Teaching & Learning

CEHS Associate Dean Sylvia Read Co-Edits Data Resource for Educator Preparation Programs

By Alicia Richmond |

Sylvia Read

Utah State University Professor Sylvia Read is one of three co-editors of a publication written for educator preparation faculty, along with Linda McKee and Debbie Rickey.

“The purpose of the book is to gather as many stories as possible, in one place, of many different educator preparation programs and how they use data to improve their programs,” says Read, associate dean for accreditation and undergraduate studies and professor in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership in the Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services (CEHS).

Using Data for Continuous Improvement in Educator Preparationis a recently released book that addresses the relevance of data in its many forms. This includes the need to improve, collect, analyze and share data and to provide case studies that illustrate quality assurance in educator preparation programs.

“Gathering the stories helps those of us who prepare educators to engage in program improvement for the benefit of our educator candidates,” Read says.

McKee, the chief operations officer and a founding member of the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP), says the book contains a vast treasure trove of valuable insights and procedures focused on leading, improving and sustaining quality assurance and enhancement.

“Co-editing this book with my colleagues Sylvia Read and Debbie Rickey has been an honor as we support AAQEP’s organizational principle of sharing resources and ideas across educator preparation programs,” McKee says.

Read, who has been involved with AAQEP since 2017, says when the association was being formed, she served on different committees to the help it become a body of accreditation.

“From the very beginning, one of the main goals we have had as a professional association was to share stories and research,” Read says. “AAQEP not only engages in quality assurance through an accreditation process, but also supports educator preparation programs and faculty to better understand the work they do.”

In the book’s preface, Mark LaCelle-Peterson, CEO of AAQEP, states: “Through this book series, AAQEP seeks to widen the circle of learning from accreditation, to foster broad dissemination of findings and insights from quality assurance work, and to put the knowledge generated through the accreditation process into circulation so that others may benefit from those who have gone before.”

As educator preparation faculty read through the chapters, they will gain an in-depth understanding of the importance of data in education, learn innovative methods of data collection and analysis, and explore how these insights can empower educators to better serve the needs of their students.

“We must have data. Without data, we have little basis for deciding how make improvements,” Read says. “We use data to evaluate how our students are performing. The data is then taken back to the program faculty so that we can ask what we should do to help our educator candidates perform better.”

Emma Mecham, associate professor in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership in CEHS wrote a chapter for the book entitled “Practicing What We Preach: Using Data from the PRAXIS Performance Assessment for Teachers to Guide Instruction.”

“These are issues that education faculty all over the country are grappling with in terms of performance assessment — to enable our students to demonstrate what they know and what they can do in ways that are recognized by state governing bodies,” Mechan says.

In her chapter, Mecham writes that “although assessment can and sometimes is used as a tool for shaming, blaming, excusing, and attaching value to students, teachers, and schools, that isn’t what it is most useful for. The point, I tell them, of assessing students is to gather information that helps you make better instructional decisions.”

Mecham concludes that rather than fearing data, she is excited about what it teaches her. The ultimate goal is for every teacher candidate to be successful in demonstrating his or her knowledge and skills so that they can be effective educators in schools and classrooms.

Each chapter of the book focuses on how to use data to guide the future of educator preparation. New methods of collecting and analyzing data are illustrated with vibrant stories and examples, and each chapter describes the meaningful use of the data to better prepare future educators.

“I became involved in teacher education to help produce good teachers for the families and children of Utah,” Read says. “This association (AAQEP) attests to the quality of educator preparation programs that choose to seek accreditation. This book gives ideas on how other programs are using data.”

For more information or to purchase the book,Using Data for Continuous Improvement in Educator Preparation, please clickhere.

For media interviews, contact Andrea Ciecierski atandrea@styluspub.comat Myers Education Press.

Co-editors of "Using Data" Linda McKee, Debbie Rickey and Sylvia Read.

WRITER

Alicia Richmond
Director of Public Relations & Marketing
Emma Eccles Jones College of Education & Human Services
alicia.richmond@usu.edu

CONTACT

Alicia Richmond
Director of Public Relations & Marketing
Emma Eccles Jones College of Education & Human Services
alicia.richmond@usu.edu


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