A Comparison of Three Professional Development Mechanisms for Improving the Quality of Standards-Based IEP Objectives

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9 Scopus citations


Professional development is a necessary component of maintaining competency in professional practice. Technology has opened the door to new formats for delivering professional development, in addition to more traditional modes of training. This study compared three professional development formats for improving the quality of standards-based Individualized Education Program objectives written by school-based speech-language pathologists (SLPs). Forty-seven SLPs were randomly assigned to one of three professional development formats. Fourteen SLPs assigned to the web-based group read training content presented on a website. The 17 SLPs in the workshop group attended a workshop, while the 18 SLPs in the peer coaching group attended the workshop followed by 2 months of peer coaching conducted through a website. No follow-up support was provided to the web-based and workshop groups. Results show that all groups improved; however, the workshop and peer coaching groups made significant improvements compared with the web-based group. Surprisingly, the peer coaching group did not demonstrate continued improvement. The type of coaching, in this case, peer coaching in which two novices observed and provided feedback to each other, may account for the observed plateau in performance. Factors to be considered when matching learner outcomes to professional development activities are summarized and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-224
Number of pages14
JournalCommunication Disorders Quarterly
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Hammill Institute on Disabilities.


  • on-line learning
  • peer coaching
  • professional development
  • speech-language pathologists

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing


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