Date of Award

January 2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Gary Schnellert


Through research I have identified eight constructs of effective professional development (collaborative, content focused, active practice, inclusive of technology, goal oriented, evaluated, sustained, increases self-efficacy). North Dakota state law requires two days of professional development that are defined by their length of time. The purpose of this quantitative study was twofold: (a) to identify if the eight constructs of effective professional development are embedded in North Dakota public schools' professional development opportunities and (b) whether or not the schools that offer professional development given the restraints of North Dakota state law are offering effective professional development. North Dakota public school teachers and North Dakota public school administrators were surveyed regarding their perceptions of effective professional development.

Although state law only requires two days of PD, 370 of the 437 responses to this question indicated that their districts offered more than two days. Nearly 64% of the responses indicated that the number of PD days in the district calendar was adequate to accomplish their PD needs for the year. Sixty three percent of the respondents believed the PD their district was offering during those days was effective. The results show the quality of the professional development is more important than the length of the professional development.