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ERIC Number: ED561003
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Oct
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Effectiveness-Focused Teacher Preparation. The Progress of Education Reform. Volume 15, Number 5
Christie, Kathy
Education Commission of the States
The well known 1983 report "A Nation at Risk" recommended that individuals preparing to teach should meet high education standards and demonstrate an aptitude for teaching and competence in an academic discipline--adding also that college and university teacher preparation programs should be judged by how well their graduates meet these criteria. The report's recommendations led states to begin to require that teaching candidates should take basic skills assessments and content area assessments. Yet, while states set standards for programs by requiring that each program be accredited even before the report's release, most state leaders still have no idea how well these programs are preparing their graduates to be highly effective in the classroom. More than 30 years later, this remains the million-dollar question. In 2011, states reported data on 2,124 teacher-preparation programs from which well over 200,000 candidates exit each year. Many of these candidates annually join the ranks of the more than 3 million public school teachers assigned to classrooms across the nation. However, too many of these recent graduates feel unprepared as they enter the classroom. In his quantitative analysis of mathematics instruction in classrooms, highly regarded Michigan State University researcher and author William Schmidt found that when teachers said they felt unprepared, it was because they were unprepared. He also suggested that it is unfair to blame teachers when they attend programs whose quality is not within their control. This issue of "The Progress of Education Reform" explores why, 30 years following the release of the recommendations included in "A Nation at Risk," obtaining meaningful information on how well teacher-preparation programs are preparing the nation's teachers remains such a challenge. Moving in the direction of effectiveness-focused preparation is presented as an effective strategy and one that a number of states already have initiated.
Education Commission of the States. ECS Distribution Center, 700 Broadway Suite 1200, Denver, CO 80203-3460. Tel: 303-299-3692; Fax: 303-296-8332; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: GE Foundation
Authoring Institution: Education Commission of the States
Identifiers - Location: Louisiana; New York; Ohio; Tennessee; Texas