Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Perceptions of a university-school collaborative partnership
by Smith, Annie, Ph.D., The University of Alabama, 2009, 116; 3369781
Abstract (Summary)

Assessing Professional Development School (PDS) partnerships in teacher education presents a challenge for researchers and program evaluators because of the uniqueness of each program and the lack of a universal definition (Teitel, 2001). Since the prominence of PDSs university–school partnerships have become a model for school reform by underlining the need for collaboration between K-12 schools and universities (Campoy, 2000). The desired outcome is education reform that occurs simultaneously between K-12 schools and at the university level. Although participants involved in PDS partnerships tend to attest to their value, connections between PDS activities and their impact on teaching have been hard to document (Castle, Fox, & Sounder, 2006).

Issues of educator accountability and student achievement have almost demanded scientific research showing program impact. In response to this demand, several groups have established PDS standards and models to help examine the impact and the perceived impact of these programs. Utilizing existing PDS standards and models, this study examined the impact of the partnership between a university and two K-12 school systems located in the Southeastern part of the United States and based on multiple stakeholder perceptions. It also compared the beliefs, attitudes, or opinions of multiple stakeholders involved in different PDS partnerships. PDS partners felt that the partnership was on target. And there were no significant differences in the stakeholders’ beliefs about the progression of the partnership.

The study aimed to show program impact based on a combination of standards and principles set by the Holmes Group, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and specific goals set by the University-School Consortium for Educational Renewal (USCER) partnership, a joint venture between two K-12 school systems and a college of education at the local university. The members, structure, goals, resources, and outcome were included in the study. Similar to other PDS partnerships, USCER works in collaboration to develop university-school partnerships for the renewal of educational programs and the improvement of student achievement. Each stakeholder has individual as well as collective goals for USCER. Assessing USCER’s impact is key to the justification and sustainability of the partnership.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: McLean, James E.
Commitee: Robinson, Cecil D., Thoma, Steve J., Wetzel, Kathy S., Wilson, Elizabeth K.
School: The University of Alabama
Department: Educational Psychology
School Location: United States -- Alabama
Source: DAI-A 70/08, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: School administration, Teacher education, Higher education
Keywords: Collaborative partnerships, Partnership, University-school partnerships
Publication Number: 3369781
ISBN: 9781109323832
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