Standard 6. 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.
6.1 Unit Governance and Resources
The unit's governance system 6.4.a 6.4.b contributes to preparation of teacher education candidates and school professionals. Collectively, the Dean, faculty, instructors, associate dean, chairs, coordinators, directors, P-12 clinical faculty, superintendents, partnering public school administrators and faculty, community colleges, and alumni, contribute to program quality and candidate readiness. The Dean assumes responsibility for leadership and operation of EPP by overseeing all undergraduate, professional development (PD), licensure, and graduate programs to ensure all programs meet national, state, and institutional standards reflected in the EPP's CF. The Dean also serves as a liaison between departments, the Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs in academic matters, effective teaching, service, research, advising, and faculty performance. The Dean collaborates with deans from the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), School of Business Education (SBE), University College (UC), and The Graduate School (TGS) to promote a positive image, support a strong institutional strategic plan with local and state initiatives, and achieve financial management of the School. An associate dean, three department chairs, support units, and faculty assist the Dean in administering the School.
Groups and committees play a significant role in decision-making and execution of leadership. The associate dean coordinates faculty and student services, instruction, research, grants, and accreditation. Program department chairs provide leadership at the undergraduate and graduate levels in partnership with faculty to coordinate and offer degree or licensure areas. The EPP has an organizational structure that delineates the roles and responsibilities of faculty in the decision-making process relative to candidates meeting standards and program requirements. Several committees contribute to the executive process 6.4.k. Committees meet monthly or bi-monthly and make recommendations to Dean. Three advisory committees provide advice support leadership in the unit: (i) the Dean's Advisory Board, (2) the Ed.D. Advisory Board, and the (3) Principal Advisory Council.
The University of North Carolina General Administration (UNCGA) identified recruitment as a strategic priority. Each NC EPP is funded to support the development of a recruitment plan 6.4.d detailing recruitment groups. Support from UNCGA resulted in creation of an Exempt Personnel Action (EPA) Non-teaching position and a SOE recruiter hired to implement the plan. The recruiter is guided by SOE admissions requirements. Candidates are recruited from seven community college partner sites, a primary source of likely candidates. The recruitment plan targets specific recruitment areas: community colleges (transfer students), Troop to Teachers, high school graduates, and undeclared admitted university students. Recruitment focuses on the high-need areas of math, science, middle grades, and special education and was extended to elementary education candidates with concentrations in high needs areas. The recruiter maintains offices at partner community colleges and is supported by a campus-wide Recruitment Committee with members from the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), School of Business Education, University College (UC), Community Colleges (CC), Admission's Office, Registrar's Office, Financial Aid Office, Enrollment Management, and military support services 6.4.d.1.
The Director of Recruitment & Advisement communicates with the Director of Admissions toreview and update EPP marketing materials: academic calendars, catalogs, grading policies, and publications developed/reviewed by FSU offices to include the Office of Admissions, Marketing, and Public Relations 6.4.e. SOE Dean approves marketing materials.
Partnership agreements between EPP and community colleges detail expectations 6.4.d.2. A successful recruiting tool, CC partnerships formerly centered on Dual Enrollment and were designed for pre-candidates to simultaneously take FSU and CC courses 6.4.d.4. In January 2014, the Dual Enrollment program was modified and renamed the Dual Degree Articulation agreement 6.4.d.3. The change reduces process duplication and optimizes transitions across supporting services, e.g., financial aid, enrollment management, and registration.
The SOE Academic Advisement & Retention Center (SOEAARC) was implemented to ensure advising to assist pre-majors in education and is managed by the Director of Recruitment and Advising. The Center serves pre-majors up to completion of 45 credit hours with a plan of study review, transcript evaluation, advisement for Education Learning Community, and encouraging undeclared university students to major in Teacher Education. SOEAARC procedures, on its website are maintained by Center staff. The Director serves on university committees, including the FSU Advising Effectiveness Committee, Transfer Services Advisory Committee, and Retention Committee to ensure information is accurate, clear, and current. The EPP ensures candidates have access to student services e.g., advising and counseling, and referrals are made to the Center for Personal Development, the Health Services Center, Career Services, or other FSU student support services 6.4.c.
While significant state-wide budget cuts persist, EPP maintains high quality services to candidates, faculty, and partners. EPP's budgetary funds come from state allocations according to formula rates. Funding is comparable to FSU units and provides support for teaching, research, and service 6.4.f. EPP's budget for three departments is comparable to the Department of Nursing 6.4.g. The EPP receives external monetary support, e.g., endowment funds, scholarship support, and grants 6.4.f.l to enhance the unit's budget. EPP secured funds for candidates towards admission and licensure exam via a fundraising banquet held by the Fundraising Committee of Dean's Advisory Board. EPP budgetary allocations permit faculty teaching, scholarship, and service that extend to P-12 partners. The EPP has been able to retain faculty, hire adjuncts, support clinical work, and provide Praxis II workshops, as budget reductions were taken from vacant positions.
EPP departments post and fill vacant faculty/staff positions to serve academic and advisement needs using the online PeopleAdmin resource provided by the Office of Human Resources. Course sections offered have been reduced across campus and the state; however, EPP offers courses to meet program needs. Budget cuts caused some adjunct and vacant faculty positions to be abolished to prevent loss of employees, but faculty workload has remained as detailed in the approved Faculty Workload Policy 6.4.h. Management of faculty load is a department duty. Since 2012, Academic Affairs has a Student Credit Hour/Full Time Equivalency (SCH/FTE) calculator to determine if faculty maintain the required 1.0 FTE. Units develop a SCH/FTE table that identifies faculty teaching by department, number of SCH generated, and FTE 6.4.h.1. Allowance is made for faculty with a reduced load. SCH/FTE matrix is submitted to the Provost each summer and used to determine faculty position needs.
The EPP is housed in the C.L. Butler Learning Center 6.4.i, built in 1976. The facility has 72,267 gross area. The EPP's Curriculum Learning Resource Laboratory, on the 2nd floor of the Charles Chesnutt Library, houses educational resources to support pre-/candidates' instructional efforts to become facilitators of learning. The Lab supplements classroom instruction by providing candidates and teachers use of audio/visual and resources for classroom settings. Staff supports candidates' with creating instructional materials aligned to the pedagogical skills in coursework. The lab houses over 16,000 resources.
The Library supports educational, research, and cultural endeavors via selection, acquisition, organization, and analysis of information resources. The Library is a major cultural resource for the community and region and is a full service information center that supports FSU with tangible and online services. Databases, E-Books, catalogs, and web resources are accessible on the Library website.
Three computer labs reside in Butler and are assigned to the SOE, advanced candidates, and the 3rd is a foreign language lab for students from Inner Mongolia, China. Classrooms are equipped with smart boards, projectors, and computers. Two classrooms have Interactive Television software so faculty can instruct pre-candidates onsite or at CCs. Dean's conference room is equipped with videoconferencing. Wireless/high speed broadband capacity is available in Butler and across campus. The EPP has a full-time Instructional Technology Specialist (ITS) to update SOE and supporting websites and conduct relevant/current training for faculty, staff, and candidates. The ITS collaborates with Information Technology and Telecommunication Systems (ITTS) to support the SOE. The ITS assists units across campus and provides digital media for events e.g., awards ceremony, lectures, banquets, etc. Butler is not a new building; however, FSU and the EPP have made efforts to provide 21st Century technological resources to candidates and faculty. ITTS purchases technology and upgrades faculty computers and printers every three years.
Distance Education (DE) 6.4.j is a key part of FSU's access to education. FSU supports a DE Librarian where candidates can chat online for assistance. Course sections are available each semester to support the DE demand. Courses developed for on-line offerings must be validated by department faculty and staff from the Office of Online Education. Courses offered via Blackboard are supported by ITTS and DE. Each year the EPP receives funding from UNCGA based on the number of credits offered via DE. This fund supports development of online courses, Plato costs, and other EPP technological needs.
6.2.b Continuous Improvement
§ Summarize activities and changes based on data that have led to continuous improvement of candidate performance and program quality.
§ Discuss plans for sustaining and enhancing performance through continuous improvement as articulated in this standard.
The SOE anticipates sustained financial support from state appropriations and external funding sources. In 2011, planning funds were allocated to FSU towards a new SOE building. Since the state's budget deficit, those funds have not been released. FSU administrators and the SOE Dean's Advisory Board are petitioning to secure the release of the planning funds 6.4.i.1. The SOE building is the next designated state funded capital project on the FSU capital project list 6.4.i.2.
The EPP has purchased access to 40 seats to assist pre-candidates in preparation for the Praxis I examination, the gateway assessment for admission to initial licensure programs. SAT scores and earned degree may be used to substitute for the Praxis I examination. Plato scores, required for the completion of specific courses are used to determine intervention services for pre-candidates. EPP faculty members either volunteer their services or are provided with a stipend to develop and lead examination preparation workshops informed by information derived from Plato scores. Pre-candidates enrolled at partner community colleges also use Plato software and participate in the workshops. Prior to October 2014, only initial candidates seeking licensure in elementary and special education were required to complete the Praxis II exam to secure state licensure. The EPP and its specialty faculty, through funding support made available by Academic Affairs, provide Praxis II specialty workshops at least twice each semester to prepare candidates for the examination. Over 90% of candidates meet licensure examination requirements each academic year. Advanced candidates and faculty, have access to SPSS research software to assist in the analysis of data to meet dissertation and other research needs. The software is available on computers housed in the Office of Research Initiatives, a computer lab specifically reserved to support advanced candidates, and is supported by a faculty director and a Graduate Assistant (GA). Qualtrics survey software is also made available via the EPP's budget and is used for both research and unit assessment data.
The SOEAARC was one of the first units on campus to collaborate with University College and the Office of Admissions to utilize Adobe Connect, an online communication system. This process is used to communicate with and monitor prospects as well as enrolled pre-majors in a group process. The EPP has access to WebFocus data management software to review and collect data on prospects/applications, admission, enrollment, and completion data. Data may be secured by semester, across unit, by gender, race, and compared across semesters. WebFocus is maintained by the Office of Institutional Research and EPP administrators are trained in its applications and resources.
The EPP is served by Graduate Assistants (GAs) each year since 2011. GAs serve units with graduate programs and funds for GAs are managed through The Graduate School 6.4.l. The Dean collaborates with chairs and directors to determine the allocation of this additional administrative and research support. Generally, a GA is assigned to the Dean's Office, one to the Associate Dean, two to each department, one to the Office of Teacher Education, and one to the Office of Research Initiatives (ORI).
The Office of Summer School and Continuing Education was reorganized and is a direct support to the EPP. Summer funds are self-generated. The Director of Summer School had a 50% teaching assignment to the EPP. She now has direct supervision of the Office of Continuing Education with no teaching designation. The EPP receives a percentage of all summer funds secured via its course offerings 6.4.m. These funds are used to support faculty to continue the growth and development of summer school and support travel to conferences. Summer School also supports the Continuous Improvement Report (CIR) funds provided to each academic unit based on growth in improvement of Programs Student Learning Outcomes (PSLO) 2.4zb, advisement, persistence, OPAR, SCH/FTE ratio. The EPP uses these resources to support personnel and significantly enhance the effectiveness of faculty in their teaching and mentoring of candidates. In order to enhance teaching and learning effectiveness at FSU, the OFD offers on-demand webinars and workshops for faculty to promote innovative pedagogical and technological practices that meet candidates' needs. Topics include: grading and feedback, student engagement, teaching with technology, syllabus development, online course design, managing faculty, leadership, strategy and policy, and Blackboard.
Since 2011 the Provost leads a course for new faculty to familiarize them with FSU's professional expectations including reappointment, tenure, and promotion requirements. Participating faculty receive a one-course release during the semester in which s/he is participating in the course. Faculty without tenure, who did not have this opportunity upon employment are able to capitalize on this opportunity. Guests presented to the course include senior administrators and tenured faculty to help provide insights into the FSU professional community.
EPP assessment data are maintained within the TaskStream Learning Achievement Tools (LAT) (candidate) and Accountability Management System (AMS) (Unit) platforms. The EPP receives support from Academic Affairs (AA) to maintain the LAT platform of the assessment system in TaskStream. In addition, the Banner system houses faculty and student records. All candidate details as well as course schedules are posted to Banner, that feeds into the WebFocus data system. The systems are maintained by personnel to ensure accurate and effective data.
The EPP is supported by the Dean's Advisory Board, established in 2011. Membership includes FSU/SOE alumni, business leaders, school superintendents, and faith-based representatives. The Board provides support to the EPP, its program, candidates, and faculty. Board members advise the dean in the overall improvement of the School, serve as role models for our candidates, assist the Dean in fundraising, and promote a positive image of the EPP 6.4.n. A fundraising event is held each November as a capstone activity to the American Education Week series of activities 6.4.o. Funds raised from the event are used to supplement Praxis I scholarships, sponsor Praxis I workshops, and offer student teaching stipends.
The SOE has extended its support of military dependent children. The SOE has membership with the Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC) and partner with the Coalition to offer PD to faculty, teachers, and in-service teachers to address the needs that children of military families bring to the classroom. PD activities began in summer 2012. These strategies are infused into program curriculum 6.4.p. A Graduate Certificate Program applying modules developed by MCEC is in the planning phase. Discussions are ongoing with Wake County and Cumberland County Public School Systems to implement a "Troops to Teachers Hire in Advance Program."
The ongoing need for continuous improvement by the EPP to support faculty development would require the external funding equivalence prior to recent budget cuts. This funding support is critical for faculty to maintain engagement in dialogue and skill development related to emerging theories and practices. Funding support will enable the EPP to limit the enrollment number to 15 for each methods class, so the faculty can closely monitor candidates' teaching and learning in the P-12 classroom prior to enrollment in Student Teaching. The candidates and P-12 settings have environments with advanced technological resources. The EPP must update its learning environment so faculty can remain competitive with technological advances.