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Defining 'Job Embedded' Professional Development

The term "job embedded" professional development is a big one in our field these days. It reflects the common-sense and increasingly influential idea that post-baccalaureate teacher training should be responsive to teachers' day to day practices in school and their own students' needs. The term has also shown up in a lot of recent legislation, including the economic-stimulus bill.

Unfortunately, for journalists like me, it's also a clunky, jargon-y term that doesn't do a very good job of conveying what the practice actually consists of. Fortunately, the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality, which is housed at Learning Point Associates; the Mid-Atlantic Comprehensive Center; and the National Staff Development Council step in to fill the void with a new brief delineating just what this type of support looks like and how it can be supported by schools and districts.

The paper lists examples of the practices, some of which are done individually, and others with teams of educators. They include including action research, evaluating student work using protocol, case discussions, coaching, and lesson study.

Now, if only we could come up with a better name... let's hear your suggestions!

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