Campus: CSU Northridge -- June 11, 2003

Education College Recognized for Producing Quality Teachers

CSUN Receives Accreditation from National and State Agencies

Cal State Northridge's commitment to producing quality teachers was recently underscored by the decisions of state and national organizations to continue the accreditation of the university's Michael D. Eisner College of Education.

Philip J. Rusche, dean of CSUN's Eisner College of Education, said the decisions by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing were particularly gratifying because both agencies have recently adopted new, stricter standards for measuring how well colleges and universities prepare future teachers.

"I am really proud of our faculty and our programs," Rusche said. "The decisions by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing and NCATE underscore the college's commitment to be at the leading edge of quality teaching and learning."

In his letter to CSUN President Jolene Koester informing her of NCATE's decision, NCATE President Arthur E. Wise congratulated the college of education for "displaying the high quality necessary to be granted national accreditation."

NCATE accredits 554 institutions, which in turn produce two-thirds of the nation's new teacher graduates each year.

NCATE-accredited schools must meet rigorous standards set by the profession and members of the public. Teacher candidates must have in-depth knowledge of the subject matter that they plan to teach as well as the skills necessary to convey it in order for students to learn. The university is required to carefully assess this knowledge and skill to determine if candidates may graduate.

NCATE-accredited schools also must have partnerships with preschools and K-12 schools that help teacher candidates develop the skills necessary to help students learn. Candidates must be prepared to understand and work with diverse student populations. The university faculty must model effective teaching practices, and the college of education must have the resources, including information technology resources, necessary to prepare candidates to meet new standards.

The U.S. Department of Education recognizes NCATE 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, school specialists and teacher educators as well as members of the public and education policy makers.

The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing ensures that those who educate the children of California are academically and professionally prepared. It is the nation's oldest independent teaching standards board.

Among the commission's goals is to assure the public and the state Legislature that teacher education programs are effectively training school personnel to function in the credential areas for which they are being prepared.

California State University, Northridge is considered a leading producer of teachers among public institutions in California. It was one of only four universities nationwide tapped last year by the Carnegie Corporation of New York to take part in a landmark initiative designed to strengthen K-12 teaching by developing state-of-the-art programs at schools of education.

Contact: Carmen Ramos Chandler, (818) 677-2130, carmen.chandler@csun.edu


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