The Effects of Networked Professional Learning Communities

Rilana Prenger*, Cindy L. Poortman, Adam Handelzalts

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Teacher professional learning is considered crucial for improving the quality of education. Teacher collaboration in professional learning communities can contribute to the effectiveness of professional development efforts. In the past decade, there has been a shift from within-school to between-school professional learning communities. However, results regarding their effectiveness have been inconsistent. In this study, we examine the effects of 23 networked professional learning communities in the Dutch context, using a mixed-methods approach. Results showed moderately positive effects on teachers’ perceived satisfaction; the knowledge, skills, and attitude developed; and their application to practice. Considering the early stage of development of these professional learning communities, teachers’ participation in networked professional learning communities seems promising for enhancing their professional learning.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)441-452
    Number of pages12
    JournalJournal of Teacher Education
    Issue number5
    Early online date24 Jan 2018
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019


    We would like to thank the participants and external coaches from the 23 PLCs involved in this study for their participation. We also thank our research assistants for their support with data collection. This study was funded and supported by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (grant number 804AO-45775). Although government-funded, the present study was independently designed and conducted.

    FundersFunder number
    Ministerie van Onderwijs, Cultuur en Wetenschap804AO-45775


      • mixed methods
      • professional development
      • professional learning communities
      • teacher learning


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