EFFECTIVE TEACHER STUDY
Max Malikow Assistant Professor Le Moyne College
ABSTRACT The purpose of this study is to quantify student evaluated teacher effectiveness in order to ascertain the grade level, subject, and characteristics of exceptionally effective teachers as reported by 361 Le Moyne College students. In this study the students were provide with the following definition of exceptionally effective: showing the ability to go beyond the ordinary in producing desired results. The students were instructed that they could select one of their teachers from any grade level or subject. The distribution of selected teachers is as follows: 315 secondar5y teachers, 34 primary teachers, 11 college professors, and 1 parish priest. Subject areas of frequently selected secondary teachers are: social studies (89), English (89), mathematics (55), foreign language (33), and science (27). Personality characteristics most often cited by the students were: challenging/had reasonably high expectations (82), sense of humor (59), enthusiastic (56), creative (39), caring (39), explains complicated material well (39), and flexible instructional style (33).
NATIONAL FORUM OF TEACHER EDUCATION JOURNAL-ELECTRONIC 2___________________________________________________________
Who are exceptionally effective teachers and what are their characteristics? This is a study conducted at Le Moyne College from 1998-2004.
I. Introduction A. Statement of the Research Question The purpose of this study is to quantify student evaluated teacher effectiveness in order to ascertain the grade level, subject, and characteristics of exceptionally effective teachers as reported by 361 Le Moyne College students. In this study the students were provided with the following definition of exceptionally effective: showing the ability to go beyond the ordinary in producing desired results. Teacher preparation programs, as part of their accreditation process, are increasingly attentive to any information to assist in making adjustments and modifications to improve the outcome. Formal evaluations of graduates and students are useful. I have attempted to undertake a continual form of information gathering from classes I teach that ultimately may be useful for this purpose.
B. Rationale for the Research The value of this study is that the accomplishment of the research question would make a contribution to the Le Moyne College teacher education program. “The goal of this department is to prepare effective teachers for tomorrow’s schools” (Le Moyne College Catalog 2004-2005, p.91). The result of having identified the grade levels, subjects, and common characteristics of over 350 teachers assessed by their students as exceptionally effective serves to better inform the Education Department faculty of the qualities that make teachers memorable as instructors who are effective in their work. Therefore the department members will be better equipped to evaluate their own program in the light of this information.
MAX MALIKOW ____________________________________________________________
II. Methodology A. EDU 215 Writing Assignment EDU 215: Learning in a Sociocultural Context is a required course for Le Moyne College education majors who are preparing to teach at the secondary level (grades 7-12).“It involves students in examining, analyzing, and developing theories of how students learn within a social, cultural, and political context …” (Le Moyne College Catalog 2004-2005, p.97). One requirement of the EDU 215 classes I teach is a reflective paper. I encourage the students not to begin this writing assignment early in the course. I explain that they would find the paper easier to write if they first experience at least half of the fifteen weeks of the material. The learning outcome associated with...