P. Hunt1, Ä. Leijen1, L. Malva1, B. Slof2, M. van der Schaaf2

1University of Tartu (ESTONIA)
2Utrecht University (NETHERLANDS)
This paper explores a possibility for enhancing workplace-based learning with e-portfolios in initial teacher education. Several innovative concepts, i.e. core practice (Grossman, Hammerness, & McDonald, 2009), entrusted professional activities (Ten Cate, 2005) and rubric assessment (Dekker-Groen, Van der Schaaf, & Stokking, 2012) were utilized to develop a new framework to assess and foster the development of student teachers’ performance-based competency requirements. A theoretical assessment rubric of the student teachers was developed in the collaboration of the Estonian and Dutch teacher educators.

An explorative study was conducted to the answer the following research questions:
1) Which professional activities do student teachers need to master during their internship placement?
2) How can the utilization of assessment rubrics within e-portfolios assess student teachers’ proficiency level for these activities?

A Delphi procedure was carried out at the institute of teacher education, University of Tartu, in Estonia in order to validate the crucial professional activities for student teachers and their assessment rubric. A Delphi method is based on stakeholders’ judgements and in the present study it consisted of three rounds. Out of 15 selected stakeholders 13 individuals participated in the Delphi study. The stakeholders were asked to rate the relevance of the rubric’s different components in 5-point Likert scale and write any comments if necessary. In order to reach an agreement between the judgments, a statistical percentage of 75% of the 4 or 5 point rate was aimed.

In the first round the statistical agreement of 75% was reached in: 5 out of 5 professional roles (e.g. Pedagogue), 11 out of 11 professional activities (e.g. Supervises the development of the student as a person) and 5 out of 11 sets of the performance levels (e.g. Level 2: The teacher recognizes the development of the student as a person at the group level). Many comments and suggestions were given about the content of the performance levels. Therefore, in the second round of the Delphi study it was decided to validate only the performance levels. The answers were analysed and the rubric was modified according to the suggestions. One professional activity and a set of performance levels were added to the rubric.

In the second round the statistical agreement of 75% was reached in 10 out of 12 sets of the performance levels. The analyses of the feedback and the modification of the rubric after the second round is still in progress. For the third round it is planned to validate the complete assessment rubric including all the components. As a result of the Delphi study it is possible to propose a new student teachers’ assessment rubric for the teacher education institutes. The next step in the validation process is to study the effects of its implementation.

[1] Grossman, P., Hammerness, K., & McDonald, M. (2009). Redefining teaching, re‐imagining teacher education. Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, 15(2), 273–289.
[2] Ten Cate, O. (2005). Entrustability of professional activities and competency-based training. Medical education, 39(12), 1176–1177.
[3] Dekker-Groen, A. M., Van der Schaaf, M. F. and Stokking, K. M. (2012). Performance standards for teachers supporting nursing students’ reflection skills development. Journal of Nursing Education and Practice, 2(1), 9–19.