Aligning Mathematics Teacher Work Sample Content with Selected NCTM Standards: Implications for Preservice Teacher Education

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Teacher Work Sample Methodology has been described as an alternative means/set of procedures for assessing teacher effectiveness in producing student learning that are more authentic than traditional means of teacher certification. To investigate the degree to which the methodology aligns with state/national standards, 50 work samples produced by student teachers at Western Oregon University between fall 1991 and spring 1999 were analyzed to determine: (1) the efficiency of Teacher Work Sample Methodology in moving state and national standards, for example, the NCTM standards, into the classroom; and (2) the extent to which Teacher Work Sample Methodology promotes alignment of standards, content, instruction and assessments of instruction. The research found that a majority of the student teacher work samples demonstrated weak alignment or no alignment between stated instructional objectives and selected NCTM Curriculum and Evaluation Standards (Problem Solving, Communication, Reasoning, and Connections). However, in most of the work samples, more than half of the pre/post-assessment methods (performance, knowledge) were aligned with the instructional objectives.

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