Category B:  Preparation to Teach Curriculum to All Students in California Schools 

Standard 6:  Pedagogy and Reflective Practice
The Multiple Subject Credential program at Fresno State is designed to promote a high level of pedagogical thought and reflective practice. The program begins with coursework in philosophy, psychology, and language acquisition theory that provides candidates with a solid understanding drawn from research and literature related to the critical issues that under gird reflective practice in California schools.

From these foundational courses and throughout the credential program, candidates regularly and systematically apply theories and principles to the analysis of pedagogical practices. In the first semester, candidates conduct structured observations of classrooms in conjunction with CI 171: Understanding the Learner, Instructional Design and Assessment and LEE 172: Cultural and Language Contexts of the Classrooms. These observations are used to frame discussion and dialogue based on the theories and principles drawn from the literature and specifically related to the needs of individual students within the classroom. [See LEE 172 syllabus:  ELD and Content Lesson Observations.] 

A case study is conducted during Phase 1 to assist candidates in learning to analyze student data and to begin making decisions relative to differentiated instruction. [See CI 171 syllabus:  Case Study Assignment.]  In CI 171: Understanding the Learner, Instructional Design and Assessment, LEE 173: Teaching Reading and Social Studies in Grades 4-8 ,LEE 177: Teaching Reading and the Arts in Grades K-3 ,CI 175: Teaching Science and Applied Technology, and CI 176: Mathematics Instruction and Applied Assessment, candidates learn to plan effective lessons as well as analyze and reflect on state-adopted academic content standards and frameworks and the California Standards for the Teaching Profession.

As candidates implement lessons and units in their concurrent field and fieldwork placements, they are required to reflect on their teaching practices and identify factors that contribute to the success (or failure) of the lesson, student learning that took place, and any changes they would make in future lessons . In Phase 3, candidates learn to develop/plan lessons so that all students can learn and how to apply alternative approaches relative to differentiated instruction for students in SPED 179: Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management. [ See SPED 179 Syllabus.]During the final student teaching placement ( EHD 170), teacher candidates build a reflective portfolio of their work (Holistic Proficiency Project and Teaching Sample Project), samples of student outcomes, and reflections on their personal teaching. [See FAST Manual.]

To maximize student learning, candidates learn to create and maintain well-managed classrooms that foster students’ physical, cognitive, emotional, and social well-being. They learn to develop safe, inclusive, positive learning environments that promote respect, value difference, and mediate conflicts according to state laws and local protocol.

Fieldwork courses EHD 174 and EHD 178 help candidates learn how to develop safe, inclusive positive learning environments that promote respect, value difference, with students and create effective learning environments. Making positive connections and working with small groups of students is emphasized in the EHD 174 seminar. One presenter has an extensive background in mediation and conflict resolution with young students which is integrated into the EHD 178 seminar. Small group activities include role play, simulations and opportunities for teacher candidates to brainstorm and practice strategies that they can use to engage small groups of students as well as in whole class instruction. SPED 179 requires students to develop a Classroom Management Plan including environment, rules, procedures, and interventions.  Candidates are expected to implement these strategies in their field placements and their effectiveness is evaluated through observations, mid semester and final assessment goal setting meetings, and TPA’s.  (See Multiple Subject Handbook.

In addition to their fieldwork courses and participation in seminars related to creating effective learning environments, ECE candidates are required to enroll in CI 150ECE Managing Early Learning Environments.  This course focuses on developing safe, inclusive, and positive learning environments for children from birth through grade six with a focus on K-3 classrooms. [See CI 150ECE syllabus.]  Students are expected to apply CI 150ECE course content to their concurrent fieldwork experiences. [See LEE178ECE syllabus.]

By design, the preliminary teacher preparation program fosters the ability of candidates to evaluate instructional alternatives, articulate the pedagogical reasons for instructional decisions, and reflect on teaching practices.   The program fosters each candidate’s realization that the analysis and assessment of practices promote a teacher’s professional growth.

The Multiple Subject credential program at Fresno State is explicitly designed to promote reflective practice. Candidates are taught to reflect on the connections and interactions among foundational studies, content knowledge, and effective teaching practices. Assignments emphasize critical reflection in the refinement of teaching practice, curriculum development, and assessment. Curriculum and instruction courses and fieldwork require candidates to select and use materials, plan and make presentations, design activities, and monitor student success by thoughtfully assessing student needs, defining important instructional goals, considering alternative strategies, and reflecting on prior decisions and their effects.

Candidates are expected to analyze their choices of materials and teaching and assessment approaches in light of student achievement and diverse needs. Throughout the phases of the program, candidates gradually learn to apply increasingly higher standards to critiques of their own effectiveness in planning and teaching lessons. The Teaching Sample Project and the Holistic Proficiency Project are culminating assignments/summative assessments  in EHD 170, final student teaching, that show evidence of analysis and assessment of instruction in the candidate’s field placements. [See FAST Manual.]

At every phase of the Multiple Subject credential program candidates are required to analyze and reflect on their own teaching and assessment practices. By systematically applying their growing knowledge of psychological, cultural, and learning theory to the analysis of practices they observe or implement in the classroom, candidates participate in reflective discussion in the coursework and maintain a reflective log as a part of student teaching requirements. Through daily student teaching entries that include analysis of teaching, assessment, and classroom management practices, and through completion of the performance assessments, candidates reflect and learn to make informed changes and decisions in their pedagogical practices. Assignments such as the Comprehensive Lesson Plan Project and the Teaching Sample Project assist candidates in learning to make informed, defensible decisions about teaching.

In the program, candidates read, analyze, discuss, and evaluate professional literature pertaining to important contemporary issues in California schools and classrooms, and use sources of professional information in making decisions about teaching and learning.

Candidates in the Multiple Subject credential program at Fresno State receive an extensive introduction to the professional literature during Phase 1 and Phase 2 coursework. This literature is routinely used to foster discussion of important contemporary issues of education in California, such as effective assessment procedures, instruction of English learners, balanced, comprehensive literacy programs, the impact of class size and grouping on student learning, and the implementation of Response to Intervention models and Universal Design for Learning. Current professional journals are routinely used as reading and discussion materials in all the foundation, curriculum, and instruction courses where candidates are expected to analyze their own practices in light of the research.

Candidates learn how to use and interpret student assessment data from multiple measures of student academic performance to inform instruction.  They learn how to plan and differentiate instruction based on student assessment data and diverse learning needs of the full range of learners (e.g., struggling readers, students with special needs, English learners, speakers of non-standard English, and advanced learners).

The Multiple Subject credential program at Fresno State is specifically designed to promote professional growth through reflection on practice that is grounded in an understanding of critical foundational issues and on the relevant literature. Reflection on educational practice is incorporated into each curriculum and instruction course. Teacher candidates are expected to demonstrate multiple sources of information in the planning, teaching, and assessing of lessons and units.  These sources of information may include such resources as the state curriculum frameworks and content standards, the California Standards for the Teaching Profession, professional journals and books, and age-appropriate reading materials for students. During Phase 3 in SPED 179 Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management teacher candidates are instructed and assessed on their knowledge and application of strategies to meet the needs of all students (students with disabilities, EL, at risk, GATE…). In the Differentiated Instruction Report students must use assessment data to inform their practice and pedagogical choices. Differentiation of instruction is demonstrated in their lesson designs utilizing UDL and in response to assessment and selection of targeted interventions.

In Phase 1 each of the courses prepares teacher candidates to learn about student differences, analyze student data and to begin making decisions relative to differentiated instruction. Teacher candidates conduct case studies to document their ability to interpret student assessment data and use it to inform instruction. [See CI 171 syllabus:  Case Study Assignment; LEE 172 syllabus: Cultural Awareness Project; LEE 173 syllabus: Case study.] In CI 171 teacher candidates conduct an academic pre-assessment and then use that information to design instruction. [See CI 171 syllabus: Design for Instruction Unit.] In LEE 172 they specifically look at language acquisition and assessment of English Learners, as well as instructional strategies for English Learners (e.g. SDAIE) [ See LEE 172 syllabus: course outline and Final Exam.] In LEE 173 teacher candidates learn about multiple forms of formative and summative assessment related to reading and writing. They complete competencies in their field placements in which they assess students and plan instruction based on the assessment.

[ See LEE 173 syllabus: course outline and competencies.]

In Phase 2 teacher candidates continue to develop their skills related to the planning and assessment cycle. In CI 175 they plan, model in class, and reflect on a standards-based science lesson with strategies appropriate for English learners and special needs students, and particular emphasis on technology. [ See CI 175 syllabus: course outline and Model Lesson Project assignment.] In CI 176 teacher candidates explore multiple forms of pre-, formative, and summative assessments and demonstrate their ability to use assessment to inform mathematics instruction and analyze learning through a Mini Unit assignment. [ See CI 176 syllabus: course outline and Mini Unit assignment.] In LEE 177 teacher candidates complete two forms of case studies, one with a kindergartner and one with a 1 st through 3 rd grade students, in which they use a variety of reading and writing assessments to learn about the students’ abilities and then use that information to suggest appropriate instruction. In addition, they complete a variety of competencies related to planning lessons to meet students’ needs. [ See LEE 177 course outline, case study assignments, and competencies.]

In Phase 3 teacher candidates focus specifically on students with special needs in their SPED 179 course. Teacher candidates are prepared for an assignment in which they are expected to (a) identify two students with disabilities in their field placement, (b) describe their abilities, (c) determine what types of accommodations/modifications might be necessary to learning outcomes, assessments, and instruction, (d) document how these students responded to the accommodations/modifications, and (e) reflect on changes to assessment or instruction. [ See SPED 179 syllabus: course outline and Differentiated Instruction and Environment Report.]

As a part of their program, candidates use an electronic portfolio (TaskStream) to document their work. Each of the teacher performance assessments (the Comprehensive Lesson Plan Project, the Site Visitation Project, the Holistic Proficiency Project, and the Teaching Sample Project) require, to different degrees and in different ways, teacher candidates to demonstrate their ability to teach and assess students in order to identify their learning needs and foster their optimal growth anddevelopment. [ See FAST manual.]Each candidate also prepares, as a part of the Teaching Project, a personal plan for ongoing professional growth.

Site and university supervisors evaluate each candidate’s professional portfolio, which is organized electronically utilizing Task Stream. Assignments, performance assessments, and requirements are continually reviewed during the program as part of the formative evaluation leading to fulfillment of requirements based on the Teaching Performance Expectations. Rubrics are used to evaluate each performance assessment. The performance assessment components include: the Comprehensive Lesson Plan Project, Site Observation Project, Holistic Proficiency Project, and Teaching Sample Project.  Candidates also place assignments, work products, and competency evidence in their portfolio.

Candidates learn to select, assess, make pedagogical decisions, and reflect on instructional practices in relation to (a) state-adopted academic content standards for students and curriculum frameworks, (b) principles of human development and learning, (c) the observed effects of different practices, and (d) consultation with colleagues.

In CI 171: Understanding the Learner, Instructional Design and Assessment; LEE 173: Teaching Reading and Social Studies in Grades 4-8; LEE 177: Teaching Reading and the Arts in Grades K-3; CI 175: Science Instruction and Applied Technology; and, CI 176: Mathematics Instruction and Applied Assessment, candidates are taught to plan effective lessons as well as analyze and reflect on state-adopted academic content standards and frameworks and the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. SPED 179: Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management role play and have a group assignment that incorporates Professional Learning Communities (meetings with colleagues) to plan the teaching of standards, assess results, meet as a team and use data to determine interventions for identified groups of students – those that did not learn to the stated level and those that already did learn the information.

As candidates implement lessons and units in the field placements and student teaching, they are required to reflect on the effectiveness of lessons taught in relation to their teaching behaviors, interactions with students, and documentation of student outcomes.

[See CI 171 syllabus: Design for Instruction Assignment.]

[ See Multiple Subject Handbook.]

[See CI 176 syllabus: Mini Unit Assignment.]

Candidates maintain a reflective teaching log and complete the Teaching Sample Project related to teaching and assessment practices as well as classroom management strategies. Their entries, work samples, and lesson analyses involve their abilities to choose and use approaches to teaching reflected in the state curriculum frameworks and content standards as well as the requirements of setting up and maintaining a supportive learning environment addressed by the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. Group discussions in student teaching seminars address the candidates’ recognition of the intellectual, ethical, social, personal, and physical development of students and the impact of decisions made in the classroom and by student teachers on the well-being and academic achievement of the students. 

The Multiple Subject Credential Early Childhood Education Program (ECE) faculty has created a program for developing the reflective practices of its candidates relative to matters of professional ethics which include professional responsibilities for developing the intellectual, ethical, social, personal, and physical development of students.  With reference to codes of ethics including that of the NAEYC, ECE candidates formally discuss classroom scenarios developed by faculty to reflect contemporary issues of professional ethics in California’s schools.

Based on the Four Component Model of Moral/Ethical Maturity (Rest, Narvaez, Bebeau and Thoma, 1999) ECE candidates formally meet in advisory groups (Future Teacher Forums) with ECE faculty advisors to discuss ethical sensitivity, moral and ethical judgment, and moral/ethical motivation and commitment relative to a specific scenario and to develop professional role models who may influence our thinking and commitment to advocacy and action.  The same model is used in coursework where candidates discuss content-specific issues of professional ethics.  Data from pre- and post-assessment of these three dimensions indicate significant growth is ECE candidates’ abilities to analyze a situation and to plan a course of action that is in accordance with ethical guidelines.

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