The Impact of a Professional Learning Community on Student Achievement Gains: A Case Study Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • March 20, 2019
  • Croasmun, Janice
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • Throughout the United States, public schools are looking for ways to raise student achievement levels in order to meet the accountability standards required by the No Child Left Behind legislation and other federal, state, and local accountability. This is a case study of one elementary school in North Carolina that raised its student achievement level from 56% to 84% over a five year period, and credited this increase to the creation of a professional learning community at the school. The purpose of this study was to verify the existence of a professional learning community at the school and to investigate its impact on the increase in student achievement. Hord's (1997) five components of a professional learning community were used as the framework of this study. These five components include: (a) Supportive and Shared Leadership, (b) Shared Values and Vision, (c) Collective Creativity, (d) Shared Practice, and (e) Supportive Conditions. A questionnaire was first given to all staff which looked at the presence and strength of a professional learning community at the site. Additional data were gathered from interviews, observations, and documents. Results of this study indicated that a professional learning community exists at the school site, and that this professional learning community did positively impact student achievement. Findings also suggest that a combination of factors contributed to the increase in student achievement, with some components of the professional learning community making more of an impact than others. As an increasing number of schools and school systems look to professional learning communities as a way to address accountability and raise student achievement, this study provides some evidence that such an approach can have positive and successful results.
Date of publication
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Malloy, William W.
  • Doctor of Education
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education
Graduation year
  • 2007

This work has no parents.