Collaborative professional learning: cultivating science teacher leaders through vertical communities of practice

Kristen Trabona, Monica Taylor, Emily J Klein, Mika Munakata, Zareen Rahman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations


This article presents findings from a multi-year study of a grant-funded professional development fellowship program that supports teachers in becoming science teacher leaders and improving science curriculum and instruction. The program’s activities are designed to: (1) create and support a corps of teacher leaders, (2) institute a culture reflective instruction, and (3) improve teacher quality through vertical articulation of curriculum and professional development. This paper shares the experiences of fellows in our third cohort during their first year in the program and focuses on their collaboration in a vertical group. Three significant themes emerged in the data: tendency to participate in a pseudo community (engaging in superficial conversation); focus on emerging problems of practice; and finally, interactions that encourage pulling back the curtain and reflecting on the details of practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)472-487
Number of pages16
JournalProfessional Development in Education
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2019



  • Vertical articulation
  • communities of practice(CoP)
  • teacher leadership
  • teacher learning

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