A teaching performance assessment is an assessment that requires candidates to demonstrate through their performance with K-12 students that they have mastered the knowledge, skills and abilities required of a beginning teacher, as exemplified in the Teaching Performance Expectations (TPEs).
At Dominican, we have adopted the CalTPA, which is embedded in your Dominican course work. The CalTPA measures the domains of the TPEs, which describe what California teachers need to know and be able to do before being recommended for a Preliminary Credential. Your credential program introduces you to the TPEs and gives you multiple opportunities to become familiar with them.
The CalTPA is organized into four interrelated yet separate tasks that increase in complexity as you move through them. Each performance task measures a number of TPEs. The four tasks are:
- Subject Specific Pedagogy Task. This task requires candidates to use information provided within the prompt about particular students to identify appropriate subject-specific instruction and assessment plans, and to adopt this information for these students. This task is based on written scenarios provided to the candidate that describe students in hypothetical classrooms.
- Designing Instruction Task. This task requires the candidate to make appropriate connections between what the teacher knows about the students in the class and his/her instructional planning for those students. This written task contains a five-step set of prompts that focuses the candidate on first identifying and then applying the connections between the students' characteristics and learning needs and the teacher’s instructional planning and adaptations for those specific students.
- Assessing Learning Task. This task requires candidates to demonstrate their ability to design standards-based, appropriate student assessment activities using a specific standards-based lesson of the candidate’s choice. Assessment is designed for the whole class and adapted for an English learner and a student with special needs. In addition, candidates demonstrate their ability to conduct assessment activities appropriately to assess student learning and to diagnose student instructional needs based on the results of the assessment(s).
- Culminating Teaching Experience Task. In this task, the candidate designs a standards-based lesson for a class of students and teaches that lesson to actual K-12 students within the classroom setting, while making appropriate use of class time and instructional resources, meeting the differing needs of individual students within the class, managing instruction and interactions with and between students, and assessing student learning. Following the lesson, the candidate demonstrates the ability to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the lesson. To ensure equity to all candidates in the scoring of the task, a videotape of the lesson is collected and reviewed as evidence during the scoring process.