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2007-2008

TITLE II, HIGHER EDUCATION ACT INSTITUTIONAL INFORMATION FOR THE UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA, RENO COLLEGE OF EDUCATION ON THE QUALITY OF TEACHER EDUCATION 2007-2008

Title II of the Higher Education Act requires institutions of higher education that prepares teachers to report the pass rates of their graduates or program completers on teacher licensure exams taken by 10 or more students to its State Education Agency. Additional information that relates to the quality of teacher preparation is also reported. The State Department of Education must then submit a state report summarizing the results of all teacher preparation institutions that is submitted to the U. S. Department of Education. This web site discloses the results from the College of Education at the University of Nevada, Reno for its 2007-2008 program completers.

Section 1. Pass Rates

The UNR pass rates were calculated by the Educational Testing Service. The following tables represent those data.

Section II. Program Information

  1. Total number of students enrolled during 2007-2008: 280*
  2. Total number of students in programs of supervised student teaching during academic year 2007-2008: 204
  3. Total number of faculty in supervision of teacher preparation students during 2007-2008: 58
    • 3 Appointed full-time in professional education
    • 2 Appointed part-time in professional education and full-time in the institution
    • 53 Appointed part-time in professional education, not otherwise employed by the institution
  4. The student/faculty ratio: 3.5 students per faculty member
  5. The average number of hours per week required of student participation in supervised student teaching was: 37.5 hours. The total number of weeks of supervised student teaching required is 16 weeks. The total number of hours required is 600 hours. Twenty weeks totaling 750 hours is required for the elementary/special education integrated majors.
  6. The teacher education program is currently approved by the state.
  7. The teacher preparation program is not currently designated as "low-performing" by the state as defined by section 208 (a) of the HEA of 1998.

*This number includes only those students who have been admitted to a teacher education program

Section III. Contextual Information

College Of Education Vision And Mission

Vision

Commitment to inspire learners through collaboration and innovation

Mission

We strive to be a College of Education where faculty, staff, and students are engaged in significant work and dedicated to improving education for each person. We seek to inspire those who pursue careers in education to value learning and the learner. Together, we provide information, service, and support to community members, including families, allied professionals, and policymakers.

  • To Share Core Values. Faculty, staff, and students are guided by a strong sense of community that encourages collaboration, innovation, and involvement in a diverse society. We are lifelong learners, who make decisions about our learning. We strive to respect and express concern for each other and we are motivated by a spirit to risk. We value trust, fairness, and open-mindedness.
  • To Create Learning Environments. We seek to create dynamic learning environments with services and programs for licensure, professional development, and preparation for positions in leadership and higher education. Faculty, staff, and students strive to work together in mutual respect and are enriched by each other's ideas and dedication. Our work is supported by research and scholarship in order to improve professional practice and contribute to the knowledge base in our fields of study. We engage in outreach activities that are informed by scholarship and that influence educational practice and policy.
  • To Accomplish Results. We prepare professionals who embody the conceptual framework of the College of Education by demonstrating a love of learning, a strong fund of knowledge, an ability to reflect as practitioners, and a commitment to democracy and multiculturalism. We are scholars who conduct research and disseminate findings that inform our practice and policy, as well as that in the broader educational community. We provide educational leadership to the state and the nation.

Together We Make A Difference!

Conceptual Framework

The conceptual framework for basic and advanced professional preparation programs at the University of Nevada, Reno is organized around four themes: a lifelong love of learning; a strong fund of knowledge concerning all aspects of education; reflection on educational practices, and valuing democracy and multiculturalism. Although the term "conceptual framework" implies a fixed structure, we view this framework as being dynamic and one in which professional educators must immerse themselves. The framework changes as the paradigms held by science, art, and technology shift. The framework changes with the unique circumstances of the individual educator. It is expected that the use of educational technology play a role to attain and further the four themes of the conceptual framework.

Love of Learning

Knowledge is not a fixed set of truths which are handed down. Therefore, educators must be open to discovery and derive pleasure as the mind extends life themes into new realms of meaning. Learning is intrinsically rewarding, combining the cognitive with the affective. Mastery, curiosity, and the desire to know become animating forces in the intellectual life of a learner. Access to information through the use of technology allows candidates to broaden their knowledge from numerous locations, and not just the university classrooms. Because of a love of learning and desire to meet the needs and desires of students, educators must seek to build a growing repertoire of knowledge, as well as professional skills.

Strong Fund of Knowledge

Educator's intellectual resources and dispositions largely determine their capacity to engage students' minds and hearts in learning. Therefore, a strong fund of subject matter knowledge is essential in professional preparation. Educators must possess knowledge of, knowledge about, and a positive disposition toward subject matter. Educators must also possess a strong fund of pedagogical knowledge in order to adequately represent subject matter to students, or to translate knowledge into classroom curricular events. Pedagogical content knowledge represents a blending or melding of content and pedagogy that is uniquely the province of teachers, their own special form of professional understanding. To maximize the use of pedagogical knowledge, educators must possess a rich knowledge base about learners; including knowledge about physical, cognitive, and affective development and the role of a student's experiential background in the learning process. Educators must also possess a strong fund of curricular knowledge including different views of curriculum and ensuing consequences for the role of the educator; some conception of curricular planning processes and the knowledge necessary to carry it out; and the realities of curricular decision making. Educators must be able to link subject matter with pedagogy as they shape experiences that enable students to develop and learn. Furthermore, educators must possess skills in using technology to access content and pedagogical information and to integrate it into their teaching. Content, pedagogical, and technological knowledge and skills are essential for educators to influence the highest level of achievement among their students.

Reflective Practice

Educators should be able to make sound judgments and choices in selecting particular approaches and adapting them in ways that are consistent with their goals and that serve the best interests of their students. Educators who become experts at their craft have learned how to reflect systematically and develop strategies for learning from their experiences. Such an ability will depend on the acquisition of a reflective attitude toward teaching. Reflective teaching should be thought of as a general professional disposition, regardless of the philosophical framework out of which one works. Reflective practice informs decision-making, which is a key element in the instructional process, and is essential to effective participation in an educational setting.

Democracy and Multiculturalism

We live in a pluralistic society that reflects a rich and diverse mixture of cultures and experiences. Consequently, schools should provide learning opportunities that give all students access to forms of social, political, and economic power. The purpose of educational institutions should be to give voice to the diversity of its people, as well as represent dominant values and positions. This must be done within a critical framework that supports open forums for discussion and debate, as well as toward forms of schooling that are empowering in intent and are rooted in forms of social justice and community. Representation of the diversity of thinking that is reflective of a multicultural society is mandatory within educational institutions that support multiculturalism. Open access to information through publications and electronic means is of critical importance within a multicultural democratic community.

Assessment System

The University of Nevada, Reno College of Education developed a candidate performance assessment system using the Interstate New Teachers Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC) Principles. The 10 principles were combined into the college's Five Domains of Professional Competence. All candidate performance assessment focuses on the five domains of: 1) knowledge of students and learning environments, 2) knowledge of subject matter and planning, 3) delivery and management of instruction, 4) knowledge and use of assessment, and 5) professionalism.

Program Information

Teacher education candidates at the University of Nevada, Reno can choose from among five majors: elementary education, special education, integrated elementary and special education, early childhood education, and secondary education. There are 26 teaching majors and 34 teaching minors from which secondary education candidates may choose their teaching specialty. The elementary education, special education, integrated elementary/special education, and early childhood education majors are considered four-year programs in which candidates complete all course work as well as their student teaching internship within the Bachelor's degree. The secondary education major is a four and one-half year program in which candidates complete all course work within the Bachelor's degree and do their student teaching internship at the post baccalaureate level. Candidates with majors in other colleges on campus that will lead to teacher licensure in Nevada can complete a secondary education minor in order to meet all requirements for a teaching license.

The student internship is sixteen weeks in length for candidates majoring in elementary, special, early childhood, or secondary education. The integrated elementary and special education majors intern for a period of 20 weeks in which 10 weeks are spent in a regular elementary classroom and 10 are spent in a special education setting.

Candidates may become licensed through one of three different programs at the University of Nevada, Reno. The programs include the traditional undergraduate degree programs, "professional degree" programs, and Master of Education/First Time Licensure programs. The professional degree program, available in elementary, secondary, or special education is for individuals who have a Bachelor's degree and wish to complete only their Nevada licensure requirements. Those students take the necessary content and pedagogy courses to qualify for the supervised internship and for licensure in Nevada. The Master of Education/First Time Licensure programs in elementary, secondary, and special education combine licensure course requirements with Master's degrees. However, completing the licensure course sequence will not meet all requirements for Master's degrees; candidates must complete additional course work to finish the degree.

The College of Education at the University of Nevada, Reno is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), 2010 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20036; phone (202) 466-7496. This accreditation covers the institution's initial teacher preparation and advanced educator preparation programs. Licensure programs within the College of Education are also approved by the Nevada State Board of Education.

Demographics

During the fall semester of the 2007-2008 reporting year, the College of Education at the University of Nevada, Reno had approximately 280 (see note below) candidates admitted to and enrolled in various teacher education programs. The demographic breakout of those candidates was as follows:

Demographic InformationNumber
Gender
Male 55
Female 225
Racial/Ethnic Origin:
American Indian/Alaskan Native 2
Asian/Pacific Islander 3
Black, Not Hispanic 2
Hispanic 20
White, Not Hispanic 223
Non-resident Alien 1
Unknown 29

Additionally, the College had 604 candidates enrolled as pre-majors in education. These are individuals who have not yet been admitted to a teacher education program.

Note: Those candidates enrolled in the Master of Education/First Time Licensure program are classified by the university as graduate students, and are not included in this count. Therefore, our total number of teacher education candidates is slightly more than the numbers reported above.

Clinical Experiences For Students

Our teacher education programs are considered to be field-based. Candidates spend a great deal of time in practicum experiences working with PK-12 students prior to their semester long student teaching internship. These experiences are progressive in nature in that candidates begin by observing and assisting the classroom teacher. Later, they co-teach or solo teach lessons to the entire class. The following table depicts the amount of time in each course in the various programs that candidates in the regular undergraduate teacher education programs spend in field experiences prior to their semester-long supervised internship.

Field Experiences Prior to Internship Reported by Program.
ProgramCourses with Field ExperiencesMinimum Number of Hours
Elementary Education EDU 201 - Introduction to Elementary Education 30
EDEL 433P - Teaching Elementary School Mathematics Practicum 30
EDEL 443P - Teaching Elementary School Science Practicum 30
EDRL 442 - Literacy Instruction I 9
EDRL 443 - Literacy Instruction II 9
EDRL 461 - Diagnostic Assessment and Instruction in Literacy 12
Total 120
Special Education EDU 209 - Exploring Teaching and Learning Practicum 30
EDES 317 - Engaging Students in Learning: Practicum and Seminar 90
EDES 413 - Refining Teaching Skills: Practicum and Seminar 90
Total 210
Integrated Elementary and Special Education EDU 209 - Exploring Teaching and Learning Practicum 30
EDES 313 - Develop as a Teacher: Practicum and Seminar 90
EDES 317 - Engaging Students in Learning: Practicum and Seminar 90
EDES 413 - Refining Teaching Skills: Practicum and Seminar 90
Total 300
Secondary Education EDU 202 - Introduction to Secondary Education 20
EDSC 321- Secondary Pedagogy I With Field Experience 30
EDSC 404 - Secondary Pedagogy II With Field Experience 30
Total 80
Early Childhood Education HDFS 233 - Practicum with Children and Families 112
HDFS 428 - Preschool Curriculum I 45
EHDFS 429 - Preschool Curriculum II 45
Total 202

In addition to the dedicated practicum experiences listed above, students in the elementary education, integrated elementary/special education program, and the special education programs have additional school-based or clinical experiences that accompany their nine credits of literacy methods courses. The culminating course, EDRL 461, involves intensive tutoring with struggling readers in an after-school clinical setting.

Requirements For Admission To Teacher Education Programs

Candidates wishing to pursue a teacher education program may enter the College of Education as a pre-major until they meet the requirements for admission to teacher education. As a pre-major, candidates can take introductory courses, educational psychology, computers in education, and the school law course. They cannot take upper division methods courses until they have been admitted to teacher education. Requirements for admission to teacher education vary by program area. The requirements for admission to teacher education for each program are as follows:

Secondary Education:
  1. Have completed 30 credits of college course work that includes the core curriculum requirements in English, mathematics, and natural sciences;
  2. Have completed EDU 202 or the equivalent with a grade of C or better;
  3. Have a minimum overall grade point average of 2.75;
  4. Pass the basic skills tests in reading, writing, and mathematics. Tests are any of those allowed by the Nevada Department of Education (NDE) for teacher licensure. Passing scores are the same as those required by the NDE;
  5. Complete an application form for Admission to Teacher Education;
  6. Submit two confidential letters of recommendation;
  7. Submit a "reflective essay", three to five pages in length that discusses the candidate's understanding of the purpose of public education and how the complex issues facing secondary educators are going to affect the candidate as a teacher.
Elementary Education:
  1. Have completed 45 credits of college course work;
  2. Have completed an introductory education course such as EDU 201 with a grade of C or better;
  3. Have documented at least 30 hours of experience working with K-8 students in an educational setting under the supervision of a licensed professional who attests to the candidate's potential to become a highly qualified teacher;
  4. Have passing scores on all sections of the Praxis I (PPST) or CBEST;
  5. Have a minimum overall GPA of 2.75;
  6. Have a grade of C or better in all education courses; and
  7. Have a grade of C or better in all other courses required in the elementary education program;
  8. Submit a typed essay (2-3 pages) on the applicant's beliefs regarding the purposes of education, the role of teachers, and the characteristics of students.
Early Childhood Education, Special Education, and Integrated Elementary/Special Education:
  1. 1) Have completed 30 credits of college course work;
  2. Have an overall GPA of 2.75;
  3. Have passed all sections of the Praxis I (PPST) or CBEST;
  4. Complete an application form for Admission to Teacher Education;
  5. Submit two letters of recommendation; and
  6. Submit a typed one to two page essay entitled, "Qualities I Bring to the Teaching Profession" for special education, and for the integrated program, a two to three page essay on the topic listed on the application.

Note that meeting these requirements does not guarantee a candidate's admission to a program. Some admissions are competitive and only the best candidates are admitted.

Individuals with Bachelor's degrees may obtain an exception to the basic skills testing requirement consistent with those offered by the Nevada Department of Education. For example, the NDE does not require the basic skills test of individuals who have a Master's degree. Therefore, if an individual enters a teacher education program with a Master's degree, he/she is not required to take the basic skills test. Graduate level candidates who have taken the Graduate Record Exam may use their GRE scores in place of the basic skills test if they 1) have completed an undergraduate degree with a grade point average of 3.0 or better (as shown on transcripts), and 2) show GRE scores that meet the following minimums: a) GRE verbal: 420, b) GRE Quantitative: 460, and c) GRE Analytical: 430.

Because the Nevada Department of Education will accept either PPST scores or CBEST scores for licensure, our College of Education has done likewise. On some occasions, candidates will take a PPST test and fail it, then take the CBEST and pass. We accept the passing score for admission into our programs. Due to this program procedure, one will note that we may not have a 100% passing rate on the basic skills tests. This is due to the fact that Praxis I tests are generated by Educational Testing Service and the CBEST is not. Therefore, when ETS sweeps its database to determine our pass rates, the failures on Praxis I exams show up. In actuality, we do have a 100% pass rate on the basic skills tests for our college.

Requirements For Admission To Student Teaching

In order for a teacher education candidate to enter the required student internship, he/she must meet the following requirements:

  1. Complete all course requirements.
  2. Meet the overall grade point average of 2.75 or 2.5 for secondary education majors. Secondary education majors must also have 2.5 GPA in their teaching major, a 2.3 GPA in their minor, if they have a teaching minor, and a 2.75 in their education course work.
  3. Hold a valid Nevada substitute teaching license, including fingerprinting and background check.
  4. Be qualified in the professional judgment of the faculty.
  5. Secondary education majors must also complete the methods course in their teaching major with a grade of C or better if taken at the 400 level and a B or better if taken at the graduate level.
  6. If planning to intern in Washoe County School District, candidates must be on active substitute status with the district.
  7. Possess professional liability insurance for the internship period.

A performance assessment system has been implemented whereby teacher education candidates have to demonstrate their ability to meet the college's five Domains of Professional Competence. Candidates submit a portfolio prior to being admitted to the internship. They are assessed again at the time of their program completion.

Pass Rate Summary

The College of Education pass rates reported for 2007-2008 indicate that we had an overall pass rate of 92% and the statewide rate was 90%. The following summarizes the aggregated institutional and statewide pass rates for each category of tests in which there were ten or more students from our institution who took the exams:

AssessmentInstitutionalStatewide
Basic Skills 98% 98%
Professional Knowledge 91% 88%
Academic Content Areas 95% 94%
Summary Total 92% 90%

The third year follow-up of the 2004-2005 UNR program completes indicates that we had an overall pass rate on all tests of 93% and the statewide rate was 95%. The following summarizes the aggregated institutional and statewide pass rates for each category of tests in which there were ten or more 2004-2005 program completers from UNR who took the exams:

AssessmentInstitutionalStatewide
Basic Skills 98% 98%
Professional Knowledge 95% 96%
Academic Content Areas 95% 97%
Summary Total 93% 95%

July 2009

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University of Nevada, Reno

University of Nevada, Reno
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Reno,  NV  89557-

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