Professional Development for Remote Learning

Report: Low-Cost, Microcredential-Based PD Can Improve Expertise in Student-Centered Learning

COVID-19 is making new kinds of demands on educators to become proficient at meeting the needs of individual students, whether they're in the classroom or learning from home. A new report from the Christensen Institute has suggested that low-cost, microcredential-based professional development could help those teachers become expert in student-centered learning at a time when budget is tight and traditional PD resources are scarce.

The 40-page report has four parts:

  • Part 1 discusses a framework for analyzing the solutions for student-centered PD, including microcredentials. As the report noted, "To the extent that micro-credentials are specifiable, verifiable, and predictable, then they are modular in nature and overcome many of the challenges inherent in PD solutions with interdependent architecture. They could be the solution for making student-centered PD adaptable to a variety of models, affordable, easy to set up, and customizable."

  • Part 2 lists 66 educator microcredentials for student-centered teaching. The idea is to enable teachers, coaches and administrators to "stack" the specific ones their student-centered learning model requires.

  • Part 3 offers the "playlists" of microcredentials shared by 14 experts, based on various roles: teachers, coaches, design teams and school leaders.

  • Part 4 provides recommendations for moving into the "micro-credentialing ecosystem."

"One step toward creating the preconditions for modularity is to specify the competencies that student-centered educators need," the report's authors concluded. "We hope that the micro-credentials identified in this report offer a starting point for specifying a starter list."

"Educator competences for student-centered teaching" is openly available on the Christensen Institute website.