Designing for Impact: Exploring Educator Professional Development Needs During the Pandemic


As a research-based and data-informed designer of online professional development for educators, the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation has a fervent interest in understanding the contemporary needs of educators. The COVID-19 pandemic presented an opportunity to discover how online professional development for educators can be best leveraged during global crises. To that end, four NC State Friday Institute researchers conducted “Insight into Contemporary Professional Growth Needs for North Carolina Educators,” an exploratory qualitative study, to better understand the classroom-, school- and district-level challenges North Carolina educators were facing one year into the pandemic. The study was guided by three central questions:

  1. What are the current areas of growth for North Carolina educators?
  2. In what ways does the political landscape impact current areas of growth for North Carolina educators?
  3. What online professional development design features are most impactful for North Carolina educators?

This webinar, inspired by this paper and featuring its authors, will focus on several actionable strategies key stakeholders can utilize to enhance online professional development offerings for educators across North Carolina.