High-quality 4-H programming requires effective professional development of educators. Through a mixed-methods study, we explored professional development offered through state 4-H programs. Survey results revealed that both in-person and online delivery modes were used commonly for 4-H staff and adult volunteers; for teen volunteers, in-person delivery was most common. Additionally, most professional development efforts were characterized as episodic, expert-led, and group-based (traditional approaches); the least common approaches were described as ongoing, learner-centered, and group-based (reform-based approaches). Interview data supported survey findings. Traditional approaches to professional development are considered ineffective; thus, the implementation of more reform-based professional development opportunities is recommended.
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Smith, M. H., Worker, S. M., Schmitt-McQuitty, L., Meehan, C. L., Lewis, K. M., Schoenfelder, E., & Brian, K. (2017). Prevalent Approaches to Professional Development in State 4-H Programs. Journal of Extension, 55(4), Article 17. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol55/iss4/17