College of Education Conceptual Framework
The conceptual framework of the College of Education emphasizes that teachers are instructional leaders who use reflective decision-making; who focus on best practices; and who have a thorough knowledge of students, a strong content and pedagogical knowledge, a commitment to their profession, and a desire to continue their development.
The conceptual framework model begins with the Goals, Philosophy, Core Beliefs, and Dispositions mentioned as the foundation for the model. From this foundation, one sees two interrelated squares. The outer square includes the four Pathwise domains of teacher professionalism, content knowledge, creating an environment for learning, and teaching for student learning. The inner square identifies and shows the relationship between these domains and the 10 intended candidate outcomes of the UA Fort Smith teacher education program. Those outcomes, in turn, mirror the ten INTASC standards.
An examination of the model illustrates the interrelationship of the various principles. As an example, on the left, one finds Content Knowledge in the outer square. This relates to the five UA Fort Smith candidate outcomes in the inner square. Those five include one in the middle that embraces the other four. All outcomes in the two interrelated squares lead to best practices and a learning community focused on student learning. The student learning circle represents the nurturing environment that comes from attention to these elements. In the model, all these elements then lead up to "Professional united to ensure continuous learning and success." This paradigm illustrates that for education to be effective, learning must never end for the teacher as well as the pupil. Also, it shows that teacher success requires careful attention to all these elements united in a common framework focused on student learning.