Professional Development:
Frequently Asked Questions

How can I access past programs without a satellite or VCR connection?

If you are associated with a registered site you will now have access to all USDLC Professional Development Satellite Programs through a streamed video link provided within the program description.  User Name and Password Required. 

If I miss a broadcast or forget to record a broadcast, will there be another broadcast of the same program? How can I find out about rebroadcasting?

There will not be any rebroadcasting of programs in the future. The streamed video on the USDLC website serves as backup to the satellite broadcast.

If you missed a program due to technical issues with the USDLC-installed equipment and you have problems accessing the streamed video:

  • Please contact Technical Assistance, report your difficulties, and order a videotape without cost. (Telephone: 888-948-1209, EMAIL [email protected] , FAX: 309-298-1890, HOURS: 5 days per week 9-5pm CT).

If you missed a program because of local issues (i.e. you failed to set the VCR), you may order a videotape through Technical Assistance at the cost of $19.95 plus shipping. 

How does my school find out what their username and password are to access handouts associated with a professional development series?

Please contact your Site Coordinator for this information.    You may also contact email Linda Walters , the USDLC Professional Development Coordinator, in the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (919-807-3497) or Sandy LaPlante with USDLC (888-828-7352). 

How can I obtain the needed information so that I can get into the USDLC web site?

You will need your school’s username and password to access the programs offered on the USDLC web site. Your Site Coordinator will have this information.

You may also call or email Linda Walters, the USDLC Professional Development Coordinator, in the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction or Sandy LaPlante with USDLC.

Is it allowed to use recorded professional development tapes from the previous year for next year’s professional development efforts?

Your USDLC site license is valid for 1 year only. At the end of contract year all video tapes are to be erased. In addition, no certificates will be issued to teachers for any program not completed within the contract year.

The contract year runs from July 1st to June 30th.

Since the implementation of the on-demand professional development streaming video, how will our district know when a teacher has completed a program?

Every individual that completes one of our programs must complete an evaluation. Once the evaluation is submitted, a certificate of completion is issued to the individual. It is up to the district and the individual to coordinate together to be sure the individual is given credit for the completed professional development.

How do I get my name on the USDLC listserv?

USDLC manages the listserv. You may send an email to [email protected] requesting to be placed on the listserv. Your name and your school’s address is required for registration to the USDLC listserv. Registration is not automatic and may take a few days to complete.

How can we purchase any of the professional development programs?

Individuals not associated with a registered site may not acquire our professional development videos.

If you are associated with a registered site you may order a video tape for a fee of $19.95 plus shipping by contacting Technical Assistance (Telephone: 888-948-1209, EMAIL [email protected] , FAX: 309-298-1890, HOURS: 5 days per week 9-5pm CT).   

How can I get a program when there has been a technical problem at our site?

If a program is missed at your site due to problems with equipment installed by USDLC:

Please contact Technical Assistance (Telephone: 888-948-1209, EMAIL [email protected] , FAX: 309-298-1890, HOURS: 5 days per week 9-5pm CT)  to report your difficulties. 

You will be referred to the streamed video provided on the USDLC website as backup to any problems with receiving satellite broadcasts.  If you have difficulty with the streamed video link, you may request a video, without cost, through Technical Assistance.

If you missed a program due to local issues (i.e. forgetting to set the VCR), you may contact Technical Assistance and order a videotape for a fee of $19.95 plus shipping.  

How can I find out what subjects and areas have professional development courses via USDLC?

There are no specific lists or search engines that will identify what subjects and specialty areas are covered by the professional development programs. However, each program has a description of the content covered.

Can I receive graduate credit for any of the courses? How do I register for credit?

USDLC does not offer graduate credit for streamed video / satellite programs.   However, you may receive graduate credit from Western Illinois University for participation in STAR-Online.  To learn more about receiving graduate credit visit the STAR-Online web site on earning graduate credit.

What is the deadline for turning in the professional development evaluation form?

The key deadline for turning in the professional development evaluation form is June 30th of each year. You must turn in your evaluation forms before that date to be credited with completing your professional development programs.

What is STAR-Online?

In April 2000, the United States Department of Education (USDE) awarded the United Star Distance Learning Consortium (USDLC), Inc. a five-year Star Schools grant for the STAR-Project. The STAR-Project leverages USDLC’s 19 years of distance learning experience and Western Illinois University’s online staff development model developed and implemented via the WIU-Ameritech TechKnowledgy Project.

STAR-Online (TechKnowledgy) offers K-12 educators self-paced quality training through over 50 web-based programs on technology integration as well as opportunities to access resources and network with teachers nationwide.

You can learn more by visiting the STAR-Online web site or by contacting Merrie Jean Parry or by calling 309-298-8444.

You may also download a PDF the STAR-Online brochure.

How do I register for STAR-Online?

You may register for STAR-Online by visiting the home page where there is a link to the Registration page. STAR-Online is a separate registration process with its own site licenses and fees.

I am a certified teacher, but I am currently unemployed. Is it possible for me to earn renewal certification credit through STAR-Online?

You will have to make arrangements with your local school district to participate in any USDLC Professional Development programs or to participate in STAR-Online. It is up to the school district to decide if they wish to support your professional development efforts and award you renewal certification credit.