Smalley, S., Hainline, M. S., & Sands, K. (2019). School-based Agricultural Education Teachers’ Perceived Professional Development Needs Associated with Teaching, Classroom Management, and Technical Agriculture. Journal of Agricultural Education, 60(2), 85-98. doi: 10.5032/jae.2019.02085
Across the nation, there is a large shortage of teachers in several subject areas (Daniel, 2015; Milliard, 2015; Sutcher, Darling-Hammond, & Carver-Thomas, 2016). In agricultural education, many teachers are leaving the profession within the first five years of beginning their teaching careers (Tippens, Ricketts, Morgan, Navaro, & Flanders, 2013). Professional development opportunities for teachers can be utilized to retain teachers in the profession (Touchstone, 2015). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the professional development needs of Iowa school-based agricultural education teachers in the areas of teaching, classroom management, and technical agriculture. Motivating students to learn, teaching in a land laboratory, proper implementation of Individualized Education Program (IEP) for students with disabilities, teaching students decision-making skills, and developing performance-based assessment instruments were the teaching and classroom management items that SBAE teachers expressed the highest perceived levels of professional development needs. The items with the highest perceived training needs were teaching knowledge and skills in biotechnology, integrating current advances in agriculture technology into the curriculum, teaching knowledge and skills in agribusiness, teaching about public issues regarding agriculture, and teaching knowledge and skills in agricultural mechanic. Future research should be conducted to determine what agriculture technology and biotechnology professional development is needed by in-service teachers.