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Old Dominion University's Darden College of Education - producer of the largest number of teacher candidates in Virginia each year - achieved reaccreditation recently from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), the organization responsible for professional certification of teacher education.

Currently, 575 institutions are accredited and more than 100 others are candidates and precandidates for accreditation in NCATE's 50th-anniversary year. Those institutions produce two-thirds of the nation's new teacher graduates.

Old Dominion met NCATE's rigorous standards, which are set by the profession and members of the public. The standards expect accredited schools of education:

- to ensure that subject matter content, and how to teach it, is a priority;
- to emphasize school district collaboration;
- to ensure that candidates can use technology in instruction; and
- to prepare teacher candidates to teach students from diverse backgrounds.

"At Old Dominion University, we take the education of teachers seriously," said William H. Graves, dean of the Darden College of Education. "Our teacher education program's reaccreditation by NCATE affirms the work of our faculty, students and school division partners. Our reaccreditation is another reason that the university can guarantee that our teacher-education graduates can and are ready to teach."

The redesigned 1995 accreditation standards emphasize teacher performance. They focus on what teacher candidates should know and be able to do, and
expect candidates to demonstrate specific skills. Meeting NCATE accreditation standards also helps institutions prepare new teachers for
newer, more rigorous licensing standards in many states.

NCATE is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the professional accrediting body for schools, departments and colleges of education.
On-site visits, document review and accreditation decisions are all carried out by professionals from the education community, including teachers,
members of the public and education policymakers.

Teacher candidates who graduate from NCATE-accredited schools are better prepared for initial licensing and advanced board certification. NCATE is
working with the Interstate New Teachers Assessment and Support Consortium and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards to ensure that
teacher education accreditation standards, model teacher licensing standards and advanced teacher certification standards are compatible.

A study by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) showed that graduates of NCATE-accredited colleges of education pass ETS PRAXIS content examinations
for teacher licensing at a higher rate than do graduates of unaccredited colleges. In fact, teacher candidates who attend NCATE colleges boost their
chances of passing the examination by nearly 10 percent.

More information about ODU's teacher preparation program is available online at www.odu.edu/educ/education. More information about NCATE is available on
the Web at www.ncate.org.

This article was posted on: July 12, 2004

Old Dominion University
Office of University Relations

Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.