- General Information
- Partner Roles in edTPA
- Submitting and Scoring edTPA
- Leveraging edTPA Data into Programs
- Costs Associated with edTPA
- Security, Video, and edTPA
- State Policy
Question: What is edTPA?
edTPA is a preservice assessment process designed by educators to answer the essential question: "Is a new teacher ready for the job?" edTPA includes a review of a teacher candidate's authentic teaching materials as the culmination of a teaching and learning process that documents and demonstrates each candidate's ability to effectively teach his/her subject matter to all students.
Question: Who created edTPA?
Stanford University faculty and staff at the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning, and Equity (SCALE) developed edTPA, formerly the Teacher Performance Assessment. They received substantive advice and feedback from teachers and teacher educators and drew from experience gained from over 25 years of developing performance-based assessments of teaching (including the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) Standards portfolio, and the Performance Assessment for California Teachers). The design and review team was comprised of more than 100 university faculty, national subject-matter organization representatives (e.g., NCTM, NCTE, NSTA, etc.), and K-12 teachers.
Question: What is edTPA designed to achieve?
edTPA is intended to be used for teacher licensure and to support state and national program accreditation. By focusing on the act of teaching, edTPA complements existing entry-level assessments that focus on basic skills or subject-matter knowledge. This is the first time teacher preparation programs will have access to a multiple-measure assessment system aligned to state and national standards to guide the development of curriculum and practice around the common goal of making sure new teachers are able to teach each student effectively and improve student achievement.
edTPA is comparable to entry-level licensing exams that demand applications of skills in other professions, such as, the medical licensing exams, the architecture exam, or the bar exam in law. As a nationally available teacher performance assessment, edTPA:
- Will help candidates develop the confidence and skills they need to be successful in urban, suburban, and rural schools.
- Provides a uniform and evidence-based process that can be used across states to confirm that aspiring teachers demonstrate their readiness for the classroom.
- Measures candidates' ability to differentiate instruction for diverse learners, including English language learners and special education students.
- Provides meaningful and consistent data that can be used to improve teacher education programs and renew program curriculum.
- Creates a body of evidence of teacher performance.
Question: How is edTPA constructed and used?
Evidence of a candidate's ability to teach is drawn from a subject-specific learning segment of 3-5 lessons from a unit of instruction taught to one class of students. Materials assessed as part of the edTPA process include video clips of instruction, lesson plans, student work samples, analysis of student learning, and reflective commentaries. Based on the submitted evidence, which is reviewed by trained scorers, faculty and candidates can discuss the impact of candidates' teaching performance on student learning and determine ways to improve teaching. Faculty can analyze evidence of candidate performance to guide decision-making about program revision. State education agencies may use edTPA scores for licensure and accreditation.
Question: What are the standards upon which edTPA is based?
edTPA is aligned with the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) standards, and various professional standards, depending on the subject area, including Common Core State Standards and Specialized Professional Association (SPA) standards.
edTPA also aligns with the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) standards. This means that the goals and tasks of edTPA and the expectations in the NCATE standards are comparable. Institutions using edTPA to provide evidence of candidate performance can be assured that some aspects of the performance assessment provide the type of evidence that NCATE seeks in determining whether or not a unit's teacher candidates have the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that are outlined in its standards. Click here for a description of the "points of alignment" between edTPA and the NCATE standards authored by SCALE and NCATE
Note that NCATE and the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) are in the process of merging their operations to form a unified accrediting body, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). The alignment of edTPA and the new CAEP standards and processes will be determined after the new standards are released in late 2013.
Question: Does edTPA take the place of faculty observation of candidates' clinical experience?
No. Teacher educators in states that use edTPA will continue to observe and assess their students, and design their program and coursework as they always have. edTPA was not designed to take the place of faculty observation. Indeed, faculty observation is critical to the success of the implementation of a multiple-measures assessment system. Faculty observations, along with assessments embedded across the preparation curriculum, ensure candidates gain the skills and knowledge to demonstrate their readiness for the classroom. Well-prepared candidates with the dispositions to teach are expected to perform well on their capstone assessment, edTPA.
Question: What subjects will be available for edTPA?
The following subjects will be available for assessment under edTPA:
- Agricultural Education
- Business Education
- Classical Languages
- Early Childhood
- Educational Technology Specialist
- Elementary Education*†
- Elementary Literacy
- Elementary Mathematics
- English as an Additional Language
- Family and Consumer Sciences
- Health Education
- K-12 Performing Arts
- K-12 Physical Education
- Library Specialist
- Middle Childhood English-Language Arts*
- Middle Childhood History/Social Studies*
- Middle Childhood Mathematics*
- Middle Childhood Science*
- Secondary English-Language Arts
- Secondary History/Social Studies
- Secondary Mathematics
- Secondary Science
- Special Education
- Technology and Engineering Education
- Visual Arts
- World Language
* Not applicable to WA.
† The Elementary Education handbook has Elementary Literacy and Elementary Mathematics components.
Question: Who is participating in edTPA?
Current members of the Teacher Performance Assessment Consortium (TPAC) include Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. In addition, Western Governors University is also a member of TPAC and offers online accredited teacher preparation programs across the United States.
Partner Roles in edTPA
Question: What is AACTE's role in edTPA?
The American Association for Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE) supports the development and implementation of edTPA and is helping to share information about edTPA with its member institutions.
Question: What is Stanford University's role in edTPA?
Stanford University is the author and exclusive owner of edTPA and responsible for ongoing development of the assessment, and implementation support resources for participating states and institutions of higher education. Stanford University is also responsible for the design and development of the online scoring training, including selecting and coding subject-specific benchmarks and other training materials.
Question: Will the Pearson platform replace other electronic portfolio vendors for edTPA?
No. Electronic platform providers are working very closely with Pearson so that candidates can construct and submit their edTPA materials for scoring to the Pearson platform via the platform used at each campus. The following vendors are integrated edTPA platform providers:
- Chalk & Wire
For more information on any of these integrated platform providers contact information is available at http://www.edtpa.com/Contacts.aspx Candidates at campuses without a commercially available electronic platform will be able to submit their materials through the Pearson platform.
Question: What is Pearson's role in the implementation and rollout of edTPA?
Demand for edTPA grew so rapidly that support was needed to deliver it to campuses and states that asked for it. So through a procurement procedure, Stanford chose Pearson because Pearson has the capacity, experience, and infrastructure to offer edTPA at scale quickly, so that students don't have to wait to see the benefits in the classroom. As an operational partner, Pearson will deliver the assessment materials, online technology, program resources, and other support to teacher candidates that's required for multi-state use of edTPA program.
Question: How will Pearson continue to support edTPA once it becomes operational?
Pearson will continue to support edTPA once it becomes operational, through web-based services, including information, registration, an edTPA submission platform, and an edTPA scoring platform; scoring of edTPA submissions and results reporting; and recruitment and qualification of scorers.
Question: Who will actually own edTPA upon completion of field-testing and final development work?
Stanford University is the exclusive author and owner of edTPA.
Submitting and Scoring edTPA
Question: Who scores portfolios?
edTPA scorers include teacher educators from the programs participating in edTPA, as well as other qualified teacher education faculty, clinical supervisors of student teachers, K-12 teachers, administrators, and National Board Certified Teachers.
All scorers are recruited and selected because of their documented experience both with beginning teachers and subject-matter content. Their efforts help to support the assessment and an evidence-based process that can make objective, comparable, and valid evaluation of teaching skills and readiness for the classroom. The criteria for selecting and training scorers are rigorous. Details can be found in the edTPA Scorer Requirements. These educators are also carefully monitored during scoring activities to maintain high quality.
edTPA scorers are compensated for their effort to improve the performance and preparation of incoming teachers. They are paid for training as well as for each assessment scored.
Question: Is feedback given to candidates? If so, how?
Institutions of Higher Education are encouraged to to provide formative feedback prior to a candidate's official submission of edTPA materials. The Faculty Feedback feature in the Pearson submission platform (and other vendor platforms) permits a faculty member to view a candidate's commentaries and video clips, and respond with feedback in accordance with acceptable support guidelines. Such feedback is not a requirement of edTPA.
Question: What are the expected pass rates for edTPA?
The rigor of edTPA - or that of any assessment - cannot be determined by pass rates alone. For example, a high pass rate might be the result of effective screening and rigorous preparation - while a low pass rate may reflect a lack of candidate preparedness rather than the difficulty of an assessment.
Like other professional licensing examinations in fields such as medicine and nursing, edTPA's goal is two-fold: 1) ensure that candidates who pass have met the standards of knowledge and skill required of effective practitioners, and 2) encourage preparation programs to emphasize these elements in their training.
The results of the field test indicate that edTPA is a rigorous assessment that is aligned to state and national teaching standards. It is the final step at the end of a long process of rigorous preparation and evaluation, in which most candidates have already passed a basic skills test and a subject-matter test and will have been evaluated by their professors and classroom teacher mentors in real school settings.
Following additional analysis of the field test, a recommended passing standard that uses a professionally acceptable and credible standard-setting approach will be provided as a guide for states. As is the case with current licensing exams, each state adopting edTPA can elect to set its own passing score to determine who is permitted to practice in that state. This state-level process will determine the ultimate percentages of teacher candidates who pass the assessment.
Question: How can teacher preparation programs utilize their candidates' results from edTPA?
edTPA is designed to help teacher preparation programs increase their focus on practice by providing a set of standards - developed by teacher educators and teachers and based on the best practices - that support student learning. As a result, the edTPA process will challenge some institutions and alternative route programs to improve their teacher candidate and preparation programs.
It will also provide valid research-based performance data for ongoing program revision. Candidate score profiles, artifacts, and commentaries provide a rich data source for programs to examine how they are preparing quality teachers to respond effectively to varied student learning needs.
Leveraging edTPA Data into Programs
Question: What is the benefit of making edTPA nationally available?
Development of a nationally accessible teaching performance assessment will allow states, school districts, and teacher preparation programs to share a common framework for defining and measuring teaching performance that forms a valid and robust vision of teaching quality. As states reference data generated from this tool to inform teacher licensure and recruitment, they will establish a national standard for relevant and rigorous practice that advances student learning.
Question: Is there validity research demonstrating the relationship between edTPA and student learning?
Research has been completed to indicate the strength of assessments similar to edTPA (more available on the resource tab of this website). Several of these studies can be read at the links below:
- Preservice Performance Assessment and Teacher Early Career Effectiveness: Preliminary Findings on the Performance Assessment for California Teachers
- Using Student Achievement Test Scores as Evidence of External Validity for Indicators of Teacher Quality: Connecticut's Beginning Educator Support and Training Program
- Developing and Assessing Beginning Teacher Effectiveness: The Potential of Performance Assessments
- Evidence in Teacher Education: The Performance Assessment for California Teachers (PACT)
- Performance-Based Assessments as High-Stakes Events and Tools for Learning
Several studies have also validated the impact that National Board Certification has on student achievement and teacher effectiveness, including:
Costs Associated with edTPA
Question: What are the costs associated with edTPA?
The $300 fee (estimated) that will be charged to teacher candidates for edTPA is fair. That cost covers all edTPA assessment services, including a professional, qualified evaluator who has been trained to edTPA rubrics, expectations of performance, and standardized scoring procedures, and who will be monitored during scoring activities to maintain high quality.
Question: What are some recommendations for dealing with the costs associated with edTPA?
"Tuition" plan - In some states, costs are integrated into candidates' course tuition, analogous to a lab fee in science or visual arts. The fee is automatically assessed when a student enrolls in the seminar, and is covered by any financial aid the student receives for tuition. The institution of higher education then pays Pearson the registration fees and Pearson gives it registration vouchers to distribute to student teachers.
"Layaway" plan - Costs are known to teacher candidates, who may then put money towards those costs during preparation.
Security, Video, and edTPA
Question: What policies are in place to ensure the confidentiality and security of edTPA candidate materials and assessment data, including access to and use of video recordings?
Pearson and Stanford University have prepared the document, Confidentiality and Security of edTPA Field Test Materials and Assessment Data to outline comprehensive security and confidentiality policies for candidates, faculty, and Pearson employees.
Question: What if a candidate's classroom contains students who may not be filmed (witness protection program, religious objections, etc.)?
The classroom and filming angle may be set up to exclude these students from the video without excluding them from instruction.
Question: How may the video clips submitted with a candidate's portfolio be structured?
Candidates may submit video clips recorded while teaching the Learning Segment for edTPA. Each clip must represent a continuous recording of instructional time. In other words, the clips may not be edited.
Candidates choose the video clip(s) that represent subject specific teaching and learning as designated in their edTPA handbook. Candidates should review their handbook video clip guidelines carefully to determine the portion of recorded classroom teaching that is most appropriate for edTPA submission.
Question: How are states using edTPA for program approval and/or licensure?
edTPA is intended to be used for teacher licensure and to support state and national program accreditation. edTPA provides a uniform and evidence-based process that can be used across states to confirm that aspiring teachers demonstrate their readiness for the classroom. It is an effective measure of entry-level teaching skills and readiness for the classroom regardless of the path candidates take to becoming teachers.
Question: What value does edTPA add to the current set of assessments (state assessments of basic skills, subject-matter competence, course assignments, student teaching evaluations) that teacher candidates currently need to pass for an initial license?
edTPA is transformative for prospective teachers because the process requires candidates to actually demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to help all students learn in real classrooms. By focusing on the act of teaching, edTPA complements existing entry-level assessments that focus on basic skills or subject-matter knowledge.
Like student teaching evaluations, edTPA assesses the teaching of real students in actual classrooms. Unlike student teaching evaluations, edTPA scorer training and moderation procedures will ensure a high degree of comparability of judgments across faculty, supervisors, and institutions. The scores across the different dimensions of teaching produce a profile of teaching practice to help novices identify relative strengths and weaknesses to guide ongoing professional growth and improvement.
edTPA will provide a rich data source for studying program effectiveness. Faculty across the country have used results from the edTPA field test (formerly Teacher Performance Assessment) and similar assessment data to inform continuous program improvement, going beyond raw scores, to identify any prerequisite knowledge and skills missing from or under-emphasized in the program, as well as any skills that need stronger reinforcement across the program. It will provide valid and reliable information that states can use, along with other measures, to inform teacher-quality initiatives, issue initial teacher licenses, make accreditation decisions about programs, and plan teacher induction and in-service professional development.