional learning conversations and help improve teaching practices." Said Edthena Founder and CEO Adam Geller.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.