Monday, May 26, 2014

Educational Psychology and Types of Research and NCLB

In cluster one of Anita Woolfolk's texbook Educational Psychology, I learned a lot of information about various of types of research available to educators and how they could be implemented in the classroom.  In order to help break down the information that I read, I created a mind map of the types of research that I read about.  I found the mind mapping tool to be extremely useful.  It is a great way to take a lot of information and break it down to take out the important facts.

In this cluster we also learned a lot about the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).  In the article "Teacher Research Informing Policy: An Analysis of Research on Highly Qualified Teaching and NCLB," Audrey Amrein-Beardsley (2006) discusses several characteristics of teachers that are important for improving student achievement.  Some important characteristics of being an effective teacher and improving student achievement in accordance with the NCLB Act are that a teacher must be certified according to traditional methods from an accredited institution, have experience, and have strong content knowledge in the subject area they are specializing in.  The only gray area here is the idea of experience.  A teacher fresh out of school may be just as effective, or even more so, than a teacher who has been teaching in the classroom for many years.  I think that some teachers who are just out of school may have more ideas and be willing to try different ways to engage and promote higher order thinking with their students.  Newer teachers may be more inclined to utilize new technology and internet tools in the classroom to help reach and engage all of their students.  With the NCLB Act it seems that good and effective teaching is evaluated by an increase in testing scores.  Although standardized testing scores on a whole do demonstrate the effectiveness of the teacher in the classroom, it cannot be the sole determinant for an effective teacher.  There are so many unknown variables that come into consideration on testing day.  I think that in order to evaluate a teacher on their effectiveness, standardized testing scores as well as observations made during classroom interactions, lesson plans, student engagement, and in class tests should be weighed more than standardized tests alone.  

To hear more about the No Child Left Behind Act listen to Anita Woolfolk's podcast. 


Amrein-Beardsley, A. (2006). Teacher Research Informing Policy: AN Analysis of Research on Highly Qualified Teaching and  NCLB. Essays in Education, 17(Summer).

Woolfolk, A. (2013). Educational Psychology. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Education Inc.

Cluster One Pretest:


Date Taken: Thursday, May 22, 2014
Time Spent: 4min 7secs
# of Questions: 12
83.3 %
10 / 12 pts

Cluster One Posttest:


Date Taken: Thursday, May 22, 2014
Time Spent: 1min 23secs
# of Questions: 12
91.7 %
11 / 12 pts

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