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University Coordinators

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​University Coordinators Clinical.jpgField experiences are an important component of the teacher education program at CMU.  The clinical experience is an opportunity to put theory into practice.  Due to the size of the teacher education program and the interest in providing diverse field experiences for its Teacher Candidates, CMU has established centers throughout the state.  

  • ​The Central Michigan University Coordinator, a faculty member in the Department of Teacher Education and Professional Development or the Counseling and Special Education Department, serves as coordinator of the student teaching clinical experience in the classrooms and schools in each Student Teaching Center.  The University Coordinator will make at least six observations of the Teacher Candidate, one of those possibly including a video observation. 

    In addition to the University Coordinator, there may be an occasion when the Director of Clinical Experiences, the Department Chair, another University Coordinator, or Subject Matter Specialist visits a school and classroom during the semester.
  • The University Coordinator, an experienced classroom teacher and often an experienced administrator, works collaboratively with P-12 school personnel to:​​​
    • Communicate the clinical experience program and the teacher education program and policies of TEPD, the Center for Clinical Experiences, the College of Education and Human Services, and the University to the P-12 school community.
    • Recognize and follow policies established by the school in which Teacher Candidates are placed.
    • Visit Cooperating Teachers and administrators to discuss the progress of Teacher Candidates.
    • Provide strategies for evaluative feedback related to the clinical experience for Cooperating Teachers.
    • Provide evaluative feedback related to University Coordinator observations for Cooperating Teachers.
    • Provide formative and summative evaluations for Teacher Candidates. 
    • Assist and advise Teacher Candidates concerning problems involving student teaching during their clinical experiences.
    • Support the student teaching clinical experience in a tactful and positive manner.
    • Provide or acquire in-service experiences or consulting services, when requested, for administrators, Cooperating Teachers and other public school personnel. 
    • Recognize school personnel in various ways for services rendered.
  • The University Coordinator works collaboratively with Teacher Candidates to:
    • Secure appropriate student teaching placements and continuously evaluate the environment in which the Teacher Candidate has been placed.
    • Communicate effectively with each Teacher Candidate regarding placements, schedules, meetings, observations, visitations, and evaluations.
    • Effectively teach topics designated by TEPD as an integral and required part of the field experience to enhance the transfer of theory to practice.
    • Formally observe and document the progress of each Teacher Candidate a minimum of six times during the semester and effectively collaborate with the Cooperating Teacher in the evaluative process.
    • Informally visit each placement as often as necessary to provide suggestions, recommendations and solutions regarding problems confronting the Teacher Candidate or Cooperating Teacher.
    • Conference with Teacher Candidates and Cooperating Teachers after each formal observation to provide positive feedback and suggestions for improvement.
    • Act as a mentor/coach for assigned Teacher Candidates.
    • Provide diverse experiences during the student teaching semester.
    • Support the co-teaching pair, if the teacher candidate is assigned to a co-teaching
  • The University Coordinator works collaboratively with the Center for Clinical Experiences to:
    • Positively support the mission, goals, and policies of the Center for Clinical Experiences and TEPD/CSE.
    • Meet deadlines on required forms, schedules, placement lists, etc. 
    • Attend scheduled field and center meetings on a regular basis.
    • Participate in staff development of personal and professional growth planned by the Center for Clinical Experiences, the department and/or other sources.
    • Involve the Center for Clinical Experiences, or designee, in the resolution of problems.
    • Responsibly manage resources.
    • Maintain important data in the Center for Clinical Experiences as requested (Progress Evaluation, Final Evaluation, MDE surveys, Graduate Tracking, etc.).
  • Most observations are pre-planned with the Teacher Candidate and the Cooperating Teacher.  Each participant should be aware of the date and time of the expected visit. 
    • At the conclusion of each observation, the University Coordinator conferences with the Teacher Candidate.  A private area is preferred.  The Cooperating Teacher is welcome to be a part of the conference.
    • The University Coordinator frequently asks the Teacher Candidate for his or her self-evaluation first.  Together, they review the effectiveness of the lesson based upon the essentials for effective instruction.   
    • The University Coordinator and the Teacher Candidate will discuss classroom management, teaching skill, strengths and weaknesses of the lesson, and alternative classroom strategies.  
    • Copies of the observation will be shared with the Teacher Candidate, Cooperating Teacher, and the Center for Clinical Experiences and are sent electronically to the Center for Clinical Experiences.
    • Subject Matter Specialists: Secondary certification Teacher Candidates may have a Subject Matter Specialist (SMS), from their major or minor department, schedule observations during student teaching.  The SMS will contact the Teacher Candidate to schedule the observation.  Copies of the subject matter observations and feedback are shared with the Teacher Candidate and Cooperating Teacher, a copy is also sent to the Director of the Center for Clinical Experiences. A copy of the observation will be sent to the University Coordinator by the Center for Clinical Experiences and a copy will be put in the Teacher Candidate’s file.
  • Concurrent with the student teaching experience (EDU 458 and SPE 456/458), students assigned to each center are enrolled in a three-credit semester-long course (EDU 432 or SPE 522/581), referred to as Seminar.  This schedule will be provided by the Center for Clinical Experiences to University Coordinators.  All Teacher Candidates are expected to attend ALL seminar sessions and complete the assigned work as this is a three (3) credit hour professional education course and MUST be passed with a C+ or better.  

    The content of these seminars is directly related to issues being faced as part of the clinical experience.  Topics such as unit and lesson planning, classroom management, meeting diverse needs of students, technology, assessment, becoming a reflective practitioner, and finding a teaching position after graduation are a few of the components of these seminars.
  • Formative evaluation is a measure of how well a Teacher Candidate is doing on a day-to-day basis, while summative evaluation measures how well a person has done after a period of time.  During student teaching the emphasis is on formative evaluation, but this process should provide the basis for summative evaluation at the end of student teaching.  The major focus of all evaluations is to assist the Teacher Candidate in developing the skills, knowledge, and dispositions of a professional educator. 

    The Mid-Progress and Final Evaluations are summative assessments aligned with The Danielson Model and the InTASC Standards adopted by Michigan for teacher preparation.  The Final Evaluation focuses on four areas: 1) Preparation and Planning; 2) Classroom Environment; 3) Instruction; and 4) Professional Responsibility.  The Final Evaluation will be completed at the end of the teacher candidate’s student teaching experience.  The evaluation will be completed in Taskstream™.  The teacher candidate, the cooperating teacher, and university coordinator will complete the evaluation.

    At the end of the eighth week of the student teaching experience the Cooperating Teacher and the Teacher Candidate will complete a detailed Mid-Progress Evaluation. The Cooperating Teacher and Teacher Candidate should plan to meet with each other to discuss strengths, weaknesses, and to make a plan for future success.  The Teacher Candidate will be able to see all responses; since this information is not automatically shared between all parties the Teacher Candidate is encouraged to provide copies of the evaluations to the Cooperating Teacher and University Coordinator.
  • General Education Teacher Candidates will receive CR/NC for EDU 458 and a letter grade for EDU 432.  Both courses must be passed successfully (EDU 458 with “CR” and EDU 432 with C+ or better) in order to earn credit for either course. Five grades are possible for the student teaching field experience (EDU 458) at Central Michigan University:

    ​(C) Credit​(I) Incomplete
    ​(NC) No Credit​(Z) Deferred
    ​(W) Withdrawal

    Special Education Student Teachers will receive a letter grade for SPE 522/581 and SPE 456/458. SPE 522/581 courses must be passed successfully in order to continue on to the student teaching course, SPE 456/458. The student teaching observations conducted by the University Coordinator along the professionalism checklists completed by the Cooperating Teacher represent 50% of your course grades.

    General Education University Coordinators assign the grade based on the joint evaluations of the University Coordinator and the Cooperating Teacher.  In the event of subject matter weakness of secondary Teacher Candidates, the opinion of the Subject Matter Specialist may be sought.
  • Should instructional issues arise in the classroom during student teaching the University Coordinator, Cooperating Teacher, and student teacher will develop a “Plan of Action” and submit the plan to the Director of Clinical Experiences. The University Coordinator, Cooperating Teacher and the Student Teacher will work collaboratively to resolve the issues at hand.
  • When a problem in the field persists, a written plan of action must be developed.  Prior to completing the official “Action Plan”, the University Coordinator or Cooperating Teacher may:

    • Conduct formal and informal visits to the assigned classrooms/schools to observe and assess the Teacher Candidate’s work based on identified criteria 
    • Document and discuss identified strengths and areas of growth for the Teacher Candidate
    • Share observed strengths and needs with the Teacher Candidate and allow for a period of attempted improvements.

    If growth is not demonstrated, a written Action Plan should be submitted. The Action Plan is a standardized CCE form and can be found ____________.  The development of an Action Plan includes the following steps:

    1.   Communicate the need for an Action Plan to the appropriate CCE contact, enlisting support and guidance as necessary, and sharing history of the issue and previous interventions, if any.

    1. Student Teaching Action Plans should be directed to the Director of Clinical Experiences.
    2. Pre-Student Teaching Action Plans should be directed to the Coordinator of Clinical Experiences.

    2.  Develop a written Action Plan with input from the Teacher Candidate and Cooperating Teacher identifying the concern(s), the goal(s) for improvement, a defined timeline for improvements including a deadline for review, and specific action steps needed to achieve the stated goal.

    3.  Submit a signed Action Plan to The Center for Clinical Experiences, and provide copies of the signed plan to the Cooperating Teacher, Teacher Candidate, and appropriate CCE contact (see #1).

    4.  Clinical Faculty shall evaluate the Teacher Candidate’s progress by documenting actions taken and noting whether the goal has or has not been completed by the deadline.

    Teacher Candidates who have a valid concern relating to their placement or evaluation by their University Coordinator should contact the Director of Clinical Experiences or Coordinator of Clinical Experiences.
  • ​Academic Calendars: Student teaching semester is the university semester, ending the first part of May or December. The final day in the field is the Thursday prior to Commencement, regardless of when the candidate begins their field placement. 
  • Communicate:  Student Teaching is stressful for Teacher Candidates. Be sure to communicate regularly with students.  Maintain the level of professionalism that is expected of our Teacher Candidates. 
  • How Can You Help: Teacher Candidates will need the most support in classroom management strategies, differentiation, assessment, co-teaching, and teaching literacy in their content areas.
  • Global Experiences:  Teacher Candidates interested in participating in a global experience contact the Director of Clinical Experiences.  A Global experience is a great way to contact with students and observe new cultures.
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​For more information

Center for Clinical Experiences
College of​​ Education and Human Services​
Central Michigan University
421 Education Building
Mt. Pleasant, MI 48859

 ​989-774-7662 ​​
 ehscss@cmich.edu​​​​​​​​​​​​
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College of Education and Human Services | Central Michigan University | ehs@cmich.edu | 195 Ojibway Ct | EHS 426 | Mt. Pleasant, MI 48859 | (989) 774-3079