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From Reflection To Meaning: One University's Journey Toward A Teacher Work Sample Accountability Model
Unformatted Document Text:  portfolio solution. The revised TWS document and the portfolio are actually one document now, supporting our new paradigm of collecting all the data through only electronic means. As with any shift in policy and procedure this change from a portfolio requirement to a TWS met with concerns and many questions. Staff development, open lines for communication and on going support for this change have all eased anxieties and helped provide just-in-time coaching that demystifies misconceptions and strengthens validity of the TWS as an accountability tool. B. Literature reviewThe impact of teacher education on teachers' behavior in schools resulting in student achievement is a common theme in the literature. More recently it has moved to the front of the discussion in response to public mandates by NCLB, our state and NCATE. Darling-Hammond (1999) identifies the ability in securing greater learning will ultimately depend on our developing more skillful teachers. Teacher educators must develop a process that allows teacher candidates to see the whole picture and to help them develop their skills as effective teachers. Performance based standards promote a shared vision of effective teaching and learning. A change in the licensing requirements through the addition of the new standards demands that teacher candidates apply their knowledge; theoretical and practical knowledge is no longer enough. Teacher candidates must now demonstrate how to use their knowledge to promote learning for their students. Modification of teacher education programs with a standards-based focus links expectations of teachers with expectations of students (Ambach, 1996). Educators suggest that “experience is always necessary for intellectual development...the subject must be active...." (Labinowicz, 1980). We use the term active learning in this context to mean that teacher candidates need to participate in their learning, not be passive receivers of information. Active learning strategies are also important for teacher candidates. Some teacher candidates are successful in the college classroom setting, but they find they cannot apply their knowledge to children in their own classroom. Active learning is critical to the teacher candidate’s understanding. Learning which is "situated" in practical, work-related contexts is both faster and more effective than learning which is purely classroom based and unrelated to the contexts in which it is to be applied (Resnick, 1987). Our institution is a member of the Renaissance Group which is currently providing national leadership by implementing the Teacher Work Sample Methodology (TWS). The TWS introduces teacher candidates to effective instructional practices through lesson planning that comprises the components: Contextual Factors, Learning Goals, Assessment Plan, Design for Instruction, Instructional Decision-Making, Analysis of Student Learning, and Reflection and Self-Evaluation. Using the TWS, opportunities are provided for teacher candidates to develop effective instruction. The major goal of the TWS Project is through the careful planning and development of a teacher work sample unit of instruction, teacher candidates will enhance their teaching effectiveness with the hope that this effectiveness will transfer to their own classrooms. This provides opportunity for the teacher candidates to transition to teaching in real-life settings. The TWS represents a meaningful connection between teaching and learning that samples both the pre service teacher candidate and K-12 students (Schalock, 1999; Girod, Reynolds, Woods & Scholock, 2002; & Fredman, 2004). C. Contribution.

Authors: Gordinier, Cynthia., Watkins, Paul. and Miller, Chris.
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portfolio solution. The revised TWS document and the portfolio are actually one document now,
supporting our new paradigm of collecting all the data through only electronic means.
As with any shift in policy and procedure this change from a portfolio requirement to a
TWS met with concerns and many questions. Staff development, open lines for communication
and on going support for this change have all eased anxieties and helped provide just-in-time
coaching that demystifies misconceptions and strengthens validity of the TWS as an
accountability tool.
B.
Literature review
The impact of teacher education on teachers' behavior in schools resulting in student
achievement is a common theme in the literature. More recently it has moved to the front of the
discussion in response to public mandates by NCLB, our state and NCATE. Darling-Hammond
(1999) identifies the ability in securing greater learning will ultimately depend on our developing
more skillful teachers. Teacher educators must develop a process that allows teacher candidates
to see the whole picture and to help them develop their skills as effective teachers. Performance
based standards promote a shared vision of effective teaching and learning. A change in the
licensing requirements through the addition of the new standards demands that teacher
candidates apply their knowledge; theoretical and practical knowledge is no longer enough.
Teacher candidates must now demonstrate how to use their knowledge to promote learning for
their students. Modification of teacher education programs with a standards-based focus links
expectations of teachers with expectations of students (Ambach, 1996).
Educators suggest that “experience is always necessary for intellectual development...the
subject must be active...." (Labinowicz, 1980).
We use the term active learning in this context to
mean that teacher candidates need to participate in their learning, not be passive receivers of
information. Active learning strategies are also important for teacher candidates. Some teacher
candidates are successful in the college classroom setting, but they find they cannot apply their
knowledge to children in their own classroom. Active learning is critical to the teacher
candidate’s understanding. Learning which is "situated" in practical, work-related contexts is
both faster and more effective than learning which is purely classroom based and unrelated to the
contexts in which it is to be applied (Resnick, 1987).
Our institution is a member of the Renaissance Group which is currently providing
national leadership by implementing the Teacher Work Sample Methodology (TWS). The TWS
introduces teacher candidates to effective instructional practices
through lesson planning that
comprises the components: Contextual Factors, Learning Goals, Assessment Plan, Design for
Instruction, Instructional Decision-Making, Analysis of Student Learning, and Reflection and
Self-Evaluation. Using the TWS, opportunities are provided for teacher candidates to develop
effective instruction. The major goal of the TWS Project is through the careful planning and
development of a teacher work sample unit of instruction, teacher candidates will enhance their
teaching effectiveness with the hope that this effectiveness will transfer
to their own classrooms.
This provides opportunity for the teacher candidates to transition to teaching in real-life settings.
The TWS represents a meaningful connection between teaching and learning that samples both
the pre service teacher candidate and K-12 students (Schalock, 1999; Girod, Reynolds, Woods &
Scholock, 2002; & Fredman, 2004).
C.
Contribution.


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