Candidacy for Accreditation. The status granted to a non-accredited unit seeking accreditation that has established itself as a precandidate and has met NCATE's preconditions for accreditation.
Candidate Performance Data. Information derived from assessments of candidate proficiencies, in areas of teaching and effects on student learning, candidate knowledge, and professional dispositions. Candidate performance data may be derived from a wide variety of sources, such as projects, essays, or tests demonstrating subject content mastery; employer evaluations; state licensure tests; and mentoring year portfolios as well as assessments, projects, reflections, clinical observations, and other evidence of pedagogical and professional teaching proficiencies.
Candidates. Individuals admitted to, or enrolled in, programs for the initial or advanced preparation of teachers, teachers continuing their professional development, or other school professionals. Candidates are distinguished from students in P-12 schools.
Certification. The process by which a non-governmental agency or association grants professional recognition to an individual who has met certain predetermined qualifications specified by that agency or association. (The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards grants advanced certification.)
Clinical Faculty. P-12 school personnel and professional education faculty responsible for instruction, supervision, and/or assessment of candidates during field experiences and clinical practice. See Professional Education Faculty.
Clinical Practice. Student teaching or internships that provide candidates with an intensive and extensive culminating activity. Candidates are immersed in the learning community and are provided opportunities to develop and demonstrate competence in the professional roles for which they are preparing.
Conceptual Framework. An underlying structure in a professional education unit that gives conceptual meaning to the unit's operations through an articulated rationale and provides direction for programs, courses, teaching, candi¬date performance, faculty scholarship and service, and unit accountability.
Consistency in Assessment. The assurance that key assessments produce dependable results or results that would remain constant on repeated trials. Institutions can document consistency through providing training for raters that promote similar scoring patterns, using multiple raters, conducting simple studies of inter-rater reliability, and/or comparing results to other internal or external assessments that measure comparable knowledge, skills, and/or professional dispositions.
Contemporary Professional Experiences. Meaningful and structured activities in a P-12 school setting within the last five years. Examples include structured observation, working in schools as a teacher or other school professional, action research, research projects that are school-based, and participating in professional development school activi¬ties.
Content. The subject matter or discipline that teachers are being prepared to teach at the elementary, middle, and/ or secondary levels. Content also refers to the professional field of study (e.g., special education, early childhood education, school psychology reading, or school administration).
Cultural Background. The context of one's life experience as shaped by membership in groups based on ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status, gender, exceptionalities, language, religion, sexual orientation, and geographical area.
Curriculum. Courses, experiences, and assessments necessary to prepare candidates to teach or work with students at a specific age level and/or to teach a specific subject area.