Theme and Conceptual Model
The theme and model were conceptualized and developed by the TEU faculty and administration. Since its inception the ARK model has continued to undergo evaluation and development. The model encompasses all aspects relating to the development of a comprehensive knowledge base in both content and pedagogy, utilization of that knowledge base in effective instructional practice, and continued growth and development as a practicing teacher through continuous reflection, professional scholarship and service, and program development. The model described below has been presented to and evaluated by the local professional education community, including:
- University administration, including the President, VP for Academic Affairs, deans of the various colleges, and department chairs;
- Local school principals (city and rural);
- Superintendents of the surrounding school districts;
- University faculty members outside the unit who teach content courses primarily for teachers and/or assist in student teaching supervision;
- Stakeholders Advisory Council, consisting of local teachers, candidates, administrators, and school board members;
- Newly admitted teacher candidates during program orientation;
- Candidates within the programs and those just completing the programs:
- Local ATE executive committee
The ARK model is not an instructional sequence model, but a conceptual model that attempts to identify the priorities that permeate the program and to serve as a unifying structure. The relationship between ARK and instruction is emphasized in faculty teaching and expectations for teacher candidates.
Theme: Teacher as Reflective Decision-Maker
The Teacher as Reflective Decision-Maker is the organizing theme which best integrates the programsí mission, philosophy, belief statements, and goals. The ARK model has been developed to help implement this theme and is an appropriate guide for both faculty and candidates in the teacher education programs at Minot State University. The theme and model overarch the ten INTASC standards that guide the program. Activities often possess characteristics of two or more of the components; thus, there is the deliberate intersection of the components. The ARK model also serves as an advance organizer for faculty and students as they categorize course content and pedagogy within TEUís programs. Candidates are introduced to the conceptual model during an orientation for newly admitted teacher candidates. In the Pre-admission seminars the model is utilized as a basis for articulating the program. Also, the three ARK components permeate the entire program with each course reinforcing the model.
Model: ARK (Action, Reflection and Knowledge)
Teachers who Act--the "doing part"--are decision-makers who can and do model best pedagogical practice. They value, encourage, and monitor the sustained active involvement of every student in carefully planned, meaningful learning experiences. They collaborate willingly with colleagues and other professionals on educational issues, to plan and implement best practice, and to offer and receive support in continuing to develop as an expert teacher.
Teachers who Reflect--the "thinking part"-- are decision-makers who evaluate relevant choices for teaching, decide and act upon those choices, and continually reevaluate them in light of their effectiveness as evidenced by student response and achievement, and by current literature and research findings.
Teachers who Know--the "knowing part"-- are decision-makers who have acquired a strong knowledge base in content and pedagogy, and who understand the importance of continually striving for currency in these areas. This knowledge base provides information for reflection and action in the teaching situation as well as the skills and attitudes necessary to ensure continued growth.