Date of this Version
The current U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) emphasis on the preparation of teachers in content knowledge, and de-emphasis on pedagogy and teaching practicums, constitutes a major issue concerning how best to prepare a sufficient supply of highly qualified teachers. By contrast, federal policy represented by the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) emphasizes both full certification and content knowledge. Our research was based on data from the Schools and Staffing Survey for beginning teachers in both special and general education (separately). Results showed that extensive preparation in pedagogy and practice teaching was more effective than was only some or no preparation in producing beginning teachers who (a) were fully certified, (b) secured in-field teaching assignments, and (c) reported being well prepared to teach subject matter and well prepared with respect to pedagogical skills. Thus, contrary to the USDOE perspective emphasizing preparation in content knowledge, extensive preparation in pedagogy and practice teaching contributed to the attainment of the two key NCLB indicators of a highly qualified teacher: full certification and in-field teaching.
Date Posted: 20 November 2008
This document has been peer reviewed.