Gifted and talented professional development : a case study of the effectiveness of online courses for elementary teachers.
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Thornton, Elizabeth R., 1993-
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Professional development is imperative for gifted and talented teachers’ improvement in classrooms. However, many professional development courses are not meaningful for teachers and are not presented effectively. Using effective researched strategies, leaders can create better professional development courses. Professional development leaders should observe gifted and talented courses for strategies to ensure professional development courses are beneficial. Examining professional development courses allows for constant improvement of and reflection on professional development design for teachers. Using researched effective strategies when designing gifted and talented professional development courses is imperative to see a positive change for teachers. This research utilized a case study design to understand effective strategies for online gifted and talented teacher professional development courses. This study builds upon researched strategies of professional development, online teaching, and andragogy. Gifted and talented teacher professional development courses can improve and develop effective classroom teachers by implementing researched strategies. This case study allowed the researcher to observe four separate online gifted and talented professional development courses for effective strategies. After observation, the researcher examined the four professional development courses for similarities and differences between the courses. The collection of data highlights strategies currently being implemented in the courses and allows the researcher to make recommendations for future improvement of online gifted and talented professional development courses for teachers. This study informs key stakeholders of gifted and talented professional development programs on the importance of effective professional development courses for teachers. Through sharing the findings with key stakeholders, leaders can better understand what is involved in professional development and in what ways could strategies be employed to effectively engage teachers. Additionally, the study provides an observation tool through which professional development leaders may examine the effectiveness of their online professional development courses using researched strategies focused on effective professional development, online teaching strategies, and andragogy. The tool can be utilized and modified by professional development leaders to improve professional development courses for teachers.