Standard 6 Report
The College of Education (COE) has administrative responsibilities and oversight authority to plan and implement all initial and advanced programs for teacher education and educational leaders, as evidenced by clearly established policies that govern programs, student/candidate admission/retention, and faculty selection/development (Exhibit 6.4.a COE Faculty Handbook).
The Unit's governance structure consists of the Dean, Heads of the Departments of Curriculum and Instruction (C&I), Educational Leadership (EDL), and Kinesiology, Sport and Leisure Studies (KSLS). However, the College of Professional and Graduate Studies merged with the College of Education on July 1, 2014. As a result of this consolidation, the College of Education was renamed the College of Educational, Professional and Graduate Studies (COEPGS). In addition to the previously mentioned three academic departments in the former College of Education, the newly merged college includes the Departments of Criminal Justice and Mass Communication; and the Schools of Graduate Studies, Nursing and Social Work from the former College of Professional and Graduate Studies. The Unit also includes teacher preparation programs housed in the College of Arts and Sciences. However, all teacher education program oversight follows the same procedures and governance structure regardless of which college the teacher education program is housed. The Unit's chief academic officer is the Dean of the former College of Education. The COEPGS Dean is also Dean of Graduate Studies, as of July 1, 2014. Nevertheless, for the sake of consistency, the title of College of Education (COE) will be used primarily to refer to the Unit. The Unit consists of teacher education programs housed in the current College of Educational, Professional and Graduate Studies (COEPGS) as well as teacher preparation programs located in the College of Arts and Sciences (COAS).The Office of Professional Laboratory Experiences, responsible for all field and clinical practice, is housed in the College of Education.
There are three key active COE Councils --- PK-16+ Council, COE/PGS (College of Education/Professional and Graduate Studies) Administrative Council, and the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) Team. (Exhibit 6.4.a2 Selected Meeting Minutes for COE/GPS AC). The PK-16+ Council is the decision and policy making body for the Unit. It consists of the Colleges of Education and Arts and Sciences unit faculty and staff representatives, assessment coordinator, department heads, partnership school teachers and administrators, lab school principals, Office of Professional Laboratory Experiences (OPLE) Director/Accreditation Coordinator, Centralized Advisement, Referral and Evaluation Center (CARE) Director, and the Licensure, Records and Certification (LRC) Specialist, and is co-chaired by the Dean of Education and the Dean of Arts and Sciences (Exhibit 6.4.a1 PK-16+ Council Stakeholders). The PK-16+ Council approves and/or rejects final recommendations received from departments in the Unit (Educational Studies and Arts and Sciences teacher preparation programs). COE/PGS Administrative Council is the internal administrative governing body responsible for College-wide decision and policy making. This body advises the Dean of COE/PGS on matters pertaining to specific policies and procedures germane to each entity in the College of Educational, Professional and Graduate Studies. It is comprised of the College Dean (chair), Department Heads, Associate Deans, Lab School Principals, Office of Professional Laboratory Experiences Director/Accreditation Coordinator, Centralized Advisement, Referral and Evaluation Center (CARE) Director, and the Licensure, Records and Certification (LRC) Specialist. The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) is chaired by the Curriculum & Instruction Dept. Head. This stakeholder group develops a set of assessment that measures the degree to which K-12 students are progressing successfully to prepare for college and careers. Membership consists of PK-12 school partners, unit faculty in COE and COAS, department heads in Depts. of Educational Leadership and Kinesiology, dean of the College of Education, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, lab school principals, a candidate, director of the Office of Professional Laboratory Experiences, director of CARE Center and Licensure, Records and Certification Specialist.
The PK-16+ Council approves/rejects final recommendations, or policy changes received from Educational Studies and Arts and Sciences teacher preparation program departments (teacher and ed leadership programs), the College Curriculum Committee, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for Careers and College (PARCC) team, Praxis Oversight Committee, Assessment System Review Panel, Student Appeals Committee, Promotion and Tenure Committee, departmental Admissions Committees and the Dual Advisement Committee. All of the aforementioned councils and committees, except for the PK-16+ Council, coordinate and monitor program and candidate performance in meeting SPA, state, CAEP/NCATE, program and institutional requirements and standards. Each council and committee has similar unit faculty and staff representation serving as members. Information is exchanged and shared with all, and final decisions are filtered to all other dept. heads, faculty and staff, once final decisions are voted on by PK-16+ Council. The COE Dean accepts, or rejects the final decisions, or recommendations made by members of the PK-16+ Council. The COE Dean has overall authority to veto, or approve any recommended decision, or policy governing the Unit. The COAS Dean, who serves as PK-16+ Council co-chair, may exercise the right to vote in order to break a tie vote regarding any recommendations.
Curriculum Committee reviews requests for curricula changes (including the addition or deletion of courses), degree requirements and other matters associated with the curriculum The Curriculum Committee has a faculty or dept./school head representative from each department and school in the College, and is chaired by an elected chair among committee members. The Committee selects a chairperson.
Student Appeals Committee reviews appeals of undergraduate students who are on academic probation or suspension. Educational Studies faculty representatives from the Departments of Curriculum and Instruction and Kinesiology, Sport and Leisure Studies are on the committee, with one of them as chair. This body recommends to the dean the approval or rejection of students/candidates requesting an appeal for readmission. Each department or school has its own appeals committee that addresses non-academic probation and suspension appeals. Graduate student submit letters of appeals for academic probation and suspension to the dean for the School of Graduate Studies. The dean submits letters of appeal and supporting documentation for the Graduate Council to deliberate and make final decisions based on majority rule.
Promotion and Tenure Committee ensures that faculty portfolio include all appropriate documentation to demonstrate compliance with requirements. The Committee has a faculty representative from each department and school in the College. The body recommends to dean applicants for promotion and/or tenure. The Committee selects its own chair.
Assessment System Review Panel is chaired by the Assessment Coordinator. The group gathers, aggregates and reviews data; recommends to the (COE/PGS Administrative Council and) PK-16+ Council approval of unit/program changes, modifications and best practices for strengthening unit assessment and evaluation processes and procedures. Unit faculty serve on the Panel to review key assessments, participate in the development of data-driven program improvement plans, the redesign of programs and the preparation of SPA/NCATE-CAEP documents and reports. The Panel consists of COE dean, accreditation standard chairs/co-chairs, unit faculty and department head representatives from COE and COAS, director of OPLE/Accreditation Coordinator, director of the CARE Center and the LRC Specialist.
PRAXIS Oversight Committee collaborates between College of Education (COE) and College of Arts and Sciences faculty and staff (COAS) to support success of teacher education candidates in preparation for taking and passing Praxis I and II. Unit faculty and department head representatives from COE and COAS, director of OPLE/ Accreditation Coordinator, director of the CARE Center and the LRC Specialist participate on Committee.
Dual Advisement Committee is a body of unit faculty who meet as necessary to ensure a seamless advisement process for all teacher education students and candidates. Unit faculty from COE and COAS, director of OPLE/Accreditation Coordinator, director of the CARE Center and the LRC Specialist serve on Committee. The Committee selects co-chairs among a COE and COAS unit faculty/staff.
The Unit is closely connected to the general operations of GSU and various education entities in Louisiana. The Dean represents the Unit in the administrative governance of GSU and serves as liaison between the Unit and the Louisiana State Department of Education. The Provost's Council of Academic Deans (CAD) meets regularly and the Dean shares pertinent information with the College of Education(al)-Professional and Graduate Studies Administrative Council regarding scheduling, faculty professional development, departmental/staff needs, GSU and Unit policies and procedures, university operations and budget. Also, the Dean holds regular meetings with Dept./School Heads to discuss and receive input on pertinent matters regarding the College (Exhibit 6.4.a3 Selected Dept./School Heads' Mtg Minutes for 2012-2014). -See complete narrative at Exhibit 6.1 Unit Governance and Resources.
Pre-teacher education students continue to have a challenge with passing Praxis I Reading, Writing and Computational Skill exams. The numbers of pre-teacher education students passing Praxis I are slowly improving since 2011. The Unit had the following numbers of pre-teacher education majors (undergraduate and alternative programs) to pass all parts of Praxis I: 18 in 2011, 23 in 2012, 22 in 2013 and 19 in 2014. There was a slight decrease in the number passing Praxis I in 2014, based on the smaller number of those who took exams. However, the number of those passing Praxis I over the past few years is steady. Pass scores on all components of this exam are prerequisite to admission to teacher education program, both at initial and advanced levels. However, if a teacher education applicant has an ACT test score of 22, he/she may be exempt from Praxis I.
As a consequence, faculty responsible for teaching First Year Experience (FYE) and Praxis I Accountability (PRAXIS preparation) courses for Mathematics, Reading and Writing Skills have infused ETS Plato online preparation work in their classes. This infusion has provided more intense preparation for pre-teacher education majors to perform better on Praxis I tests. The current Praxis I passing rate demonstrates that this blended approach is effective. Additionally, as of Fall 2014, Reading-Writing Praxis I Accountability course is no longer a combined course for teaching reading and writing Praxis test skills. The new ED 211 Writing Praxis I Accountability course allows pre-teacher education students to receive intense Plato instruction to concentrate on writing skills in preparation for passing Praxis I Writing test. Thus, the Reading Praxis I Accountability course provides pre-teacher education majors with dedicated time and attention to concentrate on improving their reading skills to perform successfully on the Praxis I Reading exam. Also, a professional development workshop was held recently to update faculty with the new Praxis I Core Academic Skills for Educators (Reading, Writing and Mathematics) tests. The Mathematics Praxis I Accountability course remains a stand-alone course taught by the math teacher education content faculty member.
Additionally, Praxis II Accountability (PRAXIS preparation) courses for Content and Pedagogical Knowledge and Skills are designed to provide assistance for candidates to pass Praxis II Knowledge, Skills and Content Area tests. Some departments, such as Music, History and Kinesiology, provide special content specific workshops for their candidates planning to take Praxis I/II. However, the Alternative Teacher Education Program (ATCP) conducts Praxis I & II workshops on Saturdays every month, and is free for GSU students.
The majority of GSU's teacher preparation programs have full national recognition, or national recognition with conditions by NAEYC, ACEI, CEC NASPE, NCSS, NASM, NSTA and ELCC (refer to all SPA reports for details). Consequently, the Early Childhood, Elementary, General Special Education Mild/Moderate: An Approach Elementary Grades 1-5, General Special Education Mild/Moderate: An Integrated to Merged Approach Secondary Grades 6-12, Physical Education Pedagogy, Social Studies, Music, Secondary Education and Teaching in Biology concentration and Educational Leadership programs are meeting current Specialized Professional Association standards with relevant assessments. Whereas SPA reports for NSTA, NCTM, and NCTE in the Secondary Education and Teaching (Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics programs) have not been submitted since 2012 due to having less than five candidates.
Since 2011, Secondary Education programs in English, Music and Social Studies Education have moved from the Dept. of Curriculum and Instruction to respective discipline departments in the College of Arts and Sciences. This transition was made due to the annual low completers (as defined by the LA Board of Regents) for the specific discipline departments. The aforementioned Secondary Education programs are listed as concentrations in the previously mentioned departments in order to count the number along with the total for non-education majors in Departments of English and Foreign Languages, Music, and History. Additionally, in 2013, the Early Childhood Education program was converted to the new Child Development and Early Literacy program and transferred to the Dept. of Family and Consumer Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences for the similar reason as the Secondary Education programs. Consequently, the Unit has been able to maintain these teacher preparation concentrations. However, the previously mentioned programs have not shown an increase in program completers by housing the content discipline teacher education concentration in the respective discipline departments. Also, there continues to be very low completers with concentrations in Secondary Education and Teaching in Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics Education, which continues to be administratively housed in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. The Unit has been unsuccessful in combining these concentrations by moving them as programs with non-teacher education majors in the Departments of Physics and Mathematics and Biology. As a result, the Unit will increase recruitment efforts with semester information sessions on-campus and off-campus partnership school districts.
A new post-baccalaureate initial alternative certification program started in the Summer of 2012 as a result of a $3.0 million federal grant. The Alternative Teacher Certification Program (ATCP)/Master of Arts in Teaching degree (MAT) is designed to attract individuals seeking the MAT in an alternate route for gaining teacher certification. Qualified applicants may concentrate in the annual cohort model Elementary Education-General Special Education Mild/Moderate Grades 1-5, or Secondary Education-Mild/Moderate Special Education Mild/Moderate Grades 6-12 dual certification program. This program began with three in a cohort and with as many as 21 cohort intern teachers completing the year round program since 2013.
The Unit was cited an AFI in 2010 Standard 2.b Data Collection, Analysis, and Evaluation "The unit did not provide evidence that information technology is used systematically across all advanced programs for data collection, analysis, and evaluation."
Since 2012, unit faculty responsible for teaching courses in our undergraduate and graduate teacher certification programs have been trained to use TaskStream (6.4j Unit Faculty Trained to Use TaskStream). Faculty are using TaskStream to manage assignments and assess learning outcomes. As a result, departmental and the Assessment System Review Panel meetings have been used to discuss program changes and modifications as identified in SPA reports and courses (Exhibit 6.4.a4 Sample of Assessment System Review Panel Mtg Minutes). Standard 2 has evidence of how TaskStream is used to collect, analysis and evaluate program and candidate data.