NCATE-Standard 5

Standard 5 – Faculty

Faculty are qualified and model best professional practices in scholarship, service, and teaching, including the assessment of their own effectiveness as related to candidate performance; they also collaborate with colleagues in the disciplines and schools. The unit systematically evaluates faculty performance and facilitates professional development.

5.1 Significant Changes

5.1 What are the significant changes in how the unit ensures that its professional education faculty contributes to the preparation of effective educators through scholarship, service, teaching, collaboration and assessment of their performance?

The EPP at ECU continues to meet Standard 5. Supporting evidence is provided below.

Qualified Faculty

In AY 2013-14, 288 faculty were listed on the EPP roster as professional education faculty at ECU; of those, 174 completed faculty profiles for upload in AIMS. Faculty appointments reside in five units across the institution, with the COE serving as the coordinating unit for the CAEP, in conjunction with NCATE. All teaching faculty are guided by the institution’s Faculty Manual.

As Appendix D indicates, EPP faculty members are highly qualified to teach within the content area with an earned doctorate degree or equivalent alternate credential (e.g., master’s degree or demonstrated expertise). The faculty credentialing process at the University was refined as part of the SACS reaffirmation, which resulted in Department Information Sheets for each degree program. Department Information Sheets outline acceptable degrees for each program of study. All instructors must meet the ECU credentialing requirements outlined prior to teaching at the institution. All course instructors have prior work experience in educational settings (P-12 experience preferred). University supervisors must meet equivalent alternative credentialing requirements—master’s degree, NC supervision licensure, or other qualifications—prior to serving in this capacity. Clinical teachers hosting intern candidates hold appropriate licenses And to have three years of successful teaching experience to be deemed highly qualified in their respective areas.

The Office of Faculty Excellence (OFE) is a great resource for all programs in the EPP and has increased its campus presence and offerings significantly since the 2006 NCATE visit. OFE-guided new faculty mentoring is provided within each college in the EPP. Institutional, state and national faculty honors are awarded for teaching, research, and service; all of which are managed through this office.

Modeling Best Professional Practice in Teaching

ECU faculty models best-professional practice in teaching. Student feedback is utilized by faculty to improve teaching practice. The institution is committed to improving the quality of the instrument used to gather student feedback. SPOTS, the Student Perceptions of Teaching survey, data are available to EPP faculty and program leadership to use as one of multiple assessments of faculty teaching.

EPP faculty have been recognized for teaching awards since the 2006 NCATE accreditation visit. The UNC Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching was awarded in 2008 to Dr. Louis Warren, Professor of Elementary Education, and in 2014 to Dr. Abbie Brown, Professor of Instructional Technology. This is the highest teaching honor bestowed from the institution.

Modeling Best Professional Practice in Scholarship

The University’s history as a teacher-producing institution permeates all ITP’s at ECU. All teacher education faculty maintain robust research agendas and actively contribute to knowledge generation in their areas of expertise. Data compiled from faculty scholarship entries in Sedona, ECU’s documentation system for faculty activity, indicate that ITP faculty are active in research.

Many of the awards noted above, recognize scholarly contributions in addition to teaching awards. The institution’s Annual Lifetime and Five-Year Achievement University Research/Creative Activity Annual Lifetime and Five-Year Achievement University Research/Creative Activity Awards highlight exemplary scholarship across the institution. In 2011-12, Dr. Guili Zhang, in the COE’s former Department of Curriculum and Instruction, was awarded the Five-Year Achievement Research/Creative Activity Award.

Modeling Best Professional Practice in Service

Data compiled from faculty service entries in the Sedona documentation system indicate that ITP faculty provide quality professional service at many levels. All faculty serve on unit, EPP, and institutional committees. Because the EPP is spread across five units at ECU, EPP faculty collaboration is collegial and common practice. Professional service at the state and national level is evident (Appendix D) from the numerous committee and leadership roles held by faculty in recent years.

The faculty at ECU is united by the University’s motto, Servire, which means “To Serve.” Each year, the University inducts new and recurring members to the Servire Society, which recognizes faculty and staff who contribute 100 or more hours of service to community organizations in eastern NC. The University also documents annual service to, and support for P-12 public schools in NC through the annual Institution of Higher Education (IHE) Report. This report is submitted to NCDPI annually in compliance with NC State Board of Education policy, and documents planned collaborative partnerships between ECU and the public schools (2011, 2012, 2013 ).

The College of Education, whose motto is “Excellence Through Partnership,” focuses on service to P-12 public school partners. The COE Executive Director of Teacher Education convenes the LCSN monthly, calling together liaisons from 38 partner public school districts in eastern NC.

Unit Evaluation of Professional Education Faculty Performance

The EPP conducts systematic and comprehensive evaluations of faculty performance on an annual basis (summarized by the OFE Evaluation Web page). Multiple measures are used to evaluate faculty teaching, research, and service. While specific criteria for each constituent unit in the EPP may vary, all faculty are evaluated on the University-approved instrument. The University administers a student feedback survey for each course section taught at the institution, and data is shared with individual faculty and department chairs for use in annual evaluations. When faculty performance falls below expectations, the appropriate unit administrator addresses concerns with the faculty member and devises an action plan to provide additional support for the faculty member. For tenure or tenure track faculty, the unit dean addresses persistent subpar performance evaluations. The units also participate in post-tenure review in five-year intervals. The ECU OFE provides guidance to all units in the EPP for institutional policies for tenured or tenure track faculty including reappointment, promotion, tenure, and post-tenure review.

Unit Facilitation of Professional Development

The EPP at ECU is committed to supporting faculty professional development at many levels and in many areas. Significant changes in professional development across the EPP include:

  • edTPA: The OAA provides local evaluation training for EPP faculty, including university supervisors, clinical teachers and volunteers. All faculty who participate in edTPA local evaluation are required to attend at least one training annually.
  • The NCDPI and the NC State Board of Education mandates that EPP partners with NCDPI to provide appropriate and timely professional development for EPP faculty. In 2013-14, examples of professional development offerings include: Homebase, Read 3D, Common Core, and more.
  • Cornerstone: ECU has made locating training easier by implementing the Cornerstone training system. This is a “one-stop shop” for all training offered on campus.

The EPP takes advantage of professional development opportunities provided by other ECU offices. The OFE offers professional development on a wide range of topics germane to faculty: workshops ranging from statistics to promotion and/or tenure, to instructional innovation. The ECU Information Technology and Computing Services (ECU ITCS) provides professional development for faculty on many technology-based planes, from introductions to services supported by ECU ITCS, to pilot professional learning communities. Joyner Library offers a variety of speakers and workshops throughout the academic year to further research and instruction at ECU.

5.2 AFI

5.2 Summarize activities and assessments that demonstrate correction of any areas for improvement from the previous visit, if applicable.

In the 2006 NCATE Accreditation visit, Standard 5 and its indicators were met.

5.3 Transformation Initiative

5.3 Transformation Initiative
  • Summarize activities and changes based on candidate performance data and program quality that are related to the TI, if TI is related to this standard.
  • Discuss plans for sustaining and enhancing progress on the TI in this area, if TI is related to this standard.

In Sections 1.3, 2.3, and 3.3, each Pirate CODE innovation is highlighted to illustrate progress to date and strategic plans for sustainability, refinement, and expansion beyond ELMID. In Standard 5, the focus on Faculty Qualifications, Performance and Development requires a shift in perspective within the Pirate CODE from the innovations to the research and development (R&D) model for institutionalizing innovation.

In this section, the Pirate CODE goals provide the framework for highlighting faculty teaching, scholarship, and professional development as part of the R&D model.

Develop the Research on Practice model, codifying its steps and developing an implementation model to institutionalize innovations within programs.

Over the last five years, the Pirate CODE innovations were piloted and studied with the intent of strengthening teacher candidates’ preparation. The innovations led to a more coordinated approach to teacher preparation and assessment that will ultimately lead to positive gains in P-12 student achievement. What began as curriculum and clinical practice reforms in ELMID evolved into a coordinated set of innovations and associated practice-based research studies. Faculty are systematically engaging in the R&D model in which the innovations progress from a squishy pilot, to formal IRB approval, and conduct formal pilots that scale-up, as well as produce studies of impact. The R&D model is becoming inextricably linked to Pirate CODE work and is providing a process and language lead faculty use when interweaving current innovations with new innovations.

An example of faculty applying the R&D model beyond the Pirate CODE innovations is the Principal Candidate Instructional Coaching planned study of practice. The faculty collaborate across departments (ELMID and the Department of Educational Leadership) to explore models where principal candidates coach elementary candidates during their practicum (field experiences). These experiences include planning and implementing lessons in the classroom. The team followed the R&D process to start implementation of the innovation. In spring 2012, three principal candidates and nine practicum students participated in a squishy pilot. The following spring, this particular stage continued with five principal candidates and 28 practicum students. Based on the results of the squishy pilot, a formal pilot with IRB approval was conducted in fall 2013. This formal pilot was quasi-experimental and included all junior practicum students and principal candidates. Control and treatment sections were designated after candidate registration. Based on the analysis of this formal pilot, refinements will be made to the model and a second formal pilot will be conducted as the refinements are implemented in the coming year.

This example of Principal Candidate Instructional Coaching highlights the use of the Pirate CODE R&D model for innovating teacher preparation, which is flexible enough to allow for programmatic features, yet rigid enough to hold faculty accountable to innovation-based memoranda of understanding (MOU’s). The EPP is expanding the R&D model into new ITP areas (such as the re-development of the elementary science education concentration) and new program areas outside of ITP’s (e.g.; the principal preparation program).

Document the implementation of research-based innovations in the teacher education curricula with concerted efforts to expand implementation into all ITPs at the institution.

Comprehensive changes in curricular and clinical experiences take commitment, time, and vision in order to systematically create a continuum of developing expertise (CODE) in novice teacher candidates. The increasingly explicit culture of assessment in teacher education, in conjunction with the promise of valid and reliable performance assessments, invites teacher education programs to innovate. With renewed focus, programmatic improvement, actionable data, and a clear sense of the implementations needed, these changes impact and truly transform the program.

After three years of Pirate CODE implementation, faculty are focusing extensively on what emerges as the most critical aspect of the design: researching the fidelity of implementation among the innovations. By applying fidelity of implementation measures and processes (Durlak & DuPre, 2008; Loucks, 1983; O’Donnell, 2008) to selected innovations, researchers will be able to speak more clearly to the short-term and long-term impact of the innovation.

The Pirate CODE proves that systematically investing in practice-based research projects that result in data-driven program improvements is critical. Developing the infrastructure to support the innovations is equally as important. Implementation guides for faculty, FAQ lists, and training sessions have been developed to assist in the exploration and implementation of the innovations beyond ELMID. Lead faculty utilize the innovations-based MOU’s to structure monthly meetings, regular email communication, and opportunities for continual dialogue necessary for innovation R&D. Spaces and places are created for faculty teams to collaborate around the work of the innovations. The development of a CTE approval process is underway as innovations expand.

As noted in Section 2.3, the innovations are supported by the OAA assessment system’s ability to code students by innovation in TEMS, thus facilitating further drill-down studies. This coding, combined with Taskstreamintegration, supports submission of program benchmark and capstone assignments for evaluation. Prior to large-scale use of the electronic platforms, instructors documented teacher candidates’ learning outcomes in multiple locations. Utilization of Taskstream as an electronic portfolio, in conjunction with TEMS, provides access and oversight to program administration, increasing the availability of teacher candidate data for program improvement and practice-based research.

Develop and engage in practice-based research surrounding the seven Pirate CODE project innovations.

Heeding the call of AACTE, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and NCATE in the Data Quality Campaign (2010), actionable data became increasingly important in the R&D model. Innovation research teams were formed, with ELMID faculty taking the lead as original developers of the Pirate CODE innovations. Through the College of Education Dean’s leadership and support from the TQP grant, biostatistics faculty and COE research-methods faculty collaborated with the research teams.

Data summits, panel discussions, and webinars delving into the various innovations were held at the program, college, and state levels as more programs chose to explore the impact of the various innovations. Examples include a Co-teaching webinar, multiple symposia, and panel presentations at national venues (see Exhibit 5.4.a). In these sessions, faculty discussed programmatic results of edTPA and the next steps in program improvement and innovation. With TEMS codes, OAA is able to provide information about the innovations experienced by each candidate. TEMS coding provides faculty the opportunity to collect and analyze data at multiple levels: individual candidate, individual innovation, and combined innovations.

Document and communicate the processes, the successes, and the challenges of the Pirate CODE by contributing to the research literature through publications, presentations, and collegial conversations at the institutional, state, and national levels.

As faculty became fully versed in the Pirate CODE R&D model, implementation lessons were compiled and presented in various venues. As faculty were recognized for their work, invitations to share implementation experiences were received from local, state, and national colleagues. Pirate CODE successes have revolved around implementing data-based summits, dedicating time and space for innovations, developing Pirate CODE implementation resources, expanding the network of colleagues, and funding innovations creatively.

Examples include:

  • EPP unit and ELMID program leadership facilitated data-based summit for faculty to foster critical conversations surrounding the Pirate CODE’s impact on program improvement.
  • Pirate CODE teams scheduled bimonthly meetings for innovation implementation and research discussion and writing.
  • Exhibit TI.4.a highlights faculty presentations and publications
  • Supported by the R&D model, the Co-teaching team initiated a Co-teaching collaborative, held an inaugural Co-teaching webinar with colleagues from other institutions, and is working towards a Co-teaching Special Interest Group with AERA.
  • To support implementation at each stage, Pirate CODE faculty developed training resources for faculty, candidates, clinical teachers, and university supervisors.
  • As the innovations progressed through the R&D model, new opportunities for greater–and more focused–collaboration with teacher education faculty across the country emerged.
  • The Dean of the College of Education’s leadership committee provided resources to support faculty work within the R&D model. These resources included travel support, “critical” writing partners, professional development, and release time.

Pirate CODE challenges are what construct the basis for Year 4 and 5 plans, enhancing the R&D model and implementation. Pirate CODE faculty are prepared to address challenges associated with: allocating time for innovation; conducting research to inform, but not compromise, teaching practice; integrating Pirate CODE innovations with faculty work; and increasing fidelity of implementation.

Examples include:

  • The Dean of the College of Education recognized the intensive and complex nature of the Pirate CODE model and provided support for implementation as well as research. Time and space were provided for the work to continue. At different points in the implementation process, different supports were needed to build faculty capacity at each stage of the model.
  • Through experiences with the Pirate CODE R&D model, faculty are capable of researching and developing new innovations. Lead faculty have built their capacity to use data in order to drive programmatic innovations, develop models, as well as research studies for new projects. In doing so, this will inform their practice and improve candidate learning, and preparation.
  • The R&D model will be mutually beneficial for candidates and faculty. The research will generate publications for faculty. Since innovation takes time, faculty publications may not materialize as quickly as presentation materials. Faculty must somehow make the work count for promotion and tenure, though innovations may not be far enough along the R&D model to contribute to the current literature. As a result, the Dean of the College of Education has worked closely with the R&D faculty teams in supporting and mapping publication opportunities.
  • After three years of Pirate CODE implementation, faculty members recognize the need to improve fidelity of implementation across all Pirate CODE innovations. Thus, faculty members are engaging with experts in the field of FOI in order to develop processes and metrics to support short-term and long-term goals.

5.4 Exhibits

5.4 Exhibits

ECU is conditionally accredited based on the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) standards, for a period of 7 years, from Fall 2015 to Spring 2022.

ECU  will seek accreditation based on the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards in Spring 2022. CAEP is the single specialized accreditor for educator preparation, and administers NCATE accreditation.