Teacher professional learning communities provide environments in which teachers engage in regular research and collaboration. They have been found effective as a means for connecting professional learning to the day-to-day realities faced by teachers in the classroom. In this paper, we draw on survey data collected in primary schools serving 71 villages in rural Gansu Province, as well as transcripts from in-depth interviews with 30 teachers. Our findings indicate that professional learning communities penetrate to some of China's most resource-constrained schools, but that their nature and development are shaped by institutional supports, principal leadership, and teachers' own initiative.
Policy statements were gathered from 13 organizations which have major responsibilities in the area of teacher education. Statements were solicited on 20 issues, including educational quality and standards, program structure, certification, governance, and student admission. Agreements and disagreements among organizations are described. (PP)
Oklahoma teachers, asked their opinions about aspects of a new state law to upgrade teacher preparation, supported raising college admission requirements, requiring an entry-year internship for beginning teachers, and participation in staff development activities. The teachers questioned the value of minimum competency testing. (PP)
Cross-cultural research findings are summarized in an effort to inform multicultural educators of subtle differences in how children from various cultures learn. Differences in spatial conceptualization, cognitive learning, nonverbal communication, personality, and general attitudes are discussed. Research methodology is noted. (PP)
In May 1977, the National Council for Accredita tion of Teacher Education (NCATE) adopted revisions to the standards which will become effective on January 1, 1979. Prior to the adoption of the new NCATE con stitution in 1973, AACTE had the responsibility for re vising standards. The 1970 revision of standards was largely the work of the AACTE committee on stan dards. However, under the new constitution, the NCATE's committee on standards is charged with the responsibility for recommending changes in the stan dards. In the present case, the committee made a series of proposals. According to the NCATE constitution, there must be a waiting period between presentation and adoption of changes in standards. During this period, constituent organizations and member institu tions had the opportunity to react. One public meeting was held at which NCATE constituent members ap peared. An AACTE task force on accreditation pre pared reactions to the proposed changes, many of which were adopted by the NCATE committee on standards. The committee's final recommendations were adopted by the council in May 1977. According to the NCATE constitution, there must be an 18 month period before implementation, so the standards will apply to institutions being visited after January 1, 1979.
This paper will discuss the revised standards with emphasis on changes from the present standards. Im plications for institutions as they prepare for NCATE visits will also be considered. In many cases, the changes are merely clarifications of existing standards. However, as will be seen, there are some significant and substantial changes. In the final section we raise some fundamental questions about the application of the standards.
In 1978 and 1979, the Texas Research and Development Center for Teacher Education initiated extended discussions, commissioned papers, and sponsored a conference on major topic areas that cut across the teacher education continuum. The planning processes, the conference and its formation, the final report, and national agenda are described. (JN)
Criticism and recommendations made toward teacher education programs do not usually examine the diversity among these programs. This article explores characteristics of various institutions, their education students, and the content of their programs. (DF)
The authors present a program of research on the teaching practices of 1st-year teachers that has evolved within a partnership between and among a university and area school districts. The research links observed 1st-year teaching practices with school level (elementary, middle, high school) and type of teacher preparation (traditional bachelor's degree or nontraditional master's degree or postbaccalaureate certification). This study was conducted during 3 consecutive years, and results suggest that 1st-year teachers, as a group, performed adequately. School-level analyses reveal higher quality classroom management practices at the elementary level. Type of preparation analyses reveal higher quality management practices among teachers who attended traditional programs. The potential interaction between school level and type of preparation was not definitive but suggests further research is needed on the match between type of preparation and school level as expressed in quality of teaching practices.
Provides a rationale and framework for promoting critical reflection in teacher preparation, focusing on what critical reflection is, whether and how reflective practice can be taught, constructivist methods, dialogue as a form of teaching, action research to nurture reflective practice, and writing as a tool to encourage connections between content and practical experiences (thus enhancing reflective abilities). (SM)
In this article, the authors focus on the disciplinary divides between multicultural, bilingual, and special education. Existing issues that inhibit closer integration of these areas are highlighted, and a focus on the issue of culture is examined. Problematic ways that this key area has been treated in the past are described, and a proposal for a cultural focus on all students is described.
Madam/Mr. President, I urge you to think broadly and systemically about improving education in the United States. Use your authority to create a plan that provides all children and adolescents with access to well-funded, desirable schools that orient their learning toward the future. Enable them to flourish because they are healthy, they have a balanced and engaging curriculum, and they are working with good teachers—who themselves are encouraged to continue their education. Make it possible for all education professionals to have access to the latest research on teaching and learning and the time to think through how the research can and should inform practice. Encourage schools, colleges, and universities to establish cross-institutional cultures wherein professors, teachers, and administrators work in partnership to review the latest research and to contribute to the knowledge base through collaborative research and through practitioner research and other forms of research in their own classrooms, schools, and districts.
The locus of control in teacher education has been outside the hands of those who educate our nation’s teachers for more than a century. Essentialists have long controlled the agenda for public schooling in America, and it is evident as well that their influence has prevailed in both the form and function of teacher education. The authors suggest that the contest between progressives and essentialists regarding teacher education has been repeatedly decided in favor of the essentialists. The current attempt to recast teacher education to focus singularly on effectiveness of classroom teachers in raising the test scores of their students is a not-unanticipated result of this enduring contest.
Investigated preservice teachers' understandings of their own and their students' cultural backgrounds, examining how they integrated those understandings into literacy instruction. The ABC model (autobiographies, biographies of students, cross-cultural analysis, analysis of cultural differences, and classroom practices) helped stimulate students to continue examining their lives, their cultural/linguistic backgrounds, and the impact of those factors on teaching diverse students. (SM)
This study investigates the impact of an observation framework on preservice teachers’ abilities to engage in productive video-based reflections on mathematics teaching. The Lesson Analysis Framework draws from research on expert—novice teacher differences. Its central element is the analysis of the impact of teachers’ instructional decisions on students’ learning of mathematics. Through an experimental design, the effects of this framework on preservice teachers’ abilities to reflect on teaching are compared to the effects of an alternative framework focused on the evaluation of separate elements of instruction. Findings suggest that the Lesson Analysis Framework facilitates preservice teachers’ learning to elaborate on what they observe and to propose alternative teaching strategies. In addition, the framework provides a structure for evidence-based evaluation of observed instruction.
Seeking to deepen our understandings of the ways international study abroad programs may enhance efforts to prepare culturally responsive teachers, the purpose of this case study was to explore a preservice teacher’s intercultural development during a semester-long teacher education program in London, England. Such study abroad teacher education programs are offered as an innovative means to promote preservice teachers’ intercultural development, providing unique opportunities for these students to confront their ethnocentric worldviews and begin to consider the ways culture influences teaching and learning. Findings from this study reveal that participation in the program positively influenced intercultural development. Themes that illuminate aspects of the participant’s study abroad experience that both challenged and supported intercultural development included immersion within both a culture and school along with the essential role of an intercultural guide who promoted reflective practices around issues of culture and self. Implications for preservice teacher education program design are addressed.
Teachers must be informed about the signs or indicators of child abuse and neglect, as well as the reporting procedures, to become more effective in reporting suspected cases. Teacher educators can provide this information in a variety of ways; three ways are suggested. (JMK)
A study investigated: (1) academic qualifications of female education majors; (2) how they compare with females in other academic programs; (3) career-choice shifts during college; and (4) whether females unsuccessful in other programs choose education as a last resort. Scholastic Aptitude Test scores, grade-point averages, and other measures of achievement are analyzed. (PP)
A scale assessing teacher beliefs concerning the responsibility for student academic success was developed and validated. The results show a striking difference in male/female teacher responses. Female teachers consistently assumed greater responsibility for the learning outcomes of their students. (JN)
In order to determine if successful academic performance assures good teaching, four measures of academic achievement of teacher education graduates of Georgia State University from 1981 through 1984 were correlated with on-the-job performance assessments. Results are presented and implications for education policies are discussed. (Author/MT)
Thoughtful mentoring can shape and challenge a beginning teacher’s practice in educative ways, especially when the novice is well prepared and adopts the stance of a learner. What responsibility does a mentor have when the novice performs at the edge of acceptable practice? Drawing on interview and observation data collected for a national study of new teacher induction, this article explores how a well-supported mentor routinely missed opportunities to address difficulties faced by three novices. Through the construct of professional accountability, the authors argue for a more sophisticated approach to mentoring that blends assistance with standards-based assessment, as found in recent reform proposals. As the pool of new teachers shrinks, the phenomenon of teaching at the boundary of acceptable practice is likely to be exacerbated. This analysis raises timely questions about mentors’ professional obligations to new teachers and the public they serve.
This article describes one school of education’s efforts to navigate a state-level mandate requiring that candidates for teacher certification demonstrate “positive impact on student learning.” It explains ongoing efforts to make sense of the requirement, to measure its congruence with program philosophy, and to develop a response. The article reports on informal fact finding we did to determine how other institutions in our state were responding to the mandate, and it describes our attempts to demonstrate “positive impact” for accreditation purposes. In addition, the article raises dilemmas we face in the process. How do we negotiate conflicting definitions of impact and of student learning? What is adequate growth for diverse preservice teachers in terms of teaching for understanding? How do we position ourselves and our program in relation to powerful, controversial state demands?
In this article, the authors consider what can be learned from limited forms of evidence, for purposes of accountability and improvement of teacher education programs. They begin with a review of recent research on how evidence has been used to examine the effectiveness of teacher preparation and development. Using empirical evidence from a state with limited data capacity, they illustrate what can be learned from value-added measures as one form of evidence. As a case in point, the value-added scores for fifth-grade teachers are used to answer the question: To what extent are teachers’ years of experience and the institutions from which they obtained their teacher training related to student achievement? The authors conclude with a discussion of the use of evidence by shifting the focus of accountability from simply responding to external requirements to developing internal practices that generate knowledge for improvement, and argue for collective responsibility among multiple stakeholders.
A new interinstitutional instrument for cooperative teacher preparation and curriculum development is needed, preferably to "emerge from a partnership of the old institutions with universities taking leadership under the encouraging sponsorship of state departments of education." A "cooperative clinical teaching center" would focus on both staff development (including teacher preparation and curricular and instructional innovation) and operational research. While school and college supervisory personnel can direct the center's program, classroom teachers from cooperating schools can become the chief agents to carry it out inasmuch as they can contribute ideas and skills derived from practical experience in a way that university people cannot. Cooperative clinical teaching centers are particularly well suited for achieving interinstitutional cooperation to facilitate teacher preparation and instructional improvement in the cities. Although certain essentials are basic to effecting school-university collaboration, the potentialities of collaborative effort "will make possible Dewey's dream of a laboratory approach to the education of teachers." (Included is an outline of a possible structure for a cooperative clinical teaching center.) (SG)
A model of teaching qualities is presented to provide teachers with a self-check aimed at improving their effectiveness. The activities and suggestions offered are designed to increase awareness of skills and characteristics of effective teachers. (JMF)
To help institutions meet National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education standards, the article presents a research-based accreditation self-study process model incorporating three factors: recognition that program improvement is worthwhile, a well-designed curriculum benefiting from continuing improvement and a strong knowledge base, and a total team effort involving faculty. (SM)
Discussed is a recent recommendation that the national accreditation process now applied solely to colleges and universities be expanded to include all institutions, agencies, and organizations involved in long-term cooperative programs to prepare or upgrade school personnel. (JD)
Describes how the Department of Secondary Education at Brigham Young University (Utah) improved and benefited as the unit to which it belonged engaged in a self-study to fulfill the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education accreditation standards. (SM)
The President of the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) proposes that all members of the AACTE be given six years to achieve National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education accreditation. The article explains the demographics of the current situation in accreditation and discusses the importance of national accreditation. (SM)
As NCATE progresses toward streamlining and improving the accreditation process, use of the rating scales seems imperative in maximizing the effectiveness of visiting team reports, and for further quantitative investigation of standards. (JD)
This article examines the issue of strengthening self-study research in teacher education by consciously situating individual studies within coherent research programs on particular substantive issues. Although acknowledging the positive professional development impact of self-study on teacher educators, this article calls for more closely connecting the self-studies of teacher educators to the mainstream of teacher education research so that the voices of practicing teacher educators are incorporated into syntheses of research on particular aspects of teacher education. The article rejects the dualism of research either contributing to greater theoretical understanding or to the improvement of practice and argues that self-study research should attempt to work on both goals simultaneously.
This study examined classroom practices of effective versus less effective teachers (based on student achievement gain scores in reading and mathematics). In Phase I of the study, hierarchical linear modeling was used to assess the teacher effectiveness of 307 fifth-grade teachers in terms of student learning gains. In Phase II, 32 teachers (17 top quartile and 15 bottom quartile) participated in an in-depth cross-case analysis of their instructional and classroom management practices. Classroom observation findings (Phase II) were compared with teacher effectiveness data (Phase I) to determine the impact of selected teacher behaviors on the teachers’ overall effectiveness drawn from a single year of value-added data.
Achievement outcomes for students taught by recent program completers of Louisiana’s teacher preparation programs (TPPs) are examined using hierarchical linear modeling of State student achievement data in English language arts, reading, mathematics, science, and social studies. The current year’s achievement in each content area is predicted using previous achievement data, student characteristics, classroom characteristics (e.g., percentage of students with disabilities), school characteristics, and attendance of teachers and students. The contribution of a teacher having recently completed a specific TPP is modeled at the classroom level as an indicator variable for each TPP. Results for programs with 25 or more new teachers are reported. Results demonstrate substantial overlap in confidence intervals (CI) among programs. In some instances, 68% and/or 95% CI for programs in specific content areas did not overlap results for the average new teacher or experienced teachers (i.e., they were lower than average new teachers or higher than average experienced certified teachers). Results varied across content areas for some programs.
Relationships between variables representing substantive, semantic, and strategy elements of teacher behavior during concept instruction and class residual gain scores on a test of concept learning were examined as twenty-two teachers instructed groups of fifteen third, fourth, and fifth grade pupils in two forty-five minute lessons on the social science concept, specialization. Significant low-inference behaviors included giving concept definitions and positive examples, reviewing within lessons, including more of the relevant generalizations and concept labels. Significant rated variables included accuracy of definitions and examples, relevance of behavior to objectives, balance of concrete-abstract terminology, and enthusiasm. (Author)
Peer, teacher, and self-evaluations of students' school adjustment and coping skills appear to be predictive of students' achievement, self-esteem, and attitudes toward school. Teacher evaluations are most accurate and are sufficient in predicting results. (CJ)
Data were collected on attitude changes, perceptions of problems, and instructional behavior of elementary and secondary school teachers as they gained teaching experience. Subjects were chosen when they were student teachers at Western Kentucky University and sampling was continued over six years. Needs of beginning teachers are noted. (PP)
Teacher educators have the responsibility of designing curriculum with awareness that the education system of the future will have to be more adaptable to individual learning and behavioral styles as children with varying degrees of disability are incorporated into the system. (JD)
College and university faculty are taking a new look at their role in in-service teacher education and staff development. Several considerations regarding perceptions and activities in this area are discussed. (JMF)
Describes a cognitive intervention that offered novice student teachers access to the thinking underlying an expert teacher's practice, examining the implementation and impact of the cognitive intervention, which involved two 2-hour workshops held between participants' first and second practicum experiences. Workshop transcripts indicated that participants' final understandings of expert teaching and thinking underlying teaching expertise differed from their initial interpretations. (SM)
Offers a framework for identifying areas of agreement and disagreement across recent teacher education reform proposals. Reform documents were analyzed in relation to National Commission on Teaching and America's Future (NCTAF) recommendations. Researchers developed a rubric to assess whether and how proposals expressed agreement or disagreement with NCTAF recommendations. Two recommendations received the strongest agreement (multicultural competence and disciplinary preparation). (SM)
This article describes a portion of a long-term, action-research project investigating the teaching of an elementary social studies methods course for preservice teachers from a social justice framework. Other major foci for the course are integrated with topics related specifically to social studies teaching and learning: cultural diversity, an inquiry orientation to teaching, and teaching for social justice. The authors describe and analyze the community and social inquiry assignments used to develop the concepts of marginalization and privilege within the course. By examining their students’ developing understanding of marginality, the authors address particular aspects of assignments that seemed to facilitate and hinder this development, offering new understandings of their own practice as teacher educators for social justice. They frame their ongoing agenda for action research to develop learning experiences designed to promote political understanding among preservice teachers as rooted in the fight for social justice and offer suggestions for other teacher educators working to prepare teachers to teach for positive social change.
Many states now possess the data and statistical methods that can produce teacher value-added scores and link them to preparation programs. It is important to understand the limitations of these measures and the inferences that they do and do not support. These limitations fall into three categories. First, value-added measures (VAM) provide information about only one of several important dimensions of teacher preparation program quality, focusing on one outcome measure, but not addressing other program characteristics, including the quality of program resources, the appropriateness of program content, and the contributions programs make to teacher learning. Second, comparing programs on the average VAM scores begs the question of whether mean performance is the most appropriate way to look at program quality. Third, the measurement of program graduates’ VAM is strongly affected by the labor market for teachers, which weakens the inferences from VAM scores to the quality of preparation programs.
Broad-based empirical outcomes assessment is an increasingly evident part of governmental services and this trend is particularly apparent in education. The clearest manifestation of this trend in education has been the advent of high-stakes broad-based testing and accountability programs in K-12 education. Although this assessment regime has not yet been used to assess the efficacy of teacher preparation programs, the data management capacity and statistical technology is now emerging to make this possible. This article presents data from the 1st year of a pilot study examining the methodological and practical issues involved in implementing a value-added assessment of teacher preparation based on a massive multivariate longitudinal database. The pilot data are discussed in relation to the literature pertaining to value-added assessments in K-12 education. Selected research needs and practical concerns related to the use of value-added models for the assessment of teacher preparation are discussed.
Historically Black and historically White public postsecondary institutions sharing common geography have experienced pressure to enter cooperative arrange ments. In this manuscript the author describes the initial efforts of two col leges of education at historically segre gated institutions, Grambling State and Louisiana Tech, to cooperate on the student teaching phase of preservice programming. Program assessment data are reported and guidelines are present ed for institutions considering a similar type cooperative effort.
Data from studies of productivity and funding at colleges and universities show that teacher education is seriously underfinanced, in part because of the ways that university administrators allocate money provided under state funding formulas among their departments. Options for a more equitable distribution of funds are suggested. (PP)
Confronted with declining enrollment and budget reductions, schools of education have increasingly considered institutional merger as a possible approach to survival. This solution is currently being worked out in large education systems in Maine and Indiana. During the decade since the merger of two large institutions in Indiana, both problems and advantages have been reported. Among the problems, loss of identity and autonomy for one campus, increased administrative bureaucracy, and a strain on the governance of both schools have been cited. However, opportunities for students have been widened, resources have been shared across the two sites, and there has been a lessened dependency upon part-time faculty. A case study of the merger of the Schools of Education at Oregon State University and Western Oregon State College provides insights into the difficulties and advantages of institutional mergers. It is pointed out that mergers most often fail because of human issues rather than financial or legal problems. Nevertheless, in the few settings where significant programmatic and administrative mergers have been attempted in higher education, there is considerable evidence that they have led to greater institutional security, improved programs, and expanded opportunities for students. (JD)
Texas teacher education faculty, department heads, deans, and chief academic officers consider deans of education to be at least moderately effective in making decisions about teacher education. Perceptions of the deans' decision making about instructional programs, research, and student, faculty, and financial affairs were studied. (PP)
In the midst of a rapidly expanding concern for the quality of preservice and in-service education of teachers the pro gram for the preparation of the adminis trator seldom emerges for the consid eration it deserves. Mr. Baber draws upon his rich background as teacher, public- school administrator, campus laboratory- school superintendent, and college instruc tor to present this penetrating analysis. His constructive suggestions are a chal lenge to graduate-school leadership. Mr. Baber has just accepted the superintend ency of a new school system to be estab lished in the Rich Township District, Park Forest, Illinois, in the environs of Chicago. Without buildings or instruc tional equipment of any kind, without staff, without curriculum, and without even one enrollee, Mr. Baber has the un usual opportunity of creating a com pletely new school on a 55-acre site located in the center of the area it is to serve.