Middle School Teacher Preparation Program
Narrative Re: Assessments
Praxis I and II as well as the VCLA are required of all teacher preparation programs, we have included them on the List of Assessments, but do not have a rubric which addresses them. In Spring, 2010, the State Department passed a ruling stating if a student passed the mathematics portion of the Praxis I and the VCLA, they were no longer required to pass the reading and writing sections of Praxis I. The Middle School Teacher Preparation Program requires a 2.5 GPA as well as passing the required portions of the Praxis I and VCLA prior to admittance to the Program. The Program requires each student to have two content area concentrations in either English, mathematics, science or social sciences. Prior to student teaching, candidates must pass the Praxis II in at least on of these concentration areas. Graduate level students who are either coming back for licensure alone or are obtaining licensure at the same time as pursuing the graduate degree enroll in EDUC 642 (student teaching) and EDUC 643 (Seminar).
During Fall semester, candidates prepare lesson plans, thematic units, and a micro-teaching lesson.(EDME 408/410). During the student teaching semester, the thematic units are expanded upon and candidates do a unit plan presentation. (EDME 413/EDUC 643). Candidates include an activity whereby the candidate conducts a pre and post test on a unit they have developed to determine their effect on student learning. There is no rubric for this activity as the candidates simply compare the results of the test to determine if their teaching is having a positive effect on student learning. In Fall, 2009, candidates began analyzing their test data to determine if and how they should change parts of the content of the tests.
Field experience (EDME 432) during the all and then student teaching (EDUC 451/EDUC 642) accompanied by Seminar: Conceptualizing, planning and teaching (EDME 413/EDUC 643) may be completed either during spring, or if need be, the following fall.
Classroom climate evaluations (EDUC 451/EDUC 642) and Analysis of teacher practice through literature evaluations (EDME 413/EDUC 643) are conducted during student teaching and discussed during the evaluations. Candidates are required to conduct research on some facet of educational issues relative to middle schools and/or students. Portfolios are initiated during the fall semester and completed at the end of student teaching in EDME 413 and EDUC 643.
Evaluations from cooperating teachers and University supervisors are completed at the end of student teaching (EDUC 451/642) and the final assessment is the Reflection Journal.
Rubrics are included for all assessments except GPA, Praxis I and II, VCLA, and the Pre/post test activity.
In prior years if a candidate did not pass both content area Praxis II tests, he/she was not eligible for student teaching. In Spring, 2008, the Virginia Department of Education and the Board of Education determined even though the National Middle School Association (NMSA) still required candidates to have two content area concentrations in either English, social sciences, mathematics, or science, Virginia candidates would be permitted to student teach and be licensed in only one content area once they had passed that Praxis II test.
After this ruling became effective, four students returned in Fall, 2008 to complete their student teaching. In Fall, 2009, one student returned to complete her student teaching. In Spring, 2008, one candidate withdrew from student teaching for medical reasonsas did one candidate in Spring, 2009.