Professional Learning with Purpose
What does it mean to provide professional learning with purpose?
Educators are unique individuals, each with different strengths and often very practical opportunities for growth in their classroom practice. Yet most professional development today doesn’t address these personalized growth opportunities. Workshops, courses and other traditional PD approaches lump educators into one-size-fits-all, seat-time based learning experiences with limited opportunity for tangible growth or improvement in practice.
BloomBoard’s approach clearly defines a purpose for the skills that educators may need or want to learn. Micro-credentials, a form of micro-certification, can empower educators to personalize their learning, and prove competence via a portfolio of evidence created in their classroom practice for each skill they choose to work on.
Each micro-credential defines a specific goal or purpose; proven growth in practice and competence in each skill, and recognition for that growth via a digital certification for the skill.
Each certification can then become part of a broader purpose as well — a building block for educators’ professional growth, and career and compensation advancement — which is perhaps the most important aspect of micro-certification. Because micro-credentials address the achievement of competence at the individual skill level, they can be assembled into cohesive groups that equate to important distinctions in an educator’s career, such as qualification for compensation and/or career advancement, even formal certifications and licensing.
BloomBoard has developed a roadmap to guide an educator’s broader career purpose. Administrators can see how this roadmap can be applied to their district by scheduling a free consultation and demo.
What Are Micro-credentials?
Micro-credentials are a form of micro-certification earned by proving competence in one specific skill at a time, via a portfolio of evidence, created through classroom practice. Individual micro-credentials also form the basis for a cohesive system of skills that enable educators to grow and advance throughout their careers.
All micro-credentials offered on BloomBoard have a clearly defined purpose of achieving verified improvement in instructional practice, and also provide the building blocks for professional growth. Individual micro-credentials also form the basis for a cohesive system of skills that enable educators to grow and advance throughout their careers.
Each micro-credential is authored by instructional experts, based on a robust, standardized blueprint, grounded in instructional design best practices, and comprised of three distinct parts:
- A definition of the skill or learning goal the educator aims to achieve
- A discrete set of requirements for proving competence in the skill
- A performance rubric for each requirement
In addition to the authentic growth educators will experience, micro-credentials also offer incentives such as linkages to compensation increases, career advancement opportunities, and other incentives.
How to Earn a Micro-credential
Unlike a traditional course or workshop, where the learning process is linear and time-based, the micro-credential learning process is a unique online experience whereby educators gain an understanding at the outset of their specific goals, and then personalize their learning to achieve the specific requirements for achieving competence. This personalized, self-paced learning process, supported by coaching and collaboration with their peers, gives educators control over their professional learning and results in a more authentic, meaningful experience.
Successful completion results in a digital micro-certification that educators can add to their portfolio and resume to showcase the skills they develop throughout their careers.
Shifting From “PD” to Authentic Growth and Career Advancement
While teachers want more opportunities to grow and lead, they are often limited by the lack of transparency around growth and advancement opportunities made available in their organizations. BloomBoard’s purpose-driven approach provides schools and districts with more coherence and alignment around educator career pathways via micro-credentials. Teachers can clearly see what competencies are required to advance to different roles. By providing purpose-based professional learning that is linked to broader growth and advancement opportunities, schools and districts can better recruit, develop, and retain effective educators.