- Year 2022
- NSF Noyce Award # 2050641
- First Name Jackie
- Last Name DeLisi
- Discipline N/A
Abigail Jurist Levy, Education Development Center; Lisa Gonsalves, University of Massachusetts Boston
Jackie DeLisi, Abigail Jurist Levy, & Lukas, Education Development Center; Lisa Gonsalves & Miriam Niedergang, University of Massachusetts Boston
This research responds directly to calls for understanding teacher preparation. A review of over 700 teacher preparation programs conducted by The National Council on Teacher Quality (2018) noted the lack of essential elements of high-quality preparation, and called for sweeping improvements in pre-service teacher training. The National Research Council’s 2010 report on teacher preparation presented a research agenda to produce the evidence needed to inform program improvements. Our research responds directly to this call for more comparative studies that examine the specific components and characteristics of preparation programs.
The first phase of the three-year research study addresses the following questions:1. What is the probability that Noyce alumni from Noyce programs across the U.S. are retained in high-needs schools and districts?2. Which components of teacher candidate and teacher preparation programs contribute to Noyce alumni’s persistence in high-needs schools and districts?3. How do these program components support Noyce scholars’ STEM teaching and cultural efficacy?4. How do the design and implementation of the program components vary across Noyce-funded teacher preparation programs?
We began our work first by establishing a collaborative group of partners and creating a community of practice (CoP) across ten Noyce programs.The CoP meets quarterly, with additional communication through monthly newsletters and informal brown bag discussions. The research considers the development of teachers’ STEM teaching self-efficacy and cultural self-efficacy as central components that contribute to their persistence in schools. The first phase of the research examines Noyce alumni perception of their preparation experiences, including those that may have contributed to their interest in teaching, specifically in high-need schools. We followed up on survey results through interviews with selected alumni in order to understand the emergent features in more detail and explore the relationships between those features and teachers’ perceptions of their teaching and cultural self-efficacy.
Survival analysis of alumni survey data revealed that teachers’ perception of the quality of their preparation persists their longevity in high-need schools. We further examined the reported preparation experiences of the alumni. Eight features of preparation programs were significantly different for those who reported to have been well prepared in contrast to those who did not. Interviews with alumni also revealed the importance of experiences during preparation that expose teachers to high-need contexts with support from their programs and a network of peers. Our next steps include additional interviews with Noyce alumni, with a deeper dive into the eight features that emerged as significant from the survey and how those features may or may not have prepared teachers for working in high-need contexts. Beginning in the fall we will also look more closely at the eight features in the context of the 10 partner programs, and relationships to STEM teaching self-efficacy and cultural self-efficacy.
By examining features in the context of Noyce-funded teacher preparation programs and the association between program components and teacher retention in high-need schools, we will better understand how to prepare teachers for persistence in these schools, leading to stronger teacher preparation. This study has the potential to offer other Noyce programs across the country a concrete way to strengthen teacher preparation. Further, the national scope of this research will enable deeper understanding and potential for applying findings across varied contexts.