Educator Preparation Program Success


Stage 2 - Ensuring Educator Preparation Program Success

Promising Practices

Promising Practice: Student Mentorship and Scholarship Programs

Student mentorship programs address students' needs for academic and career advising and assist them with making the social, intellectual, and geographic transitions to college (specifically to historically White institutions). Examples include professional counseling, peer-to-peer mentorship and job placement assistance. Financial assistance for rising juniors and seniors into teacher preparation programs provides for continuing education.
Research/Evidence Shows: Recommended Actions:

Strong student-faculty relationships and the support of racially, ethnically and linguistically diverse faculty have been shown to increase retention of students of color. Studies indicate that individualized mentoring and coaching, distinct from academic advising, are effective in increasing student retention and graduation. Receiving support financially and from diverse faculty is especially beneficial for first generation students who are less familiar with the institutional structure of higher education.

  • Offer comprehensive services including counseling, tutoring, academic support, and career services.
  • Commit to the improvement of the social and racial climate on campus and the cultural competency of academic advisers and faculty members.
  • Fund mentor stipends to formalize the mentorship role.
  • Access available state scholarships to support candidates of color through their teacher preparation program.

U.S. Department of Education, Advancing Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education: Key Data Highlights Focusing on Race and Ethnicity and Promising Practices

Journal of Multicultural Education, Unheard Voices of Minority Teacher Candidates in a Teacher Education Program

$240K Grant to Advance Ongoing Neag School Student Diversity Efforts

Diverse Educators Making Outstanding Change

NPR, How One University Used Big Data To Boost Graduation Rates

USF News, Data and Case Management Drive Student Success at USF

The Education Trust, A Look at Black Student Success: Identifying Top- and Bottom-Performing Institutions

Tampa Bay Times, Editorial: USF uses big data well to help students succeed

Tampa Bay Times, Editorial: USF leads in closing achievement gap


Minority Teacher Incentive Grant Program (CT)
Description The Minority Teacher Incentive Grant Program provides up to $5,000 per year for the final two years of full-time study to undergraduates of color enrolled in a Connecticut teacher preparation program. The program also provides eligible students with up to $2,500 in yearly stipends for up to four years of teaching in a Connecticut public school. 
Scope of Reach To qualify, individuals must be college juniors or seniors of African American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian American or Native American heritage. Candidates must be nominated by a dean of education and begin teaching in a Connecticut public school within sixteen months of graduation to receive the annual stipend.
Timeframe 1998-present
Budget / Sources of funds State of Connecticut
Actor(s) Implementing Connecticut Officer of Higher Education 
Results Eleven public and private institutions participate in the program. State funding has stayed fairly consistent through the years with at least 10% of grant recipients being transfers from a Connecticut regional/community technical college. In 2016-17, 43 students received grant awards and 42 teachers received stipends.

UCONN Neag Diverse Educators Making Outstanding Change (D.E.M.O.) (CT)
Description UConn's Neag School of Education's mentoring program is designed for students of color enrolled--or interested in enrolling--in the Neag School’s five-year Integrated Bachelor’s/Master’s (IB/M) Program. Faculty of color (principals, superintendents, teachers, etc.) are brought together with students of color for small group discussions, giving Neag faculty information about ways to support students based on their experiences. Each student is also paired with a local mentor of color in the K-12 education system.
Scope of Reach (Voluntarily) participating EPP candidates of color at Neag
Timeframe 2016-Present
Budget / Sources of funds Neag School of Education
Actor(s) Implementing Neag School of Education
Results Students confirmed the importance of such programs in their feedback, stating that they had often felt unsupported, dismissed, and/or isolated in the classroom previously.

Middletown "Coming Home" Project (VT)
Description To support seven teacher candidates, Middletown, VT established a program featuring mentoring, structured experiential events, and general and university services focused on supporting candidates of color. Students were given access to a holistic support system made up of advisers, mentors, peers, and teachers. Researchers found that four things characterized the work of successful mentors:1) personalized assignments; 2) independent study; 3) support (mentors advise mentees on using university resources and dealing with the personal issues that college students typically face); and 4) monitoring (mentors monitor their mentees to address their changing needs).
Scope of Reach Seven candidates of color within the University of Vermont’s College of Education and Social Services
Timeframe Class of 2001 (enrolled 1997 - 2001)
Budget / Sources of funds Unknown
Actor(s) Implementing Education Preparation Program
Results Six out of seven mentees graduated from the educator preparation program (EPP)

Promising Practice: Predictive Technology

Universities are partnering with technology companies to develop software that can be used to predict which students are at risk of dropping out. This technology can identify students in need of support who may not seek it otherwise.

Research/Evidence Shows: Recommended Actions:
Universities that implemented predictive technology in addition to increasing student support resources eliminated the graduation gap between White students and low-income students, first generation students, and students of color.
  • Implement technology that can analyze student behavior data and predict patterns of attrition.
  • Hire a diverse highly-qualified advisory staff.
  • Lower the adviser-to-student ratio to ensure prompt intervention for students at risk.


Georgia State University (GSU) (GA)
Description Georgia State University (GSU) is home to 24,000 undergraduates, 60% of whom are non-White and many of whom are from working-class and first generation backgrounds. Working with the help of an outside consulting firm, GSU analyzed 2.5 million grades earned by students in courses over ten years to create a list of factors that can create barriers for graduation. GSU built an early-warning system called Graduation and Progression Success (GPS). GPS is updated daily and includes more than 700 red flags aimed at helping advisers keep students on track to graduate successfully.
Scope of Reach Entire GSU student body
Timeframe 2012 - present
Budget / Sources of funds Georgia State University
Actor(s) Implementing Georgia State University faculty
  • GSU has closed the graduation gap for low-income, first generation and students of color.
  • Overall graduation rates are up 6 percentage points since 2013, and 28 percentage points since 2003.
  • Graduates are getting their degrees an average of half a semester earlier, saving $12 million in tuition costs.

University of South Florida (USF) (FL)
Description Using sophisticated software, USF is identifying students experiencing academic difficulty. The university contracts with Civitas Learning, whose software can track when assignments are turned in late, when exam scores decline, and when a student suddenly stops engaging on class discussion boards. Such red flags trigger an intervention. A counselor can be dispatched to check in with the student, determine his or her source of difficulty, and connect the student with services such as tutoring, counseling or financial aid.
Scope of Reach Entire USF student body
Timeframe 2009 - present
Budget / Sources of funds Unknown
Actor(s) Implementing University of South Florida
  • USF has eliminated the gap in graduation rates by race, ethnicity, and income—exceeding national averages by a wide margin; six-year graduation rate dramatically improved from 48% in 2009 to nearly 70%.

Promising Practice: Inclusive and Culturally-Responsive EPP Curricula

Many EPPs have taken proactive steps towards making their clinical programs and curricula more inclusive, or have developed separate curricula to prepare transformative future educator-leaders to teach in urban districts.

Research/Evidence Shows: Recommended Actions:

Candidates of color often perceive themselves to be invisible, silenced, or powerless in traditional EPPs, with many reporting that their personal and cultural experiences are excluded from the curriculum. Students graduating from programs that are intentionally inclusive tend to feel more comfortable in the classroom, remain teachers longer than the national average, and move on to assume leadership roles at higher rates.

  • Empower director-level inclusion coordinators to initiate curriculum and pedagogy changes.
  • Survey students to analyze their experiences and outcomes (graduation, transfers, etc.).

The Education Alliance at Brown University, Minority Teacher Recruitment, Development, and Retention

Preparation for Teaching in Urban Schools: Perceptions of the Impact of Traditional Preparation Programs

Jack N. Averitt College of Graduate Studies, Embracing A Diverse Curriculum In University Teacher Preparation Programs

Developing Quality Fieldwork Experiences for Teacher Candidates

Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR and CT)

Crossing Borders Without Leaving Town: The Impact of Cultural Immersion on the Perceptions of Teacher Education Candidates

UAB Center for Urban Education

The University of Chicago Urban Teacher Education Program, Alumni

Center for American Progress, Increasing Teacher Diversity Strategies to Improve the Teacher Workforce


Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) - Central and Southern Connecticut State Universities (CT)
Description Collaboration for Effective Educator Development, Accountability, and Reform (CEEDAR) grants provided to Central and Southern Connecticut State Universities have resulted in a call to EPP and District Partners to plan culturally inclusive field experiences as a core component of candidates' EPP program experiences, as well as to infuse culturally responsive pedagogy into the core curriculum. The CCSU MAT Program has begun to take initial steps to revamp its curriculum accordingly, citing culturally responsive teaching as one of the institution's five foundational principles.
Scope of Reach All EPP candidates at CCSU and SCSU
Timeframe 2013 - 2017
Budget / Sources of funds CEEDAR Grant
Actor(s) Implementing CCSU and SCSU EPP Programs
  • Curriculum revamp in progress.
  • Institutional plan includes a holistic approach that will likely have a noticeable and measurable impact on the lives of students of color on campus.

Project ACCESS Summer Community Immersion course (MO)
Description The summer after the first year of University of Missouri at Kansas City's (UMKC's) EPP program, EPP candidates spent eight weeks immersed in an urban community with opportunities to experience the urban context and its social institutions. Candidates explored tangible community solutions and how to problem-solve scenarios that represented the experiences of urban students, families, and teachers.
Scope of Reach Select EPP teacher candidates at UMKC
Timeframe 2009 - 2011
Budget / Sources of funds $356,450; WK Kellogg Foundation
Actor(s) Implementing UMKC EPP Program
Results Thirty-three students participated across two summers, reporting a desire to be involved in the urban community, a new understanding of the role of teachers in urban schools, and a changed perception of urban families, including a new understanding of self and others.

University of Oregon Institutional Plan (OR)
Description The University of Oregon's College of Education has developed an institutional plan to foster a more inclusive learning environment. To do this, the university is conducting a comprehensive review of pedagogical practices and curricular content, and assigning a school director to implement recommendations based on findings.
Scope of Reach EPP Teacher candidates at UO
Timeframe 2015 - 2018
Budget / Sources of funds University of Oregon College of Education
Actor(s) Implementing UO Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Assistant Dean for Equity and Inclusion
  • Curriculum revamp in progress.
  • Institutional plan includes taking a holistic approach that will likely have a noticeable and measurable impact on the lives of students of color on campus.

Urban Teacher Education Programs (IL, NJ, AL)
Description The University of Alabama, University of Chicago, Rutgers University, and others have developed Urban Teacher Education Programs. These programs prepare candidates to teach in their local high-needs, racially diverse districts and explicitly address issues of race, language, class, and culture that teachers encounter in their work. Teacher candidates undergo a year of residency where they engage in clinical/pre-service training in a local partner district.
Scope of Reach EPP teacher candidates at UAB, UChicago, and Rutgers
Timeframe Present
Budget / Sources of funds Participating universities
Actor(s) Implementing Participating university faculty
  • UChicago's UTEP Program: 90% of graduates are teaching in Chicago Public Schools or other high-needs urban districts; 96% five-year teacher retention rate.
  • University of Alabama UTEP Program: 70% African American; 70% three-year teacher retention rates.

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