tial learning outcomes, relate to and extend the general education abilities (Loacker and Mentkowski, 1993). Within the major area of study, students are expected to achieve at least a level 5 for each of the program’s abilities (Zeichner, 2000).

Abilities and Learning Outcomes in Teacher Education

Alverno’s Department of Education offers degree programs in elementary, early childhood, secondary, bilingual, music, art, and adult education. All education programs are designed to foster the same set of teaching abilities. These teaching abilities define professional levels of proficiency that are required for graduation with a major in any of the teacher education programs. The teaching abilities refine and extend the general education abilities into the professional teaching context. While the professional teaching abilities are introduced in the first year, they receive heavy emphasis during the junior and senior years. The teaching abilities include:

  • Conceptualization—integrating content knowledge with educational frameworks and a broadly based understanding of the liberal arts in order to plan and implement instruction.

  • Diagnosis—relating observed behavior to relevant frameworks in order to determine and implement learning prescriptions.

  • Coordination—managing resources effectively to support learning goals.

  • Communication—using verbal, nonverbal, and media modes of communication to establish the environment of the classroom and to structure and reinforce learning.

  • Integrative interaction—acting with professional values as a situational decision maker, adapting to the changing needs of the environment in order to develop students as learners.

Each of the above education abilities is further described for faculty and candidates through maps (Diez et al., 1998). In the maps, development of the ability is defined in terms of what teachers would be expected to do with their knowledge and skills at various stages of their development. An example based on skill in integrative interaction follows: the beginning teacher would demonstrate ability in integrative interaction by showing respect for varied learner perspectives; the experienced teacher would provide structures within which learners create their own perspectives; and the master teacher would assist learners in the habit of taking on multiple perspectives. This type of mapping is intended to “capture the interactions between knowing and doing” (Diez et al., 1998:43).

Alverno’s Program for Education Majors

Alverno’s program for education majors is designed to address the developmental needs of learners. Concepts are addressed in an integrated fashion, across



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