What does good CPD look like?
Read 'What does good CPD look like?' from the TDA Archive. Available to download
There is a widespread consensus, backed up by research, about what is effective CPD. The key features of good CPD are set out below.
- Each activity is part of a coherent long-term plan that gives the participants opportunities to apply what they have learned, evaluate the effect on their practice, and develop their practice.
Research shows that CPD is most effective when it is sustained, as part of a deliberately planned process.
- It is planned with a clear vision of the effective or improved practice being sought. This vision is shared by those undertaking the development and by the people leading or supporting it.
The plan needs to show precisely what expertise, understanding or technique the CPD is intended to deliver.
Sharply defined outcomes are also the starting point for evaluating the impact of the CPD.
- It enables the participants to develop skills, knowledge and understanding which will be practical, relevant and applicable to their current role or career aspiration – for example, in curriculum or subject content, teaching and learning strategies and the uses of technology.
- CPD is only effective when it is directly relevant to each participant. Where CPD is provided for large groups, or for the whole staff, it may be useful to separate the participants into smaller groups so the CPD can be customised to suit each type of participant.
- It is provided by people with the necessary experience, expertise and skills. These providers may sometimes be colleagues and peers. At other times they may be specialists from inside or outside the school.
- It is based on the best available evidence about teaching and learning. The evidence needs to include current research and inspection evidence. Research shows that pupils learn best when staff are motivated, developed and updated.
Research also indicates positive links between pupils’ learning and sustained CPD.