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Collective Capacity (Project C2): Professional Learning to Improve the Quality of Language and Literacy Instruction for ELs


Project C2 is a Development and Innovation project funded by the Institute of Education Sciences, under the topic of Effective Instruction. The purpose of this 4-year project is to develop, refine, and pilot a job-embedded professional learning model for fourth- and fifth-grade teachers focused on increasing the quality of language and literacy instruction for English learners (ELs). The end purpose is to develop effective teachers who skillfully implement high-quality instruction that increases positive achievement gains for ELs in the upper-elementary grades (grades 4–5).

Project Design

Project C2 builds on the research team’s previous work as leaders of Project ELITE2, a model demonstration project funded by the Office of Special Education Programs. Building on model components partially developed through Project ELITE, the current project aims to develop a teacher-driven professional learning framework that includes five core features: (1) evidence-based instructional practices, (2) instructional coaching, (3) peer collaboration for practice refinement, (4) self-assessment and self-reflection of teaching, and (5) teacher-driven action planning. MCPER researchers will collaborate with practicing professionals to develop, refine, and specify the intervention, and then test its promise through a pilot study.

Project Timeline and Major Activities

In the first phase of the project, the research team will develop the model using an iterative development process that emphasizes meaningful stakeholder collaboration (district and school leaders, educators) to design, refine, and fully develop the professional learning content and job-embedded professional learning components. Development will occur in three schools over 3 years, followed by a pilot study to examine the model’s promise. The development phase will involve collaborative teams of researchers and practitioners to plan, implement, evaluate, and refine the model. The final normative model will be evaluated in an underpowered randomized control pilot study.

Project Participants

The C2 research team collaborates with district leaders, campus leaders, and fourth- and fifth-grade teachers and their students in Hays Consolidated Independent School District.