Date of Award


Degree Name

Curriculum and Instruction


College of Education and Professional Development

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Edna Meisel, Ed.D. Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Ronald Childress

Third Advisor

Dr. Travis Bradshaw

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Nega Debela


Unlike the ineffective generic approach often used for teacher professional development, NASA STEM Educator Professional Development Collaborative (EPDC) Digital Badging offers access to a highly organized system of knowledge and personalized, online professional development (PD) through digital badging. This qualitative case study provided an in-depth view of teacher perspectives of the value of NASA STEM EPDC Digital Badging as a model for personalized STEM professional development. The population for this study consisted of ten K-12 teachers, from a rural Southwest Virginia school system, who participated in the STEM-UP after school program and experienced PD through NASA STEM EPDC Digital Badging. Data from STEM-UP 2019 program evaluations and teacher responses from semi-structured interviews were used to inform this research. This study focused on teacher demographics, educational advantages and motivating factors that caused teachers to persist with the program, their perceptions of the badging for personalized learning and how the training fit into the over-all learning ecosystem. Data shows that teachers perceive the badge training as motivating, useful, personalized and effective as a form of PD that easily transfers learning into the classroom. Results of this study imply that NASA STEM EPDC Digital Badging was useful for the STEM-UP teachers and may be effective PD in other learning situations.


Career development – Research – Virginia.

Career development – Virginia – Case Studies.