ERIC Number: ED393829
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
What Educators Want in a Master's Program: A Practitioner's Perspective.
Selke, Mary J.
A constructivist practitioner's masters program in professional development (PDMA) was designed and piloted at the University of Northern Iowa. The program provides an option for pursuing a master's in education structured upon the following constructivism-focused framework of components: (1) the program is designed for experienced educators, and all coursework is applicable to the classroom; (2) classrooms serve as field-based learning laboratories; (3) students progress through the program in cohort groups; (4) professors collaborate in teaching teams to deliver an articulated curriculum; (5) electives, seminars, and practice foster individualization within a community of learners; (6) exit outcomes reflect the linkage of theory to practice; (7) three strands are conducted within a context of inquiry and reflection, initiated early in the program--talent development, managing/monitoring student learning, and community; (8) time commitments are pre-established to assist in planning; and (9) inquiry, reflection, and authentic assessment are crucial. A statewide survey was conducted among a random sample of urban, suburban, and rural schools; 100 surveys (59 percent) were returned. The study resulted in several observations related to master's study for educators. Among these observations were: the overriding goal must be to shape the knowledge base applied in practice; theoretical constructs taught must be modeled and proactively connected to classroom practice; degree programs are needed that are accessible and affordable for teachers in the initial years of their careers. Because master's study shapes expectations for personal processes of continuous professional development, it is crucial to systemic change at the school or district level. Eight data tables are included. (Contains 20 references.) (ND)
Descriptors: Constructivism (Learning), Curriculum Development, Educational Objectives, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Knowledge Base for Teaching, Masters Programs, Professional Development, State Surveys, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Improvement, Teaching Experience, Theory Practice Relationship
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: University of Northern Iowa
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of Teacher Educators (76th, St. Louis, MO, February 24-28, 1994).