What We Do Transform Programs
Bridging theory and practice to improve teaching and learning
We convene diverse voices and give teachers tools to identify and counter historical patterns of inequity. With a better understanding of how students learn, teachers can make better instructional decisions so that all children thrive.
We create multi-year Impact Networks: groups of educator-preparation programs that work together toward common improvement goals.
Programs participating in an Impact Network:
The Learning by Scientific Design Network is a network of educator-preparation programs working to ensure novice teachers understand basic principles of learning science and how to employ these principles when they teach. Building off Deans for Impact’s The Science of Learning, this initiative supports participating programs to reimagine and redesign the arc of teacher-candidate experiences so that candidates are prepared with our best scientific understanding of how students learn. As part of this network, Deans for Impact has developed a unique formative assessment that provides data about teacher-candidates’ knowledge of principles of learning science, data which is being used to drive transformative changes within programs.
Hear the voices of participants in the network through our Learning by Scientific Design podcast series. And explore data and stories from the first two years of the network in our June 2021 report, Deepening Meaning and Learning.
The Early Literacy by Scientific Design Network (ELbSD) prepares future teachers to plan and enact foundational skills and lessons grounded in our best scientific understanding of how students learn to read. Over the 2022-23 academic year, we’re working with educator-preparation programs to ensure that future teachers of young learners are prepared to implement evidence-based reading instruction that will support more equitable classroom experiences.
From 2021 to 2022, through a partnership with the Tennessee Department of Education, Deans for Impact facilitated a collaborative of four Tennessee educator-preparation programs working together to make instructional effectiveness a priority for new teachers through the use of high-quality instructional materials (HQIM). We created and implemented four modules that prepare future teachers to evaluate whether materials are high-quality, use them to deliver consistent, standards-aligned instruction, and explain why they’re important in fostering equitable and inclusive learning environments.
From 2016 to 2022, Deans for Impact led the Common Indicators System (CIS) Network, a national effort to gather evidence across a broad range of educator-preparation programs about what teacher-candidates know and can do at key stages in their preparation. By using common measures, faculty and program leaders in the CIS Network learned with and from one another as they sought to improve their own programs and contributed to building a more robust evidence base about effectively preparing future teachers.
From 2018 to 2020, five Illinois programs and their P-12 school partners worked together with Deans for Impact to improve the instructional preparedness of beginning teachers, with an emphasis on culturally, racially, and linguistically diverse classroom contexts. Participants used tools developed by the network to collect evidence about the instructional practice of candidates and teacher educators, and developed strategies to increase alignment around key practices among teacher-educators, mentor teachers, and others who support candidates.
Read about the network in our report: Shared Vision, Shared Commitment.
From 2018 to 2019, Deans for Impact and the Louisiana Department of Education brought together six educator-preparation programs to improve the preparation of future ELA and math teachers. Over the course of a single academic year, members of the Collaborative made targeted changes to their programming and measured results. The impact was significant: each participating program showed increases on multiple dimensions of a pre/post measure of programmatic practice, and two-thirds of programs saw demonstrable increases in teacher-candidates’ content readiness.
To learn more about the Louisiana Believe and Prepare Impact Collaborative, check out our report: Leading by Collaborating.