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IES Grant

Title: What is the Value of Apprenticeship for Teachers? Linking Preservice Mentor Quality to Inservice Teacher and Student Outcomes
Center: NCER Year: 2018
Principal Investigator: Goldhaber, Dan Awardee: American Institutes for Research (AIR)
Program: Effective Instruction      [Program Details]
Award Period: 4 years (07/01/2018 - 06/30/2022) Award Amount: $1,396,583
Goal: Exploration Award Number: R305A180023
Description:

Co-Principal Investigator: Theobald, Roddy

Purpose: Student teaching experiences are recognized as the key component of an effective teacher training program and often provide prospective teachers with their first teaching experiences before entering the workforce. Emerging literature suggests that the type and quality of student teaching placements is associated with increased student teacher satisfaction and self-efficacy and future teacher effectiveness. However, there is little empirical evidence linking any characteristics of cooperating teachers (i.e., mentor or supervising teacher whose classroom is used for the student teaching experience) to the future outcomes of the teacher candidates they supervise. In this project, researchers explore characteristics of cooperating teachers to the later outcomes of the student teachers they supervise.

Project Activities: This project will bring together administrative data from Washington State collected as part of the Teacher Education Learning Collaborative (TELC), a consortium of 15 of the 21 teacher education programs (TEPs) that place student teachers in the State and from Washington State public schools data on K–12 students and their teachers. With this combined dataset, researchers will explore the correlations between characteristics of cooperating teachers (e.g., credential and experience indicators, value-added scores based on standardized test scores and absenteeism of the K–12 students they teach, and teaching candidate perceptions of the cooperating teacher) and characteristics of teaching candidates (e.g., teaching portfolio assessment scores, value-added scores based on student test scores, attrition, pre-service coursework). Researchers will also conduct a validation study using data from an ongoing study in a participating Washington State school district, in which student teachers were randomized to cooperating teachers in the 2016–17 and 2017–18 school years.

Products: Researchers will produce preliminary evidence of potentially promising practices and peer-reviewed publications as well as postings on the CALDER website and presentations at conferences for state policymakers.

Structured Abstract

Setting: This project uses data from across Washington State, including urban, suburban, and rural communities.

Sample: The primary sample will consist of approximately 27,000 teaching candidates who graduate from 15 of the 21 teacher education programs (TEPs) in the state. The validation sample consists of 165 teaching candidates randomized to student teaching placements and cooperating teachers in a participating school district in the 2016–17 and 2017–18 school years.

Malleable Factors: The malleable factors include characteristics of cooperating teachers (e.g., credential and experience indicators, value-added scores based on standardized test scores of the K–12 students they teach, and teaching candidate perceptions of the cooperating teacher) and characteristics of teaching candidates (e.g., teaching portfolio assessment scores, value-added scores based on student test scores, and attrition).

Research Design and Methods: The researchers will merge administrative data from teacher education programs and from Washington State education licensure application and personnel records to explore correlations between characteristics of cooperating teachers and teaching candidates. The validation study will utilize a randomized design, in which teaching candidates will be randomized to student teaching placements and cooperating teachers in order to account for non-random sorting of teacher candidates to cooperating teachers and into the teaching workforce that may bias estimated relations between cooperating teacher characteristics and teacher candidate outcomes.

Control Condition: Due to the exploratory nature of the research design, there is no control condition.

Key Measures: Measures of cooperating teachers include credential and experience indicators (e.g., degree level, years of in-service teaching experience, and licensure test scores), value-added scores based on standardized test scores of the K-12 students they teach, and teaching candidate perceptions of the cooperating teacher. Measures of teaching candidates include: (a) performance on a portfolio-based subject-specific assessment administered to teaching candidates during their student teaching assignment; (b) value-added estimates based on standardized test scores and absenteeism of the K-12 students they ultimately teach as in-service teachers; and (c) probability of attrition from the workforce.

Data Analytic Strategy: The research team will use linear regression models to explore the relation between teaching candidate performance on the teaching portfolio assessment, prior licensure test scores, and cooperating teacher characteristics. They will also estimate value-added models that consider student test performance as a function of observed student characteristics (including prior test scores) and cooperating teacher characteristics. The team will use duration models to estimate the probability of attrition as a function of teacher characteristics (e.g., experience) and cooperating teacher characteristics.

Related IES Projects: Applicants at the Doorstep: Improving Hiring Practices through a Better Understanding of the Link between Applicant Information and Teacher Quality (R305H130030)

Learning From the Source: Can We Elicit Better Applicant Information Directly From Professional References? (R305A170060)


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