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Professional Development Plan
Jason Bedell
Specialization: Educational Technology
Feb 15, 2008
Walden University
Professional Development Plan Part I
My personal and professional goals are varied, but they all revolve around using
technology to improve student learning and achievement. First, I would like to learn more
and better ways to implement technology effectively into my classroom. I want to use
technology to help my students achieve more than they have in the past, both as a high
school English teacher and as a school library media specialist, areas in which I hold
certification. Second, I am very interested in becoming more knowledgeable about the
different assistive technologies that are available and that are being created to help
students with special needs. Third, I would like to be in charge of ordering new
technology and technology integration for a school district. In this position, I would be
able to directly help the most people by identifying the best new technologies, finding
and correcting gaps in the technological offerings of a school district, and training
teachers on how to immediately apply and use technology to make learning more relevant
and rigorous for students. Fourth, I would like to teach educators and future educators at
the college level. One of the best ways to help students is to help shape those who will be
teaching them. Fifth, I would like to eventually create new educational technologies
myself. The specialization of my program is educational technology. This program will
allow me to explore more of the educational theories behind effective teaching,
experience, understand, and develop new technologies and software, and research how to
effectively combine the two areas to create modern, relevant, effective teaching strategies.
My intended field of study is educational technology. I have many specific
professional interests. At the moment, I am very interested in using Internet technology to
extend the classroom and increase students’ achievement. I am currently exploring the
possibilities of MOODLE, which is an online course management system. I am using it to
have my students create a wiki, or editable database, as well as use it for online
discussions and assignment submission. My two main areas of interest are innovative
uses of existing technology and the potential of emerging technologies.
Walden has an altruistic and noble mission that revolves around the concept of
social change. This mission is one that I embrace wholeheartedly and one of the reasons
that I chose to come to Walden University. I think that the field of education is by nature
one of social change. If those working in the field of education are not working to shape
and change the minds of young people for the better, then this noble work will not be
done and it will not continue into the next generation. Walden’s commitment to social
change combined with my devotion to using technology to better the lives and quality of
life of young people will hopefully bring about dramatic results.
For me to meet these goals, it is absolutely necessary for me to attain a doctoral
degree. Having the PhD in educational technology would open many doors for me.
Primarily, it would open a position as either a college professor or as district technology
director. In both of these positions, I would function as a scholar-practitioner in that my
time would be divided between researching emerging technologies to discover which
would be the best suited for effective teaching and actually helping teachers learn how to
use these emerging technologies in their own classrooms. There are few better ways to
influence a positive social change than by helping the teachers who care for the future of
this country to become the best and most effective that they can be.
Professional Development Plan Part II
Social and behavioral science coursework
In the behavioral and social sciences, I have taken several classes in psychology,
including adolescent and educational psychology, and sociology.
Academic coursework in other fields.
My academic coursework consists of two degrees and two certifications. I
received a B.A. in English from Seton Hall University with a G.P.A. of 4.0 in 2006. I also
received a M.A. in Education from Seton Hall University in 2007. I am highly qualified
to teach English and Language Arts in grades 7 through 12. I also just finished taking the
last classes to become certified as an Associate School Library Media Specialist. I have
also taken several classes on how to integrate and use technology to enrich and enhance
student learning.
Professional presentations, seminars and workshops.
I have not had the opportunity to go to many professional presentations or
conferences. I was able to go to a teacher’s convention in Atlantic City while student
teaching in 2007. I was also able to attend a 6-hour workshop on classroom management
in November of 2007 given by the Tennessee Education Association. My experiences
have been positive, but I am interested in attending a more focused conference on
educational technology for my last residency.
Volunteer activities.
I have quite a bit of volunteer activities; however, none of them relate to my field
of study. At the age of 14, I began volunteering in a hospital pharmacy. Over the next
four years, I volunteered in several capacities and departments throughout the hospital.
After I left the pharmacy, I moved on to volunteering in the daycare center where I was
able to work with toddlers. Lastly, I volunteered with the distribution department, where I
aided in the efficient dispersal of supplies. I volunteered there for a total of four years.
While it is not necessarily related to education, working in a hospital environment helped
me to realize the necessity of social change.
Prior experiences designing and executing research.
Most of my experience with academic research was done during my studies of
literature. While working on my baccalaureate degree as well as while taking a graduate
English class I had to do extensive studies of the available literature on the subjects,
especially scholarly articles. I also had to come up with original ideas and interpretations
of classic literature.
Publications and other writing experiences.
My baccalaureate degree gave me extensive practice in writing professional
research papers on various subjects. This comprises the bulk of my scholarly writing
experiences, as I have not submitted any of my papers to be published.
Teaching Assignments
Currently, I teach a reading intervention program called READ180 to high school
freshman who are reading three to four years below grade level. I teach three sections of
content area reading for freshman and sophomores who are reading one to two years
below grade level, as well. This class is designed to give the students reading
comprehension skills in that are applicable to all of their classes. I also participate in
teaching an after school credit recovery program three days a week.
Professional training.
In the past, I student taught freshman and senior English from September to
December of 2006; I also completed a 150-hour practicum as a school library media
specialist in January and February of 2007. My training for these positions was
completed through several different universities. As was aforementioned, I completed
both an English and an Education degree at Seton Hall University. While completing my
M.A. in Education, I received my initial teacher licensure. I student taught at Central
Regional High School in NJ. I completed most of the coursework for certification as a
school library media specialist at Seton Hall University as well. I finished the coursework
by taking a children’s literature course through Rutgers University and a web
development course through University of Phoenix.
Academic strengths and weaknesses.
My strengths academically lie in writing well and being able to quickly
comprehend most of what I read. My weakest point would be advanced mathematics,
although I am competent enough for most statistical analyses and data interpretation.
Research strengths and weaknesses.
I have a lot of experience researching literature, although I would like to learn
more about conducting original research and about the availability and range of literature
on the field that I am specializing in. One area that I would like to learn more about is
conducting research with actual test subjects. I am very competent with library, reference,
and information technology resources.
Availability of library, reference and information technology resources.
I have access to the libraries of Walden University, University of Phoenix, Seton
Hall University, and Rutgers University.
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