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ERIC Number: ED530453
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 338
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1095-5522-6
ISSN: N/A
A Program Evaluation of Cardinal Stritch University's Undergraduate Teacher Education Program
Russell, Freda Renee
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Cardinal Stritch University
The purpose of the research was to study the effectiveness of Cardinal Stritch University's Undergraduate Teacher Education Program in preparing its graduates to teach all children. The researcher framed the study around four areas of concern common to beginning teachers from the research and literature: (a) curriculum, instruction and assessment [teaching practice]; (b) ability to teach diverse learners [diversity]; (c) navigating the school environment [school culture]; and (d) having opportunities for professional growth [professional development]. The researcher utilized a program evaluation design as the research methodology, which is a mixed-method approach, allowing for a systematic process of assessing the quality through surveys of beginning teachers, principals and mentor teachers, interviews with principal and mentor teachers, and document analysis of key program benchmarks to further explain findings and the extent in which the program contributed to those results. The following questions guided the study: (1) Are the graduates performing at the expected level of proficiency for beginning teachers, based on the Wisconsin Teacher Standards? (2) How did the responses of the graduates compare or contrast to that of the principals and mentor teacher responses? (3) What role, if any, did teacher mentoring play in the graduates' preparation to teach all children? (4) In the schools where the formal mentoring process was evident, what other factors contributed to beginning teacher proficiency? Findings suggested that beginning teachers are least prepared in the area of school culture. School culture is defined as a group's shared beliefs, values, traditions, and ways of interacting with one another, that gives the school a "climate" or feel. It is the "way they work" that is known to its members and may be hidden to new members. Beginning teachers struggled specifically in the areas of classroom management, balancing workload, and connecting with other teachers and the community. Beginning teachers, principals and mentor teachers described the struggle as "treading water" and feeling overwhelmed with the responsibilities of the classroom and student learning. The beginning teacher's lacked understanding of the culture of the school, which created an inability to prioritize what was important; to develop a vision for what "good" teachers do and what good teaching is. The implications for teacher preparation are a commitment to strong school-university partnerships that allow college faculty and K-12 faculty to develop integrated approaches to teacher preparation and a continuum of teacher development for all professional educators. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml.]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Wisconsin