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University News

Fullerton Ranks High in CSU Evaluation of Teacher Credential Programs


March 17, 2003 :: No.174

The high marks that graduates of Cal State Fullerton's teacher credential programs received at elementary and high schools where they teach helped to boost a systemwide evaluation of teacher preparedness that was reported this month to the California State University Board of Trustees.

The trustees met March 11-12 on the campus of Cal State Fullerton-the university's first outing as host of the annual spring gathering of trustees and campus presidents on one of the CSU's 23 campuses.

Cal State Fullerton alumni earned higher marks for preparedness than did CSU alumni overall in the second annual CSU Systemwide Evaluation of Teacher Education Programs. Specifically, 93 percent of CSUF graduates were rated prepared to teach math, and 91 percent prepared to teach reading, by their supervisors in elementary schools. That represents a leap from 72 and 71 percent, respectively, from one year earlier.

“We have been pleased with the high quality of teachers that we've hired from Cal State Fullerton's teacher education program, as well as their commitment to public education,” said Sherine Smith, principal of Capistrano Valley High School.

Systemwide, 83 percent of the graduates of CSU teacher credential programs received high marks from their supervisors for their level of preparation to teach reading and math in elementary schools. This level of effectiveness shows improvement from one year earlier, when 81 percent were evaluated favorably for their preparation in reading, and 80 percent for math.

Even greater improvements were realized in preparing high school teachers. Cal State Fullerton graduates were rated 97 percent prepared for teaching in grades 9-12, as compared to 95 percent one year earlier. Systemwide, 90 percent of CSU graduates teaching in grades 9-12 received high “preparation grades” from their supervisors, up from 86 percent one year earlier.

“I find it very easy to place graduates from Cal State Fullerton within the district,” said Donna Perry, assistant superintendent of the Anaheim Unified High School District. “The district's collaborative effort with Cal State Fullerton is one of the strongest in the state of California.”

Other results of the CSU evaluation:

• 92 percent of Fullerton teaching graduates, 89 percent in the CSU overall, know and understand the subjects of the curriculum, according to their supervisors, up from 84 percent and 87 percent, respectively, one year ago.

• 90 percent of Fullerton alumni (85 percent in the CSU) communicate effectively with parents, up from 85 percent (84 percent, CSU) the year before.

• 84 percent of Fullerton grads (82 percent in the CSU) manage their classes effectively for instruction, up from 83 percent a year (81 percent, CSU) a year earlier.

• 93 percent of Fullerton alumni (89 percent in the CSU) prepared good lesson plans, and 91 percent of those from Fullerton (83 percent, CSU) used a good “mix” of teaching strategies - two important aspects of teaching that were evaluated for the first time this year.

Beyond the preparedness evaluation, Fullerton alumni weighed in on their choice of program:

“According to the survey responses of our graduates, 92 percent selected Fullerton for its strong reputation for quality, and 86 percent felt that going to Fullerton would increase their chances of getting a position,” said L. Y. Mickey Hollis, acting associate dean, School of Education in the university's College of Human Development and Community Service.

Initiated by the CSU Office of the Chancellor and the deans of education, the systemwide evaluation gathered reports from 2,442 randomly selected teachers and 2,002 supervisors. The report's margin of error is less than four percent.

“Our reforms in teacher preparation are producing dividends,” said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. “And the children in California's public schools are the beneficiaries. We intend to keep the focus on preparing outstanding teachers. Our goal is for every graduate of our credential programs to be a top-quality teacher.”

Carmen Zuniga Dunlap, chair and professor of elementary and bilingual education, at 657-278-2554
Susan Katsaros, Public Affairs, at 657-278-4854


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