Standard Six: Unit Governance and Resources
The unit has the leadership authority, budget, personnel, facilities and resources including information technology resources, for the preparation of candidates to meet professional, state and institutional standards.
Element Five: Unit Resources Including Technology
In order to ensure that College Of Education (COE) candidates have high-quality university supervisors and mentor teachers during their student teaching experiences in 2006-07 the COE has increased the faculty load credit devoted to supervising a student from 0.5 semester hour to 0.67 semester hour for each student teacher. Likewise the stipend amounts given to P-12 mentor teachers for having COE candidates in their classrooms have increased, now ranging from $150-$367 per practicum experience.
As a result of our work toward achieving National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) accreditation, we have invested in both technology and personnel to assure that the assessment system is in place, and will continue to be maintained on a regular schedule into the future.
The COE has invested in ensuring that the unit’s assessment system will provide data that is helpful for improving programs from year to year. In developing this system the COE invested in releasing faculty members from teaching for the purpose of NCATE coordination, NCATE standards development, and assessment system development. Each year, for the last four years, a total of 6-9 hours of load credits have been assigned to various faculty members to carry out these assignments. In addition, the COE has invested $34,125.36 in developing an assessment system for the purpose of meeting NCATE standards. Starting in 2007-08 the COE has increased the annual budget for ongoing NCATE assessment work by $9,000. These funds are assigned to increase a current support person’s position to full-time for the specific purpose of managing the NCATE data system.
Through regular university funding the COE makes certain that faculty and staff have high-quality technology tools to enhance learning. All COE faculty have a high-functioning laptop computer for use while teaching, during supervision and when participating in scholarly and service activities. Through COE funds and the Oregon Technology Education Network (OTEN) students have access to a variety of technology tools that they can use in labs, out in their P-12 classrooms and at home for the purpose of meeting the standards of a professional educator.
As mentioned earlier, the COE is one of six independent colleges who cooperated together to start the Oregon Technology in Education Network (OTEN). Now in its tenth year, OTEN is currently funded through a Teacher Education Quality Enhancement Partnership grant. OTEN is devoted to increasing thoughtful and effective ways of integrating technology in classrooms, K-college. As members of this consortium, the COE operates several programs for students preparing to be teachers: a software preview center; technology hardware/equipment lending library; two annual technology conferences; and competitive $500 mini grants to enhance learning through technology. Faculty members at these institutions can also access technology tools to model effective teaching. Faculty members who represent Pacific University in the consortium collaborate with faculty members at the other institutions in conducting research on P-12 student learning as the result of teaching with technology. This has led to many articles, at least one book and countless conference presentations.
OTEN sponsors an annual conference in the fall for teachers wanting to learn more about using technology to engage students in learning and another in the spring where candidates who have received mini-grants present their work to their peers and other invited guests. Pacific University has participated in sponsoring these events on campus. The OTEN conferences are unique in the region in providing a chance for pre-service and first year teachers to gather and learn more about integrating technology into their classrooms early in their careers.
In addition, OTEN has provided technology tools directly to teachers serving in low-income schools who are actively using technology to enhance learning. These practicing teachers, in turn, act as mentors to emerging teachers. As a partner in OTEN, the COE has been able to distribute technology grants over the past ten years totaling the following amounts:
- Grants to Faculty members at Pacific University of approximately $20,000
- Grants to Pacific University Student Teachers of approximately $75,000
- Grants to Mentor teachers at low-income schools of approximately $40,000
The following link includes records of all grant presentations given over the past six years at the six participating universities: http://www.oten.info/. This is the best record of all the presentations given and grants received by students and faculty. Grants in the past three years have been given to Technology Mentor Teachers who teach at the following schools:
Forest Grove area: Cornelius Elementary; Echo Shaw Elementary; Tom McCall Upper Elementary School; Neil Armstrong Middle School; Banks Elementary School
Portland: Meriwether Lewis Elementary School
The evidence from this activity has shown that student teachers develop as the critical technology experts in their respective schools as well. Many have given in-service presentations to the staff of their schools and many have given workshops at their schools. COE students have also given over 100 presentations at OTEN sponsored conferences.
This program has allowed Pacific to be a catalyst for change in Oregon as many of our teachers have taken positions as the technology leaders in their new schools. Campus leaders have heard back from a few of the teachers who have gone on to present at conferences and write grants of their own outside of OTEN; they credit the COE faculty members for giving them the courage and expertise to do so.
Library services available to College of Education faculty, candidates and alumni are exemplary due to the following factors:
- Faculty and candidates have access to 23,216 electronic journals through the Pacific University Library.
- The Pacific University Library has 1,915 journals at the Forest Grove and Hillsboro campuses. These journals are available to faculty and candidates at the Forest Grove campus in print and in Eugene through document delivery services.
- Forest Grove and Eugene faculty, candidates and alumni can access over 26 million resources in the combined catalogs of academic libraries from colleges and universities in Oregon and Washington through the Orbis-Cascade Alliance. This Alliance also allows our students in Eugene to use the Knight Library at the University of Oregon for their resource needs.
- Eugene faculty and candidates can request Pacific University Library materials located at either the Forest Grove or Hillsboro for delivery to Eugene.
- The Eugene campus has a professional library with curricular materials and text books available to candidates and faculty.
- The Forest Grove campus houses a) a curriculum library, b) reading resources, c) math/science/health curriculum resources, and d) a Child and Young Adult literature collection.