NCATE Preconditions

Precondition #1. The institution recognizes and identifies a professional education unit that has responsibility and authority for the preparation of teachers and other professional education personnel.

1.1 Letter from the institution’s chief executive officer that designates the unit as having primary authority and responsibility for teacher education programs.

1.2 A chart or narrative that lists all professional education programs offered by the institution (including any nontraditional/alternative programs). The chart or narrative report should depict (a) the degree or award levels for each program; (b) the administrative location for each program—for example, School of Education, Department of Music; and (c) the structure or structures through which the unit implements its oversight of all programs. If the unit’s offerings include off-campus programs, a separate chart or narrative as described above should be prepared for each location at which off-campus programs are geographically located.

1.3 An organizational chart of the institution that depicts the professional education unit and indicates the unit’s relationship to other administrative units within the college or university.

Precondition #2. A dean, director, or chair is officially designated as head of the unit and is assigned the authority and responsibility for its overall administration and operation.

2.1 The job description for the head of the professional education unit.

Precondition #3. Written policies and procedures guide the operations of the unit.

3.1 The cover page and table of contents for the documents that contain codified policies and procedures for the unit’s operations, including policies and procedures pertaining to its candidates.

Precondition #4. The unit has a well developed conceptual framework that establishes the shared vision for a unit’s efforts in preparing educators to work in P–12 schools and provides direction for programs, courses, teaching, candidate performance, scholarship, service, and unit accountability.

4.1 The vision and mission of the institution and unit.

4.2 The unit’s philosophy, purposes and goals.

4.3 Knowledge bases including theories, research, the wisdom of practice, and education policies that inform the unit’s conceptual framework.

4.4 Candidate proficiencies(.xls) aligned with the expectations in professional, state, and institutional standards.

4.5 A description of the unit’s assessment system including how the candidate proficiencies described in 4.4 are regularly assessed and how unit operations are evaluated.

Precondition 5. The unit has published criteria for admission to and exit from all initial teacher preparation and advanced programs and can provide summary reports of candidate performance at exit.

5.1 A photocopy of published documentation (e.g., from a catalog, student teaching handbook, application form, or web page) listing the basic requirements for entry to, retention in, and completion of professional education programs offered by the institution, including any nontraditional/alternative and off-campus programs.

5.2 A brief summary of candidate performance on assessments conducted for admission into programs and exit from them. This summary should include (a) the portion of Title II documentation related to candidate admission and completion that was prepared for the state and (b) compilation of results on the unit’s own assessments.

Precondition #6. The unit’s programs are approved by the appropriate state agency or agencies, and, in states with educator licensing examinations and required pass rates, the unit’s summary pass rate meets or exceeds the required state pass rate.

6.1 The most recent state approval letters, including or appended by a list of approved programs. If any program is not approved, the unit must provide a statement that it is not currently accepting new applicants into the non-approved program(s). For programs that are approved with qualifications or are pending approval, the unit must describe how it will bring the program(s) into compliance.

6.2 Documentation submitted to the state for Title II, indicating that the unit's summary pass rate on state licensure examinations meets or exceeds the required state pass rate. If the required state pass rate is not evident on this documentation, it should be provided on a separate page.

Precondition #7. If the institution is located in a non-partner state or in a partner state that requires the submission of program reports for national review through NCATE, the unit has committed to submitting program reports for each program for which NCATE has approved program standards at least one year prior to the visit.

7.1 A list of program reports that will be submitted to NCATE one year prior to the visit. For additional information, see the Handbook section, “Responding to Program Standards” and the program review section of this website.

Precondition #8. The institution is accredited, without probation or an equivalent status, by the appropriate institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

8.1 Current accreditation letter and/or report that indicates institutional accreditation status.