School of Education

Standard 6

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The unit has the leadership, authority, budget, personnel, facilities, and resources, including information technology resources, for the preparation of candidates to meet professional, state, and institutional standards.

6.1 Unit Governance and Resources

How do the unit's governance system and resources contribute to adequately preparing candidates to meet professional, state, and institutional standards?

6.2.b Continuous Improvement

  • Summarize activities and changes based on data that have led to continuous improvement of candidate performance and program quality.
  • Discuss plans for sustaining and enhancing performance through continuous improvement as articulated in this standard.

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6.1 Unit Governance and Resources

SUNY Oswego, as with each campus in the system, has its own College Council, appointed by the governor. The Council holds four regular meetings throughout the year and receives reports from the president, vice presidents, Faculty Assembly chair, and Student Association president. The Oswego president leads an administrative team organized into four divisions: Academic Affairs, Administration and Finance, Development and Alumni Relations, and Student Affairs and Enrollment. The School of Education is incorporated into the Academic Affairs division, which according to the Middle State Accreditation Report, accounted for 62 percent of the campus operating budget in 2010-11. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, and the School of Communication, Media, and the Arts join the SOE in this division. Additionally, Graduate Studies, International Education, and the Division of Extended Learning as well as programs such as the Interdisciplinary Programs and Activities Center and the Honors Program are also included. The Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs directs this division.

The SUNY Oswego administrative team works collaboratively with the campus community through such formal structures of governance as the Faculty Assembly, the employee unions, and the Student Association as well as through lines of authority from the Provost and other vice presidents to deans and department chairpersons and directors.

Additionally, the SOE governance structure, as is highlighted in the by-laws, policies, and procedures in Exhibit 6.4.a, is led by the Dean who represents SOE in all administrative and financial interactions. The unit consists of six academic departments and the Field Placement Office, each led by its own chairperson or director. Housed within the Dean's office are the Associate Dean responsible for student issues, the Associate Dean responsible for assessment and accreditation, the Technology Support Professional, and secretaries. The Faculty Council Chair and Diversity Coordinator also report to the Dean. Exhibit 6.4.b includes SOE organizational charts showing the unit's administrative configuration and relationship to the institutional governance structure. The SOE organizational composition supports coordination of all initial and advanced programs for teacher preparation as well as preparation of other professional school personnel and the management professionals in Technology and Health Promotion and Wellness. Support for candidates in each program includes leadership from the faculty, resources both human and monetary, as well as facilities and access to information technology.

Included in the unit governance structure, SOE standing committees focus on specific issues relevant to preparation for the twenty-first century workplace and include: Assessment, Diversity, Field Experience, Educational Technology, Professional Development Schools, and Peer Review. Each committee has representatives from the six departments and follows the charge as determined by SOE faculty and described in the SOE Policy Handbook, Faculty Council By-Laws Article IV - Committee Structure and Functions found in Exhibit 6.4.a. Coordinated by the Faculty Council, the committee structure serves as recommending bodies to the School of Education. Also coordinated by the Faculty Council are unit faculty and staff meetings at least twice each semester to review and discuss relevant items to the school as a whole, most recently focusing on facility renovations progress. Minutes of these meetings are submitted electronically and uploaded into the Tk20 data management system for access by all faculty.

The unit provides support for recruitment of new students through information provided to admissions counselors as well as through off-site centers, open-house events, conferences, visits to community colleges, and in direct mail and social media. Exhibit 6.4.d provides examples of practices and resources for candidate recruitment and admission including admissions criteria provided by the Office of Admissions and the Graduate Studies office. Academic calendars and catalog information are compiled and reviewed by the unit as requested. (Exhibit 6.4.e) SOE publications and advertising are complete, current, and available on the Oswego website. Examples can be found in Exhibit 6.4.e.

Grading policies for individual courses are determined by course instructors and recorded in course syllabi produced for student access either online or in hard copy. General grading policies for the institution are included in college catalogs, on the college website, and here in Exhibit 6.4.e.

Ensuring that candidates have access to student services and academic support, the SOE faculty works with various other departments on campus to meet the needs of all candidates including academic advisement. Academic advisement begins with orientation programs during the summer and winter breaks with advisement coordinators and counselors. First year advisement is continued in each program with advisors who meet with advisees at least four times per academic year. Each faculty advisor is assigned advisees, usually determined by enrollments, with the expectation that advisement covers candidate progress and knowledge of services that are provided by the Office of Learning Services, Career Services, and the Writing Center. Notations on progress can now be entered in Degree Works, the institution's online reporting system, accessible by both advisor and advisee. Academic support and other services are highlighted in Exhibit 6.4.c.

The yearly SOE budget based on collaboration with the Finance office, Provost's office, and office of the Dean along with input from chairs and directors supports campus and clinical work essential for preparation of professional educators. Exhibit 6.4.f includes budgets for 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 highlighting provisions for assessment, technology, and professional development. Other budgetary information in Exhibit 6.4.f includes campus resources for student computing access, SOE granting income compared to institutional income, and support for online course development. Department chairs administer their respective operating budgets. Comparisons made between SOE and School of Business, which has clinical-like components in forms of internships, demonstrate that SOE receives budgetary allocations proportionate to other campus units. Exhibit 6.4.g points up the comparisons.

Faculty workload policies administered through the unit governance system in association with both institution and SUNY policies as described fully in Exhibit 6.4.h, SOE Policy Handbook, include:

  • Section 52.21(b)(2)(i)(h) of the New York State Education Department Commissioner’s Regulations requires that “faculty teaching assignments in teacher education programs shall not exceed 12 semester hours per semester for undergraduate courses, or 9 semester hours per semester for graduate courses, or 21 semester hours per academic year for faculty who teach a combination of graduate and undergraduate courses.
  • Double workload credit for teaching a single large section of a required course will be awarded if the total number of students is greater than 85 for lower division undergraduate courses, 50 for upper division undergraduate courses, and 35 for graduate courses.
  • The School of Education faculty is expected to spend significant time in one-to-one teaching interactions with candidates involved in projects and theses. In recognition of this fact, all School of Education faculty have a 9-sh teaching load. Thus, project and thesis advisement and/or school involvement is built into the typical faculty instructional assignment as the equivalent of one 3-sh course.
  • Faculty who complete 16 or more projects/theses in a 3-year period are eligible for a one course reduction in teaching load in the next academic year.
  • Individual faculty members shall not supervise more than 18 student teachers per semester, or 4.5 student teachers per 0.25 teaching load per semester.
  • The definition of internship varies across disciplines, but in undergraduate programs that require an internship, the ratio of students to teacher should be no more than 15:1 for a semester, or fewer if required by applicable professional standards.
  • In general, assigned time may be granted for department chair, program coordinator, admissions coordinator, student teaching coordinator, advisement coordinator, coach, and trainer. Responsibility for a grant or special project may also fall under this category.
  • The use of adjunct faculty is indicative of budget limitations in today's economy. For spring and fall 2012, the SOE included 105 adjuncts teaching 167 courses, the majority representing student teaching supervisors and courses linked to clinical practices.

Resources including physical facilities, computer technology access, and library access are all part of the purview of governance. Park, Wilber, and Sheldon halls, specific facilities for the SOE, have been undergoing major renovations since 2009. A portion of the facility opened in fall 2012, Park Hall is scheduled to re-open in spring 2014, with Wilber Hall following suit one year later. Exhibit 6.4.i provides information on current support as well as future access with completion of renovations. Resources across all programs in SOE include current library and curricular resources and electronic information. General computer access within the SOE includes labs/classrooms in Sheldon, Wilber, Park, and across campus in multiple open computer labs (Exhibit 6.4.i and 6.4.j). Wireless access is provided in SOE facilities and all campus academic buildings. Technology-enhanced classrooms allow instructors to use a wide variety of presentation tools and allow candidates to experience these technologies. Departments providing online courses are supported by Campus Technology Services.

6.2.b Continuous Improvement

The initiatives in the SOE's governance structure that support continuous improvement and program quality include the following:

  • Supporting data collection and effective use of data has resulted from the implementation of Tk20 and training sessions for faculty, staff, and students coordinated by the Associate Dean of Assessment and Accreditation in conjunction with the Technology Support Professional. Increased utilization of Tk20 across all six SOE departments improves program quality through analysis of data to make program changes and enhancements as identified.
  • As a result of the Tk20 initiatives, fieldwork, student teaching, and clinical experience reports have been restructured by the Field Placement Office and made more efficient as well as more sustainable by eliminating paper documentation.
  • The School of Education has focused on the $42 million facilities renovations that will offer improved program quality in each department. (Exhibit 6.4.i) All six departments will be housed in the facility. It is anticipated that proximity of all programs and faculty will lead to more collaborative initiatives. Faculty members have served on various committees in the design stages of the renovation including extensive work by the Renovation Steering Committee and the Educational Technology Committee to design state-of- the-art classroom spaces as highlighted in Standard 1 - Attachment 1.B.
  • Following SOE processes and practices for candidate recruitment, the following have been implemented: Educational Administration began a strategic marketing campaign by developing a series of electronic one-page flyers to email to administrators, alumni, students, and schools. Technology Education representatives attended conferences and student events to promote the profession. In an effort to increase enrollment and better serve students, an accelerated graduate program for in-service teachers was developed by VTP, resulting in new candidates. An agreement with SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) enables ESF graduates to seamlessly matriculate into graduate level initial teacher certification programs in Curriculum & Instruction. The MOU was signed early in fall 2012 and implemented immediately. We developed a NOYCE implementation grant proposal, in conjunction with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS), to expand opportunities for science and math majors to enter the teaching profession.
  • Several clinical and professional faculty participated in the NYSED Certification Field Study. New certification requirements are in place for initial certification candidates in 2014. The Field Study involved video of lessons along with written reflections, as will be required of candidates during future clinical experiences.
  • SOE collaborated with other schools and colleges in the institution that offer content, cognate, and allied courses for educational professionals; with community college partners from which many candidates transfer; and P-12 schools to ensure that content expertise and literacies nationally developed as Common Core Standards are incorporated in new and existing curricula across campus.
  • Working with collaborative institution partners, the SOE coordinated the Webinar Overview: The New Face of Teacher Preparation addressing Common Core Standards, Performance Assessment, Clinically Rich Preparation, and Data Driven Instruction.
  • Foundational work for NY State high stakes assessment for initial certification, the Teacher Performance Assessment and edTPA, resulted in an ad hoc committee representing each department to design an assessment tool to be incorporated in student teaching. Currently, the edTPA and Teacher Work Sample exhibit similar characteristics that measure disciplinary content knowledge and pedagogical expertise, therefore merging the two assessments is being considered.
  • VTP expanded utilization of synchronous capabilities for class and learning enhancement thus increasing candidate access to virtual classrooms and is in discussion with Extended Learning for a fully online program. CPS is now regularly offering three courses online to better meet the needs of the Syracuse program (CPS 508, 515, + 1 additional) and is exploring the feasibility of developing additional online courses in support of this program.
  • Participation in the institutional goal to create more Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) opportunities has resulted in at least two course proposals through Curriculum & Instruction and Vocational Teacher Preparation.
  • Teaching Resource Center (TRC) in Penfield Library offers a wide array of teaching materials, including activity books, lesson planning guides, k-12 videos, software, games, posters and more. Sample textbooks for all subjects and grade levels, usually teacher editions are searchable as a separate document type in the library catalog’s Advanced Search. Many sets include supplementary materials.

Sustaining performance through continuous improvement supports the institution goals for academic rigor, increased research experiences, enhanced experiential learning, maintaining commitments to social equity and diversity, and enhancing community engagement. All of these goals can only be accomplished through persistently improving unit governance and resources for the preparation of candidates to meet professional, state, and institutional standards. Plans include:

  • All academic programs will submit annual learning outcomes summary and assessment plans. Evidence from 2012 departmental learning outcomes reports will be used to improve programs.
  • A new non-certification MSEd in Curriculum & Instruction for professionals working in social services and for international student non-certification MS-SE (Master of Science-Studies in Education) has been approved by C & I. With Faculty Council approval, the program will move through campus governance.
  • Continued support from the Provost includes: a campus-wide Spring Writing Retreat focused on professional development in writing; an increase by 10 percent the number of faculty engaged in mentored research; incentives for faculty to prepare grant proposals with the goal to increase submitted grants by 5 percent; encouraged participation in Provost's fall retreat for all faculty focusing on best practice topics and in the future, assessment retreats at the department level; and, continued academic professional development support for at least $1500 per full time faculty member.
  • The Dean's office will continue workshops on edTPA as well as increase participation in an additional edTPA pilot program.
  • Several clinical and professional faculty participated in the NYSED Certification Field Study. New certification requirements are in place for initial certification candidates in 2014. The Field Study involved video of lessons along with written reflections, as will be required of candidates during future clinical experiences.
  • The Dean's office and department chairs through the SOE Administrative Advisory Council will continue to expand clinically rich programs using the Professional Development School model, with increased funding to provide comprehensive training for cooperating teachers. Web-based video is one possibility in order to meet the limitation of cooperating teachers located throughout the state. Additionally, all Associate Deans across the campus will be offering orientation programs for adjunct faculty within each college and school.
  • Members of the Dean's office, representatives from the six SOE departments and content Program Advisory Groups (Exhibit 6.4.b) will continue work with New York's Statewide Teacher Education Network (S-TEN). In July 2012, SUNY's Office of the Education Pipeline was awarded $3.5 million in Race to the Top (RTTT) funds by New York State Education Department to develop and implement a comprehensive teacher education initiative with SUNY faculty. The goal of this initiative is to engage higher education faculty and their educational partners in the renewal of teacher and school leader preparation to meet the needs of today’s children. Each campus (C-TEN) was awarded up to $40 thousand to fund projects related to one or more of the focus areas – Common Core Standards, Clinically Rich Teacher and Leader Preparation, Performance Assessments as in edTPA, new framework SBK and NYSTCE exams, and Data-Driven Instruction and APPR. Identified geographic regions (North, Central, Downstate, Western) were also awarded up to $34 thousand to fund projects related to one or more of the focus areas. Cortland, Empire, Oneonta, Cornell, Binghamton, and Oswego make up the Central region. Action plan templates for the network have been completed.
  • The Dean is in discussion with Pearson VUE in conjunction with Extended Learning to become an authorized testing center. Testing centers provide a secure and uniform testing environment, high quality service, and dependability. Using Pearson VUE software and applications, Oswego will deliver the electronic test and upload candidate results. The testing center is designed for any candidates across the state needing testing facilities.
  • SOE faculty will receive continued support through the campus's computer replacement program. For example, 29 faculty computers were either replaced or allotted to new faculty members in the academic time frame of 2009 -2012 - a financial commitment of nearly $20 thousand.
  • Phase III of the School of Education renovation is in the planning stages. Once Park Hall is completed, Wilber Hall will be evacuated and renovations will be completed for Curriculum and Instruction, Counseling and Psychological Services, and Health Promotion and Wellness departments. Of note in the renovated facility is inclusion of a Webinar room in the Dean's Suite. More courses can then employ synchronous learning techniques for online and hybrid-delivered courses with this technology-enhanced space.

Through leadership with financial support for facilities, professional and clinical faculties, supplies, equipment, and professional growth, SOE programs will continue to function at highly productive levels. The renovation of SOE facilities represents the institution's continued commitment to teacher/educator preparation.