Start or Manage a Cohort

The McCormick Center partners with professional development organizations around the country to offer facilitated cohorts of Aim4Excellence participants.

Cohorts blend the benefits of online learning with the power of facilitated face-to-face interactions to promote communities of practice. Communities of practice have been shown to support the integration of new knowledge, provoke critical thinking, challenge old assumptions, and develop leadership skills.


Typically this model incorporates monthly face-to-face meetings involving 10 to 15 participants, all of whom are moving through the Aim4Excellence online modules concurrently.


Local facilitators conduct monthly face-to-face meetings with participants to build a community of learners and help participants implement concepts. Facilitators receive face-to-face training on the Aim4Excellence content and best practices so that they can support their cohorts. Additionally, the McCormick Center supports facilitators through a facilitator liaison, an annual national meeting, and an online facilitator community. This online platform provides facilitators the opportunity to interact with other facilitators from around the country, request reports, and download recruitment and curriculum materials.

Some of the responsibilities of the cohort facilitator include:
  • Organizing and leading monthly Aim4Excellence cohort meetings to discuss module content, using pre-designed curriculum guides designed by the McCormick Center;
  • Supporting participants as they complete the requirements of the Aim4Excellence Online National Director Credential;
  • Providing recommendations and support to assist participants as they implement new administrative practices into their programs;
  • Tracking cohort participants’ progress through the Aim4Excellence modules and communicating progress to program organizers; and
  • Communicating regularly with participants.


For additional information about setting up a cohort in your area, contact Teri Talan via email using the form below or via phone at 847.947.5060.

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