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Evaluating the Effectiveness of Teacher Preparation Programs for Support and Accountability


"To meet the new and more rigorous college- and career-ready standards for student learning, all of today's students must have access to effective teaching-every day and in every classroom. As teachers and their school leaders are increasingly held accountable for implementing consistently effective teaching, calls for holding the programs that prepare them accountable have increased in kind. State and federal policymakers are therefore seeking to change how teacher preparation programs are evaluated-for the purposes of accountability and support.

This brief explores research that points to the opportunities and the challenges that evaluating teacher preparation programs differently presents. To begin laying the groundwork for the complex work ahead, we provide information on the following policy-relevant questions:
- What is the current status of teacher preparation program accountability and support?
- How is teacher preparation program evaluation changing?
- What are some ways to evaluate programs using the evidence of the quality of program processes?
- What are some ways to evaluate programs using the evidence of impact on outcomes?
- What are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges of each approach?
- How are states on the forefront of change-Louisiana, Texas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Ohio, and Florida-approaching the evaluation of their teacher preparation programs?

We offer answers to these questions but do not suggest that one particular approach is necessarily superior to another; we provide a resource for state education agency personnel and other state-level stakeholders to use as they redesign systems of teacher preparation program accountability and support."