Principles of Professional Development

Approved by the NCTE Executive Committee, November 2006

  1. Professional development of teachers/faculty is a central factor leading to student success.
  2. Professional development treats teachers/faculty members as the professionals they are.
  3. Professional development supports teachers/faculty at all levels of expertise; its value is confirmed by external validation.
  4. Professional development relies on a rich mix of resources, including a theoretical and philosophical base; a research base; and illustrations of good practices.
  5. Professional development can take many different forms and employs various modes of engagement.
  6. The best models of professional development—best in the sense of enhancing first, teacher practice leading to second, student learning—are characterized by sustained activities, by engagement with administrators, and by community-based learning.
  7. Professional development is systematically reviewed with evidence of efficacy provided by a review process including multiple stakeholders and NCTE’s own research.


This position statement may be printed, copied, and disseminated without permission from NCTE.