Title

Creating Classroom-ready Special Educators Using a Residency-based Model

Location

Harborside Center

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Relevance

This topic discusses the specific need to prepare teacher candidates to work with at-risk and students with special needs immediately upon receiving certification and not relying on "on-the-job" education and professional development.

Brief Program Description

This presentation, geared for school administrators and higher-education faculty, reviews the residency-based model for special education preparation at West Liberty University. The program provides intensive preparation in special needs classrooms in lieu of traditional classroom instruction resulting in increased exposure to IEP writing, meetings, eligibility, and collaboration with families/paraprofessionals resulting in classroom-ready special educators.

Summary

Special education teachers are in short supply; those that know all the intricacies of the job are in even shorter supply. Recent recommendations from the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) support the use of a residency model similar to that used in preparation of medical professionals. This presentation will review the residency-based design for teacher candidates used to prepare special education candidates at a medium-sized regional university.

The residency-based program for special educators was designed to provide teacher candidates with more authentic opportunities to prepare them for the unique needs of working with at-risk and special needs populations. In lieu of traditional classroom instruction, candidates selected for the residency program are placed in special education classrooms with veteran teachers using evidence-based practices that aligned with the university curriculum. Residency candidates complete online and field-based assignments with the guidance of both university faculty and cooperating teachers, and that align to the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) standards for professional preparation. This has resulted in increased exposure to IEP writing, IEP meetings, eligibility reports, eligibility meetings, barriers caused by district policy and collaboration with families and paraprofessionals. Additionally, because the residency candidates complete the same summative assessments as their peers completing the traditional route, data is available on the effectiveness of the program.

The session will outline specific implementation requirements including: faculty roles and responsibilities, placement criteria, mentor incentives, syllabus construction, field requirements and grading criteria. Additionally, effectiveness data will be reviewed to show comparisons with the traditional face-to-face, in-class instruction upon completion of the program and following the candidates into their first years of teaching.

Evidence

CAEP supports the use of a residency model similar to that used in preparation of medical professionals. This presentation uses classroom-based summative assessment data, state certification exam data (Praxis 2 content tests), and job placement data to review the effectiveness of the residency-based model versus traditional routes.

Format

Poster Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Traci Tuttle is an associate professor of special education at West Liberty University. She received her Ed.D. in Special Education from West Virginia University, and her Master of Education in Special Education from Vanderbilt University. She has had classroom experience as a special educator working in large inner-city school districts as well as small rural schools with students with mild to moderate disabilities before starting in higher education.

Keyword Descriptors

special education, teacher preparation, residency programs, alternative preparation

Presentation Year

2016

Start Date

3-8-2016 4:00 PM

End Date

3-8-2016 5:30 PM

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Mar 8th, 4:00 PM Mar 8th, 5:30 PM

Creating Classroom-ready Special Educators Using a Residency-based Model

Harborside Center

This presentation, geared for school administrators and higher-education faculty, reviews the residency-based model for special education preparation at West Liberty University. The program provides intensive preparation in special needs classrooms in lieu of traditional classroom instruction resulting in increased exposure to IEP writing, meetings, eligibility, and collaboration with families/paraprofessionals resulting in classroom-ready special educators.