Training for pre-service and in-service teachers that is delivered through distance education methods solves various problems of traditional professional development. These problems include issues such as providing a consistent message, training large numbers of personnel, and overcoming scheduling and funding problems. As with other forms of instruction, professional development training materials should be subjected to a level of evaluation that increases the likelihood of successful implementation. However, it is unclear how this need for evaluation of professional development software is being met. Commercial software companies have been found to eschew evaluation of their products and classroom teachers can be expected to conduct only limited software evaluations of the software. This article contends that educational researchers are well positioned to conduct comprehensive evaluations of the professional development software they create. This purpose of this review of the literature is to (a) consolidate the database of literature with regard to professional development software, (b) examine the degree to which the software described in the literature has been comprehensively evaluated, and (c) provide suggestions for future research.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Science Applications