Conceptual Framework: Competencies
- General Education: Reflective practitioners possess a broad base of knowledge in the liberal arts, including mastery of oral and written English communication, mathematical and reasoning skills, and technological competence as well as a global perspective that emphasizes people's interdependence with one another and with nature.
- Human Learning and Development: Reflective practitioners have a solid grounding in educational psychology, the branch of psychology that specializes in understanding teaching and learning in educational settings. They know the four pillars of educational psychology: human development, theories of learning and cognition, classroom management, and assessment.
- Contexts of Schooling: Reflective practitioners possess a critical understanding of the contexts of schooling: social, political, economic, historical, philosophical, legal, professional, global, and cultural.
- Area of Specialization: Reflective practitioners possess a deep, thorough, and, above all, working knowledge of their area(s) of specialization, enabling them to make informed decisions to approach curriculum implementation
- Theory and Practice of Teaching and Learning: Reflective practitioners employ a variety of models of teaching and learning. Best practice entails a balance between pedagogical approaches.
- Instructional Uses of Technology: Reflective practitioners integrate technology into curricula, instruction, and assessment of students to cerate high quality learning experiences and instructional opportunities.
- Assessment as an Aid to Practice: Assessment is primarily a means for determining the relative success of teaching and counseling interventions for the purpose of improving them in the future. In other words, assessment is used as a tool for reflection and subsequent planning.
- Cultural Diversity and Multicultural Education: Reflective educators are knowledgeable of both the differences that distinguish individuals and groups and the commonalities that bind them together. They understand and respond to the diverse needs and backgrounds of students, clients, and families and develop strategies for combating prejudice and advancing educational equity, inclusion, and intercultural understanding.
- Special Needs and Inclusion: Reflective practitioners are aware of the impact of disability on the teaching-learning process and are responsive to the individual strengths and needs of children and youth with a range of disabilities. They understand the effect that disability has on family functioning, and they can work effectively with parents in program planning. In order to function effectively in an inclusive environment, reflective practitioners must also collaborate with professionals from all disciplines when making educational decisions. They examine their own cultural and family background as it pertains to disability, reflecting on the impact of their beliefs and behavior on the classroom setting, counseling situation, or planning session, making adjustments as necessary. They are prepared not only to be responsive to students' adapted curriculum, instruction, and learning needs but also to make curriculum adaptations and instructional modifications on-the-spot to accommodate students' needs.
- Professional Ethics: Ethics are principles of conduct used to guide an individual's behavior. Ethical principles guide practitioners as they determine aims and objectives; select content and materials; plan and implement methods and strategies; conduct non-discriminatory evaluations of students, clients, and staff; reflect on their choices and actions; and take responsibility for the consequences. Reflective practitioners accept the professional, social, ethical, and moral responsibilities and reap the personal rewards of being a teacher in a democratic, pluralistic society.
- Collaboration and Advocacy: Reflective practitioners recognize that schools, families and communities must work together, and educators must collaborate within schools, to support student and client learning and growth, and to promote democratic values in their own communities and beyond.
- Professional Development: Reflective practitioners consciously plan, implement, and reflect upon their own professional growth, as well as that of the profession. Committed professionals actively participate in a wide variety of educational opportunities.