On Wednesday, May 14 and Thursday, May 15, teacher preparation faculty in the College of Education met from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day to prepare for the pilot use of the edTPA in student teaching during the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 semesters. The workshops were organized by Antonia Potenza, the associate dean for academic affairs, and approximately 20 COE faculty attended. These workshops were a follow-up to a year-long conversation about the edTPA and how to implement it at RU.
As you may know, the edTPA is a nationally adopted performance assessment of student teachers that is going into effect in Illinois in August, 2015. Starting in Fall 2015, student teachers will have to pass the edTPA to be licensed as teachers in Illinois. The College of Education plans to pilot test the assessment in Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 with all student teachers, while starting to incorporate the material covered by the edTPA into methods and field placement courses.
Although the edTPA incorporates much of what our teacher preparation programs already cover in their classes, the format of the assessment (including videotapes of student teachers leading lessons and assessing students' learning) and the scoring (by external reviewers following a standard set of rubrics) are different from current RU practices. During the two days of workshops, faculty were invited to review the edTPA-- what it measures, the rubrics used in scoring it, and how student teachers' practices will be evaluated-- and to consider how best to prepare students by making improvements in program curricula, student teaching, methods courses, and clinical field placements.
More information about the edTPA is available at this website: https://www.edtpa.com. A website specific to RU’s College of Education is currently under construction, and should be available by the start of classes in Fall 2014.