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Understanding Urban Communities as Context and Text for Teaching and Learning

Editor’s Note: Professor Hollins inspired attendees of AACTE’s recent Annual Meeting in Atlanta during the Speaker Spotlight Session. (View a video recording of her speech here, and read another version in this Hechinger Report piece, which includes the video she played during her address.) To follow up on her presentation, we invited Hollins to explore her topic in a series of blogs for Ed Prep Matters. This is the second post in the series.

Teaching is an interpretive practice that requires knowledge of the community where students grow and develop, and where they are socialized. Students’ initial and ongoing learning happens within a particular community; is framed by the ideologies and practices of the community; is influenced by the experiences, interests, and values shared among members of the community; and is appropriated through the learner’s perception, which is developed within the particular community. The initial learning that happens within a community constitutes the intellectual, psychological, social, and emotional development of the individual person.

Understanding Teaching as an Interpretive Process and Practice

Editor’s Note: Professor Hollins inspired attendees of AACTE’s recent Annual Meeting in Atlanta during the Speaker Spotlight Session. (View a video recording of her speech here, and read another version in this Hechinger Report piece, which includes the video she played during her address.) To follow up on her presentation, we invited Hollins to explore her topic in a series of blogs for Ed Prep Matters. This is the first post in the series.

The way teaching and learning teaching are conceptualized influences approaches and practices in both. For example, where teaching is viewed as an interpretive process, learning teaching also requires an interpretive process for constructing the habits of mind and deep knowledge of approaches and practices necessary for facilitating meaningful, purposeful, and productive learning experiences for students in different contexts, from different cultural and experiential backgrounds, and with different developmental needs.

Advancing the Imperative of Authentic Practice

Throughout the AACTE Annual Meeting sessions in Atlanta, I was reminded of the lesson from Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert. The imperative of ample, authentic practice as a foundation for professional mastery resonated across several conference presentations.

‘Deans for Impact’ Brings Welcome Energy to Reform Efforts

Eighteen education deans have formed a new coalition, Deans for Impact, to engage in the ongoing and important discussion about educator effectiveness and quality evidence. This group has staked out an agenda that is congruent with AACTE’s overall goals and also echoes the professional standards being implemented by the Council for the Accreditation for Educator Preparation.

Implementation Conference Reflects Growth, Experience of edTPA Community

The third annual edTPA National Implementation Conference, held last month in Los Angeles, drew nearly 400 educators and policy leaders from 28 states and more than 100 universities.

Convened at the University of California Los Angeles to accommodate record attendance, this year’s conference featured 32 plenary and breakout sessions, including a panel on how to promote and sustain partnerships between teacher preparation programs and cooperating PK-12 schools.

PDK/Gallup Poll Shows Public Support for Quality Teacher Preparation

AACTE Members Addressing Key Concerns Through Rigorous Programs, Partnerships, and Policy Initiatives

AACTE member institutions across the country are leading rigorous and effective teacher preparation programs that echo the priorities of those surveyed in the 46th annual PDK/Gallup Poll of the Public’s Attitudes Toward the Public Schools. The 2014 poll includes a special section released today on teacher preparation and evaluation.

The first report on the 2014 poll, released last month, showed that Americans are skeptical of federal policy influences on public schools and of the Common Core State Standards and standardized tests. The newly released second report delves into specific ways respondents think teacher quality and schools should be improved.

CPRE Report: Preparation in Methods, Pedagogy Linked to Teacher Retention

Preservice preparation in teaching methods and pedagogy has a notably positive effect on new teachers’ likelihood to stay past their first year on the job, according to a new report out of the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE). Teachers’ routes to licensure, certificate types, degrees, and selectivity of their colleges have much less correlation with attrition, say report authors Richard Ingersoll, Lisa Merrill, and Henry May.

Analyzing data from the national Schools and Staffing Survey and supported by a National Science Foundation grant, the authors studied to what degree various elements of preservice preparation contribute to beginning teachers’ attrition or retention after 1 year in the classroom, particularly in the fields of mathematics and science.

Breathing Room for Teacher Evaluation; Will ED Extend Approach to Teacher Prep?

Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan issued a statement responding to widespread concerns about standardized testing—saying that “testing issues today are sucking the oxygen out of the room in a lot of schools” and offering to delay by a year the federal requirement that teacher evaluations include some “significant” influence from students’ performance on state assessments.

Teaching: More Complex Than Rocket Science

American teachers touch the American future every day. They do so by producing good citizens, good employers, good workers, and good people. As teacher educators, we prepare these leaders.

In today’s political climate, too many people take a simplistic approach to teaching and learning. It’s not hard to find someone who will argue that to teach, all you need are good intentions. Nearly everyone has been in school, so many people believe this makes them expert on how to teach and even on how to train teachers. Similar logic would lead us to conclude that since everyone has been born, we could all be obstetricians and medical educators. Teaching and teacher training are not simple tasks.

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