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Standard 4.2: Continuous Improvement

4.2.a   Not moving toward Target on this standard

4.2.b   Continuous Improvement 

In order to continuously improve candidate performance and program quality in promoting the development of diversity proficiencies, program faculty regularly meet as a group to discuss growth and needs of candidates in their respective programs and address the issues when needs arise. This practice ensures that each candidate who has successfully completed his/her program will have at least met the satisfactory level of diversity proficiency. At the same time, aggregate data are used to guide improvement of program quality. Changes are made based on the effectiveness of existing practice on learning outcomes.

For example (taken from the Dean's Annual Report to the Provost), in the Multiple Subject Credential Program, the goal in resources for at-risk students as measured by CTQ score and performance in completing assignments for Differentiated Instruction and Classroom Management (SPED 179) / Field Study C (EHD 170), has been met, and thereby the program faculty (instructors and supervisors) responded by continuing to provide the content through fieldwork seminars and coursework (primarily in SPED 179 course). When goal for English learners has been met, the Multiple Subject faculty with expertise in teaching English learners will continue to work with Multiple Subject instructors in courses and supervisors in fieldwork to further integrate the EL content strategies in the program content presentation and assessment.

To further support our teacher candidates in teaching students with special needs, the action plan includes the following:

  1. Special Education faculty will meet and develop an activity or module for each course in the MS program to address special needs students in inclusive settings.
  2. Special Education faculty will implement changes in the syllabi for courses including SPED 179.

As another example, nearly all candidates scored “exemplary” on the scoring rubrics for each of these course and program requirements in MAT, which adopts the “social justice theme,” and faculty endeavor to continue to refine all course syllabi, and the program’s culminating experiences (Comprehensive Examination, Action Research Project and Action Research Thesis) for sustained improvement in candidates’ proficiencies.

A third example can be taken from findings indicating that Educational Leadership and Administration candidates are developing knowledge and skills to implement equitable practices to ensure the achievement of every P 12 student, and promote equity, fairness, and respect among all community members. These data are used in conjunction with the collection of sample student work products to inform upcoming conversations in our Professional Learning Community course alike meetings, where faculty will examine student strengths and challenges and trends regarding assignment criteria where students needed to revise, as well as recommend appropriate changes or modifications to assignments now that the Signature Assignments have been used for one academic year cycle. The changing P 12 context and outcome data have already been used to make modifications in various Signature Assignments for EAD 272 based on California’s adoption of national Common Core Standards and participation in Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium.

One final example taken from the data from Assessment of Theoretical Comparison Paper, Assessment of Theory to Practice Project, Assessment of Case Study Project, Graduate Student Survey and Exit Survey for the program Reading/Language Arts reveals concerns about candidates’ proficiency with students with special needs. In response, the faculty is putting more emphasis on how the methods apply to universal access and special needs students as described in the RICA standards.

Discuss plans for sustaining and enhancing performance through continuous improvement as articulated in unit Standard 4.

As indicated in Exhibit 4.4.c, except for an improvement area in Reading, all programs have received positive outcome on their candidates’ diversity proficiencies. In order to maintain this positive outcome, program faculty have committed to maintain the factors embedded in the curriculum, field experiences, and learning community that contribute to positive development of candidates’ diversity proficiencies. At the same time, program faculty members continuously seek research-based best practices in diversity training to further enhance program quality and candidates’ diversity proficiencies.

The Unit continues to find resources to support a diverse learning community and a rigorous program to enhance diversity training. For example, a faculty who has expertise in gay, lesbian, & bisexual population retired in 2010 and another faculty who is African American retired. Their departure may affect the exposure of candidates to the different perspectives and experiences that these faculty members have offered. In response, Kremen recently hired competent candidates who demonstrate diversity expertise. A new faculty who is an African American male and another faculty who is Asian American male are hired. The School has further participated in Cohort Hire for Diversity in 2012-2013. The School continues to make information available to candidates about student associations and student services programs connected to different sexual orientations.

Challenges and Opportunities
To optimize the cultivation of awareness and respect for diversity across campus, Kremen Equity Committee has been participating in meetings held by the University’s Committee on Strategic Plan for Diversity in order to strengthen alignment of strategic plans for diversity and efforts in promoting a culture of respect for diversity.

Due to economic hardships and increase in tuition fees, recruitment of diverse candidates such as those from low socio-economic background and first generation college students has become more challenging. In order to make our quality teacher education available to the local community, a task force has been formed to explore factors affecting prospective candidates to enroll in our teacher education program.

To promote stronger collaboration between faculty in the Special Education Program and the regular Teacher Education Programs, Kremen successfully integrated the Special Education, Literacy, and Early Childhood Education programs into a new department entitled: Literacy, Early, Bilingual, and Special Education (LEBSE) in August 2011. During monthly department meetings, the faculty had many discussions on scholarly publications, mentoring, department policy, and establishing common goals. During these times, faculty members have formed professional bonds thinking about ways to collaborate in teaching, research, and service.

Furthermore, a new Master’s Option entitled Masters Option in Multilingual and Multicultural Education was approved by the department in May 2012 and scheduled to start accepting students in the fall 2013. This new Option will provide students with a distinct specialization and expertise in educating the linguistically and culturally diverse students and faculty with the opportunities to share their expertise in diversity education.

Areas of Improvement»

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