Standard 5.2: Continuous Improvement

5.2.a   Not moving toward Target on this standard

5.2.b   Continuous Improvement  

A significant transformation that has resulted in program improvement in Kremen is the enhancement of our assessment system (KLASSI). Although data driven decision-making has always been a goal of our school, developing a comprehensive approach with the considerable variability of programs within the unit has been a challenge. National trends in education such as Common Core, English Language Learner Issues, and Co-Teaching have influenced the content and delivery of our program. At the state level the annual Chancellor’s Report provides information from public school administrators and candidates alike about the quality of preparation of our first year teacher candidates. In addition, internally developed systems such as the FAST and specific program and department assessments (Annual Reports to the Provost) assist in making informed decisions.

This type of informative assessment subsequently results in appropriate professional development such as our continuing involvement in workshops on Common Core, English Language Development, and Special Education. One example of continuous improvement is the adoption of Co-Teaching as an innovative approach to implementing student teaching. In the past year we have provided training for approximately six hundred teachers and teacher candidates in the program with positive results (Powerpoint Presentation). Another example is the proliferation of Kremen/Public School Partnerships (e.g. Dual and Stem) that have resulted in field-based cohorts that experience the bulk of their teacher preparation in public schools. Teacher candidates that participate in this more authentic learning environment are evaluated at a higher level than candidates in traditional teacher preparation programs (Annual Reports to the Provost). The need to maintain quality, based on information about best practices, has been the impetus for the current revision of the Single Subject Teacher Preparation program. The number and quality of Collaborative Projects faculty are involved with is yet another example of informative assessment driving our professional endeavors.

Excellent personnel are essential to continuous program improvement and are reflected in the hiring practices and support for faculty productivity at Kremen. There has been an emphasis on hiring new faculty that represent the diverse nature of our demographics. The 24 tenure track faculty members who were hired during the 2003-2011 period came from the following demographic background: males (21%), females (79%), Hispanics (25%), Asians (17%), African Americans (8%), and Anglos (46%) (Refer to Kremen Diversity Standard #4). Faculty scholarship has also been a focus with more emphasis and scrutiny on the number and type of publications. In evaluating faculty scholarship, articles are now analyzed critically by peers in an effort to enhance the quality of writing and the status of the educational journals where the articles are published. There has been a positive increase in the number of Peer Reviewed Journal articles and Books/Book Chapters in the last four years from 25 to 30. The increase is greater between 2004 (19) and 2012 (30), and is especially significant when you consider that Kremen had 14 more tenure track faculty in 2004 than we have now. The combination of informative assessment with professional development and the relentless pursuit of outstanding faculty is the formula this unit is utilizing for ongoing program improvement.

Areas of Improvement»

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