dards for the assessments and the process for setting them justified and reasonable?

  1. Participation: To what extent do teachers participate in the program?

  2. Impact on Outcomes for Students: To what extent does the advanced-level certification program identify teachers who are effective at producing positive student outcomes, such as learning, motivation, school engagement, breadth of achievement, educational attainment, attendance, and grade promotion?

  3. Impact on Participating Teachers’ Professional Growth: To what extent do teachers improve their practices and the outcomes of their students by virtue of going through the advanced-level certification process?

  4. Impact on Teachers’ Career Paths: To what extent and in what ways are the career paths of both successful and unsuccessful candidates affected by their participation in the program?

  5. Impact on the Education System: Beyond its effects on candidates, to what extent and in what ways does the certification program have an impact on the field of teaching and the education system?

  6. Cost-effectiveness: To what extent does the advanced-level certification program accomplish its objectives in a cost-effective manner, relative to other approaches intended to improve teacher quality?

The NBPTS has been the topic of much discourse in the measurement, teacher education, and education policy literature; nearly 200 articles discuss the board’s work. However, the majority of these documents do not report on empirical research, and only a handful yield valid findings related to the questions in our charge. Thus, we relied on an evidence base that was neither broad nor deep, which we supplemented with additional investigations.


Over a seven-year period, the board worked to identify the essential characteristics of accomplished teaching and to develop a method for identifying teachers who demonstrated these practices. Their product is a set of standards for 25 teaching specialty areas. The standards in each area describe the ways accomplished teachers demonstrate that they know their students, their subject matter, and how to teach it; think systematically about their practice; and learn from their experience. Assessments for each specialty were designed to allow teachers to demonstrate their proficiency in classroom settings. To earn NBPTS certification, teachers must respond to six computer-based constructed-response exercises that measure subject

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