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Unit Assessment System

2000 - 2005

The assessment of student learning begins with educational values. Assessment is not an end in itself but a vehicle for educational improvement. Its effective practice, then, begins with and enacts a vision of the kinds of learning we most value for students and strive to help them achieve. Education values should drive not only what we choose to assess but also how we do so. Where questions about educational mission and values are skipped over, assessment threatens to be an exercise in measuring what’s easy, rather than a process of improving what we really care about.

American Association for Higher Education, 1992

Program Intentions: Mission, Aims, and Goals

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University are residential colleges pursuing the liberal arts within the Catholic university tradition. These two rural Minnesota institutions work together to offer their students “a unified liberal arts curriculum which focuses on questions important for the human condition, demands clear thinking and communicating, and calls forth new knowledge for the betterment of humankind.” Through this shared curriculum these two colleges strive as one to offer their students “an integrative environment for learning which stresses intellectual challenge, open inquiry, collaborative scholarship, and artistic creativity.” These colleges recall their monastic founders by celebrating learning within their Benedictine settings that “foster attentive listening to the voice of God, awareness of the meaning of one’s existence, and the formation of community built on respect for individual persons” (Academic Catalog 2003-2005, pg. 4)

Given these colleges’ common educational mission, the Department of Education they jointly sponsor takes as its principal aim the preparation of “exemplary teachers who have a strong liberal arts background, exemplify Benedictine values, and make professional decisions which can help all students achieve their full potential as persons and as responsible world citizens in a democratic society” (Conceptual Framework, Mission).

Focused by this aim, and consistent with the efforts of the two colleges, the Education Department’s mission is to offer those prospective teachers “a rich and diverse background of coursework and experiences that stress intellectual challenge, open inquiry, collaborative scholarship, and that promote clear thinking.” This unit’s mission further encourages the preparation of teachers as decision-makers “who make their informed and ethical classroom decisions based on a firm knowledge of content, pedagogy, and the needs of their students” (Conceptual Framework, Mission).

Students enrolled by the colleges and prepared by their Education Department for licensure by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching reflect this mission and aim in their work toward that Department’s program goals. The knowledge, skills, and values or dispositions that these candidates acquire and affirm through pursuit of the unit’s ten goals strengthen the decisions they make as they plan, implement, and evaluate the effects of their practice (Conceptual Framework, Goals) These ten program goals, revealed through the knowledge base that supports the unit’s “Teacher as Decision-Maker” conceptual model, also guide the design of its curriculum.

The department’s goals are shaped by the Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers as approved by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching (1999). The 10 terminal and 120 enabling standards in this collection were derived from the earlier work of the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC).

1. Subject Matter. The candidates we prepare for licensure as teachers understand the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the disciplines they are preparing to teach so that they will be able to make this subject matter meaningful for their students Goal 1 is developed and supported in the Education Department’s Knowledge Base (pg. 2).

2. Student Learning and Development. Our candidates draw on their understanding of learning and developmental processes to choose optimal ways to encourage their students’ intellectual, social, and personal development (Knowledge Base, pg. 9).

3. Diverse Learners. Our candidates, recognizing how differences among students can influence their learning, make instructional decisions that reflect on their students’ backgrounds and exceptionalities (Knowledge Base, pg. 18).

4. Instructional Strategies. Our candidates use their knowledge of instructional strategies to decide upon and employ those that are most likely to encourage their students’ critical thinking, problem solving, and performance skills (Knowledge Base, pg. 27)

5. Learning Environment. Our candidates use their knowledge and skills to create just, disciplined learning communities that can motivate students to achieve personal and academic success through positive social interaction and active engagement in their learning (Knowledge Base, pg. 33)

6. Communication. Our candidates use of effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster their students’ learning (Knowledge Base, pg. 38)

7. Planning. Our candidates plan and effect instruction as they decide what content they will teach, to whom they will teach it, in what ways they will do so, and with what effect (Knowledge Base, pg. 42)

8. Assessment. Our candidates use information provided through their use of formal and informal assessment methods to make instructional decisions that will support their students’ continuous development (Knowledge Base, pg. 47)

9. Reflection. Our candidates for licensure critically reflect on the effects of their instructional decisions on the performance of their students, on the practice of their colleagues, and on the actions of others in their learning communities.  They use those reflections to direct and sustain their professional renewal (Knowledge Base, pg. 55)

10. Collaboration. Our candidates enhance their effectiveness as educators by working together with their colleagues, their students’ parents, and members of their school community to create and sustain a positive learning environment that can enhance students’ learning and well-being (Knowledge Base, pg. 58).

Theory of the Program

Assessment of these goals and the program of study and practice that sustains them could be enhanced were it to be informed by the informal program theory that guides the unit’s curriculum. Such a “theory-of-action,” as proposed by Schon (1997), would describe the elements of an instructional program and the logic that orders them in order to explore the unit’s expectations of how each of these elements contribute to the program’s effectiveness. Revealing the theory or context that surrounds a program provides a frame of reference for an inquiry into that program’s effectiveness. Moreover, discovering a program’s context helps derive assessment questions that are grounded in that programs’ theory of how defined actions or procedures enable desired outcomes. Assessment questions guided by insights reflecting a program’s theory could result in more easily identified “program resources, program activities, and intended program outcomes” while also suggesting “a chain of causal assumptions linking program resources, activities, intermediate outcomes, and ultimate program goals” (Wholey, 1987, pg. 78).

How, then, does this teacher preparation program work? Which of its elements do students encounter as they prepare for licensure as elementary and secondary teachers? Why are these elements arranged as they are? In recent years the College of Saint Benedict has enrolled about 550 women each fall in their first year of study. Saint John’s University, six miles to the Northwest, has enrolled nearly as many young men in each first year class. A typical first year class of about 1000 students enrolling in both colleges will include as many as many as 300 who upon their matriculation harbor an interest in becoming elementary or secondary teachers. Perhaps as many as 200 of this number will enroll in introductory courses during their first or second year of study as they discern the strength of their call to this profession. Nearly 100 will complete a four year program of study leading them to licensure as elementary or secondary teachers. How do they reach this goal?

Phase I: Pre-Acceptance Foundation. Those who persist in their desire to prepare for a teaching career will complete a set of foundation courses that form the “first tier” of the department’s curriculum, each offering from one to four credit hours. A typical four-credit hour course meets every other day for 70 minutes during over a six-day cycle. A semester of 16 weeks will include 12 such cycles, offering from 33 to 36 class meetings. Most students complete a total of 16 credit hours each semester.

These first courses in the unit’s curriculum offer prospective candidates opportunities to explore and acquire “professional” knowledge (Professional Standards, p. 56) about the role of schools in our diverse society (Education 111, Introduction to Teaching and Learning in a Diverse World), characteristics and needs of exceptional learners, theories and patterns of human development (Education 203, Human Development, Typical and Exceptional) while observing and participating in educational field settings. Foundation courses thus offer prospective candidates a framework or context for their future course work and clinical (methods and student teaching) experiences. Since the unit’s adoption of a “standards-based” teacher preparation curriculum, these foundation courses also provide opportunities to know, apply, and be assessed upon those standards common to all of the unit’s elementary and secondary licensure programs.

As they begin to acquire this foundation of knowledge about schools, learners, and ways of teaching, college students seeking the Education Department’s acceptance as candidates for licensure also complete 60 hours of required pre-admission field experiences while enrolled in Education 111 (formerly monitored through Education 108). These initial field experiences include 30 hours working with “at risk” K-12 students completed during this introductory course and 30 additional hours “shadowing” a teacher in a K-12 school. Guided by experienced teachers who collaborate with the unit’s faculty, these early field experiences provide prospective candidates with an opportunity to experience the challenges of teaching children and to observe a teaching professional’s classroom life. Those who complete this required field experience are formally judged on several standards-based dimensions by the licensed teachers in whose classrooms they have served. Affective indicators of a potential candidates’ disposition for this demanding professional role are an important part of these early formative assessments. Students conclude their documentation of this experience with a guided self-reflection on the nature and effects of their work in these classrooms.

Responding to the increasing diversity in Minnesota’s schools, the unit has developed additional opportunities for prospective candidates to work in K-12 classrooms which serve students from different cultural, ethnic, economic, and racial groups. Those who seek to become elementary teachers invest five instructional days (30 hours or more) as supervised observers, aides, and tutors in an inner city Minneapolis or Saint Paul school. These potential elementary teachers will also invest another 30 hours in local area schools enrolling a diverse student body (Education 212, Clinical Experience, Elementary Education). Prospective candidates for secondary licensure (K-12 and 5-12) enroll in a similar five day, 30 hour supervised “urban plunge” during their winter break, spring break, or in early May (Education 213, Clinical Experience for K-12/5-12 Education Minors). Both of these “diversity-intensive” field experiences require prospective candidates to complete standards-guided reflections on the nature of their work in these settings as well as the implications of that work for their future roles as professional educators.

Prospective candidates conclude their Tier One foundation coursework with opportunities to know and be assessed on key aspects of “pedagogical knowledge” (Professional Standards, pg. 55) concerning instructional and assessment as they complete coursework for Educational Psychology (Education 310). During this course prospective candidates usually prepare their application materials for review by the unit’s Admissions Committee in hopes of being accepted as an elementary education major or secondary education minor preparing for licensure.

Phase I: Academic Skills. As prospective candidates for licensure as teachers complete first tier foundation courses and field experiences, they also verify their academic skill performance for advanced study and practice. The unit has defined a foundational level of academic performance in the academic skills of reading, writing, grammar, and the use of mathematics which all candidates must affirm and maintain during their preparation for licensure. In past years prospective candidates completed the Academic Profile, a competency-based examination developed by the Educational Testing Service, to establish their performance levels in these college level skills. With the advent of additional licensure tests and their associated cost, the unit elected to accept alternative indicators equated with the Academic Profile’s “Level Two” performance in three of the four skill areas. Performance levels are described in Appendix A of this plan.

While in the past prospective candidates presented Academic Profile scores at Level Two or higher in each skill area to affirm their academic skills, presently they may also offer ACT sub-scores of 24 or higher (the colleges’ mean composite ACT score is 25) for each skill area to affirm their competence.  Prospective candidates who have completed the Educational Testing Services Praxis I/Pre-Professional Skills Test may affirm Level Two performance with sub-scores of 175 in reading, 174 in writing (grammar), and 173 in mathematics as equivalent indicators of Level Two skills in those academic skills.

Most of Minnesota’s college-bound high school students complete The College Board’s ACT examination. The state’s Board of Teaching requires prospective candidates to have at least attempted all sections of The Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST) before acceptance as candidates in preparation for licensure. Nearly all prospective candidates thus have both PPST and ACT scores to affirm their performance in reading, grammar, and mathematics.

Each semester the unit offers a holistically scored essay examination of its own design to provide prospective candidates with assessments of their writing performance, as neither the modest writing samples collected by the ACT or the PPST provide meaningful estimates of the ability to formulate and express a persuasive argument. Prospective candidates must also verify their skills in public address by completing the unit’s “Speech Adequacy Test” or by presenting evidence of successfully completing formal instruction in public speaking during high school or college.

Should a prospective candidate fail to affirm Level Two academic skills, the unit encouraged pursuit of a range of developmental opportunities. Following completion of diagnostic testing to identify areas of strength and weakness in a skill area, prospective candidates might elect to enroll in a course, complete a computer-managed or self-instructional program, or work with a professionally supervised tutor through the colleges academic skills centers in reading, writing, or mathematics. Performance levels and developmental opportunities are described in candidates’ Teacher Education Handbook.

The pre-acceptance field experience and the early foundation courses together offer prospective candidates opportunities to discern the strength of their disposition toward the complex and demanding role of a professional educator. The unit’s academic skills standards and indicators help prospective candidates verify that they are intellectually prepared to pursue that role in depth.

Phase I: General Education. The unit’s mission, embedded within the shared mission of the two colleges, calls candidates and their faculty to a life of the mind balanced with a life of service. As prospective candidates progress through their pre-acceptance curriculum of foundation courses, field experiences, and academic skills examinations they also continue to complete courses designed for the colleges’ Core Curriculum. All first year students complete a two-semester Symposium offering opportunities to refine their communication skills in classes designed to enroll nine men and nine women. During their second and third years of Core study students will complete courses in the natural sciences, the humanities, and the social sciences. All fourth year students complete a Senior Seminar exploring values supporting a life of learning and service. Candidates for licensure complete a Senior Seminar on “human relations” designed to build on their field experiences with diverse learners.

Having completed the general education portion of their college coursework, most candidates will have invested nearly one-half of the 124 credit hours required for graduation. The unit draws on this broadly designed general education experience, as it provides prospective teachers with the opportunity to acquire and begin to refine their understanding of a broader body of knowledge, skills, and values. Their general education will thus inform their professional practice by providing an organizing framework for the more detailed subject matter they will acquire, refine, and prepare to share with their future students.

Phase II: Acceptance and Preparation for Licensure. Acceptance is offered by the unit’s Admissions Committee to prospective candidates upon review of their preparation for that role. The application process is described in the Teacher Education Handbook located on the unit’s web site.

The Committee’s review is based on several documents, including…

  • A letter of application revealing that student’s philosophy of education and stated commitment to a life of teaching.
  • A completed department application and a personal data form.
  • A structured interview focused on dispositions related to teaching and learning with either the Director of Elementary Student Teaching or the Director of Secondary (K-12 / 5-12) Student Teaching, depending on the intended area of licensure. This interview is one of several “formative screens” designed to identify prospective candidates who may not thrive in our program of study and practice.
  • Supervising teachers’ review of the candidate’s pre-acceptance clinical experiences from Education 111 and 212/213, additional applicant screens.
  • Recommendations for candidacy from three college faculty members, including the prospective candidate’s Symposium instructor, the Core Curriculum’s two semester course in written and oral communication.
  • Completion or exemption from the unit’s Speech Adequacy Test.
  • Affirmation of academic skills at Level Two (AP, ACT, PPST, Essay) or, if required, successful resolution of any deficient skills through one or more developmental opportunities.
  • College transcripts affirming a prospective candidate’s minimum grade point averages of 2.5 (four point scale) or “BC” for unit and major courses, 2.0 or “C” for other college coursework, and at least a 2.5 or “BC” for the second semester of Symposium.
  • Successful completion, or at least an attempt to complete, each of the PPST skill areas.
  • A high school transcript
  • College entrance scores (PSAT, SAT, or ACT)
  • Concerns which faculty may have described using the unit’s procedure for that purpose.

Candidates of promise who have incomplete files may be offered “conditional acceptance” for a brief time to enable them to continue coursework toward licensure while they also complete the requirements for full acceptance. Most candidates who are offered conditional acceptance have not completed remedial work to resolve academic skills deficiencies, have not attempted the PPST, or have not completed a pre-acceptance field experience. Conditional acceptance allows candidates to enroll in the unit’s advanced foundation and methods courses, but only for a limited time. Failure to resolve the conditions within the required time limit may result in the Admissions’ Committee denying acceptance.

Preparation for Elementary Licensure (K-6 +5-8). Once accepted, candidates will follow divergent pathways that reflect the grade level and licensure area in which they seek to practice. In the 2004-2005 academic year about 52% of those accepted as candidates by the unit were preparing for licensure as elementary level generalists (K-6) who will also be licensed to teach a “specialty” to middle level students (grades 5-8) in mathematics, language arts, natural science, or social studies.  Most will complete five courses of four credit hours each to support their selected specialty. These “content knowledge” courses are taught by arts and sciences faculty prepared in academic disciplines that are appropriate for candidates’ specialties. The courses they teach are designed to provide candidates with opportunities to know, apply, and be assessed on relevant content standards for their area of elementary licensure as stipulated by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. Elementary candidates build on their “professional knowledge” acquired in the unit’s foundation courses with additional content knowledge in music (Education 150, 2 credit hours), art (151, 2 credit hours), children’s literature (215, 4 credit hours), science (Course of the College 111 and 112, 8 credit hours) and mathematics (8 credit hours).

Elementary candidates also complete a series of teaching methods courses offering “pedagogical content knowledge” in physical education K-6 (1 credit hour), art K-6 (2), music K-6 (2), social studies K-6 (4), mathematics K-6 (4), science K-6 (4), reading, writing, and language K-6 (4), and one course in middle level literacy and pedagogy in candidates’ specialty (4 credit hours). Candidates who focus on learning to teach a foreign language complete a K-8 language methods course (4). All methods courses include field and clinical experiences offering opportunities for elementary level candidates to plan and teach students in their areas of licensure.

Preparation for Secondary Licensure (5-12 / K-12). About one-half of the unit’s candidates pursue secondary level licensure (grades 5-12) as teachers of language arts, the physical sciences (biology, chemistry, or physics), mathematics, or social studies. Some will elect to prepare for licensure as teachers of art, music, or world languages to students in grades from kindergarten through grade twelve. All will acquire relevant “subject matter knowledge” (Professional Standards, p. 53) through a series of from eight to ten content courses designed to offer opportunities to know, apply, and be assessed on the subject matter standards of their major area of study as specified by Minnesota’s licensure rules for secondary level teachers. Depending on their college major, secondary students also complete from two to four teaching methods courses as part of their college minor in education. These methods courses offer “pedagogical content knowledge” (Professional Standards, p. 54) through opportunities to know, apply and be assessed on relevant Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT)

While the “standards-based” foundation courses refine candidates’ professional knowledge and introduce basic pedagogical knowledge, their work in one or more disciplines contributes to a growing understanding of the knowledge, skills, and values that together support a “standards-based” body of content knowledge. Methods courses provide opportunities to draw upon this growing body of content knowledge to form a core of “pedagogical content knowledge” to inform later teaching. Candidates thus have an initial framework of knowledge, skills, and values to help them begin to make informed decisions about what to teach and on how to teach.

Phase III: Clinical Practice. Sixteen weeks of closely supervised student teaching are divided into two eight-week clinical assignments, one in each of two grade levels, to offer elementary/middle level (K-6/5-8) and most secondary/middle level (9-12/5-8) candidates the opportunity to refine their pedagogical content knowledge by working with students in their licensure area and level. Secondary candidates seeking licensure as K-12 specialists in art, music, or world language will enjoy two such “rotations” during their sixteen-week clinical practice as student teachers working with students in elementary, middle, high schools.

Student teaching thus becomes one of the unit’s Tier Three “capstone” experiences designed to help candidates integrate their accumulating knowledge of what to teach with their growing knowledge of how to teach through opportunities to share their growing fund of knowledge with school children. Formative assessments of candidates, offered by their cooperating and supervising teachers, provide guidance on how, and how well, candidates incorporate Minnesota’s Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT), relevant licensure content standards and Minnesota’s K-12 student standards into their teaching. Emphasis on explicit documentation of candidates’ success in helping all the children in their charge learn meaningful knowledge and skills provides a frame of reference for this formative review and for candidates’ self-reflection.

Phase IV: Exit / Recommendation for Licensure. With the completion of successful student teaching experiences in each of two clinical settings, candidates complete a final review of their practice with their cooperating teacher and their college supervisor. With successful student teaching experiences, exit reviews, and state-mandated examinations completed, the unit’s licensure officers recommend candidates for teacher licensure by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching.

Anticipating Change. A related theme that has significant influence on the unit’s theory of action is the faculty and staff’s expectation of continuous change in every element of its program. During the past several years, once the immediate needs of candidates were met, the unit’s members were at work on significant program revisions.  Some of those revisions were driven by the unit’s informal or formal studies of its effectiveness. The adoption of testing and developmental options for students with deficient academic skills, for example, first emerged from faculty members’ informal observations of their students’ writing problems in foundation courses. Their perceptions were later confirmed through analyses drawn from Saint Benedict’s nascent performance assessment effort in the mid 1990’s. The unit responded to this weakness by adopting academic skill proficiency levels, methods of assessing those skills, and developmental options. These responses were supported by changes in the unit’s acceptance policy. The unit then drew on its own and the colleges’ resources to sustain this change in policy and practice.

As the unit’s partnership plan is realized, the human and fiscal costs of sustaining viable, exciting, and mutually rewarding relationships with elementary and secondary schools will grow. The unit’s technology plan will encourage faculty and candidates to use current and future technologies, thereby requiring commitment of some portion of the unit’s human and the Colleges’ fiscal resources that are not yet used in this way. The unit’s plan for increasing the diversity of field experiences, candidates, and faculty will require a significant investment of staff time and require the Colleges’ fiscal resources for candidate scholarships and program support. Documenting candidates’ performance in the program and drawing upon that documentation to test facets of the unit’s effectiveness will require greater commitment of the staff time in new areas.

In addition to the cost of such plans as will help the unit pursue its mission, responding to external demands for programmatic change will also demand human and fiscal resources. A change in the Colleges’ academic calendar, ending January Term and extending winter break and adding a May term, offers new opportunities to incorporate field experiences that may also require more staff time to find those field settings and monitor students’ performance in them. Documenting compliance with the standards-based model of program approval adopted by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching as well as responses to legislative initiatives will require a significantly greater investment of the unit’s staff time to consult with faculty in supporting arts and sciences disciplines to improve their documentation of candidates’ attainment of those standards. As was the case for the addition of a middle level experience to elementary and secondary licensure, even a seemingly small shift in licensure rules could create significant new demands on the unit’s resources. Responding to a growing federal presence in education, already evident in Title II reporting requirements, could demand still more staff energy and time.

This theme relates to the unit’s theory in action in two ways. First, the unit’s faculty and staff are committed to their shared mission, aim, goals, and conceptual framework. That commitment seems strong enough to guide significant change in its programs encouraged by internally generated improvements, licensure changes, or the demands of external accreditation. The result is likely to be a clearer, positive, and unified response to such changes that are thought likely to encourage stronger licensure programs and better candidates. The unit’s response to “manageable” change might be characterized as “Education is always changing; we will devise new ways to strengthen our teacher preparation program.”

While the unit’s conceptual foundation provides a frame of reference against which to evaluate the threat and opportunity inherent in such systemic or programmatic changes, the unit’s resources for responding to such changes, however beneficial they may prove to be, are not without limit. As in most small colleges, the time and creative talents of the unit’s faculty and staff often appear elastic, stretching to incorporate newly uncovered needs and opportunities. There are, however, limits to this critically important human resource.

As faculty and staff are drawn further into planned programs to strengthen partnerships, increase student and staff diversity, integrate meaningful instructional technology, and useful performance assessment, without careful stewardship these exciting new ventures may draw too much time and energy away from the unit’s primary aim, preparing liberal arts college graduates for a life of service as teachers in Minnesota’s schools. Should this shift occur, the unit’s theory of action may drift toward a new characterization; “Education is always changing; we have to resist changes to maintain a stable program.” If the future of teacher education continues to include increased demands from state and national regulatory agencies for significant changes in how the unit prepares candidates for licensure, those who manage the unit’s resources may find that new opportunities to invest its human resource will exceed the capacity of that resource, thus threatening accomplishment of its mission without the addition of new staff or a reduction in workload.

Assessment Questions. The theory guiding this program of teacher preparation holds that students will seek acceptance as candidates for licensure based on their success in foundation courses, the strength of their academic skills, and the affirmation that successful field experiences in a variety of settings provide. This assumption encourages the specification of the first assessment question; Do prospective candidates possess the basic academic skills that will sustain their learning while they are enrolled in the unit’s program?

Opportunities to learn about schools and teaching careers within those schools encourage students who persist in their desire to become candidates for licensure to continue their work in a related discipline. This assumption encourages a second question: Do candidates prepared by the unit possess an integrated body of knowledge, skills, and values drawn from one or more disciplines central to their area of licensure?

As candidates’ understanding of content knowledge grows, methods courses emphasizing how to teach that content provide opportunities to plan and teach lessons to children in the appropriate grades. A third question evolves from this assumption. Do candidates for licensure prepared by this unit’s program possess the pedagogical knowledge, skills, and values appropriate for their areas of licensure?

The significant investment of time and talent brought to student teaching by candidates, their cooperating teachers, and the unit’s supervising teachers suggests a fourth question. Do these candidates teach knowledge and skills from their area of licensure to others?

These four questions grow from and thus reflect the unit’s program theory formed by its aim, mission, and goals. Such questions can help guide a review of candidates’ performance as well as support an evaluation of the program of study and practice that prepares them for their roles as professional educators. These questions thus focus the specification, development, collection, and analysis of assessment information that can support summative judgments of the unit’s effectiveness.

Assessment Question 1. Do candidates prepared for licensure as teachers possess the basic academic skills and values that will sustain their learning while enrolled in the unit’s program?

The first of these five assessment questions guides our search for information affirming that our students possess the basic academic skills and values that will sustain their learning in our program of study and practice if accepted as candidates for licensure. Such skills include the ability to write well, to draw inferences from reading complex information, to use mathematics to solve everyday problems, and to orally share ideas with others. As both their college work and their professional practice will depend on reading, critical thinking, and writing, we provide experiences throughout our program to enhance the development of these skills. Further, we attempt to model and encourage adoption of the Benedictine values of “openness to change and lifelong learning as essential to continued teaching effectiveness” (Conceptual Framework, p. 4).

Our expectation that candidates for teacher licensure possess academic skills and values consistent with the opportunities revealed through their liberal arts education is also congruent with state and professional standards. The Minnesota Board of Teaching’s rules for the approval of teacher preparation programs require that an approved institution “recruits, admits, and retains candidates who demonstrate potential for professional success in schools (Institutional Program Approval, 1999, Minnesota Rule 8700.7600.5.D.1). Furthermore, those approved programs must use “multiple criteria and assessments…to identify candidates for admission who have the potential to become successful teachers” (5.D.2).

While such skills are not explicitly noted in the Professional Standards developed by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), we might safely presume that they would be needed by all who would seek to “know and demonstrate the content, pedagogical, and professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to help all students learn” (Professional Standards, 2001, p.10). Toward that end, our review and affirmation of prospective and accepted candidates’ academic skills is consistent with institutional, state, and professional standards.

The following matrix identifies sources of information available at each phase in candidates’ progress through our program.  Information gathered in this way contributes to our response to this first assessment question.

Assessment Question 1: Do candidates possess the basic academic skills and values that will sustain their learning while enrolled in our program of study and practice?

Program Intentions: Program Phases:

Unit Standards

MBOT Standards

NCATE 2000 Standards

Pre-Acceptance

Foundations Courses

Departmental

Acceptance

Methods

Courses

Student Teaching

Exit Review

Unit Mission:

Embedded within our belief in the necessity of a broad liberal arts education is an emphasis on the basic skills of reading, critical thinking, and writing. Therefore, we seek to provide experiences throughout our program that enhance the development of these skills.

D.1

The institution recruits, admits, and retains candidates who demonstrate potential for professional success in schools.

Sources:

ACT Math ACT Reading ACT Writing EDWA Essay
PPST Math
PPST Reading
PPST Writing
Speech Exam(exemption) College GPA Unit GPA Major GPA Faculty Concerns

Sources:

EDUC 111 EDUC 310 (writing)

Sources:

Faculty Interview Academic Skills scores Developmental Work College Transcript Review: Required Courses College GPA Unit GPA Major GPA Fieldwork Evaluations

Sources:

Methods Work Sample(2007) Lesson Plans Teaching Materials Observations: Cooperating Supervising teachers Students’ Learning EDUC 359 (writing)

Sources:

Portfolio Review Work Sample Unit/Lesson Plans Materials(writing) (quantitative) Observations (speech) Performance Profile

Sources:

PPST Math PPST Writing PPST Reading College GPA Unit GPA Major GPA Required Courses Program Requirements Completed Developmental Work Recommended for Licensure

Sources of Information. Formative information gathered and examined as candidates work toward Minnesota’s content standards and its Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers, embedded as opportunities to know, apply, and be assessed in courses offered by other academic departments and by the unit, is described in program approval documents submitted to and approved by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. Instructors’ formative assessments of performance as described in our program approval documents are not referenced in this summative assessment plan.

College students seeking acceptance as candidates must confirm that they possesses academic skills at or above Level Two, the unit’s minimal expectation of all candidates for performance in reading, writing, using mathematics, and public address.  This level of performance was derived from many years of experience using the Academic Profile (AP), a fixed response examination developed by the Educational Testing Service to estimate college students’ college-level skills in reading comprehension, recalling the conventions of English composition, and in the use of mathematics.  Equivalent scores from the College Board’s ACT college entrance examination or from the Educational Testing Services’ Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST) are now used to indicate performance at criterion-referenced levels derived from the Academic Profile.

Prospective candidates’ performances on the holistically scored Education Department Writing Assessment (EDWA) and on the unit’s faculty-scored Speech Adequacy Test estimate their writing performance and public address (speech) performance skills. Those prospective candidates performing below Level Two in any skill area must chose and complete developmental opportunities in each deficient area prior to receiving unconditional acceptance as a candidate for teacher preparation. Developmental opportunities generally include diagnostic testing to confirm and focus potential deficiencies, instruction directed at defined weaknesses, and completion of post-tests to affirm performance at “Level Two” or above. Complete Definitions for each performance level within each skill area are appended to this document (Appendix A).

Writing performance is monitored in selected foundation courses completed prior to students’ admission to candidacy. These courses provide students with writing experiences scored using the unit’s common scoring guide and carry significant value in each of the courses where they are included. Foundation courses also provide informal opportunities to monitor students’ disposition toward academic life though their responses to such assignments. The scoring guide used to judge these papers appears in Appendix B to this plan.

Students seeking acceptance as candidates must also have earned a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 2.5 (4 point scale, a grade of “BC”) or higher in all college coursework, a grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 in their majors and education courses, and at least a “BC” in the second semester of their Symposium course.

Acceptance of students’ application for candidacy requires evidence of adequate academic skills or successful remediation of those skills found to be deficient. Minnesota’s teacher licensure agency, The Board of Teaching, requires that prospective candidates attempt to pass each section of the Pre-Professional Skills Test prior to their acceptance. Those who are unsuccessful must be offered developmental opportunities to help them pass this examination at some time prior to their recommendation for licensure. Accepted candidates must show that they have completed developmental work. Monitoring basic skills performance in education courses is also encouraged through faculty writing concern reports and the resulting plan of action they encourage. Such concerns must be resolved prior to a prospective candidate’s acceptance.

Review of academic skills continues during candidates’ work in required pedagogy or “methods” courses offering opportunities to learn, apply, and to be assessed on methods of instruction appropriate for each licensure program. Unit and lesson plans as well as instructional materials prepared for those lessons are reviewed by instructors for writing quality. Candidates’ communication skills are affirmed during supervised fieldwork by unit faculty and cooperating teachers. Papers assigned in advanced foundation courses completed during the “methods” phase of candidates’ work are scored and reported for writing quality during the Tier Three “capstone” course focused on current “Issues in Education” (EDUC 359).

Candidates’ academic skills are also monitored during their sixteen-week clinical experiences as student teachers. Cooperating teachers and the colleges’ supervising instructors review candidates’ unit and lesson plans, their instructional materials, and observe their instructional and interpersonal communications. College supervisors require their candidates’ to correct deficient writing that might be evident in their instructional materials, portfolio assignments, or teaching performance.

As candidates conclude their work, staff members complete an exit review verifying the completion of required basic skills tests, remedial work, required courses, and successful clinical experiences. A positive review results in successful exit from the program and a recommendation to the Board of Teaching for licensure.

Assessment Question 2. Do candidates possess an integrated body of knowledge, skills, and values drawn from one or more disciplines central to their area of licensure?

The conceptual framework that guides our candidates’ preparation for teaching encourages them to practice “humane educational decision-making based on appropriate professional knowledge, grounded in Benedictine values, and focused on the essential goals of meeting the needs and enhancing the lives of all students” (Conceptual Framework, Model, p. 1).

Within the realm of that body of professional knowledge we include “not only factual knowledge, but also organizing principles, central concepts,” and the epistemology practiced in the disciplines they will share with their students (p.1).

An integrated understanding of a field of study, from which such facts, concepts, principles, and ways of knowing are drawn, contributes to the effectiveness of the “planning decisions” described by James Cooper (1999) and Carl Smith (1992). They saw these decisions as central to teachers’ selections of what they will explore with their students. We thus require that our candidates for licensure “understand the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structure of the disciplines they are preparing to teach so that they will be able to make this subject matter meaningful for their students” (Conceptual Framework, Program Goal 1, p. 5).

This first of the unit’s ten program goals supports Minnesota’s Board of Teaching approval of teacher preparation programs. Candidates for licensure prepared in an approved program “complete a program of general studies in the liberal arts and sciences” that is “equivalent” to that required of all students enrolled in that institution (Institutional Program Approval Rules, 8700.7600.5.B.1). That general education curriculum must incorporate “multicultural and global perspectives” (5.B.3). Further, approved programs must “require candidates in teacher preparation programs to attain academic competence in the content that they plan to teach” (5.B.2).

This goal is also congruent with Minnesota’s “Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers” (Minnesota Board of Teaching Licensure Rules, 8710.2000), a core of pedagogical knowledge and skills guiding the preparation and practice of all who would teach Minnesota’s children.

Guided by these rules, approved programs provide their candidates with opportunities to acquire knowledge and skills defined by content standards included in licensure area rules set by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. These content rules incorporate the advice offered by nationally recognized professional associations as well as the unique needs of Minnesota’s children.

The unit’s program offers preparation for Minnesota licensure in eight areas, including …

  • Elementary Education with a Specialty, described in Minnesota’s
  • Licensure Rule 8710.3200
  • Communication Arts and Literature (8710.4250)
  • Mathematics (8710.4600)
  • Vocal Music and Instrumental Music (8710.4650)
  • Science (8710.4750)
  • Social Studies (8710.4800)
  • Visual Arts (8710.4900), and
  • World Languages and Cultures (8710. 4950).

The internal and external program approval process used for each licensure area identifies the opportunities afforded candidates to know, to apply, and to be assessed on relevant state content standards. Documents developed for that approval process describe instruction and formative review of students’ performance. While we share responsibility for such opportunities with our colleagues in academic departments, that formative review is embedded in courses and learning experiences planned and offered by them. The matrix for this second assessment question describes our summative assessment of candidates’ performance.

Providing candidates with opportunities to acquire, integrate, and use the subject matter they will teach is also consistent with the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education’s standards (NCATE). That organization urges candidates for initial licensure to “know the subject matter they plan to teach as shown by their ability to explain important principles and concepts delineated in professional, state, and institutional standards” (Professional Standards, p. 14). Our first program goal is similar to this first element in the set defining the National Council’s conceptualization of “Candidate Performance.”

Assessment Question 2: Do candidates possess an integrated body of knowledge, skills, and values drawn from one or more disciplines central to their area of licensure?

Intentions: Program Phases: Summative Assessment

Unit Standards

MBOT Standards

NCATE 2000 Standards

Pre-Acceptance

Foundation Courses

Departmental

Acceptance

Methods

Courses

Student Teaching

Exit Review

Goal 1:

Candidates for licensure understand the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structure of the disciplines they are preparing to teach so that they will be able to make this subject matter meaningful for their students.

B.1

Liberal arts and sciences

B.2

Content Knowledge

B.3 Multicultural and global perspectives

1.1

Content knowledge for teacher candidates

-Approved course plan

Sources:

Sources:

College GPA

Major GPA

Unit GPA

Sources:

Methods

Work Sample

(2007)

Lesson Plans

Teaching

Materials

Observations:

Cooperating

Supervising

Teachers

Students’

Learning

Sources:

Student

Teaching

Performance

Profile:

Student Teaching Work Sample:

Unit/Lesson

Plans:

Instructional

Observations

Sources:

Praxis II:

Subject Matter

Knowledge

(1SEP2001)

Integrative

Experience

(TBD)

College GPA

Major GPA

Unit GPA

Driven by this first program goal and supported by relevant state and professional standards, we thus pursue our second assessment question; Do candidates recommended for licensure possess an integrated body of knowledge, skills, and values drawn from one or more disciplines central to their area of licensure? Performance indicators supporting this question include evidence of candidates’ understanding of their subject, their use of alternative views or theories drawn from that body of knowledge and skill, and candidates’ success connecting their content knowledge with other subject areas.

Sources of Information. Formative information gathered and examined during candidates’ work toward Minnesota’s content standards and its Standards of Effective Practice for teachers, embedded in courses offered by other departments and the unit, is described in program approval documents submitted to and reviewed by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. Consulting those documents will reveal the nature and range of formative assessments which instructors use to assess candidates’ content knowledge. These formative assessments are not included in this summative assessment plan.

Candidates enrolled in pedagogy or methods courses relevant for their area of licensure typically prepare and teach one or more lessons focused by a hypothetical “unit” of instruction. While time for working with K-12 students is very limited in some 2 credit (one-half semester) methods courses, even in these settings candidates’ prepared lessons and a sketch of the unit it could support could reveal their emerging understanding of how facts, concepts, and principles included in a lesson are integrated within a discipline. Instructional materials can also provide some evidence of candidates’ evolving understanding of the subjects they are preparing to teach. Instructor and peer observations may provide further insight into the extent of prospective teachers’ content knowledge. Taken together, these sources of information support the use of a information drawn from candidates’ Methods Work Sample to affirm their progress toward the unit’s first program goal.

As it is developed, methods instructors will use this modification student teaching performance profiles to describe candidates’ understanding and use of relevant content knowledge at the close of their courses. The development of a prototype for this limited profile, based on those now used to describe the performance of student teachers, was offered for faculty review in the spring of 2003. Concerns over how we might best embed this assessment within methods courses that vary in length, design, and opportunities to teach K-12 students encouraged further review. A viable prototype may be available for pilot testing during the spring semester of 2007.

Candidates completing their preparation for licensure typically invest one semester (16 weeks) in their clinical or student teaching experience. Two contiguous eight-week supervised settings provide most candidates with opportunities to work with students at each of two grade levels (K-6 and 5-8; 9-12 and 5-8,). Candidates seeking licensure as K-12 specialists in music, art, or world languages work with students in two of three settings (K-6, 5-8, 9-12).

Candidates’ student teaching experiences provide the basis for a comprehensive summative review of their understanding of the disciplines they are preparing to teach. The Student Teaching Performance Profile documents progress toward Goal 1. Criterion-referenced ratings anchored on INTASC/MBOT standards describe candidates’ understanding of the subject matter they are preparing to teach. These holistic ratings are anchored in expert review of the lessons and the units that candidates’ teach to their K-12 students.

Indicators for the subject matter portion of the Profile was based on exploratory work linking the unit’s ten program goals and Minnesota’s Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers with evidence of student teaching performance. With respect to Goal 1, teams of K-12 faculty and teacher educators devised behaviorally anchored rating scales to capture a summative description of candidates’ understanding of “the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structure” of the subjects they are preparing to teach to their students. Each of two teams examined spring 2000 student teachers’ unit and lesson plans, their instructional materials, observations of their teaching, videotaped lessons, and candidates’ reflections on their experiences.

The performance profiles based on this work thus describe candidates’ content knowledge as revealed in their work with K-12 students during student teaching. The unit’s directors of elementary and secondary student teaching prepared profiles for each candidate completing their programs during the Fall 2000 semester. Their analyses of candidates’ clinical performance, drawn from the unit’s program goals and reflecting Minnesota’s licensure standards, offered an important opportunity for continuing evaluation and renewal of the unit’s programs. Their design is consistent with Astin’s (1991) view that norm-referenced measures such as the Praxis series, now used as a licensure examination in Minnesota, “make it difficult to measure growth or change over time.” Measures anchored in descriptions of candidates’ performance on dimensions aligned with standards, however, should “not only make it possible to establish absolute standards of performance but also allow us to assess how much actually changes with time” between assessments (pg. 53).

Three performance dimensions included in the Elementary Level Student Teaching Performance Profile estimate candidates’ content knowledge as defined by Goal 1. They are coded to coincide with relevant Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT) and Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC). Performance indicators are included for each of these three dimensions to illustrate the range of judgment based on information included in candidates’ student teaching portfolios. These dimensions and their respective indicators also appear in Appendix C of this plan. A similar profile for secondary candidates was revised after its initial development in 2000. That revised secondary profile was used to describe student teachers’ performance in the fall semester of 2003. The following performance dimensions and their indicators for Goal 1, subject matter knowledge, exemplify this approach to rating candidates’ performance on this dimension of their teaching practice. The complete elementary and secondary performance profiles appear in Appendix C to this plan.

Performance Dimensions for Candidates’ Body of Disciplinary Knowledge

Elementary Level (K-6 / 5-8) Performance Profile

Goal 1: Subject Matter Knowledge

1.A. Student teachers know and understand the subject matter they teach. (INTASC 1.11).

  • Not Met: A student teacher’s performance reveals insufficient prerequisite knowledge to encourage students’ learning; content errors and disorganized knowledge are evident.
  • Basic: Displays basic content knowledge but does not go beyond textbook information, has difficulty responding to impromptu questions, misses opportunities to elaborate on a concept or to corrected student misconceptions.
  • Proficient: Displays solid content knowledge, anticipating some common student misconceptions, and responding accurately to some student questions.
  • Distinguished: Performance displays extensive content knowledge, offers evidence of continuing pursuit of such knowledge, anticipates and corrects student misconceptions, and responds accurately to student questions.

1.E Student teachers relate the content of their instruction to their students’ prior knowledge. (INTASC 1.31).

  • Not Met: A student teacher has insufficient knowledge of students’ prior learning, not understanding the importance or use of such knowledge.
  • Basic: Has some awareness of students’ prerequisite learning, it may be incomplete or limited in scope.
  • Proficient: Plans reflect understanding of prerequisite relationships among topics and concepts.
  • Distinguished: Actively builds on knowledge of prerequisite relationships when planning instruction or seeking causes for students’ misunderstanding.

1.J Student teachers integrate the subject matter they teach with other disciplines. (INTASC 1.36).

  • Not Met: A student teacher plans instruction that does not integrate with other subjects.
  • Basic: Plans reveal some effort to coordinate or integrate content with other subjects.
  • Proficient: Objectives provide opportunities for integration with other content areas.
  • Distinguished: Objectives reflect student initiative in making connections with other content areas.

Performance Dimensions for Candidates’ Body of Disciplinary Knowledge

Secondary Level (K-12/5-12) Performance Profile

Goal 1: Subject Matter Knowledge

1.C. Student teachers connect subject matter they teach to other subject areas and everyday life.

(1.C; INTASC 1.13)

  • Not Met: A student teacher does not integrate content taught with other subjects or with everyday life.
  • Basic: Makes an effort to coordinate or integrate content/experiences some of the time.
  • Proficient: Objectives provide opportunities for integration with other content areas and reference everyday life
  • Distinguished: Objectives require student initiative in making connections with other content areas and everyday life.

1.E. Student teachers use multiple teaching strategies to capture key ideas and link them to students’ prior understandings.

(MSEPT 1.E, INTASC 1.31)

  • Not Met: A student teacher uses one teaching strategy; does not link ideas to students’prior understanding
  • Basic: Uses more than one strategy; seldom links ideas to students’ prior understanding.
  • Proficient: Adjusts teaching strategies in response to students’ new and prior understanding.
  • Distinguished: Displays exceptional ability to adjust and implement multiple teaching strategies, linking all new learning to prior understanding.

1.I. Student teachers encourage their students to understand, analyze, interpret, and apply ideas from varied perspectives (uses a variety of Bloom’s levels).

(MSEPT 1.I; INTASC 1.35)

  • Not Met: A student teacher does not understand the importance of teaching at as many levels as possible; consistently teaches at the knowledge level of Bloom’s taxonomy.
  • Basic: Indicates some awareness of Bloom’s levels; occasionally teaches beyond the knowledge level.
  • Proficient: Methods reflect a clear understanding of Bloom’s levels; often teaches beyond the knowledge level.
  • Distinguished: Creates strategies and methods to cover several of Bloom’s levels; requires students to perform at all of Bloom’s levels.

Candidates completing our program must also complete subject matter examinations for the areas in which they seek licensure at or above the cut-off scores set by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. The Board has selected the Praxis II Subject Assessments developed by the Educational Testing Service for this condition of a candidate’s licensure. Those seeking licensure as a K-6 generalist with a grade 5-8 specialty must complete a content examination in each area. Secondary candidates need only complete one content examination in the area of their licensure. Most candidates complete these tests during the semester before or during their student teaching experience.

We enjoy access to candidates’ test scores and modest information on the nature of the knowledge those tests may sample. Test performance of a group ten or more candidates completing the same content examination in the same test year, even if some might have completed their preparation for licensure in different cohorts, are combined to summarize performance on major topics. Unfortunately, we do not receive a comprehensive item analysis of candidates’ individual test performance in a form that we may use to assess their performance on relevant content standards. We thus cannot easily use Praxis test information to judge the success of opportunities we provide our candidates to know, apply, and to be assessed on specific content standards.

Given the limitations of information provided by this test of content knowledge we have explored the possibility of asking our candidates to complete an integrative experience prior to exit from our program. Such experiences, already required or recommended by several of our Colleges’ academic departments, could include any opportunity likely to encourage candidates to meet the same three performance dimensions used in the review of candidates’ student teaching to affirm attainment of Goal 1.

These experiences should help candidates begin to replace what Dressel (1958) called “a mystifying mosaic of many separated courses and unrelated…experiences” with a pattern of meaning woven from “integrative threads” that help “organize the subject from the viewpoint of inquiry (Bloom, 1958). Several such experiences are presently offered by other college departments

  • Candidates in some disciplines might complete an integrative “capstone” course providing opportunities to meet Goal 1 in the subject closest to their area of licensure. Such courses usually come near the end of a candidate’s work in a discipline. These summative experiences often require the development of papers or projects created through use of relevant modes of inquiry and analysis which together reveal one’s understanding of “major concepts, assumptions, debates, processes of inquiry, and ways of knowing that are central to the disciplines taught.” Candidates pursuing licensure in social studies with an emphasis in history, for example, are now encouraged to complete History 389, “Historiography and Methods.” Participants enjoy “examination through reading and discussion of selected topics in history. This course focuses on historiography and methods. The nature and uses of primary and secondary texts will be addressed, and the course will concentrate on the analysis and critique of the reading material.” (Academic Catalog, 2003-2005)
  • Candidates might prepare an integrative research paper exploring the influence of modes of inquiry or topics of investigation central to the discipline or area of practice. Those enrolled in our Colleges’ Honors Program, for example, could work with a faculty advisor to develop a thesis and conduct research or executing a creative project.
  • Candidates might prepare and present a portfolio of work illustrating dimensions of their conceptual, aesthetic, and skill development over time. Those who complete their work in the English literature or creative writing, for example, could offer a portfolio of their work that includes essays and exams from required and elective English courses. Candidates pursuing licensure in communication arts and literature could work with an English Department faculty member to complete a reflective analysis of their work as readers, writers, and critics when they near the end of their programs of study.
  • All candidates for licensure as K-12 teachers of vocal or instrumental music  complete a juried musical performance. A reflective analysis of their evolution as artists and the relationship of that evolution to their teaching of that art form could evidence understanding of that body of knowledge and practice.

Yet to be developed (TBD), integrative experiences of this kind could help those in licensure programs formed from a loosely coordinated body of knowledge, such as social studies, formulate a stronger sense of how those subjects can be related through “inquiry, critical analysis, and synthesis of the subject” they plan to teach to others. An explicit effort to integrate diverse, even divergent, knowledge would encourage the “in-depth knowledge” on which such candidates will found their practice (Professional Standards, p. 14). Our intent in urging candidates to seek out such affirmations of their subject matter knowledge as noted in this assessment plan rests in our belief that they cannot make meaningful planning decisions on a foundation of inadequate knowledge, skills, and values. By working toward an understanding of what Grossman, Wilson, and Schulman (1989, p.32) call “syntactic” knowledge of a discipline, our candidates’ decisions could more accurately guide their students’ intellectual growth. The outcome of these integrative experiences would thus reveal the range and depth of the fund of content knowledge which informs candidates’ teaching. Implementation of this facet or the assessment plan, however, must await the resolution of concerns about the investment required of the unit’s faculty and candidates.

Assessment Question 3. Do candidates possess pedagogical knowledge, skills, and values appropriate for their areas of licensure?

The unit’s philosophy calls for the preparation of teachers who believe that “all students can learn” even if in different ways, at different rates, and at different levels. Those who accept this premise must therefore “not only be knowledgeable about the content they teach, but must also know about and be committed to making decisions that involve the use of a variety of instructional strategies and approaches appropriate for the diverse learning needs of their students” (Conceptual Framework; Philosophy, p 3)

The decision-making model that is at the core of this unit’s preparation of professional educators calls upon candidates for that role to acquire and use a body of professional knowledge that includes…

foundational knowledge (knowledge of learning, development, and human exceptionalities) and an understanding of the principles of effective practice (knowledge of pedagogy, instructional technologies, motivational strategies, management techniques, and assessment methods). This body of knowledge forms the basis of the information from which available alternatives for the decisions questions are formulated (Conceptual Framework; Theme, p. 2)

Elements of all ten of the unit’s program goals respond to this need to anchor decisions in a foundation of professional knowledge. Explorations guided by each of these goals offer candidates the opportunity to realize the context within which their practice as professional educators will take place. Further, these goals and their supporting “knowledge base” offer a foundation for that practice.

This conceptual foundation for candidates’ practice is consistent with the performance-focused accreditation standards offered by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). That organization finds that candidates for licensure should use “professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills delineated in professional, state, and institutional standards” to create experiences that will help all their students learn (Professional Standards, p. 14).

We believe that in doing so candidates enrich their understanding of the contexts in which they will practice through work directed by five of the unit’s program goals.

2. Student Learning and Development. The candidates we prepare for licensure draw on their understanding of learning and developmental processes to choose optimal ways to encourage their students’ intellectual, social, and personal development (Knowledge Base, p.9).

3. Diverse Learners. Our candidates, recognizing how differences among students can influence their learning, make instructional decisions that reflect on their students’ backgrounds and exceptionalities (Knowledge Base, p. 18).

5. Learning Environment. Our candidates use their knowledge and skills to create just, disciplined learning communities that can motivate students to achieve personal and academic success through positive social interaction and active engagement in their learning (Knowledge Base, p. 33).

9. Reflection. Our candidates critically reflect on the effects of their instructional decisions on the performance of their students, on the practice of their colleagues, and on the actions of others in their learning communities, using those reflections to direct and sustain their own professional renewal (Knowledge Base, p. 55).

10. Collaboration. Our candidates enhance their effectiveness as educators by working together with their colleagues, their students’ parents, and members of their school community to create and sustain a positive learning environment that can enhance students’ learning and well-being (Knowledge Base, p. 58).

As this foundation of professional and pedagogical knowledge grows, it begins to support the development of candidates’ “pedagogical content knowledge.” Such knowledge represents the developing synthesis of content knowledge (the subject to be taught) with a growing understanding of the teaching methods suited to that body of knowledge, skills and values (“how to teach this subject”). This interaction of subject matter knowledge and foundational knowledge informs, as it is informed by, one’s evolving sense of a content specific pedagogy. Knowing “what to teach” tempers the selection and refinement of “how to teach.” Candidates thus adapt “a broad knowledge of instructional strategies” to the unique demands of their subject areas, the needs and talents of their students, and the influences of the settings in which they will teach to offer the “multiple explanations” that will help all their students learn (Professional Standards, p. 15).

Two performance dimensions drawn from analysis of the unit’s first program goal reveal indicators of the candidate’s integration of subject matter and teaching methods. Four related program goals contribute an analysis of candidates’ pedagogical content knowledge.

1. Subject Matter. Our candidates for licensure understand the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the disciplines they are preparing to teach so that they will be able to make this subject matter meaningful for their students (Knowledge Base, p. 2).

4. Instructional Strategies. Our candidates use their knowledge of instructional strategies to decide upon and employ those which are most likely to encourage their students’ critical thinking, problem solving, and performance skills (Knowledge Base, p. 27).

6. Communication.  Our candidates use effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster their students’ learning (Knowledge Base, p. 38).

7. Planning.  Our candidates plan and effect instruction as they decide what content they will teach, to whom they will teach it, in what ways they will do so, and with what effect (Knowledge Base, p. 42).

8. Assessment.  Our candidates use information provided through their use of formal and informal assessment methods to make instructional decisions that will support their students’ continuous development (Knowledge Base, p. 47).

The unit’s perspective on the role of such pedagogical knowledge, skills, and values might play in candidates’ teaching of their disciplines or praxeologies is reinforced by the standards for the approval of teacher preparation programs by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. That agency requires candidates for licensure to be prepared in “high quality education programs that are cohesive, comprehensive, and based on research, theory, and accepted practice (Minnesota Rules 8700.7600.5.A.1).

Further, approved programs must require that candidates “complete a professional sequence of courses” that provide opportunities to know, to apply, and be assessed on each of the Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (8700.7600.5.A.2). In doing so, the Board expects that candidates “can integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies as measured by teacher performance and the performance of the students they teach” (8700.7600.5.B.4). This integrative outcome could be sustained by faculty who “encourage the candidate’s development of reflection, critical thinking, problem solving, and professional dispositions” (8700.7600.5.G.10).

We should thus expect that those who are prepared for licensure as teachers in Minnesota have acquired a pedagogy appropriate for the content area and grade level they are prepared to teach. This expectation leads to the third assessment question. Do candidates possess the pedagogical knowledge, skills, and values appropriate for their areas of licensure? Reflecting the distinction between foundational and functional knowledge, the question is divided to address these two types of teaching knowledge. The first explores candidates’ professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills (3a).

Assessment Question 3a: Do candidates possess the professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills appropriate for their areas of licensure?

Intentions: Program Phases: Summative Assessment

Unit Standards

MBOT Standards

NCATE 2000 Standards

Pre-Acceptance

Foundation Courses

Departmental

Acceptance

Methods

Courses

Student Teaching

Exit Review

Goal 2: Learning and

Development

Goal 3:

Diverse

Learners

Goal 5: Learning

Environment

Goal 9: Reflection

Goal 10:

Collaboration

A.1

High quality professional education program

A.2

Courses based on MSEPT

B.4

Candidates integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies...

G.10

Instruction encourages candidate’s reflection, critical thinking, problem solving and professional dispositions.

1.4

Professional and Pedagogical knowledge and skills for teacher candidates.

Sources:

EDUC 310: Candidate’s

Philosophy of

Education

EDUC 359:
Classroom

Management

Plan

EDUC 390:

Human

Relations

Project

Sources:

Methods

Work Sample

(2007)

Lesson Plans

Teaching

Materials

Observations:

Cooperating

Supervising

Teachers

Students’

Learning

Sources: Student

Teaching

Performance

Profile:

Work Sample:

Unit Plans

Lesson Plans

Instructional

Materials

Observations

Student

Learning

Cooperating teacher and College Supervisor observations

Sources:

Praxis II:

Pedagogical

Knowledge

Sources of Information. Formative assessment of candidates’ success at incorporating Minnesota’s content standards and the Standards of Effective Practice into their teaching is embedded in courses offered by faculty in other departments as well as by the Education Department’s faculty. This information is described in program approval documents submitted to and reviewed by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching. While these documents and the candidate performances they describe contribute to candidates’ performances later in their program, but are not included in this assessment plan, three such “formative screening tasks” embedded in foundation courses deserve mention as “check points” through which all candidates must pass.

As most complete their final Tier One foundation course prior to their acceptance as candidates, students enrolled in “Educational Psychology” (Education 310) reveal their emerging philosophy and theory of education. Prospective candidates’ position papers include teaching techniques that reflect their chosen theory, the relationship of that theory to meeting the needs of diverse learners, use of appropriate classroom management approaches, and relevant assessment methods

Fourth year candidates usually enroll in capstone Tier Three courses including “Issues in Education” (Education 359) during the semester prior to beginning their student teaching. The classroom management plan they complete reveals their understanding of ways in which classroom management strategies reflect the design of learning environments and how those plans can influence K-12 students’ performance

Prospective teachers nearing the close of their foundation coursework propose and complete a human relations project in the form of a hypothetical diversity unit for another Tier Three capstone course, “Human Relations” (Education 390). Such projects include a plan of study and supporting resources that could provide K-12 students with opportunities to actively develop and evaluate their knowledge, skills, and values with respect to people of color, students with disabilities, women, older people, the poor, or members of cultural or ethnic groups.

While their work on selected tasks within foundation courses at the first and third tiers of the unit’s curriculum describes students’ acquisition and development of professional knowledge, evidence of their performance as novice teachers confirms the use of such knowledge in performance settings.  The field experiences included in four-credit methods courses and the more intensive clinical experiences offered during sixteen weeks of student teaching provide better opportunities to describe candidates’ professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills.

The units, lessons, and instructional materials candidates prepare to support limited teaching opportunities included in methods courses could provide the basis for descriptive analysis of their professional and pedagogical knowledge. The development of a simplified methods work sample may provide the information to support that analysis. Derived from student teaching work samples and performance profiles, this additional indicator may be available in the spring of 2007.

The intensive clinical experiences provided during their student teaching rotations challenges candidates to draw on their fund of professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills. Their work in such settings provides the basis for summative review captured within elementary or secondary student teaching performance profiles. These assessments are designed to affirm the level of candidates’ performance along dimensions drawn from those of the unit’s program goals that reflect the use of professional and general knowledge./P>

The following performance dimensions for those program goals that help guide candidates’ acquisition of professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills are included in profiles for elementary and secondary candidates. Appendix C offers the behaviorally anchored rating scales for each of these dimensions.

Performance Dimensions for Professional and Pedagogical Knowledge and Skills (3a):

Elementary Level (K-6 / 5-8) Performance Profile

Goal 2: Student Learning and Development

2.D.1 Student teachers use students’ interests and strengths to enhance learning.(MSEPT 2.D; INTASC 2.22).

2.D.2 Student teachers use their students’ errors as an opportunity for learning. (MSEPT 2.D; INTASC 2.22).

Goal 3: Diverse Learners

3.K The student teacher candidate designs lessons that appeal to a variety of learning styles (INTASC 3.31).

3.D The student teacher recognizes and addresses biases, prejudices, racism, and sexism (INTASC 3.16)

3.Q The student teacher works to develop a learning community in which individual differences are respected (INTASC 3.37).

3.I The student teacher persists in helping all students achieve success. (INTASC 3.21)

Goal 5: Learning Environment

5.C Student teachers promote positive relationships and cooperation in the classroom. (INTASC 5.14).

5.L Student teachers encourage students to assume responsibility for themselves and participate in decision making. (INTASC 5.31).

5.F Student teachers promote intrinsic motivation. (INTASC 5.15

5.E Student teachers use principles of effective classroom management (INTASC 5.14).

5.N Student teachers manage resources of time, space, materials, and attention

5.R Student teachers encourage the effective participation of all students (INTASC 5.37).

Goal 9: Reflection

9.H Student teachers evaluate the outcomes of teaching and revise instructional practices (INTASC 9.31)

9.J Student teachers use professional resources and colleagues to support reflection on their teaching. (INTASC 9.33)

9.K Student teachers demonstrate professionalism in dress, conversation, and other behavior. (INTASC 9.34)

9.G Student teachers demonstrate dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility. (INTASC 9.25)

Goal 10: Collaboration

10.C Student teachers ensure the confidentiality of information and appropriate treatment of students. (INTASC 10.13)

10.H Student teachers collaborate in activities designed to make the entire school productive. (INTASC 10.25)

10.K Student teachers establish productive relationships with parents and guardians. (INTASC 10.34).

Performance Dimensions for Professional and Pedagogical Knowledge and Skills (3a):

Secondary Level Performance Profile

Goal 2: Student Learning and Development

2.A Student teachers use instructional strategies that promote student learning (INTASC 2.11)

2.F Student teachers link new ideas to ideas familiar to students. (INTASC 2.32)

2.G.1 Student teachers encourage students’ discussion, listening, and responding to group interaction. (INTASC 2.33)

2.G.2 Student teachers elicit oral, written, and other forms of students’ thinking (INTASC 2.33)

Goal 3: Diverse Learners

3.A Student teachers’ lessons appeal to a variety of students’ learning styles, strengths, and needs. (INTASC 3.11)

3.D Student teachers recognize and deal with biases, prejudices, racism, and sexism. (INTASC 3.16)

3.H Student teachers incorporate students’ experiences and cultures into their instruction (INTASC 3.20)

3.I Student teachers persist in helping all students achieve success (INTASC 3.21)

3.Q Student teachers respect students’ individual differences (INTASC 3.37)

Goal 5: Learning Environment

5.C Student teachers create a learning environment that contributes to all students’ self-esteem. (INTASC 5.21)

5.E Student teachers use principles of effective classroom management. (INTASC 5.14)

5.F Student teachers promote intrinsic motivation. (INTASC 5.15)

5.M Student teachers engage students in individual and group learning activities (INTASC 5.32)

5.N Student teachers promote students’ active engagement in productive tasks.

5.P Student teachers promote a climate of openness, respect, support, inquiry, and learning. (INTASC 5.35)

5.R Student teachers monitor students’ independent and group work. (INTASC 5.37)

Goal 9: Reflection

9.E Student teachers understand the role of reflection and self assessment on learning. (INTASC 9.22)

Goal 10: Collaboration

10.K Student teachers establish productive relationships with parents and guardians. (INTASC 10.34)

Additional information may be revealed by candidates’ performances on Praxis II examinations “of general teaching knowledge” as well as on tests they complete in “the field for which licensure is applied” (Minnesota Rules 8710.0500.B, 2000). While we have access to candidates’ scores on licensure tests they complete, we receive little additional information that might affirm progress toward specific goals and their relevant performance dimensions.

The second part of our third assessment question explores the extent of candidates’ pedagogical content knowledge (3b). Such knowledge offers guidance for student teachers who must select from a family of instructional methods those that could be used to help elementary children unlock the secrets of long division. Others might draw on their fund of specialized knowledge to select from such methods those more likely to work best for fifth graders after an assessment of their prior learning reveals incomplete understanding of multiplication. Further use of relevant pedagogical content knowledge could help candidates select from that set of appropriate instructional methods those that might better reflect students’ culture and experience.

Candidates for licensure as teachers in Minnesota should have a reservoir of such pedagogical content knowledge upon which they can draw to select plausible answers to such questions. In doing so, those candidates will “integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies as measured by teacher performance…” (Minnesota Rules 8700.7600.5.B.4).  Such knowledge may sustain meaningful self-renewal focused on improved practice that results from the intersection of a discipline’s structure, a teacher’s instructional intent, and evidence of student learning. It is the intersection of knowledge, intent, and outcome that reveals alternatives from which the reflective practitioner must choose a course of action. Exploring this intersection is the focus of assessment question 3b.

Assessment Question 3b: Do candidates possess pedagogical content knowledge appropriate for their areas of licensure

Intentions: Program Phases: Summative Assessment

Unit Standards

MBOT Standards

NCATE 2000 Standards

Pre-Acceptance

Foundation Courses

Departmental

Acceptance

Methods

Courses

Student Teaching

Exit Review

Goal 1:

Subject

Matter

Goal 4: Instructional

  Strategies

  (technology)

 

Goal 6: Communication

 

Goal  7: Planning

 

Goal 8:

Assessment

 

 

A.1

High quality professional education program

 

A.2 

Courses based

on the MSEPT

 

B.4

Candidates integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies…

 

 

1.3

Pedagogical content knowledge for teacher candidates.

 

 

 

 

Sources:

Methods

Work Sample

(2007)

  Lesson Plans

  Teaching

    Materials

  Observations:

    Cooperating

    Supervising

     teachers

  Students’

    Learning

 

Sources: Student

  Teaching

  Performance

  Profile:

 

Work Sample:

Unit Plan

Lesson Plans Instructional

  Materials

Observations by

  cooperating

  and

  supervising

  teachers 

 

Students’

  Learning

 

Sources:

Praxis II: Subject-specific pedagogical knowledge

 

Sources of Information.  Formative assessments during candidates’ work toward Minnesota’s content standards and its Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers, embedded in courses offered by the unit and by collaborating academic departments, are described in program approval documents submitted to and reviewed by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching.  These documents and the performance assessments they describe are not referenced in this plan of evaluation.

The unit’s methods courses offer candidates opportunities to focus subject matter knowledge acquired through their work in standards-based “content” courses on those learning tasks that might prepare them for professional practice.  Such tasks provide opportunities to know, to apply, and to be assessed on pedagogical knowledge reflecting the context of a candidate’s area of licensure as specified by Minnesota’s Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT) and the state’s licensure standards.  Analysis of the limited work samples prepared by candidates in discipline related pedagogy courses, using a format to be designed and piloted in the spring of 2007, will use some of the performance dimensions included in student teacher’s performance profiles

Candidates enrolled in some methods courses (visual arts, mathematics) create teaching resource portfolios which provide evidence of the extent of those candidates’ pedagogical content knowledge.  Other methods courses provide similar opportunities, although not as fully implemented as in mathematics and art.  Candidates’ resource documents are now assessed by instructors as a course embedded “formative screen” designed to identify those who may have deficient pedagogical content knowledge in their area of licensure.

Candidates’ pedagogical content knowledge is also assessed during student teaching.  The comprehensive portfolio required of all who complete this sixteen week clinical experience offers the evidence for performance profiles that ground summative judgements about the nature and extent of such knowledge in observed behavior or analysis of relevant documents.  The following program goals form a core set of performance dimensions.  Behaviorally anchored ratings for each dimension are provided in Appendix C.

Performance Dimensions for Pedagogical Content Knowledge (3b)

Elementary Level (K-6 / 5-8) Performance Profile

Goal 1:  Subject Matter

1.A  Student teachers know and understand subject matter. (INTASC 1.11)

1.E  Student teachers relate content to students’ prior learning. (INTASC .31)

Goal 4:  Instructional Strategies

4.B.1  Student teachers motivate students and introduce learning objectives using an anticipatory set. (MSEPT 4.B; INTASC 4.11).

4.B.2  Student teachers provide closure by summarizing and evaluating objectives.(MSEPT 4.B; INTASC 4.11).

4.D  Student teachers use a variety of appropriate instructional materials supported by human and technological resources (INTASC 4.13)

4.J  Student teachers allow adequate “wait time” while setting an appropriate pace for lessons. (INTASC 4.34).

4.H  Student teachers use multiple strategies to engage students in active, purposeful learning. (INTASC 4.32).

4.I  Student teachers monitor and adjust strategies in response to learner feedback.(INTASC 4.33)

Goal 6:  Communication

6.D  Student teachers communicate effectively through their writing, speaking, body language, and other media.  (INTASC 6.14).

6.I  Student teachers support learners’ expression in speaking, writing, and other media. (INTASC 6.32).

6.J  Student teachers stimulate purposeful discussion. (INTASC 6.33).

Goal 7: Planning

7.F  Student teachers create plans linked to students’ needs, experiences, and cultures. (INTASC 7.33)

7.H  Student teachers plan thoroughly and submit plans on time for review. (INTASC 7.34).

Goal 8: Assessment

8.G  Student teachers use a variety of formal and informal assessment techniques. (MSEPT 8.G/8.E; INTASC 8.31/8.12).

8.L  Student teachers maintain students’ records of work and performance. (INTASC 8.36)

8.I  Student teachers encourage students to set goals and evaluate themselves. (INTASC 8.35).

8.M  Student teachers communicates student progress to students, their parents or guardians, and colleagues. (INTASC 8.36).

Performance Dimensions for Pedagogical Content Knowledge (3b)

Secondary Level (K-12 / 5-12) Performance Profile

Goal 1:  Subject matter knowledge

Student teachers…

1.C  Connect subject matter to other subject areas and everyday life. (INTASC 1.13)

1.E  Use multiple teaching strategies to link key ideas to students’ prior understanding. (INTASC 1.31)

1.I  Use a variety of Bloom’s cognitive levels.  (INTASC 1.35)

Goal 4:  Instructional Strategies.

Student teachers…

4.D  Use a variety of materials, human, and technological resources. (INTASC 4.13)

4.F  Adjust teaching strategies to students’ responses, ideas, and needs. (INTASC 4.22)

4.H  Use multiple strategies to engage students in active learning. (INTASC 4.32)

4.I  Monitor and adjust strategies in response to students’ feedback. (INTASC 4.33)

Goal 6:  Communication

6.H  Student teachers ask effective questions.  (INTASC 6.31)

6.J  Student teachers stimulate discussion in a variety of ways. (INTASC 6.33)

Goal 7:  Planning

7.B  Student teachers plan instruction to relate curriculum to students’ needs (INTASC 7.12)

7.C  Student teachers plan instruction to accommodate individual learning styles. (INTASC 7.12)

Goal 8:  Assessment

8.E  Student teachers use assessment strategies appropriate for learning objectives. (INTASC 8.12)

8.H.1  Student teachers use data to evaluate students’ progress. (MSEPT 8.H; INTASC 8.31)

8.H.2  Student teachers use data to modify teaching strategies (MSEPT 8.H; INTASC 8.31)

8.L  Student teachers maintain student records of work and performance. (INTASC 8.36)

8.M  Student teachers communicate student progress to appropriate persons. (INTASC 8.36)

 

Assessment Question 4: Can candidates teach knowledge and skills from their areas of licensure to others while modeling values appropriate for that area of study?

Since growth is the characteristic of life, education is all one with growing; it has no end beyond itself.  The criterion of value of school education is the extent in which it creates a desire for continued growth and supplies means for making the desire effective in fact. 

John Dewey, 1966

If student learning is to be the focal point of education, and if the teacher is the primary agent of instruction, the ability to relate teacher work to student learning must become the defining element of teacher effectiveness.

           Billy F. Cowart, 1999

When other variables are adjusted for or held constant, teacher effectiveness is the primary factor that accounts for differences in student learning, even stronger as a determinant of students’ achievement than class size and heterogeneity.  This means that teachers are responsible for students’ learning despite the mitigation of social and cultural contexts, students’ backgrounds, and the match or mismatch of school and community expectations.

           Mary Cochran-Smith, 2000

Candidates successfully prepared for licensure possess the academic skills to acquire and integrate a body of content, professional, and pedagogical knowledge, skills, and values.  Should they reach this end through the units’ program of study and practice, can these candidates draw upon this fund of integrated knowledge and experience to teach others?

To expect that they can do so is consistent with the unit’s philosophy and mission.  If “all students can learn…in different ways and at different rates,” then candidates for licensure must be able to “use their content knowledge, pedagogical skills, and understanding of their students to make informed and ethical classroom decisions that foster their students’ learning  (Conceptual Framework; Philosophy, p.3).

Such an outcome is expected of teacher preparation programs approved by Minnesota’s Board of Teaching.  That agency anticipates that “candidates integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies as measured by teacher performance and performance of the students they teach” (Minnesota Rules: Institutional Program Approval: 8700.7600.B.4 1999).  The influence of candidates’ work on their students’ learning is also implied in standards advanced by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.  That organizations standards anticipate that a program’s “teacher candidates…have a positive effect on learning for all students (Professional Standards, p.16).

It is also in the classroom where candidates’ dispositions to behave as educational professionals might be most clearly documented.  Drawing on a foundation of values tested during 1,500 years of monastic life guided by the Rule of Saint Benedict, the unit expects that candidates prepared for their roles as educators will reveal a “commitment to service” directed toward enhancing the lives of their students (Conceptual Framework; Mission, p. 4)

If so, candidates’ practice will reveal their disposition to advance their “concern for community” as they “extend genuine caring and respect for all students” (Appendix C: Goal 5, performance dimension 5.C).  Candidates’ “passion for learning” should be evident in self-reflection that sustains renewal by “eagerly seeking out opportunities for growth” (Appendix C: Goal 9, dimension 9.B, “distinguished” performance level).  Further, the unit expects that the candidates it prepares will “demonstrate dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility” (Goal 9, dimension 9.G) as they perform in field and most certainly in clinical settings.

Sources of Information.  The matrix for assessment question four highlights information gathered from candidates completing field and clinical experiences in which they have helped “foster their students’ learning.”  Student teachers prepare extensive portfolios that include lessons, units, instructional materials, observations and critiques of their work, and evidence of their students’ learning in two school settings during their sixteen-week residency.  These candidates provide a “work sample” that reveals how they planned, gathered, analyzed, and reported their students’ learning before, during, and at the conclusion of a unit of several lessons spanning several days (Schalock, Schalock, and Girod, 1997).  Analysis of student learning data should serve to balance candidates’ and observers’ judgments of candidates’ instructional effectiveness as it contributes to our response to assessment question four.

Assessment Question 4: Can candidates teach knowledge and skills from their areas of licensure to others while modeling values appropriate for that area of study?

Intentions:                                                           Program Phases:

Unit Standards

MBOT Standards

NCATE 2000 Standards

Pre-Acceptance

Foundation Courses

Departmental

Acceptance

Methods

Courses

Student Teaching

 Exit Review

 

Mission Objective:

To prepare teachers who use their  content knowledge, pedagogical skills, and understanding of their students to make informed and ethical classroom decisions that foster students’ learning.

 

Goal 2:

Student Learning

 

Goal 3:

Diverse Learners

 

Goal 5;

Learning Environment

 

Goal 9:

Reflection

 

B.4

Candidates integrate general, content, professional, and pedagogical studies as measured by teacher performance and performance of the students they teach.

 

1.6

Dispositions for all candidates

 

1.7

Student learning for teacher candidates

EDUC 111

Field experiences

  30 hr. at risk

  30 hr teacher

   shadow

EDUC 212 (ELEM) Field Experiences

  30 hr Urban

  30 hr Local

 

EDUC 213 (SEC) Field Experience

  30 hr Urban

 

Sources:

 

Methods

Work Sample

(2007)

  Lesson Plans

  Teaching

    Materials

  Observations:

    Cooperating

    Supervising

     teachers

  Students’

    Learning

 

Sources:

 

Student

  Teaching

  Performance

  Profile:

 

Student Teaching Work Sample:

  Unit Plan

  Lesson Plans

  Instructional

    Materials

  Students’ 

    learning

 

Sources:

 

Portfolio Review

 

Exit Interview

 

Recommendation for licensure

While information gathered during prospective candidates’ work in “Introduction to Teaching and Learning in a Diverse World” (Education 111), often during their first or second semester of college study, is not included in this summative assessment, field experiences provided during this course may help first year college students discern the strength of their call to teaching.  A thirty hour service learning experience in an educational role with at risk youth followed by a thirty hour “teacher shadowing” experience helps first year college students to experience schools from the perspective of teachers whose professional lives they briefly monitor.  Those who persist in their exploration of the profession in their second year will experience a more intense “urban plunge” as an instructional aide in a very diverse inner city school as part of their work in “Clinical Experience Elementary Education (Education 212).  Probable secondary candidates enjoy the equivalent urban experience (Education 213).  Together, these opportunities to tutor individual students or teach classes with the guidance of a licensed instructor, serve as a “formative screen” to help prospective candidates confirm their desire for and possible success in the role of a professionally prepared teacher.  Such experiences thus help those who do not realize the level of success they expect to pursue other career objectives.

Balancing information gleaned from the primary source for responding to this assessment question, student teachers work samples, performance profiles may also provide some evidence of candidates’ success in arranging the conditions that can support their teaching effectiveness.  Candidates who fail to establish and maintain humane learning environments for all their students may not be effective teachers.  Candidates who cannot learn from their errors, or who do not use students’ prior learning as a foundation for acquiring and testing new knowledge, may miss opportunities to encourage new learning.  Performance dimensions drawn from the elementary and secondary profiles appear below.  The rubrics used to describe candidates’ performance on each of these dimensions appear in Appendix C.

Performance Dimensions for Candidate Teaching Effectiveness (4)

Elementary Level (K-12 / 5-12) Performance Profile

Goal 2: Student Learning

2.D.1  Student teachers use their students’ interests and strengths to enhance learning. (MSEPT 2.D; INTASC 2.22)

2.D.2  Student teachers use their students’ errors as an opportunity for learning. (MSEPT 2.D; INTASC 2.22)

Goal 3: Diverse Learners

3.Q  Student teachers work to develop learning communities in which individual differences are respected. (INTASC 3.37).

Goal 5: Learning Environment

5.C  Student teachers promote positive relationships and cooperation in the classroom. (INTASC 5.21)

Goal 9: Reflection

9.J  Student teachers use resources and colleagues to support reflection. (INTASC 9.33)

9.G  Student teachers demonstrate dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility (INTASC 9.25).

Performance Dimensions for Candidate Teaching Effectiveness (4)

Secondary Level (K-12 / 5-12) Performance Profile

Goal 2Student Learning

2.A  Student teachers use instructional strategies that promote student learning.(INTASC 2.11)

2.F  Student teachers link new ideas to ideas familiar to their students. (INTASC 2.32)
 

Goal 3: Diverse Learners

3.Q  Student teachers develop learning communities in which individual differences are respected. (INTASC 3.37)
 

Goal 5: Learning Environment

5.C  Student teachers create learning environments that contribute to all students’ self-esteem. (INTASC 5.21)

5.N  Student teachers promote active learning in productive tasks (INTASC 5.33)

5.P  Student teachers promote a climate of openness, respect, support, inquiry, and learning. (INTASC 5.35)
 

Goal 9: Reflection

9.E  Student teachers understand the role of reflection and self-assessment for their learning. (INTASC 9.22)

Implementation of the Plan.

Roles. The unit’s Assessment Committee oversees the implementation of this plan and the assessment system it supports.  That committee includes the Education Department’s Director of Teacher Education, Education Department faculty members, a K-12 educator from one of the Department’s school partners, and the Department’s Administrative Assistant.

The Director of Teacher Education is responsible for guiding the design and implementation of the assessment plan and the system of data collection, analysis, interpretation, and reporting that it stipulates.  Faculty teaching courses in which summative assessments are embedded provide information describing students’ performance on key indicators.  Our Directors of Elementary and Secondary Student Teaching and their respective College Supervisors of Student Teachers contribute to the performance profiles for the candidates they observe and mentor.  The Department’s Administrative Assistant maintains a performance database using information provided by and about candidates.  As implementation continues, the Assessment Committee reviews assessment results and commissions evaluation research to identify areas of their program in need of improvement or confirm the success of such improvements.

Timetable.  Nearly all elements of this plan are now in place.  Elementary and secondary student teaching performance profiles were piloted during the Fall 2000 semester.  Revised elementary level profiles were field tested during the 2001-2001 academic year and again revised during the 2002-2003 year.  While personnel changes delayed the development of the secondary level profile, a field test of a much revised version during the 2002-2003 academic year encouraged further revisions prior to full implementation for candidates completing student teaching in the fall of 2003 and spring of 2004.

The unit’s performance database, begun in the late 1990’s as a repository of descriptive information about the unit’s candidates, was first revised in 2001 to accept the performance data provided by these profiles for analysis with other assessments as they become available.  Several prototypes were revised to accommodate evolving software platforms (Dbase, Lotus, Excel, Access) supported by the colleges’ Information Technology Services.  As data accumulated, short term solutions provided analyses for ongoing evaluation research.  Specifications for a functional data base that could accommodate the information gathered using this plan were completed in the fall of 2004 with the development of a viable secondary performance profile.  Full implementation of the performance data base began during the summer of 2005.

The development of student teacher work samples documenting student teachers’ effectiveness began in the late spring of 2001 with pilot testing completed by student teachers documenting their clinical experiences during the fall 2001 semester.  A field test of a revised work sample format described the efforts of student teachers completing their licensure in the spring semester of 2002.  Both elementary and secondary candidates have prepared instructional units as the basis for their work samples since the fall semester of 2002, demonstrating the extent to which they have had “a positive effect on all learners” in their charge.

A pilot version of the methods course teacher work sample based on the format devised for student teachers was shared with faculty Fall 2001 semester.  Following modifications of that format, a revised approach shared in the spring of 2002 was met with little interest by methods instructors. While affirming the use of work sampling for methods students in principle, faculty noted that the revised format did not respect the limited teaching time afforded candidates in two credit courses or the difficulty of adding an additional task to courses already taxed by shifting state and national standards.  Implementation has been delayed until a new approach that meets these limitations can be devised.  If this additional component of our plan is sustained, we might expect to see it in place for some licensure programs during the spring of 2007.  Preparations for state approval of all licensure programs in July of 2006 will hinder a more timely development.

Basic academic skills assessment has been devised and used for some years.  Data from current indicators of candidates’ performance (ACT and PPST sub-scores and the unit’s essay test) have been incorporated in the performance data base.  The colleges’ decision to end the use of “writing flags” as an element of its Core Curriculum, a “writing across the curriculum” initiative that provided additional information on candidates’ writing performance from assessments embedded in selected foundation courses, has limited our ability to gather and use this data.

The development of an “integrative experience” to help candidates renew and expand their subject matter knowledge, especially for those candidates in licensure programs founded on loosely joined clusters of disciplines, such as social studies, remains an instructional technique with intriguing assessment potential without a development date.

As we find new ways to encourage our candidates to help all their students learn, we would like to know more about the our graduates success in closing the achievement gap that divides Minnesota’s white, middle class students from their culturally or racially diverse peers.  We would also like to sampler graduates’ experience with using technology to encourage learning in their classrooms.  Gathering our graduates’ successful approaches to working with diverse learners could further enhance our preparation of candidates for this challenging facet of their future practice.

For many years we sought the views of recent graduates and their principals to uncover areas of strength and weakness in our program.  Despite efforts to increase return rates, samples were often too small to encourage confidence in consistently positive assessments of courses and experiences forming our licensure programs.  While equally positive in their reviews of our candidates, most principals were unable to anchor their judgments about our candidates in their own systematic observations.  Aside from these measurement difficulties, the evolution of our curriculum outpaced the design of this paper and pencil mailed survey.

Professor Dickau’s recently completed review of a sample of our recently licensed teachers’ science teaching, using interviews, surveys, and observations of their instruction, provides a model for revision of our graduate survey.  While so comprehensive an approach is unrealistic for this facet of our assessment effort, his findings and instruments offer an attractive departure point for a new design.  We have also explored the feasibility of an internet-based survey that could be shaped to respond to our evolving needs.  With the growth of email accounts, developing an instrument that could explore these and other emerging themes now seems feasible.  A pilot version may be ready for use in the spring of 2006.

The following table summarizes sources identified in the assessment question matrices that are now in use, in development (design, pilot testing, or field testing) or awaiting future development.

Assessment Plan Implementation: July 2005

Assessment Questions

Sources Now Implemented

Sources To Be Implemented

1. Academic

    Skills

High School GPA and Rank

ACT / PPST sub scores

Speech Proficiency

College / Unit GPA

Faculty Concerns

Student Teaching Portfolio

(writing, math, speech)

Embedded Writing Assessment (EDUC 359)

Embedded Writing Assessments: Fall 05

(EDUC 111, 310)

 

Methods Courses Work Sample: Spring 07

(four credit courses)

2. Content

    Knowledge

Student Teaching Performance

  Profile (part of Goal 1)

Student Teaching Portfolio

  (work samples)

Major GPA

Praxis II (content tests)

Integrative Experience: To be determined

Methods Work Sample: Spring 07

 

3A.

Professional  /

Pedagogical Knowledge

Student Teaching Performance

  Profile (Goals 2,3,5,9,10)

Student Teaching Portfolio

  (work samples)

Praxis II (pedagogy)

Methods Work Sample (Spring 07)

 

3. B Pedagogical Content Knowledge

Student Teaching Performance

  Profile (Goals 1,4,6,7,8)

Student Teaching Portfolios

 (work samples)

Praxis II (pedagogy)

Methods Course Work Sample: Spring 07

 

4. Teaching

    Others

 

Student Teaching Performance Profile (Goals 3,5,9)

Student Teaching Portfolios

  (work samples)

Candidate Exit Interview

Methods Work Sample: Spring 07

Revised graduate survey: Spring 06

Continuous review and revision of the Departments’ assessment system will encourage meaningful analyses of more accurate summative indicators of candidates’ performance.  Validation of those indicators will be a continuing responsibility.  Management of the system will be guided both by the need to provide useful analyses of valid, reliable information and to keep the human investment in the system within the resource limits of the Education Departments’ faculty and staff.

Using Assessment Data for Program Evaluation and Improvement

Collecting and analyzing candidates’ performance data without using that information to question the merit and worth of that performance provides little incentive for the design and maintenance of so complex an assessment system as is described in this plan.  Assessment of candidate performance provides a point of reference to use in responding to such questions.  What might the evaluation research encouraged by those questions examine?  The following descriptions make use of the assessment information and its probable analysis as described in this plan.

The academic skills of students seeking acceptance as candidates have long been a concern of the unit’s faculty.  In 1996 the Education Department’s chairperson commissioned the colleges’ Instructional Developer to explore the feasibility of using fixed and free response skills tests to provide a more accurate estimate of those skills.  Initial results revealed potentially significant deficiencies in writing and the use of mathematics.  These findings encouraged the unit to adopt skills testing as part of its acceptance of candidates and to provide a wider range of formal remedial opportunities for those whose test performance might fall below the unit’s standard.  The Colleges’ remedial services improved to respond to students’ demands for assistance.  The Colleges’ administrators, initially skeptical of the need for testing and resulting remedial work, came to accept its role in the Department’s preparation of competent teachers.  The Departments’ testing procedures evolved to a more “authentic” design, encouraging more accurate assessments of academic skills.  Those tests were informally validated through students’ follow-up diagnostic examinations.

With the benefit of some maturity in the use of these assessments, the unit’s faculty and staff can explore the success realized by candidates who have completed developmental opportunities in basic academic skills as embedded writing assessments are introduced into courses offering work in those skill areas.  Two questions seem reasonable candidates for further exploration;

  • Do candidates continue to use their improved skills after completing their developmental opportunities?
  • Do the remedial options we offer improve candidates’ class and field performance?

Drawing on the unit’s experience in the use of academic skill indicators, further analysis of the relationship between Academic Profile scores and college entrance examination scores confirmed that students with ACT scores above a given “cut point” could perform at Academic Profile Level Two.  Following a study of relationships between Academic Profile, ACT, and PPST scores, we concluded that all candidates need not complete an additional test to confirm the extent of their academic skills, encouraging the unit to eliminate the requirement that all candidates complete the Academic Profile to affirm their academic skills?  Candidates continue to complete examinations in writing performance and public address, areas not easily affirmed with the use of fixed response tests.

Other evaluation questions are emerging from our analyses of available performance data and from review of the unit’s knowledge base.  While not yet supported by the range of experience that the unit has with assessment and evaluation of candidates’ basic skills, these questions offer an indication of how assessment of candidates’ performance will be used to explore and strengthen the Department’s programs in the years ahead.  While we have gathered relevant information to help us unlock many of these areas, such questions represent directions we might explore in continuing investment research.

  • Do all who use the Student Teacher Performance Profile to summarize candidates’ performance in clinical settings following the same procedures?  Do they draw upon the same sources of evidence to form their summary judgments?  Do they weight those sources in the same way?  Are efforts to train supervisors in using the Profile helpful?  Are the ratings that supervisors record consistent across their assigned student teaching candidates (within-rater reliability)?
  • While the validity of the Profile might be assumed from its origin in state (MSEPT), professional (INTASC), and institutional standards (Program Goals and Knowledge Base), what external evidence confirms the description of the candidates’ performance that it provides?  Do other ways of assessing candidates’ clinical performance yield similar findings (concurrent validity)?  Do the Profile judgements of candidates’ performance during their student teaching experience predict their performance on similar dimensions in their first year of professional practice (predictive validity)?
  • What are the correlates of candidates’ performance in clinical settings?  What characterizes candidates who are rated as “distinguished” from those rated as “basic” performers on their performance profiles?  Are patterns evident in their performance that might enhance the selection or development of optimal candidates?
  • Do all candidates complete our program with a fund of knowledge, skills, and values drawn from their majors that will encourage their effective instruction in the first years of their practice?  Analyses of opportunities to know and apply content knowledge suggest that some areas may provide too little knowledge or cover too many disciplines.
  • Do candidates form a useful “model” of how their students learn that reflects those K-12 students’ needs and talents, the content of instruction, and candidates’ talents?  What decision-making process do methods or student teaching candidates use when they select those more appropriate methods of instruction or when they create instructional materials?  How do they adapt their “model” of students learning process when that learning differs from their expectations?
  • What performance patterns are evident in the foundations, methods, and content coursework of candidates whose student teaching performance profiles suggest “stronger” or “weaker” performance?  What guidance might those patterns offer for more effective candidate selection and preparation for practice?
  • What patterns are evident in student teachers’ use of assessment techniques?  What do they draw upon to support their decisions to use these techniques?  To what extent do they reflect on the effectiveness of their choices?
  • What patterns are evident in student teachers’ use of instructional techniques?  What information do they use to decide upon those techniques?  To what extent do they model their decisions on the teaching of their previous instructors
  • With what success has the unit prepared candidates for practice in multicultural settings?  How do those candidates teaching in such settings judge the effectiveness of their preparation?  In what ways might they encourage the unit to improve its efforts to prepare teachers who can help all their students learn?
  • What is the value of our investment in the continuous assessment of candidates?  Has the program, or their performance, improved as a result of such assessment?  What resources have been invested to yield this return?  How might the assessment system be improved to increase that yield?

We conclude our plan for the assessment of those who would be teachers with this set of plausible evaluation questions.  They predict what might most catch our attention as we move toward a more uniform and universal description of human performance within the realm of teaching and learning.  Many more such questions are before us, lurking in the findings we will make as we learn new ways to describe teachers and teaching.  Together, they suggest how we might attempt to encourage and sustain our continuing search for the dimensions of our candidates’ effectiveness and, thereby, our programs’ success.  In doing so we might recall Dewey’s sense of human growth as the “criterion of value” as we use our findings to arrange the processes of teaching to reflect the conditions of learning (Dewey, 1966).

If our candidates’ learning, and in turn their students’ learning, “is to be the focal point of education” (Cowart, 1999) we might do well to recall that …

Assessment is most effective when it reflects an understanding of learning as multidimensional, integrated, and revealed in performance over time.  Learning is a complex process.  It entails not only what students know but what they can do with what they know; it involves not only knowledge and abilities but values, attitudes, and habits of mind that affect both academic success and performance beyond the classroom.  Assessment should reflect these understandings by employing a diverse array of methods, including those that call for actual performance, using them over time so as to reveal change, growth, and increasing degrees of integration.  Such an approach aims for a more complete and accurate picture of learning, and therefore firmer bases for improving our students’ educational experience.
      American Association of Higher Education, 1992

References

Academic Catalog 2003-2005.  (2003)  Saint Joseph, MN:  College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University.

American Association for Higher Education.  Principles of good practice for assessing student learning.  Washington D.C.: 1992.

Astin, A. W.  Assessment for excellence.  (1991).  New York: Macmillan.  p. 53.

Assessing Candidate Performance. 2001.  Saint Joseph, MN: Education Department, College of Saint Benedict.

Bloom, B.  “Ideas, problems, and methods of inquiry.”  In N. B. Henry, (Ed.)  The integration of educational experiences.  Chicago: National Society For The Study of Education. 1958. p. 95.

Cochran-Smith, M.  (2000, April).  The outcomes question in teacher education.  Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Education Research Association, New Orleans, LA.  (http://www2.bc.edu/~cochrans/mcsvpaddress.html)

Cooper, B. F. (1999). Some subjective comments on effective teaching.  Journal of Philosophy and History of Education. 49, 8  (http://hometown.aol.com/jophe99/cowart.htm)

Cooper, J. M. (1999) The teacher as decision-maker.  In Classroom teaching skills (6th Ed.).  James M. Cooper (editor).  pp.1-19  Boston: Houghton-Mifflin.

Dewey, J.  (1966).  Democracy and education. New York: The Free Press. p.53.

Dressel, P. L. “The meaning and significance of integration.”  In N. B. Henry, (Ed.)  The integration of educational experiences.  Chicago: National Society For The Study of Education. 1958. p. 23.

Education Department.  Conceptual Framework: Teacher As Decision Maker.  2000.  Saint Joseph, MN:  College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University.  

Education Department.  Knowledge Base for Teacher Education  2000.  Saint Joseph, MN:  College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University.

Grossman, P., Wilson, S., and Schulman, L. 1989.  “Teachers of substance: Subject matter knowledge for teaching.”  In Maynard C. Reynolds (Ed.) Knowledge Base for the Beginning

Teacher.  Oxford:  Pergamon Press.

Minnesota Rules: Adopted Permanent Rules Relating to Teacher License Examinations: 8710.0500. 2000.  Roseville, MN:  Minnesota Board of Teaching, Minnesota Department of Education.  

Minnesota Rules: Institutional Program Approval: 8700.7600. 1999.  Roseville, MN: Minnesota Board of Teaching, Minnesota Department of Education

Minnesota Rules: Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers 8710.2000. 1999. Roseville, MN: Minnesota Board of Teaching, Minnesota Department of Education.

Professional Standards for the Accreditation of Schools, Colleges, and Departments of Education.  2001.  Washington, D.C.: National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

Schalock, D., Schalock, M., & Girod, G. (1997).  Teacher work sample methodology as used at Western Oregon State College.  In J. Millman (Ed.), Grading teachers, grading schools.  Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Schon, D.A. Theory-of-action evaluation.  Paper presented to the Harvard Education Task Force, April 1997.

Smith, C. B.  (1992). Teacher as decision-maker.  Bloomington, IN: Grayson Bernard Publishers.

Wholey, J. S.  “Evaluability Assessment: Developing Program Theory” in L. Bickman (ed.), Using Program Theory in Evaluation.  New Directions for Program Evaluation, no.33, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1987.

 

Appendix A: Academic Profile Proficiency Levels

Writing-Level 1.  Students at Level 1 recognize agreement among basic elements (nouns, verbs, pronouns) in the same clause or phrase.  These students avoid gross errors in short or simple structures and can logically select and order main ideas or divisions in a sustained paragraph using appropriate transition words.  Students at this level demonstrate a basic understanding of appropriate writing.

Writing-Level 2.  In addition to performing successfully at Level 1, students who are proficient at Level 2 also recognize appropriate agreement among basic elements when they are complicated by intervening works or phrases.  They avoid errors in relatively long and complicated constructions.  They are able to recast several simple clauses using a single more complex combination.  Students performing at this intermediate level can recognize and use the elements of good writing.

Writing-Level 3.  In addition to performing Level 1 and Level 2 skills successfully, students at Level 3 also can identify logical statements and comparisons and is able to solve difficult or subtle writing problems such as appropriate use of parallelism.  These students can make fine distinctions among closely related root words and grammatical structures characteristic of a mature writing style.

 

Mathematics-Level 1.  Students at Level 1 demonstrate basic number sense and skills in arithmetic operations and relationships and in elementary geometry and measurement.  Students at this basic level can read and interpret information from simple graphs or charts, solve simple equations or evaluate expressions, and solve simple and routine word problems.

Mathematics-Level 2.  In addition to performing successfully at Level 1, students who are proficient at Level 2 also understand number systems, including order, magnitude, and relationships of integers, functions, and decimals.  Students at this intermediate level can solve moderately difficult equations and inequalities, evaluate complex formulas, compare and apply information from more complex charts and graphs, and apply reasoning, geometry, and measurement skills in solving moderately complex problems including word problems.

Mathematics-Level 3.  In addition to performing Level 1 and Level 2 skills successfully, students at Level 3 also can generalize and apply mathematical knowledge and skills in non-routine situations and demonstrate real comprehension of exponents, variables, geometry, and measurements.  A student at this mature level can solve multi-step and non-routine problems involving a range of reasoning skills.

 

Reading-Level 1.  “Basic” students at Level 1 recognize and comprehend discrete pieces of information, (e.g., a single detail, information presented in a single sentence) as well as relationships or connections explicitly stated in a passage and understands words and phrases in context.

Reading-Level 2.  In addition to performing successfully at Level 1, students who are proficient at Level 2 can also gather information from different sections of a passage and recombine it.  These intermediate students recognize relationships that can be inferred but are not explicit.  They can recognize summaries and alternative ways of stating information, interpret figurative language, and recognize the point or purpose of a passage as a whole, or significant portions of a passage.

Reading / Critical Thinking-Level 3.  In addition to performing Level 1 and Level 2 skills successfully, students at Level 3 can also evaluate and analyze arguments and, within an academic field, handle interpretation, inductive generalizations, or causal explanations.  “Mature” Level 3 reading and critical thinking skills are differentiated in the following ways within each of the three content areas included in the Profile;

Working with Humanities content, students at this level evaluate alternative views and interpretations.

In the Social Sciences, “mature” students evaluate claims, disputes, and inductive generalizations;

In the Natural Sciences, students evaluate explanatory hypotheses and draw conclusions.

Appendix B:  Education Department Scoring Guide for Writing Performance

                    CRITERIA

In this paper, the writer…

LEVEL 3     

  • Conveys a message with clarity and precision.
  • Uses a variety of sentence forms that fit the purpose of the paper.
  • Supports main points with specific examples or evidence as required by assignment.
  • Commits no major errors in the “mechanics” of composition (spelling, grammar,    punctuation, or capitalization)
  • Chooses words, a style, content, and a format that clearly fit the purpose of the paper.
  • Uses a vocabulary that affirms precise thinking.
  • Offers few, if any, opportunities for corrective criticism; (a red pen rarely touches the paper to highlight needed corrections.)  

LEVEL 2      

  • Clearly conveys a message.
  • Uses little variety in sentence structure.
  • Provides limited support for main points.
  • Commits occasional errors in mechanics, such as a missing apostrophe in a plural possessive.
  • Chooses words, a style, content, and a format that more or less fit the purpose of the paper.
  • Uses a vocabulary that, while acceptable for this assignment, lacks the precision evident in Level Three paper.
  • Offers several opportunities for corrective criticism.

LEVEL 1     

  • Vaguely conveys a message that may not respond to the assignment.
  • Relies on strings of simple declarative sentences that are unvaried by subordination or amplification.
  • Does not support main points with examples or other appropriate forms of evidence.
  • Commits frequent errors in mechanics, such as using a comma in place of a semicolon or period, using "you're" in place of "your," or confusing plural pronouns with singular subjects (“If the student is uncertain of the correct answer, they should consult a style manual.”)
  • Chooses words, a style, content, and a format that do not fit the purpose of the paper.
  • Uses a vocabulary that suggests imprecise thinking.
  • Offers many opportunities for corrective criticism; (I could fill most pages with red ink highlighting corrections needed to move the paper to Level 2.)

Observations:

This guide is adapted from Stephen Wilbers' 23 May 1997 column in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, "Use a Simple Writing Test to Help Hire the Right Person."  Members of the Education Department's Reading Committee modified the rubric to provide a stronger focus on the content of an essay.  The guide was last revised on 23 September 2004.

Appendix C

Student Teaching Performance Profiles

C.1: Elementary (K-6 with 5-8 Specialty) Student Teaching Performance Profile

Appendix C.1 includes performance dimensions and indicators used to describe the performance of elementary level (K-6 generalist with a 5-8 specialty) candidates for licensure during their student teaching or “clinical” experience.  Each of the ten Program Goals are drawn from the Education Department’s conceptual framework and anchored in its knowledge base.  Performance dimensions (1.A, 1.B, and so on) are derived from the Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT).  Performance indicators on each of four levels (Not Met, Basic, Proficient, and Distinguished) take the form of scoring guides or “rubrics” anchored in a description of candidates’ observed behavior or documents. 

Performance Profiles formed by such dimensions of program goals and their indicators offer a vehicle for the summative assessment of candidates’ student teaching performance based on their college supervisors analysis of all relevant sources of information gathered during their sixteen-week residency and included in their student teaching portfolios.  Performance dimensions and indicators were derived from an analysis of spring 2000 student teachers’ portfolios as described in Assessing Candidate Performance (2001), an unpublished Education Department monograph available upon request.

STUDENT TEACHER’S NAME                                  SUPERVISOR’S NAME                                      SEMESTER, YEAR 

STUDENT TEACHING PERFORMANCE PROFILE:  Elementary Candidates

SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT OF PERFORMANCE ON PROGRAM GOALS ALIGNED WITH STANDARDS OF EFFECTIVE PRACTICE

Completed by a College Supervisor, this document describes a candidate’s performance relative to the Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice for Teachers (MSEPT) upon completion of student teaching.

Supervisors:  Please use the “Rubrics for Final Evaluation” to rate candidate as 

D (Distinguished), P (Proficient), B (Basic), or NM (Not Met).

Excerpts taken from Enhancing Professional Practice by Charlotte Danielson

July 2005


Standard 1: SUBJECT MATTER - The candidates we prepare for licensure as Minnesota teachers understand the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the disciplines they are preparing to teach so that they will be able to make this subject matter meaningful for their students. (Knowledge Base, p. 2)

                                                                                                                                              MSEPT Rating

1

Knows and understands subject matter                                                                             1.A

 

2

Relates content to prior knowledge                                                                                    1.E

 

3

Integrates subject with other disciplines                                                                             1.J

 

 

Comments:

1

Knows and understands subject matter

unit lesson plans

observations

 

MSEPT 1.A

Knows and understands subject matter.

Not Met: Insufficient prerequisite knowledge for student learning.  Content errors and/or content disorganized.

Basic: Teacher displays basic content knowledge but does not go beyond textbook information, has difficulty responding to impromptu questions, opportunities to elaborate, or student misconceptions.

Proficient: Teacher displays solid content knowledge, anticipates some student misconceptions, and can respond accurately to some student questions.

Distinguished: Teacher displays extensive content knowledge, with evidence of continuing pursuit of such knowledge, anticipates student misconceptions, and can respond accurately to student questions.

2

Relates content to prior knowledge

video tape (planning section)

standards question #1

 

MSEPT 1.E

Relates content to prior knowledge.

Not Met: Insufficient prerequisite knowledge of students’ learning.  Teacher does not understand its importance.

Basic: Teacher indicates some awareness of prerequisite learning; it may be incomplete or limited in scope.

Proficient: Teacher’s plans reflect understanding of prerequisite relationships among topics and concepts.

Distinguished: Teacher actively builds on knowledge of prerequisite relationships when planning instruction or seeking causes for student misunderstanding.

 3

Integrates subject with other disciplines

standards question #13

unit lesson plans

MSEPT 1.J

Integrates subject with other disciplines.

Not Met: Plan does not integrate with other subjects.

Basic: Some effort to coordinate or integrate content.

Proficient: Objectives provide opportunities for integration with other content areas.

Distinguished: Objectives reflect student initiative in making connections with other content areas.


Standard 2: STUDENT LEARNING - The candidates we prepare for licensure draw on their understanding of learning and developmental processes to choose optimal ways that encourage their students' intellectual, social, and personal development.  (Knowledge Base, p.9)

                                                                                                                                                  MSEPT Rating

1

Uses students' interests and strengths to enhance learning                                             2.D.1

 

2

Uses students' errors as an opportunity for learning                                                         2.D.2

 

 

Comments:

1

 

Uses students' interests and strengths to enhance learning

standards question #2

 

MSEPT 2.D.1

Uses students’ interests and strengths to enhance learning.

Not Met: Teacher does not know students’ interests and strengths and/or has few ideas for planning a lesson built on them.

Basic: Teacher implements some procedures for building on students’ interests and strengths.

Proficient: Teacher consistently builds on students’ interests and strengths.

Distinguished: Teacher shows creativity in providing learning opportunities which build on interests and strengths of students.

2

 

Uses students' errors as an opportunity for learning

standards question #1b

self-evaluation question #2

 

MSEPT 2.D.2

Uses students’ errors as an opportunity for learning.

Not Met: Teacher has few ideas for responding to students’ errors.

Basic: Teacher implements some procedures for addressing students’ errors.

Proficient: Teacher consistently addresses errors in a positive manner.

Distinguished: Teacher shows creativity in providing learning opportunities which clarify understanding.

Standard 3: DIVERSE LEARNERS - Our candidates, recognizing how differences among students can influence their learning, make instructional decisions that reflect to their students' backgrounds and exceptionalities.  (Knowledge Base, p. 18)

                                                                                                                                                MSEPT Rating

1

Designs lessons that appeal to a variety of learning styles                                                 3.K

 

2

Recognizes and addresses biases, prejudices, racism, and sexism                                   3.D

 

3

Works to develop a learning community in which individual differences are respected      3.Q

 

4

Persists in helping all students achieve success                                                                 3.I

 

 

Comments:

1

Designs lessons that appeal to a variety of learning styles

5 formal lesson plans on primary level

unit: diversity section

unit lesson plans

video tape: planning section

MSEPT 3.K

Designs lessons that appeal to a variety of learning styles.

Not Met: Limited knowledge of and ability to respond appropriately.

Basic: Teaching approaches often include appropriate responses; strategies are limited.

Proficient: Teaching approaches consistently include appropriate responses that are varied, sensitive to individuals and effective in creating a pleasant and productive learning environment.

Distinguished: Teacher uses an extensive repertoire of strategies (including additional resources from the school) to provide educational opportunities appropriate for all students.

2

Recognizes and addresses biases, prejudices, racism, and sexism

observations and conferences

 

MSEPT 3.D

Recognizes and addresses biases prejudices, racism, and sexism.

Not Met: Teacher does not recognize or address  incidents of prejudice.

Basic: Teacher recognizes most expressions of prejudice and addresses them.

Proficient: Teacher consistently recognizes and addresses incidents of prejudice.

Distinguished: Teacher effectively models inclusive behaviors and creates opportunities for student to change attitudes and behaviors.

3

Works to develop a learning community in which individual differences are respected

standards question #3

 

MSEPT 3.Q

Works to develop a learning community in which individual differences are respected.

Not Met: Teacher is unaware of individual differences.

Basic: Teacher is aware of differences; sometimes models accepting behavior; sometimes facilitates learning opportunities that affirm differences. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently models warm, accepting behaviors.  Teacher responds to impromptu situations appropriately.  Teacher consistently facilitates learning opportunities to promote feelings of belonging and acceptance for all. 

Distinguished: Teacher implements techniques which bring about a positive change for one or more students.

4

Persists in helping all students achieve success

observations and conferences

unit diversity section

unit assessment section

video tape self-assessment

MSEPT 3.I

Persists in helping all students achieve success.

Not Met: Teacher does not attempt to help all students learn.

Basic: Teacher makes some attempts to address needs of all students. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently tries to address the needs of all students.

Distinguished: Teacher uses a wide variety of approaches to try to help all students succeed.

 

 


Standard 4: INSTRUCTIONAL STRATEGIES - Our candidates use their knowledge of instructional strategies to decide upon and employ those which are most likely to encourage their students' critical thinking, problem solving, and performance skills.  (Knowledge Base, p. 27)

                                                                                                                                               MSEPT Rating

1

Motivates students and introduces objectives (anticipatory set)                                     4.B.1

 

2

Summarizes and evaluates objectives (closure)                                                             4.B.2

 

3

Uses a variety of appropriate materials and human and technological resources          4.D

 

4

Allows adequate wait time; paces lessons appropriately                                                4.J

 

5

Uses multiple strategies to engage students in active, purposeful learning                    4.H

 

6

Monitors and adjusts strategies in response to learner feedback                                    4.I

 

 

Comments:

1

Motivates students and introduces objectives (anticipatory set)

Lesson plans

Observations

Standards question #4

Self-evaluation #9, 12

 

MSEPT 4.B.1

Motivates students and introduces objectives (anticipatory set)

Not Met: Anticipatory sets are sometimes omitted, are similar (lack creativity) and do not always communicate objectives.

Basic: Most anticipatory sets motivate students and communicate objectives.

Proficient: Teacher consistently uses creative, motivating anticipatory sets which communicate objectives.

Distinguished: Anticipatory sets are consistently creative and motivational, linked to prior knowledge and student interest.  Students display knowledge of objectives. 

2

Summarizes and evaluates objectives (closure)

Lesson plans

Observations

Standards question #5

Self-evaluation #12

MSEPT 4.B.2

Summarizes and evaluates objectives (closure)

Not Met: Closures are often omitted, are similar and provide minimal summary and evaluation of objectives. 

Basic: Closures are often included in lesson- provide a basic summary and/ or evaluation. 

Proficient: Closures are consistently included and provide a summary and evaluation of learning.

Distinguished: Closures are consistently creative, promote retention of learning.  Give direction to future learning.

3

Uses a variety of appropriate materials and human and technological resources

Unit resources list

Technology assignment

Lesson plans

Self-evaluation #17, 19

MSEPT 4.D

Uses a variety of appropriate materials and human and technological resources. 

Not Met: Hesitant to use a variety of materials.

Basic: Uses materials and resources provided; these resources support objectives.

Proficient: Teacher brings in additional resources which support objectives and engage students in meaningful learning. 

Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses a wide variety of resources which motivate students, support objectives and promote creative thinking.  Students are motivated to select or adapt materials. 

4

Allows adequate wait time; paces lessons appropriately

Observations

Standards question #5

Self-evaluation #15

MSEPT 4.J

 

 

 

Allows adequate wait time; paces lessons appropriately

Not Met: Pacing is slow, rushed, or both.  Little awareness of wait time.

Basic: Pacing of the lesson is sometimes even, but not consistently.  Developing an awareness of wait time.

Proficient: Pacing of the lesson is consistently even.  Wait time is consistently sufficient.

Distinguished: Pacing of the lesson is consistently even and coherent.  Wait time is consistently appropriate to allow all or most students to respond with well-formulated thoughts.

5

Uses multiple strategies to engage students in active, purposeful learning

Technology assignment

Standards question #8

Observations

Self-evaluation #8, 16

MSEPT 4.H

Uses multiple strategies to engage students in active, purposeful learning. 

Not Met: The strategy is either used infrequently and/or results in minimal learning or is inappropriate for the objectives. 

Basic: The strategy used is appropriate, results in meaningful learning and is used often. 

Proficient: The strategy is consistently used when appropriate, results in meaningful learning and is creative in approach. 

Distinguished: Teacher implements several new strategies which result in productive and meaningful learning experiences.  Students provide ideas for strategies and/or can choose a strategy.

6

Monitors and adjusts strategies in response to learner feedback

Standards question #7

Observations

Self-evaluation #13

MSEPT 4.I

Monitors and adjusts strategies in response to learner feedback.

Not Met: Adheres to plan, even when a change is needed; not alert to students’ needs.

Basic: Teacher adjusts lesson with some beneficial results.

Proficient: Teacher makes minor adjustments to lessons, and the adjustment occurs smoothly.

Distinguished: Teacher successfully makes a major adjustment to one or more lessons.

Standard 5: LEARNING ENVIRONMENT - Our candidates for licensure use their knowledge and skills to create just, disciplined learning communities that can motivate students to achieve personal and academic success through positive social interaction and active engagement in their learning.  (Knowledge Base, p. 33)

                                                                                                                                               MSEPT  Rating

1

Promotes positive relationships and cooperation in the classroom                                       5.C

 

2

Encourages student to assume responsibility and participate in decision making                  5.L

 

3

Promotes intrinsic motivation                                                                                            5.F

 

4

Uses principles of effective classroom management                                                            5.E

 

5

Manages resources of time, space, materials, attention                                                      5.N

 

6

Allows for the effective participation of all students                                                              5.R

 

 

Comments:

1

Promotes positive relationships and cooperation in the classroom

Standards question #3

Self-evaluation #18

 

MSEPT 5.C

 

Promotes positive relationships and cooperation in the classroom

Not Met: Teacher sometimes allows or promotes activities which produce conflict or put-downs.

Basic: Interactions are usually appropriate and free of competition but may show some favoritism or minimal respect. 

Proficient: Interactions are consistently respectful.  Students work cooperatively rather than competitively. 

Distinguished: Teacher demonstrates genuine caring and respect for all students.  Students extend respect and support to each other and the teacher.

 

2

Encourages student to assume responsibility and participate in decision making
 

Standards question #8

Self-evaluation #3

 

MSEPT 5.L

Encourages student to assume responsibility and participate in decision making

Not Met: Students are given few opportunities to direct their learning, assume little responsibility. 

Basic: Teacher provides students with some opportunities for decision making; students assume some responsibility for their learning. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently provides opportunities for students to make choices, assume responsibility and manage their learning community.

Distinguished: Teacher shows unusual creativity for guiding students to make sound educational decisions which enhance learning.

 

3

Promotes intrinsic motivation

Standards question #9

Lesson plans

 

MSEPT 5.F

 

Promotes intrinsic motivation.

Not Met: Teacher often engages in extrinsic motivational strategies, seldom relates lesson to student interests, seldom allows students to have choices, seldom leads students to ask questions, sometimes causes anxiety with strategies that cause embarrassment, comparison, or undue pressure. 

Basic: Teacher provides some learning opportunities that allow for student choices, relate to student interest, and allow students to ask questions.  Teacher is aware of situations which could cause anxiety for students and the teacher avoids these.   

Proficient: Teacher consistently relates lessons to student interests; students are encouraged to pursue learning that is of interest to them. Teacher avoids situations which cause anxiety for students and facilitates classroom activities so that students are affirmed. 

Distinguished: Students display a high degree of initiative and self-motivation.

 

4

Uses principles of effective classroom management

Observations

Self-evaluation #11, 18

 

MSEPT 5.E

Uses principles of effective classroom management.

Not Met: Students are not engaged in purposeful learning.

Basic: Teacher usually manages student behavior to provide productive learning experiences.  May lose some time and attention during transitions.

Proficient: Teacher consistently and effectively manages student behavior. 

Distinguished: Students give direction to provide an orderly and productive work environment.

5

Manages resources of time, space, materials, attention

Standards question #14

Observations

Self-evaluation #6

 

MSEPT 5.N

 

Manages resources of time, space, materials, attention.

Not Met: Classroom is sometimes unsafe.  Furniture arrangements are seldom made to suit lesson activities.  Physical resources are poorly used.  Learning is not accessible to some students.

Basic: Classroom is safe.  Furniture is adjusted if necessity is obvious.  Arrangement is somewhat effective. 

Proficient: The classroom is safe, and the furniture arrangement is a resource for learning activities.  Teacher uses physical resources skillfully and all learning is equally accessible to all students.

Distinguished: The classroom is safe, and students adjust the furniture to advance their own purposes in       learning.   Both teacher and students use physical resources optimally, and students ensure that all learning is equally accessible to all students.

6

Allows for the effective participation of all students

-          Unit assessment section

-          Observations

-          Self-evaluations #4, 5, 13

 

MSEPT 5.R

 

Allows for the effective participation of all students.

Not Met: Group work and independent work experiences are minimally successful in advancing instructional goals.  Students may have insufficient challenge, may not be adequately focused or may not meet needs of all students. 

Basic: Most group and independent work experiences provide appropriate challenges for all students.  Students are focused and the experiences are productive. 

Proficient: Group and independent work experiences are consistently productive for all students.  Students are appropriately challenged with creative options. 

Distinguished: Instructional groups are productive and fully appropriate to students and objectives.  Experiences are varied and creative.  Students implement their ideas to advance understanding.           


Standard 6: COMMUNICATION - The candidates we prepare for licensure as teachers use effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration, and supportive interaction in the classroom. (Knowledge Base, p. 38)

                                                                                                                                               MSEPT Rating

1

Communicates effectively through writing, speaking, body language, and other media    6.D

 

2

Supports learner expression in speaking, writing, other media                                           6.I

 

3

Stimulates purposeful discussion                                                                                        6.J

 

 

Comments:

1

Communicates effectively through writing, speaking, body language, and other media

-          Observations

-          Parent letters

-          Video tape

-          Family kit

-          Self-evaluation #1

-          Standards questions #10, 15

 

MSEPT 6.D

Communicates effectively through writing, speaking, body language, and other media.

Not Met: Written language is difficult to read and contains some errors.  Vocabulary is vague or incorrect. Spoken language is difficult to hear or understand, may be incorrect or inappropriate.  Body language is aloof, lacking warmth. 

Basic: Written communication is correct, may be inappropriate to the audience or lack some clarity.  Spoken language is usually audible, clear, correct. Teacher is comfortable with students. 

Proficient: Written and spoken communication is consistently correct and clear, appropriate to students’ age and interest.  Teacher has solid background knowledge which allows for accurate responses to students’ questions and ideas.  Teacher conveys warmth and interest. 

Distinguished: Written language and vocabulary are well-chosen and enrich the lesson.  Spoken language is expressive and appropriately challenging.  Teacher consistently conveys warmth and interest. 

2

Supports learner expression in speaking, writing, other media

-          Technology assignment

-          Lesson plans

-          Family kit

 

MSEPT 6.I

Supports learner expression in speaking, writing, other media.

Not Met: Opportunities to communicate through speaking and writing are limited to “fill-in-the-blank” activities or short responses to teacher’s questions. 

Basic: Students are provided with some productive opportunities to enhance writing and speaking skills. 

Proficient: Students are consistently given meaningful opportunities to express themselves through writing and speaking. 

Distinguished: Opportunities to communicate through writing and speaking are varied, creative, and address student interests.

3

Stimulates purposeful discussion

-          Observations

-          Self-evaluation #7

-          Standards question #10

 

MSEPT 6.J

 

Stimulates purposeful discussion. 

Not Met: Many questions are basic and factual with little student participation.

Basic: Most students are engaged in meaningful discussion.  Questions vary in quality.  Teacher directs discussion. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently includes challenging, high quality questions, leads students to articulate their ideas and encourages creativity. 

Distinguished: Students often assume responsibility for the success of the discussion, initiating topics and making positive, unsolicited contributions.  Teacher successfully engages all students in meaningful discussion

Standard 7: PLANNING INSTRUCTION - Our candidates for licensure plan and effect instruction as they decide what content they will teach, to whom they will teach it, in what ways they will do so, and with what effect.  (Knowledge Base, p. 42)

                                                                                                                                               MSEPT  Rating

1

Creates plans linked to student needs, experiences, and culture                                      7.F

 

2

Plans thoroughly; submits plans on time                                                                            7.G

 

 

Comments:

1

Creates plans linked to student needs, experiences, and culture

-          Video tape planning section

-          Unit diversity section

 

MSEPT 7.F

Creates plans linked to student needs, experiences, and culture.

Not Met: Minimal knowledge of developmental characteristics, unfamiliar with the different approaches to learning (styles, modalities, intelligences).  Unaware of student experiences. 

Basic: Teacher’s plans provide content which is appropriate for most students, making some adaptations for academic needs, cultural heritage, and experiences.

Proficient: Teacher’s plans provide content which is appropriate for all students, making general adaptations for academic needs, experiences and cultural heritage.  Teacher shows knowledge of learning styles and student needs.  

Distinguished: Teacher’s plans provide appropriate content for each student, making specific adaptations for academic needs, interests and cultural heritage.  Teacher shows extensive knowledge of learning styles developmental characteristics, and student needs.

2

Plans thoroughly; submits plans on time

-          Lesson plans

-          Observations

 

MSEPT 7.G

Plans thoroughly; submits plans on time.

Not Met: Teacher submits plans late and/or plans insufficiently. 

Basic: Teacher submits plans on time and plans sufficiently. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently submits plans on time, plans thoroughly, and incorporates variety and creativity. 

Distinguished: Teacher consistently submits plans on time, plans extensively, incorporates suggestions, and is highly creative. 

Standard 8: ASSESSMENT - Our candidates for teacher licensure use information provided through their use of formal and informal assessment methods to make instructional decisions that will support their students' continuous development.  (Knowledge Base, p. 47)

                                                                                                                                                MSEPT  Rating

1

Uses a variety of formal and informal assessment techniques                                           8.G

 

2

Maintains records of work and performance                                                                       8.L

 

3

Allows students to set goals and evaluate themselves                                                       8.I

 

4

Communicates student progress to students, parents, colleagues                                     8.M

 

 

Comments:

1

Uses a variety of formal and informal assessment techniques

-          Unit assessment section

-          Lesson plans

-          Observations

-          Self-evaluation #5

 

 

MSEPT 8.G

Uses a variety of informal and formal assessment techniques.

Not Met: Assessments are either omitted, do not evaluate objectives, or lack variety.

Basic: Some assessment is of high quality; others are not.  Some lessons do not include assessment.  There is some variety in types of assessment.

Proficient: All of the instructional objectives are assessed.  Approaches are of high quality.  Some accommodations are made for individuals.  Some variety in approaches.

Distinguished: Assessment is consistently congruent with objectives, both in content and process.  Accommodations are often made for individuals.  Students are aware of  how they are meeting standards, participate in evaluating themselves and goal-setting.  A variety of assessments are conducted to meet the variety of learning  styles.

2

Maintains records of work and performance

-          Standards questions #11

-          Unit assessment section

-          Self-evaluation #14

 

MSEPT 8.L

Maintains records of work and performance

Not Met: Records of students progress are disorganized and/or insufficient

Basic: Teacher keeps records and adheres to required procedures.

Proficient: Teacher’s system for keeping records is effective, up-to-date, and broad in scope. 

Distinguished: Student records are orderly, up-to-date, and allows for

some student maintenance.

3

Allows students to set goals and evaluate themselves

-          Unit assessment section

 

 

MSEPT 8.I

Allows students to set goals and evaluate themselves

Not Met: Students do not assess themselves or set goals.

Basic: Students assess themselves infrequently.

Proficient: Students consistently assess themselves and set goals based on strengths, needs and interests.

Distinguished: Students consistently assess themselves on a wide range of objectives, set goals and experience high levels of success.  Methods of self-assessment are varied and creative.

4

Communicates student progress to students, parents, colleagues

-          Standards questions #15

 

MSEPT 8.M

Communicates student progress to students, parents, colleagues.

Not Met: Teacher neglects to provide pertinent information to students, parents and/or colleagues.  Information may be insufficient, inaccurate or delivered in an insensitive matter.

Basic: Teacher adheres to required procedures for communicating progress to students, parents, colleagues. 

Proficient: Teacher consistently communicates progress to parents, students, and colleagues.  Feedback addresses a wide range of skills.

Distinguished: Student participates in communicating progress to parents.  Teacher keeps students, parents and colleagues informed.  These processes motivate students to achieve goals, commensurate with their abilities.


Standard 9: REFLECTION AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT - Our candidates for licensure critically reflect on the effects of their instructional decisions on the performance of their students, on the practice of their colleagues, and on the actions of others in their learning communities, using those reflections to direct and sustain their professional renewal.  (Knowledge Base, p. 55)

                                                                                                                                  MSEPT  Rating

1

Evaluates outcomes and revises practice                                                                           9.H

 

2

Uses resources and colleagues to support reflection                                                          9.J

 

3

Demonstrates professionalism in dress, conversations, and other behavior                      9.K

 

4

Demonstrates dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility                                      9.G

 

 

Comments:

1

Evaluates outcomes and revises practice

-          All self-evaluations

-          Unit assessment section

-          Unit lesson evaluations

 

MSEPT 9.H

 

Evaluates outcomes and revises practice.

Not Met: Teacher seldom uses information to evaluate outcomes and revise practice.  Teacher has little clarity about the success or limitations of a lesson; teacher has few suggestions for improvement. 

Basic: Teacher has a generally accurate impression of a lesson’s effectiveness and makes general suggestions for improvement.  Teacher often assesses similar teaching skills.

Proficient: Teacher makes an accurate assessment of a lesson’s effectiveness and the extent to which it achieved its goals; the teacher can cite general references to support the judgment.  Teacher makes specific suggestions of what could be tried another time.  Teacher reflects on a variety of teaching skills.        

Distinguished: Teacher makes a thoughtful and accurate assessment of a lesson’s effectiveness and the extent to which it achieved its goals, citing many specific examples from the lesson and weighing the relative strength of each.  The teacher offers specific alternative actions, complete with probable successes of different approaches.

2

Uses resources and colleagues to support reflection

-          Conferences after observations

 

 

MSEPT 9.J

 

 

 

 

 

Uses resources and colleagues to support reflection.

Not Met: Teacher responds defensively to feedback, suggesting that it is not important.  Teacher shows little willingness to implement suggestions.

Basic: Teacher responds cordially to suggestions for improvement, tries to implement some.

Proficient: Teacher responds well to suggestions for improvement, viewing suggestions as opportunities rather than criticism.  Teacher consistently and successfully tries new approaches suggested.

Distinguished: Teacher eagerly seeks out opportunities for growth by asking for suggestions from supervisor, cooperating teacher and colleagues (principal, other teachers, peers).  Teacher views this process positively and successfully implements new approaches.  Uses professional resources to gain insights.

3

Demonstrates professionalism in dress, conversations, and other behavior

-          Observations

-          Standards question #16

 

      MSEPT 9.K

Comments

Demonstrates professionalism in dress, conversations, and other behavior. 

Not Met: Teacher engages in behavior, language or dress that is inappropriate or offensive to others.

Basic: Teacher usually demonstrates professionalism in dress, language, and behavior.

Proficient: Teacher consistently demonstrates professionalism in dress, language, and behavior.

Distinguished: Teacher consistently demonstrates professionalism in dress, language, and behavior issues.  Teacher consistently displays a mature attitude and generous spirit when dealing with unexpected requests or situations.

4

Demonstrates dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility

-          Participation at student teachers’ seminars

-          Standards question #17

-          conferences

 

 

MSEPT 9.G

 

 

 

 

 

Demonstrates dependability, initiative, enthusiasm, and flexibility.

Not Met: Teacher does not accept responsibility for presence, follow through, preparation. Teacher does only what is required.  Teacher is hesitant to consider alternatives. 

Basic: Teacher is on time, stays the full day, follows through, is prepared.  Teacher is beginning to take initiative and consider alternatives.

Proficient: Teacher is consistently dependable and often does more than is required.  Teacher shows a strong interest in learning and readily adapts to changes.

Distinguished: Teacher anticipates needs of others and takes necessary action to meet these needs.  Teacher actively seeks others’ opinions.

Standard 10: COLLABORATION, ETHICS, AND RELATIONSHIPS - The candidates we prepare for licensure as Minnesota teachers enhance their effectiveness as educators by working together with their colleagues, their students' parents, and members of their school community to create and sustain a positive learning environment that can enhance students' learning and well-being.  (Knowledge Base, p. 58)

                                                                                                                                                MSEPT  Rating

1

Ensures confidentiality and appropriate treatment of students                                         10.C

 

2

Collaborates in activities designed to make the entire school productive                         10.H

 

3

Establishes productive relationships with parents/guardians                                            10.K

 

 

Comments:

1

Ensures confidentiality and appropriate treatment of students

-          Standards question #18

-          Observations

 

MSEPT 10.C

Ensures confidentiality and appropriate treatment of students.

Not Met: Teacher sometimes shares information inappropriately.  Teacher may show favoritism to some students, may neglect the needs of some students or may respond in a way that causes embarrassment for the student. 

Basic: Teacher shares information appropriately, treats students fairly, and shows respect for all students.  Teacher is growing in awareness of students’ needs.

Proficient: Teacher takes initiative to learn about students’ needs and needs of students he/she may have in the future.  Teacher has much knowledge about students’  needs, treats students fairly and respectfully. 

Distinguished: Teacher gains awareness of less obvious needs of students and takes innovative steps to address them. Students extend respect to the teacher and each other. 

 

2

Collaborates in activities designed to make the entire school productive

-          Standards question #12

 

 

MSEPT 10.H

Collaborates in activities designed to make the entire school productive

Not Met: Teacher avoids involvement in school events and projects. 

Basic: Teacher participates in school events when asked or required to do so. 

Proficient: Teacher volunteers to participate in school events and makes a substantial contribution. 

Distinguished: Teacher assumes a leadership role in a major school event. 

 

3

Establishes productive relationships with parents/guardians

-          Letters to family

-          Home kit

-          Standards question #15

 

MSEPT 10.K

Establishes productive relationships with parents/guardians.

Not Met: Teacher has little positive contact with parents.

Basic: Teacher has informal contact with some or all parents.

Proficient: Teacher initiates positive relationships with parents.  This supports student learning and well-being. 

Distinguished: Teacher seeks out several opportunities to establish productive relationships with parents.  Teacher responds appropriately if challenged by parent. 

 

C.2  Secondary (K-12 / 5-12) Student Teaching Performance Profile

Appendix C.2 includes the performance profile used to provide summative ratings of candidates completing student teaching in pursuit of secondary licensure.  Although a prototype was devised during the fall of 2000 to test the feasibility of this approach to recording and documenting estimates of secondary candidates’ performance, further work on the project was delayed as a result of personnel changes.  Elements of the profile were introduced in the fall of 2002, but not fully implemented until the fall of 2003 to record the ratings offered by college supervisors upon final review of a candidates’ student teaching experience.  

 

COLLEGE OF SAINT BENEDICT/SAINT JOHN’S UNIVERSITY

Standards of Effective Practice: Secondary Student Teacher Performance Profile

Form B  

 

STUDENT TEACHER_________________________________  EVALUATOR/TITLE_______________________________________

SUBJECTS/GRADES TAUGHT_________________________  SCHOOL________________________________________________

DATE EVALUATION COMPLETED______________________ 

STUDENT SIGNATURE____________________________________

DIRECTIONS: The following Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice represent critical components of the College of Saint Benedict/ Saint John’s University Department of Education Student Teaching Program. The cooperating teacher completes this form at the end of the student teacher’s experience with the cooperating teacher. The CSB/SJU supervisor completes this form at the end of the semester. Place a check mark in the appropriate rating boxes, and include a brief behavioral example whenever possible. Please use the following key and the rubrics in your CSB/SJU Handbook.

*4 = Distinguished (Consistently Exceeds Standard)              3 = Proficient (Consistently Meets Standard)

2 = Basic (Often Meets Standard)               1 = Not Met (Did not Meet Standard)                           0 = Unable to Observe

*We expect this rating to be used sparingly to indicate only the most exemplary performance.

 

 

SEP

4

3

2

1

0

Performance Examples

STANDARD 1: SUBJECT MATTER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Connects subject matter to other subject areas and everyday life

1C

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses multiple teaching strategies; links to prior understanding    

1E

 

 

 

 

 

 

Covers a variety of Blooms levels                                                   

1I

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 2: STUDENT LEARNING

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses Instructional strategies that promote student learning          

2A

 

 

 

 

 

 

Links new ideas to familiar ideas                                                   

2F

 

 

 

 

 

 

Encourages discussion, listening, responding, group interaction  

2G.1

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elicits oral, written, and other samples of student thinking            

2G.2

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 3: DIVERSE LEARNERS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lessons appeal to a variety of learning styles, strengths, needs   

3A

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recognizes, deals with biases, prejudices, racism and sexism     

3D

 

 

 

 

 

 

Incorporates student’s experiences and culture in instruction       

3H

 

 

 

 

 

 

Persists in helping all students achieve success                            

3I

 

 

 

 

 

 

Respects individual differences                                                     

3Q

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 4: INSTRUCTIONAL STRATEGIES

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses variety of materials, human and technological resources     

4D

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adjusts teaching strategies to student responses, ideas, needs    

4F

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses multiple strategies to engage students in active learning     

4H

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monitors and adjusts strategies in response to student feedback 

4I

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 5: LEARNING ENVIRONMENT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Creates environment that contributes to all students’ self esteem 

5C

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses principles of effective classroom management                     

5E

 

 

 

 

 

 

Promotes intrinsic motivation                                                          

5F

 

 

 

 

 

 

Engages students in individual and group learning activities         

5M

 

 

 

 

 

 

Promotes active learning in productive tasks                                

5N

 

 

 

 

 

 

Promotes climate of openness, respect, support, inquiry, learning

5P

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monitors independent and group work                                            

5R

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 6: COMMUNICATION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses nonverbal as well as verbal communication                          

6C

 

 

 

 

 

 

Promotes effective listening techniques                                         

6F

 

 

 

 

 

 

Asks effective questions                                                                 

6H

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stimulates discussion in a variety of ways                                      

6J

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 7: PLANNING INSTRUCTION

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Relates curriculum to student experiences                                     

7B

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accommodates individual learning styles                                       

7C

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDARD 8: ASSESSMENT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses assessment strategies appropriate to learning objectives      

8E

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses assessment data to evaluate student progress                     

8H.1

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uses assessment data to modify teaching strategies                    

8H.2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maintains student records of work and performance                      

8L

 

 

 

 

 

 

Communicates student progress to appropriate persons              

8M

 

 

 

 

 

 

REFLECTION AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Understands role of reflection, self-assessment on learning          

9E

 

 

 

 

 

 

COLLABORATION, ETHICS AND RELATIONSHIPS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Establishes productive relationships with parents and guardians in support of student learning and well being                                   

10K

 

 

 

 

 

 

After completing this form and conferring with the student teacher, mail the YELLOW copy to the CSB/SJU Director of K-12/5-12 Student Teachers. Keep the PINK copy for your records, and give the WHITE copy to the student teacher.           July 2005

 

RUBRICS FOR FORM B

College of Saint Benedict/Saint John’s University

Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice: Performance Indicators Evaluation

K-12/5-12 Student Teachers

Standard 1: Subject Matter

1C Connects subject matter to other subject areas and everyday life.

Not Met: Does not integrate content with other subjects or everyday life.

Basic: Makes an effort to coordinate or integrate content/experiences some of the time.

Proficient: Objectives provide opportunities for integration with other content areas and reference to everyday life.

Distinguished: Objectives require student initiative in making connections with other content areas and everyday life.

1E Uses multiple teaching strategies; links to prior understanding

    • Not Met: Teacher uses one teaching strategy; does not link to prior understanding.
    • Basic: Teacher uses more than one teaching strategy; seldom links to prior understanding.
    • Proficient: Teacher adjusts teaching strategies in response to students’ new and prior understanding.
    • Distinguished: Teacher displays exceptional ability to adjust and implement multiple teaching strategies, and links all new learning to prior understanding. 

1I Covers a variety of Blooms levels.

    • Not Met: Teacher does not understand importance of teaching at as many levels as possible. Consistently teaches at knowledge level only.
    • Basic: Teacher indicates some awareness of Blooms levels; occasionally teaches beyond the knowledge level.
    • Proficient: Teacher’s methods reflect a clear understanding of Blooms levels; often teaches beyond the knowledge level.
    • Distinguished: Teacher creates strategies and methods to cover several Blooms levels; requires students to perform at all of Blooms levels.

Standard 2: Student Learning

2A Uses instructional strategies that promote student learning.

    • Not Met: Teacher uses the same strategy for each lesson.
    • Basic: Teacher implements some strategies for building on students’ interests and strengths.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently creates and implements strategies to build on students’ interests and strengths.
    • Distinguished: Teacher shows exceptional creativity in providing learning opportunities which build on interests and strengths of students.

2F Links new ideas to familiar ideas.

    • Not Met: Teacher seldom links new ideas to familiar ideas.
    • Basic: Teacher links some new ideas to familiar ideas.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently links new ideas to familiar ideas.
    • Distinguished: Teacher links and requires students to link new ideas to familiar ideas.

2G.1 Encourages discussion, listening, responding, group interaction.

    • Not Met: Teacher seldom employs more than one or two strategies.
    • Basic: Teacher often uses one or two strategies.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently uses all strategies.
    • Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses all strategies and creates new methods to engage students in active learning.

2G.2 Elicits oral, written, and other samples of student thinking.

      • Not Met: Teacher relies on one method or does not sample student thinking.
      • Basic: Teacher often uses more than one method to sample student thinking.
      • Proficient: Teacher consistently uses several methods of sampling student thinking.
      • Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses several methods of sampling student thinking, and creates new methods to sample student thinking.

Standard 3: Diverse Learners

3A Lessons appeal to a variety of learning styles, strengths, needs.

    • Not Met: Limited knowledge of and ability to respond appropriately.
    • Basic: Teaching approaches often include appropriate responses; strategies are limited.
    • Proficient: Teaching approaches consistently include appropriate responses that are varied, sensitive to individuals and effective in creating a pleasant and productive learning environment.
    • Distinguished: Teacher uses an extensive repertoire of strategies (including additional resources from the school) to provide educational opportunities appropriate for all students.

3D Recognizes and addresses biases prejudices, racism, and sexism.

    • Not Met: Teacher does not recognize or address incidents of prejudice, racism, or sexism.
    • Basic: Teacher recognizes most expressions prejudice, racism, or sexism and addresses them.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently recognizes and addresses incidents prejudice, racism, or sexism
    • Distinguished: Teacher effectively models inclusive behaviors and creates opportunities for student to change attitudes and behaviors

3H Incorporates student’s experiences and culture in instruction.

    • Not Met: Teacher is unaware of individual differences and cultures.
    • Basic: Teacher is aware of differences; sometimes incorporates student’s experience and culture in instruction. 
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently incorporates student’s experience and culture in instruction
    • Distinguished: Teacher implements techniques which bring about a positive atmosphere that encourages students to share their experiences and culture.

3I Persists in helping all students achieve success.

    • Not Met: Teacher does not attempt to help all students learn.
    • Basic: Teacher makes some attempts to address needs of all students. 
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently tries to address the needs of all students.
    • Distinguished: Teacher uses a wide variety of approaches to try to help all students succeed

3Q Respects individual differences.

    • Not Met: Teacher is unaware of individual differences.
    • Basic: Teacher is aware of differences; sometimes models accepting behavior; sometimes facilitates learning opportunities that affirm differences. 
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently models accepting behaviors.  Teacher responds to impromptu situations appropriately.  Teacher consistently facilitates learning opportunities to promote feelings of belonging and acceptance for all. 
    • Distinguished: Teacher implements techniques which bring about a positive change for one or more students.

Standard 4: Instructional Strategies

4D Uses a variety of appropriate materials and human and technological resources. 

    • Not Met: Hesitant to use a variety of materials.
    • Basic: Uses materials and resources provided; these resources support objectives.
    • Proficient: Teacher brings in additional resources which support objectives and engage students in meaningful learning. 
    • Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses a wide variety of resources which motivate students, support objectives and promote creative thinking.  Students are motivated to select or adapt materials.

4F Adjusts teaching strategies to student responses, ideas, needs.

    • Not Met: Adheres to plan, even when a change is needed; not alert to students needs.
    • Basic: Teacher adjusts lesson with some beneficial results.
    • Proficient: Teacher makes minor adjustments to lessons, and the adjustment occurs smoothly.
    • Distinguished: Teacher successfully makes major adjustments to one or more lessons.

4H Uses multiple strategies to engage students in active learning

    • Not Met: Doest not use more than one strategy; does not engage students in active learning.
    • Basic: Uses one or two strategies to occasionally engage students in active learning.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently uses a variety of strategies to engage students in active learning.
    • Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses a variety of creative strategies to involve students in active learning.

4I Monitors and adjusts strategies in response to student feedback.

    • Not Met: Fails to elicit student feedback.
    • Basic: Occasionally monitors and adjusts strategies in response to student feedback.
    • Proficient: Occasionally monitors and adjusts strategies in response to student feedback.
    • Distinguished: Consistently monitors student feedback and adjusts strategies in response.

Standard 5: Learning Environment

5C Creates environment that contributes to all students’ self esteem.

    • Not Met: Teacher sometimes allows or promotes activities which produce conflict or put-downs.
    • Basic: Interactions are usually appropriate and free of competition but may show some favoritism or minimal respect. 
    • Proficient: Interactions are consistently respectful.  Students work cooperatively rather than competitively. 
    • Distinguished: Teacher demonstrates genuine caring and respect for all students.  Students extend respect and support to each other and the teacher. 

5E Uses principles of effective classroom management.

    • Not Met: Students are not engaged in purposeful learning.
    • Basic: Teacher usually manages student behavior to provide productive learning experiences.  May lose some time and attention during transitions.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently and effectively manages student behavior. 
    • Distinguished: Students give direction to provide an orderly and productive.

5F Promotes intrinsic motivation.

    • Not Met: Teacher often engages in extrinsic motivational strategies, seldom relates lesson to student interests, seldom allows students to have choices, seldom leads students to ask questions, and sometimes causes anxiety with strategies that cause embarrassment, comparison, or undue pressure. 
    • Basic: Teacher provides some learning opportunities that allow for student choices, relate to student interest, and allow students to ask questions.  Teacher is aware of situations which could cause anxiety for students and the teacher avoids these.   
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently relates lessons to student interests; students are encouraged to pursue learning that is of interest to them. Teacher avoids situations which cause anxiety for students and facilitates classroom activities so that students are affirmed. 
    • Distinguished: Students display a high degree of initiative and self-motivation.

5M Engages students in individual and group learning activities.

    • Not Met: Group work and independent work experiences are minimally successful in advancing instructional goals.  Students may have insufficient challenge, may not be adequately focused, or may not meet needs of all students. 
    • Basic: Most group and independent work experiences provide appropriate challenges for all students.  Students are focused and the experiences are productive. 
    • Proficient: Group and independent work experiences are consistently productive for all students.  Students are appropriately challenged with creative options. 
    • Distinguished: Instructional groups are productive and fully appropriate to students and objectives.  Experiences are varied and creative.  Students implement their ideas to advance understanding. 

5N Promotes active learning in productive tasks.

    • Not Met: Teacher sometimes allows or promotes activities which produce conflict or put-downs.
    • Basic: Interactions are usually appropriate and productive.
    • Proficient: Interactions are productive. Students work cooperatively rather than competitively. 
    • Distinguished: Students respect and support each other and the teacher while they are engaged in creative, active, productive tasks. 

5P Promotes climates of openness, respect, support, inquiry, learning.

    • Not Met: Teacher sometimes allows or promotes activities which produce conflict or put-downs.
    • Basic: Interactions are usually appropriate and free of competition but may show some favoritism or minimal respect. 
    • Proficient: Interactions are consistently respectful.  Students work cooperatively rather than competitively. 
    • Distinguished: Teacher demonstrates genuine caring and respect for all students.  Students extend respect and support to each other and the teacher. 

5R Monitors independent and group work.

    • Not Met: Students are given few opportunities to work independently or in groups.
    • Basic: Teacher provides students with some opportunities to work independently or in groups, and teacher often checks on individual and group work.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently provides opportunities for students to work independently or in groups, and teacher consistently checks on individual and group work.
    • Distinguished: Teacher designs create activities for individual and group work that provide intrinsic motivation, and students monitor their work and tasks with little need for teacher monitoring.

Standard 6: Communication

6C Uses nonverbal as well as verbal communication

    • Not Met: Body language is aloof, confusing, or too casual or too stern.  Spoken language is difficult to hear or understand, may be incorrect or inappropriate. 
    • Basic: Body language is appropriate. Spoken language is usually audible, clear, and correct.
    • Proficient: Body language used frequently and appropriately, and spoken language is audible, clear, and correct.
    • Distinguished: Body language is used effectively, frequently and appropriately in all classroom situations. Body language and spoken language are natural, expressive, and invite students to respond openly and naturally. 

6F Promotes effective listening techniques.

    • Not Met: Teacher does not check to determine if students are listening. 
    • Basic: Teacher often requires feedback to check students’ listening. 
    • Proficient: Teacher not only requires frequent feedback, but actively teaches students productive listening skills.
    • Distinguished: Teacher provides numerous and frequent opportunities for students to give feedback to demonstrate listening skills. Teacher actively teaches listening, and responding skills.

6H Asks effective questions. 

    • Not Met: Many questions are basic and factual, and teacher does not allow enough wait time, or teacher relies on a few students to answer.
    • Basic: Most questions require more than a yes or no answer, but remain at the knowledge and comprehension level. Teacher attempts to engage several students.
    • Proficient: Most questions are high level; teacher allows adequate wait time and calls on a wide variety of students.  
    • Distinguished: Most questions are high level: teacher always allows adequate wait time, attempts to engage all students, and encourages students to synthesize and evaluate whenever possible.

6J Stimulates discussion in a variety of ways. 

    • Not Met: Many questions are basic and factual with little student participation.
    • Basic: Most questions require more than a yes or no answer, but remain at the knowledge and comprehension level. are engaged in meaningful discussion.  Questions vary in quality.  Teacher directs discussion. 
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently includes challenging, high quality questions, leads students to articulate their ideas, and encourages creativity. 
    • Distinguished: Students often assume responsibility for the success of the discussion, initiating topics and making positive, unsolicited contributions.  Teacher successfully engages all students in meaningful discussion. 

Standard 7: Planning Instruction

7B Relates curriculum to student experiences.

    • Not Met: Unaware of student experiences. 
    • Basic: Teacher provides some connections between content and student experiences.
    • Proficient: Teacher provides frequent connections between content and student experiences.
    • Distinguished: Teacher provides appropriate content for each student, making specific adaptations for student experiences interests and encourages students to make connections between content and experiences.

7C Accommodates individual learning styles.

    • Not Met: Minimal knowledge of developmental characteristics, unfamiliar with the different approaches to learning (styles, modalities, intelligences).
    • Basic: Teacher provides content which is appropriate for most students, making some adaptations for academic needs, and cultural heritage.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently provides content which is appropriate for all students, making adaptations for learning (styles, modalities, intelligences).  
    • Distinguished: Teacher consistently plans extensively, incorporates suggestions, and is highly creative in making adaptations for learning (styles, modalities, intelligences). 

Standard 8: Assessment

8E Uses assessment strategies appropriate to learning objectives.

    • Not Met: Assessments are either omitted, do not evaluate objectives, or lack variety.
    • Basic: Some assessment is of high quality; others are not.  Some lessons do not include assessment.  There is some variety in types of assessment.
    • Proficient: All of the instructional objectives are assessed.  Approaches are of high quality.  Some accommodations are made for individuals.  Some variety in approaches.
    • Distinguished: Assessment is consistently congruent with objectives, both in content and process.  Accommodations are often made for individuals.  Students are aware of how they are meeting standards, participate in evaluating themselves and goal-setting.  A variety of assessments are conducted to meet the variety of learning  styles.

8H.1 Uses assessment data to evaluate student progress.

    • Not Met: Assessments are either omitted, or do not evaluate individual student progress.
    • Basic: Some assessment is done of individual student progress.  Some lessons do not include assessment. 
    • Proficient: All of the instructional objectives are assessed. Students are routinely informed of their progress.
    • Distinguished: Assessment is consistently provided for every objective. Students are encouraged to maintain individual assessment records. Students are aware of how they are meeting standards, participate in evaluating themselves and goal-setting.  A variety of assessments are conducted to meet the variety of learning  styles.

8H.2 Uses assessment data to modify teaching strategies

    • Not Met: Teacher does not review assessment data.
    • Basic: Teacher infrequently uses assessment data to modify teaching strategies.
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently uses assessment data to modify teaching strategies.
    • Distinguished: Teacher consistently uses assessment data to modify teaching strategies, and creates unique methods of reassessing student performance. Methods of self-assessment are varied and creative.
       

8L Maintains records of work and performance

    • Not Met: Records of students’ progress are disorganized and/or insufficient
    • Basic: Teacher keeps records and adheres to required procedures.
    • Proficient: Teachers system for keeping records is effective, up-to-date, and broad in scope. 
    • Distinguished: Student records are orderly, up-to-date, and allows for some student maintenance. 

8M Communicates student progress to appropriate persons.

    • Not Met: Teacher neglects to provide pertinent information to students, parents/guardians, and/or colleagues.  Information may be insufficient, inaccurate or delivered in an insensitive matter.
    • Basic: Teacher adheres to required procedures for communicating progress to students, parents, and colleagues. 
    • Proficient: Teacher consistently communicates progress to parents, students, and colleagues.  Feedback addresses a wide range of skills.
    • Distinguished: Student participates in communicating progress to parents.  Teacher keeps students, parents, and colleagues informed.  These processes motivate students to achieve goals, commensurate with their abilities. 

Standard 9: Reflection and Professional Development

9E Understands role of reflection and self-assessment on learning.

    • Not Met: Teacher responds defensively to feedback, suggesting that it is not important.  Teacher shows little willingness to implement suggestions.
    • Basic: Teacher responds cordially to suggestions for improvement, tries to implement some.
    • Proficient: Teacher responds well to suggestions for improvement, viewing suggestions as opportunities rather than criticism.  Teacher consistently and successfully tries new approaches suggested, or creates new approaches.
    • Distinguished: Teacher eagerly seeks out opportunities for growth by asking for suggestions from supervisor, cooperating teacher, and colleagues (principal, other teachers, peers).  Teacher views this process positively and successfully implements new approaches.  Teacher consistently reflects on every lesson, and seeks to improve.

Standard 10: Collaboration, Ethics, and Relationships

10K Establishes productive relationships with parents/guardians in support of student learning and well being.

    • Not Met: Teacher has little positive contact with parents.
    • Basic: Teacher has informal contact with some or all parents.
    • Proficient: Teacher initiates positive relationships with parents.  This supports student learning and well-being. 
    • Distinguished: Teacher seeks out several opportunities to establish productive relationships with parents.

Teacher responds appropriately if challenged by parents.

C.3  Elementary (K-6 / 5-8) Student Teaching Work Sample

C.4  Secondary (K-12 / 5-12) Student Teaching Work Sample