Take Online Classes for Professional Growth
Many states impose a legal requirement on teachers to pursue professional growth or the accumulation of additional information and training subsequent to graduation and employment by completing a certain number of hours in college classes, district seminars (also called in-services), teachers' association seminars, or private for-profit conferences.
Make certain that you work closely with your district to determine if a particular course, whether online or traditional, satisfies your state and district requirements for professional-growth hours. Never launch into a course without first finding out if it qualifies for your purposes.
Nowadays, professional growth can easily be completed over the Internet. This is done via online learning, also called electronic learning or e-learning. According to a 2007 article by The Sloan Consortium, an e-learning advocacy group, nearly 4 million students were studying via the Internet as of 2006, and almost 20 percent of all college students were taking Internet courses, with those numbers expected to increase. You can surf this educational wave into the future by signing up at most institutions of higher education to take online courses.
Numerous ingenious teaching techniques are utilized in e-learning courses. For instance, some courses are taught through the use of screen-casts, where prerecorded computer data, including visual and audio elements, can be played on your computer just like a movie using a DVD or the information can be streamed to your computer over the Internet.
Also, text chat or synchronous conferencing technologies are also utilized to allow students and course instructors to confer with each other over the Internet. Using synchronous conferencing, you don't have to sit in a real-world classroom; instead, you log on at convenient times and dates and in convenient places — as long as you've got a computer and Internet access — and get busy querying the instructor and studying your coursework. The instructor posts her lectures and assignments and you and the other students complete the assignments and chat online with the instructor and with each other. E-learning helps you eliminate problems associated with cross-town commuting, campus security, and baby sitters so you can concentrate on fulfilling your professional-growth requirements instead.