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Program Standards

Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction

We believe the development of teachers continues throughout an educator’s career. Therefore, the outcomes for practicing teachers remain the same as those for the pre-service teacher, but the skills, knowledge and dispositions change to foster continued development.

These standards have been aligned with the five Core Propositions of the National Board for Professional Teacher Standards. This alignment ensures that the Doane College Master of Education program seeks to identify teachers who effect enhanced student learning
and demonstrate high levels of knowledge, skills, and attitudes and commitment in teaching.

The Teacher Education Graduate Standards

Standard 1:  Understands Content

The developing professional understands the content knowledge of the discipline(s).

  • Demonstrates how knowledge in content area is created, organized, linked to other disciplines and applied to real world settings.
  • Commands specialized knowledge of how to convey content knowledge to students.
  • Encourages students to construct new knowledge by seeking answers to their questions.
  • Aligns content knowledge with state and national standards.

Standard 2:  Understands Development

The developing professional understands how children learn and develop, and provides opportunities supporting intellectual, social, and personal growth.

  • Maintains the belief that all students can learn by developing learning experiences for all cognitive levels.
  • Evaluates and selects developmentally appropriate outcomes and activities
  • Incorporates current and research-based learning theories into practice.
  • Acknowledges that learners learn best from involvement with experiences.

Standard 3:  Understands Differences

The developing professional recognizes and provides for individual differences and diversity.

  • Recognizes individual differences in students and adjusts practice to ensure fairness and success for each student.
  • Evaluates and designs curriculum for students with special needs.
  • Critiques and enhances curriculum for multidimensional perspectives fostering an attitude supporting the development of a community that values diversity.
  • Considers the influence of context and culture on behavior
  • Fosters students’ self-esteem and respect for race, gender, class, culture, language, family, community, and religious differences.

Standard 4:  Designs Instructional Strategies

The developing professional uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage students’ development of skills and strategies for critical thinking and problem-solving.

  • Views the teacher and learners in a reciprocal relationship: the teacher is also a learner; the learners are teachers.
  • Differentiates instruction based on observation and knowledge of student interests, abilities, skills, background knowledge, family, and peer relationships.
  • Commands a wide range of instructional techniques --  including those of technology -- knows when each is appropriate, and implements them as needed.
  • Exposes students to different modes of higher-order thinking by teaching students to think analytically and critically about authentic, real-world situations.

Standard 5:  Manages and Motivates

The developing professional uses classroom management and motivational strategies to create a positive learning environment.

  • Creates a community where high expectations and support of students promote learning to support individual student achievement to ensure success for all.
  • Utilizes different organizational settings in the learning environment to provide various learning opportunities.
  • Creates, enriches, and alters the instructional setting to encourage intrinsic motivation of students.
  • Facilitates problem-solving and conflict management between peers.

Standard 6:  Communicates

The developing professional uses knowledge of effective communication techniques.

  • Possesses the interpersonal skills needed to work collaboratively.
  • Communicates sensitively with all audiences.
  • Uses a variety of media and technological tools to enrich learning and communication.
  • Seeks opportunities to facilitate communication with diverse populations.

Standard 7:  Plans

The developing professional utilizes effective planning techniques.

  • Implements standards established by local, state and national authorities.
  • Collaborates in planning the instructional process to assure continuity of learning experiences for students.
  • Uses student-centered strategies and models.
  • Differentiates curriculum and instruction based on children’s developmental stages, intelligences, learning styles, strengths and needs.

STandard 8:  Assesses

The developing professional understands and uses a variety of formal and informal assessment strategies.

  • Defines assessment criteria and standards consistent with local, state, and national standards.
  • Uses culturally sensitive and developmentally appropriate assessment strategies in multiple contexts.
  • Conducts ongoing assessment in the instructional process measuring individual student understanding.
  • Uses assessment data to plan for student learning.
  • Fosters student involvement in assessment.

STandard 9:  Reflects on Practice

The developing professional is a reflective practitioner who actively seeks out opportunities to grow professionally. 

  • Utilizes action research promoting problem-solving and reflection to improve teaching and learning practices.
  • Engages in lifelong learning, assuming a variety of leadership roles including professional presentations, mentoring and coaching, graduate study, and publishing research.
  • Implements and supports daily practices based on a personal philosophy of teaching and learning.
  • Envisions new contexts for student learning to meet future demands.

Standard 10:  Participates in the Professional Community

The developing professional fosters relationships with school colleagues, families, and agencies in the larger community to support students’ learning and well being.

  • Uses a range of human resources (peer tutors, other teachers, aides, volunteers and school and community resources) to meet the needs of students.
  • Acts as an advocate for students using family and community resources.
  • Works collaboratively and creatively with families, engaging them in the work of the school.
  • Acts as an instructional leader by participating collaboratively in the ongoing development of a strong school program. 

Guiding Principles for the Graduate Studies Program in Education

To guide the work of the unit, we believe the following principles must be considered in all aspects of the design, implementation, and  assessment of graduate education.

  • Faculty design curricula in an integrated or problem-based model to promote an understanding of the integration of the various knowledge and skill areas in teaching, learning, research, and leadership.
  • Programs include 1) the acquisition of concepts and  information; 2) the integration of concepts with practice and use of knowledge in context; and 3) the application of knowledge and skills in a workplace environment.
  • Faculty develop bridging experiences between course content and the workplace that feature clinical exercises, field settings, and internships, which provide a synthesis and application of appropriate knowledge and skills.
  • Instructional practices utilize appropriate adult learning strategies.
  • Faculty place instructional emphasis on those methods and materials that anticipate learner performance in the workplace.
  • Faculty adapts activities in courses to the degree and level sought by each candidate.
  • Faculty provides candidates the opportunity to formulate and examine an ethical platform upon which to rely for difficult decisions.
  • Assessment of the candidates is carried out through the use of multiple sources of data, including performance assessment.
  • Faculty demonstrates expertise through continued involvement in professional practice.
  • Faculty promotes collaborative planning among school and college faculties, administrators, school boards, and community leaders.
  • Participants critique their personal practice through action-based inquiry/research.
  • The graduate program promotes the understanding of equity, cultural diversity, and exceptionalities.
  • The graduate education faculty participates in the dissemination of research findings through a variety of formats.