Education Performance Assessment System

The Rhode Island Professional Teaching Standards

Our teacher education program is designed to ensure that students meet the Rhode Island Professional Teaching Standards. As prospective teachers, students must demonstrate knowledge and attainment of specific standards that are desirable for a beginning teacher. Eleven standards serve as broad instructional and assessment goals for the teacher education programs. These standards are consistent with current theories and practice associated with teacher preparation and performance.

They are:

  1. Teachers create learning experiences using a broad base of general knowledge that reflects an understanding of the nature of the communities and world in which we live.
  2. Teachers have a deep content knowledge base sufficient to create learning experiences that reflect an understanding of central concepts, vocabulary, structure and tools of inquiry of the disciplines/content areas they teach.
  3. Teachers create instructional opportunities that reflect an understanding of how children learn and develop.
  4. Teachers create instructional opportunities that reflect a respect for the diversity of learners and an understanding of how students differ in their approaches to learning.
  5. Teachers create instructional opportunities to encourage all students' development of critical thinking, problem solving, performance skills, and literacy across content areas.
  6. Teachers create a supportive learning environment that encourages appropriate standards of behavior, positive social interaction, active engagement in learning and self-motivation.
  7. Teachers work collaboratively with all school personnel, families and the broader community to create a professional learning community and environment that supports the improvement of teaching, learning and student achievement.
  8. Teachers use effective communication as the vehicle through which students explore, conjecture, discuss and investigate new ideas.
  9. Teachers use appropriate formal and informal assessment strategies with individuals and groups of students to determine the impact of instruction on learning, to provide feedback and to plan future instruction.
  10. Teachers reflect on their practice and assume responsibility for their own professional development by actively seeking and participating in opportunities to learn and grow as professionals.
  11. Teachers maintain professional standards guided by legal and ethical principles.

Testing Requirements for Full Acceptance in all Schools of Education in Rhode Island

In order for RWU students to declare Education as a major, they must present evidence of having met the basic skills requirement as determined by the Rhode Island Department of Education (R.I.D.E.). The basic skills requirement can be met in the following ways:

Test NamePassing Score
Core Academic Skills for Educators*Math 150 Reading
156 Writing
162 Composite score of 468 with no test score more than 3 points below the cut
SAT1150 Composite
530 Verbal
530 Math
ACT24 Reading
20 Math
GRE1100 Composite (800 Scale Test) with no less than 465 Verbal and 584 Quantitative 300 Composite (170 Scale Test) with no less than 151 Verbal and 147 Quantitative

* Effective September 1, 2014, the Core Academic Skills for Educators Exams will replace the Praxis I PPST exams.

Waiver:  Candidates applying to a traditional undergraduate program are not required to retake the Core Academic Skills for Educators exam if they have achieved a GPA of 3.0 or higher by the end of their college sophomore year and are within 3 points of the cut scores on each section of the Core Academic Skills for Educators exams.

On-going Program Performance Assessment Requirements

The Department of Education uses a Program Performance Assessment System to monitor and evaluate RWU Teacher Candidate progress.  As part of that system, candidates develop and maintain an assessment portfolio that is reviewed at each level of the curriculum:

Level I: Exploring the Profession – Freshman Year 

Level II: Preparing to Teach - Sophomore and Junior Years

Level III: Performing in the Classroom - Senior Year

The Program Performance Assessment System is one of many measures the Department of Education uses to evaluate a RWU Teacher Candidates’ progress toward meeting the Rhode Island Professional Teaching Standards (RIPTS).  Matriculation in the program is contingent upon successful performance assessment reviews.

Throughout their programs RWU Teacher Candidates plan, develop and experiment with instructional materials and strategies in both the University classroom and public school settings.  As candidates proceed through coursework, they build their Program Performance Assessment evidence of performance, self-assess their dispositions, and pedagogical knowledge and skills and set goals aligned with the RIPTS.  Performance assessment evaluations are used to determine whether students are progressing toward meeting the standards and are used to move students from one curriculum level to another.  In addition, education students must achieve a GPA of 2.75 or higher to enter Level III: Performing in the Classroom.

Field experiences are required in all courses throughout the Education program. The Elementary and Secondary programs include a minimum of 100 hours of Practicum a seminar experience and one full semester (14 weeks) of Student Teaching.  During Student Teaching, RWU Teacher Candidates also enroll in a Student Teaching Seminar.

The State of Rhode Island requires all applicants for certification in Elementary and Secondary Education to pass the state licensure examination(s).  Students typically take the licensure examination(s) before or during Curriculum Level III. 

*Candidates that seek to teach in another state(s) should refer to the licensure and certification link to review requirements.

*The Educational Studies Major degree does not lead to teacher certification.