National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
All undergraduate programs in the department of Elementary Education and Reading are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). NCATE is the teaching profession’s accrediting body—a mechanism to ensure high quality teacher preparation. Institutions that have gained NCATE accreditation have met national standards in areas such as design of curriculum, assessment of candidate performance, faculty qualifications, supervision of clinical experiences, and adequate and up-to-date resources.
The mission of the Buffalo State College teacher education program is to prepare knowledgeable and skilled educators who are committed to ensuring that all students achieve their greatest intellectual, emotional, and physical potential.
The conceptual framework for all teacher preparation programs at Buffalo State College articulates the unit's vision, ensures coherence across candidates' programs and reflects our commitment to prepare candidates to work effectively with all students including students with culturally, linguistically, and ethnically diverse backgrounds and students with disabilities. An evolutionary process based on program evaluation and research in teacher education has resulted in the present model that conceptualizes teaching as facilitating learning. Teachers take that which they understand and transform it for effective instruction through a cycle of activities involving:
Comprehension - an understanding of the purposes of education.
Transformation - the process of transforming material by interpreting it critically in light of one's own evolving understanding, by identifying alternative ways of representing it to learners, by choosing from an instructional repertoire, and by adapting and tailoring it to learner characteristics.
Instruction - organizing and managing a classroom, presenting clear explanations, assigning and reviewing work, interacting with learners through questions and probes, responding to answers and reactions, and providing praise and criticism.
Evaluation - formal testing and formative assessment to obtain information for making instructional decisions, providing feedback to learners, and determining grades.
Reflection - the process of examining the teaching and learning that has occurred by reviewing, reconstructing, re-enacting, and analyzing one's own teaching behavior and the learners' performance. For Buffalo State College's conceptual framework, the term "critical reflection" will be used to emphasize the need for teacher candidates to critically examine or reflect upon their performance as reflective facilitators of learning.
Displayed below is a graphic representation of the conceptual model for educator preparation at BSC.
The model describes the purposes, processes, outcomes, and evaluation of the professional education programs at the basic level. It consists of three major components - the Learner, the Content, and the Pedagogy. These three components are interrelated and integrated to prepare teacher candidates to assume roles as reflective facilitators of learning through coursework and experiences in each component of the model. The reflective facilitator of learning has a broad liberal arts background coupled with pedagogical knowledge and content knowledge and exemplifies those qualities and dispositions that characterize effective teachers.
When considering the three major components of the conceptual framework, it is important to acknowledge that all learning occurs within an ever-changing context: the environment of the school, the local community, and the broader society. Instructional context encompasses such factors as the prevalence of technology within a school, as well as those issues pertaining to diversity and inclusion. The nature of Buffalo State College's teacher education programs reflects our awareness of the influence of instructional context on learning. We seek to prepare our candidates to experience a variety of teaching situations through our Professional Development School Consortium (PDS) and to adjust continually to changes within the profession.