Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Robert J. Hanny


The major purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between teaching practice, student achievement, and the degree to which professional development in low-achieving elementary schools in one suburban Virginia district met the National Staff Development Council (NSDC) standards. Research methods included a self-assessment survey developed by NSDC, teacher interviews, and analyses of student achievement scores using the Virginia Standards of Learning assessments. According to survey results, participating teachers agreed that the NSDC standards were reflected in professional development activities. The standards of Equity and Quality Teaching were reported to be implemented to the greatest degree in professional development activities, while Resources was the standard implemented the least. On both the self-assessment surveys and the interviews, teachers in 100% of the schools reported changes in their teaching of English as a result of professional development. The percentage agreeing that their teaching of mathematics had changed as a result of professional development was much lower (83% according to survey results and 50% according to teacher interviews).;A significant correlation was not observed between the survey results and teacher interviews. Further, a correlation between the level of implementation of the NSDC standards and student achievement as measured by the Standards of Learning assessments was found to be not significant.



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