The New Jersey Department of Education updated the regulations for teacher preparation in 2014. A new requirement includes passing a performance assessment in the area where a candidate is seeking their initial license.
The department of education selected edTPA, created by SCALE (Standard [University] Center for Assessment, Learning and Equity) as the required performance assessment. The NJDOE site provides detailed information regarding the implementation and completion of edTPA at this link. The NJDOE, in conjunction with SCALE, developed a guide for Cooperating Teachers. The Guide provides an overview of what edTPA is, what to expect and how cooperating teachers can support teacher candidates throughout the process. A power point presentation on Overview to EdTPA can also be helpful to get a general understanding of the requirements. Some essential information regarding the tool includes:
- EdTPA is a subject-specific performance assessment (27 different teaching field versions exist)
- It focuses on three key areas: (i) planning; (ii) instruction (video component), and (iii) assessment.
- Fifteen rubrics, in total, are used to assess candidate performance across the three key areas.
- Evaluators are volunteers from the professional community, trained in the review of evidence and scoring.
- Currently 38 states and Washington, D.C. are using edTPA as a licensing requirement or graduation requirement in their teacher preparation programs.
- Each state sets its own pass rate for edTPA; the recommended national standard is 42. When first adopting edTPA, lower rates are set to allow for the development of learning required for instructors and candidates.
In 2017-2018 all teacher education programs are required to pilot the edTPA in preparation for its required roll-out in 2017-2018. The NJ department of education is working with NJEA and school leaders to share information about the performance assessment for teacher candidates. A few key points include:
- There is a required video component—focused on the teacher candidate– to provide evidence for the instruction portion of the task.
- The NJ DOE is preparing standard Video Release Forms for universities to use since this is a state-wide requirement.
- The lesson plans and instruction involved with the edTPA will not distract from mandatory curriculum requirements; the content should reflect the subjects and learning goals of the clinical setting.
- No formal evaluation requirements for the edTPA are expected of cooperating teachers or clinical supervisors, however, an understanding of the tool and evaluations will help you better prepare and evaluate the teacher candidate.
- SHU FAQ about EdTPA