Program Performance Measures: North Dakota

2017 General Teacher Prep Programs Policy

Goal

The state should collect and publicly report key data on the quality of teacher preparation programs. This goal was reorganized in 2017.

Does not meet

Analysis of North Dakota's policies

Student Growth Data: North Dakota does not collect or publicly report data that connect student growth to teacher preparation programs.

Additional Program Data: North Dakota does not collect other objective, meaningful data to measure the performance of teacher preparation programs.

Citation

Recommendations for North Dakota

Collect data that connect student growth to teacher preparation programs, when those programs are large enough for the data to be meaningful and reliable.
North Dakota should continue its work toward not just collecting but also publicly reporting the academic achievement gains of students taught by programs' graduates, averaged over the first three years of teaching, when the programs produce enough graduates for those data to be meaningful and reliable.Rather than relying on an outside organization, such as CAEP, the state should codify in its own laws what data must be collected to measure student growth. Data that are aggregated at the institution level (e.g., combining elementary and secondary programs), rather than disaggregated by the specific preparation program, have less utility for accountability and continuous improvement purposes than more specific data because institution-level data aggregation can mask significant differences in performance among programs.

Gather other meaningful data that reflect program performance.
Although measures of student growth are an important indicator of program effectiveness, the strongest state systems ensure that data are collected on multiple, objective program measures. Rather than relying on an outside organization, such as CAEP, the state should codify in its own laws what data must be collected to measure program performance and what metric must be used. North Dakota should maximize the information available to programs and the public by collecting data that demonstrate how well programs are preparing teachers for the classroom, such as:

    1. Average scaled scores of teacher candidates on licensing tests, including tests of academic proficiency normed to the college-going population and subject-matter tests;
    2. Number of times, on average, it takes teacher candidates to pass licensure tests;
    3. Teacher candidate first-time scores and pass rates for licensure tests;
    4. Satisfaction ratings reported by the school principals and teachers who supervise programs' student teachers, using a standardized form to permit program comparison;
    5. Three-year retention rates of graduates in the teaching profession; and
    6. For-profit provider candidate completion rates.

State response to our analysis

North Dakota indicated that it is working toward being able to share student performance data with institutions of higher education in an effort to measure the performance of teacher preparation programs, as this is a CAEP requirement. The state added that although the state had planned to make this data available by fall 2017, it is not quite yet available. North Dakota stated that this data are available through Educational Testing Service (ETS) and to institutions, but comparisons are not made public.

In terms of collecting other, meaningful data, the state added that each institution keeps their own data and provide it in their CAEP report.

How we graded

1C: Program Performance Measures 

  • Student Growth Data: The state should collect and publicly report data connecting student growth to teacher preparation programs for all programs large enough for the data to be meaningful and reliable. Such data may include growth analyses specifically conducted for this purpose or evaluation ratings that include objective measures of student growth.
  • Supplemental Accountability Data: The state should collect and report meaningful data that inform a reasonable judgment of the performance of each approved teacher preparation program, including some or all of the following: 
    • Average scaled scores of teacher candidates on licensing tests, including tests of academic proficiency normed to the college-going population and subject-matter tests.
    • Number of times, on average, it takes teacher candidates to pass licensure tests.
    • Teacher candidate first-time scores and pass rates for licensure tests 
    • Supervisor satisfaction ratings of program graduates collected through a standardized form to allow for program comparison.
    • Three-year retention rates of graduates in the teaching profession.
    • For-profit provider candidate completion rates.
Student Growth Data
One-half of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-half credit: The state will earn one-half of a point if student growth data of program graduates are collected and reported for programs that are sufficiently large enough for these data to be meaningful and reliable. 
  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if it has made significant progress toward collecting and reporting student growth data of program graduates. 
Supplemental Accountability Data
One-half of the total goal score is earned based on the following:

  • One-half credit: The state will earn one-half of a point if it collects more than one additional data point that provides meaningful insight into program performance.
  • One-quarter credit: The state will earn one-quarter of a point if it collects one additional data point that provides meaningful insight into program performance.

Research rationale

The state should examine a number of factors when measuring the performance of and approving teacher preparation programs.[1] Although the quality of both the subject-matter preparation and professional sequence is crucial, there are also additional measures that can provide the state and the public with meaningful, readily understandable indicators of how well programs are doing when it comes to preparing teachers to be successful in the classroom.[2]

States have made great strides in building data systems with the capacity to provide evidence of teacher performance.[3] These same data systems can be used to link teacher effectiveness to the teacher preparation programs from which they came. States should make such data, as well as other objective measures that go beyond licensure test pass rates, central components of their teacher preparation program approval processes, and they should establish precise standards for performance that are more useful for accountability purposes.[4]

National accrediting bodies, such as CAEP, are raising the bar, but are no substitute for states' own policy. A number of states now have somewhat more rigorous academic standards for admission by virtue of requiring that programs meet CAEP's accreditation standards. However, whether CAEP will uniformly uphold its standards (especially as they have already backtracked on the GPA requirement) and deny accreditation to programs that fall short of these admission requirements remains to be seen.[5] Clear state policy would eliminate this uncertainty and send an unequivocal message to programs about the state's expectations.[6]


[1] For general information about teacher preparation program approval see Rotherham, A. J., & Mead, S. (2004). Back to the future: The history and politics of state teacher licensure and certification. A qualified teacher in every classroom (pp. 11-47). Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press. Retrieved from https://www.nctq.org/nctq/research/1109818629821.pdf
[2] For additional discussion and research of how teacher education programs can add value to their teachers, see: National Council on Teacher Quality. (2016). Teacher Prep Review. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/teacherPrep/2016/home.do
[3] Walsh, K., & Jacobs, S. (2007). Alternative certification isn't alternative. Thomas B. Fordham Institute. Retrieved from
http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED498382.pdf

[4] For additional research on the status of teacher quality and the strengths and weaknesses of accreditation programs and policies in the U.S., see: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education. (2010). The secretary's seventh annual report on teacher quality: A highly qualified teacher in every classroom. Retrieved from https://www2.ed.gov/about/reports/annual/teachprep/t2r7.pdf
[5] For a discussion of the lack of evidence that national accreditation status enhances teacher preparation programs' effectiveness, see: Ballou, D., & Podgursky, M. (1999, July). Teacher training and licensure: A layman's guide. Marci Kanstoroom and Chester E. Finn., Jr. (eds.), Better teachers, better schools (pp. 45-47). Washington, DC: Thomas B. Fordham Foundation. Retrieved from http://www.edexcellence.net/sites/default/files/publication/pdfs/btrtchrs_10.pdf; Greenberg, J., & Walsh, K. (2008, June). No common denominator: The preparation of elementary teachers in mathematics by America's education schools. Washington, DC: National Council on Teacher Quality. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/No_Common_Denominator_NCTQ_Report; Walsh, K., Glaser, D., & Wilcox, D. (2006, May). What education schools aren't teaching about reading and what elementary teachers aren't learning. Washington, DC: National Council on Teacher Quality. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/What_Ed_Schools_Arent_Teaching_About_Reading_NCTQ_Report
[6] See Walsh, K., Joseph, N., & Lewis, A. (2016, November). Within our grasp: Achieving higher admissions standards in teacher prep. 2016 State Teacher Policy Yearbook Report Series. Retrieved from http://www.nctq.org/dmsView/Admissions_Yearbook_Report