other programs1 when data are available to permit such an evaluation and should address the following issues:

  1. The impacts on teachers who obtain board certification, teachers who attempt to become board certified but are unsuccessful, and teachers who do not apply for board certification;

  2. The extent to which board certification makes a difference in the academic achievement of students; and

  3. The cost-effectiveness of advanced-level certification as a means for improving teacher quality.

This report presents the committee’s framework for evaluating programs that award advanced-level teacher certification and applies it to an evaluation of the impacts of the national board. Our principal findings are summarized below, and our conclusions and recommendations appear in their entirety in Chapter 12. We note that these recommendations are directed at the NBPTS, as our charge specifies, but they also highlight issues that should apply to any program that offers advanced-level certification to teachers.

THE EVALUATION FRAMEWORK

The evaluation framework developed by the committee is structured around eight sets of questions based on hypotheses about the way a program for certifying accomplished teachers might improve teaching:

  1. Specification of the Content Standards and Development of the Assessments: To what extent does the certification program for accomplished teachers clearly and accurately specify advanced teaching practices and the characteristics of teachers (the knowledge, skills, dispositions, and judgments) that enable them to carry out advanced practice? Does it do so in a manner that supports the development of a test that is well aligned with the content standards?

  2. Technical Characteristics of the Assessments: To what extent do the assessments associated with the certification program for accomplished teachers reliably measure the specified knowledge, skills, dispositions, and judgments of candidates and support valid interpretations of the results? To what extent are the performance stan-

1

The American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (ABCTE) currently has a program under development for awarding advanced-level certification to distinguished teachersSM.



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