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Otterbein Education Faculty Earn ODHE Straight A Grant, NCATE Accreditation

Otterbein Education Faculty Earn ODHE Straight A Grant, NCATE Accreditation


The Otterbein University Department of Education has received grants from the Buck Institute of Education and the Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE), as well as accreditation from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).

Department Chair Kristin Bourdage formally accepted the “Out of the Gates” award from the Buck Institute of Education on July 27.

The grant will provide professional development to Department of Education faculty, teacher partners from five different central Ohio school districts and up to 300 Otterbein education majors.  The grant funds professional development in Project-Based Learning, a method of teaching that examines real-world problems with 21st century skills.

Otterbein education faculty members also received a subaward from ODHE to work with Canal Winchester Local Schools (CWLS) and the Educational Services Center of Central Ohio. The four-year Straight A grant will fund a project titled Pathways to Possibilities/Ready for the World.

“Otterbein’s role in the project is to provide high-quality professional development to support teachers in developing 21st Century teaching practices,” said Kristin Bourdage, associate professor and chair of the Department of Education.

Guided by EnvisionEdPlus’s Four Tenets for Re-envisioning Education, CWLS and partners will implement a number of strategies to improve education in the district.

They will redesign instructional models, using STEM (strategies that engage minds) pedagogy so all students learn to think, innovate, and lead. Collaboration Design Labs, Blended Instructional Design and 21st Century Curriculum Design workshops will build an extensive local capacity to create lessons, units and courses that reflect the growing demand for future employees who work collaboratively, think critically, and design creatively.

They also will personalize learning for students and staff and train faculty to expand the use of Canvas, an open-source learning management system, to design new courses, lessons and units allowing flexibility in person, place, path and pace of learning aligned to college/career plans.

Lastly, the partners will increase access to middle school college/career experiences and high school pathways aligned to student interest and in-demand careers to expand postsecondary credit or credentials earned.

The Pathways to Possibilities/Ready for the World began in September 2016.

Last fall, the Department of Education at Otterbein earned accreditation from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), www.ncate.org. This accreditation covers initial teacher preparation programs and advanced educator preparation programs at Otterbein. The accreditation and approval of programs continues until 2023.   The Department of Education is most proud of the special recognition earned for having all five standards met without recommendations for improvements.  These standards include teacher candidate knowledge and skills, assessment, diversity, quality field experiences, faculty qualifications, and unit governance and resources.  For the Department, this means the process of preparing future teachers and supporting practicing teachers with ongoing professional development is on track and functioning well.

Founded in 1954, NCATE is recognized by the U. S. Department of Education as a specialized accrediting body for schools, colleges, and departments of education. NCATE and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) have consolidated and are now transitioning into the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

 

For more information about the Department of Education at Otterbein, visit www.otterbein.edu/education.

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