Professional Development Research Institute (PDRI)

Director: Jocelyn Washburn

Mission: The mission of the PDRI is to support the International Professional Development Network; conceptualize new professional development models; scale up the network to deliver quality professional development and support for effective schools that result in improved student achievement; and engage in professional development research efforts. 

Part of KUCRL since 2008

The purpose of the division is to support and learn from educators who are on the ground and in the schools daily. The PDRI offers support, resources, and continuing research via national and regional updates, just-in-time support, and continuous growth opportunities to develop expertise in the Center’s educational interventions. The PDRI’s work addresses classroom and school-wide implementation of Strategic Instruction ModelTM (SIM) interventions and draws upon the daily application of the interventions in diverse settings. 


  • How can implementers measure student outcome data in SIM application classrooms or schools?
  • How do administrators support teacher implementation and experiences within a change process to learn new instructional methods and interventions?
  • What are the professional development elements that are necessary to ensure implementation with fidelity while applying an adaptive, personalized model of professional development?
  • How do online resources and professional development formats add value to professional learning experiences?


  • The Professional Development Research Institute seeks new ways to deliver quality-learning opportunities, conceptualize models of professional development, and provide support to teachers and other school personnel. The ultimate goal of the activities in this area is improved student achievement through effective teaching practices.
  • One of the ways we strive to achieve these goals each year is through our International Professional Development Network. The network comprises educators who have a thorough understanding of the SIM Learning Strategies and Content Enhancement Routines. These certified professional developers and credentialed specialists provide professional development and support to teachers and other educators so that they can use these strategies and routines in their jobs or classrooms to further improve student achievement.
  • The International Professional Development Network consists of more than 1,600 members internationally, of whom 400 actively instruct teachers in the implementation of SIM tools with a secondary focus of adolescent literacy within school change. Of this number, 40 are currently classified as professional development leaders who conduct Potential Professional Developer Institutes and provide guidance and advice to the PDRI. Every year, a new cadre of SIM Professional Developers joins the ranks, bringing the Strategic Instruction Model to more teachers and students internationally. 

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