College of Education
West Chester University
302 Recitation Hall
West Chester, PA 19383
Call: (610) 436-2321
Fax : (610) 436-3102
The Professional Education Unit has designed and implemented a Unit Assessment System that is aligned with its conceptual framework, and professional, state, and national standards. This system enables the collection and analysis of data on candidates, faculty members, cooperating teachers, placements, Unit assessments, and all programs leading to certification as teachers and other school professionals.
The Unit assessment system consists of nearly 30 measures/activities. The various measures provide evidence of, among other things, (a) the acquisition of knowledge, skills, and professional dispositions by candidates in initial and advanced preparation programs; (b) the effectiveness and efficiency of operations of the Teacher Education Center as it works with P-12 partners to secure early field and student teaching experiences; (c) the qualifications of Unit faculty to teach, engage in scholarly activity, and participate in service; and (d) the nature of the structure of governance of the Unit and the institution, of budget, and of physical space used by the Unit to complete its mission of teacher education.
The measures of candidate performance - the Unit Assessments - were agreed to by all program chairs and coordinators in April of 2004. These include: PRAXIS I and II exams, lessons plans, curriculum unit plan, early field experiences evaluation forms, teaching internship performance rating forms/PDE-430 Student Teacher Assessments, and surveys (Alumni and EBI Teacher Education Exit Assessment). Beginning in fall 2008, the curriculum unit plan ceased to be used as a Unit assessment, although programs may continue to use curriculum unit plans for program assessments, if they choose. These assessment measures reflect the Unit performance indicators derived from the revised Conceptual Framework that guides all WCU professional education programs. The courses in which Unit assessments will be administered may be found in the WCU Professional Education Unit Assessment Handbook.
LiveText was adopted in 2004 as the courseware for the Professional Education Unit after more than a year of piloting and studying the performance assessment results. This courseware establishes electronic documentation of student outcomes as required by NCATE standards. LiveText is an efficient system to demonstrate adequate progress toward NCATE standards.
Data for Unit Assessments began to be gathered in LiveText during Spring 2006. Data collection through LiveText is an ongoing and long-term commitment to program improvement: the ultimate purpose for conducting performance assessments.
Teacher preparation programs in the Unit have an obligation not only to measure the performance of their candidates on performance indicators from the Unit Conceptual Framework using Unit assessments, they have an obligation to measure program specific goals or performance indicators, against SPA and PDE standards. Maintaining a culture of continuous improvement implies devoting regular attention to the process of collecting and analyzing assessment data for the purposes of (a) identifying program and Unit strengths and areas of need and (b) acting to make improvements in the areas of need. More information about the Unit/program assessment and reporting activities may be found here.