The Institute of Professional Educator Development represents a paradigm shift in which institutions of higher education that prepare P-12 teachers and P-12 schools collaborate and have a shared sense of mission for how to prepare new teachers for the profession. Being collaborative does not only mean to work together. Collaboration means sharing the part of learning that supports asking questions, reflecting about learning, and assessing in different ways in order to locate an individual's strengths. The IPED model utilizes instructional coaching and co-teaching during a teacher candidate's clinical practice to meet the needs of students in the P-12 classroom. The co-teaching pair shares classroom responsibilities for planning, instruction, and assessment.
Co-teaching in its simplest form occurs when two professional educators work together to design learning experiences for the same group of learners. Systematic co-teaching models are characterized by:
- Clearly defined, but differentiated roles, for each co-teacher in the classroom
- Common curricular vision for the learning they are co-designing
- Joint accountability for student learning outcomes
In the UW-Parkside model, one of the educators is an experienced, adaptive expert; the other is a well-prepared "teacher candidate." They both participate in an inquiry into best practices for teaching and learning. There are four stages in this model:
Pre-Professional – the expert host designs and implements learning. The candidate observes and records evidence of student learning. Both have a sustained dialogue about the learners and the learning experience.
Developing Expertise – the expert coach and the candidate co-design specific learning experiences, in which both have well defined teaching roles. Together they collect and analyze evidence of student learning and utilize that information to guide instruction. The expert evaluates very specific aspects of the candidate's performance.
Demonstrating Expertise – the expert coach and the candidate co-design specific learning experiences. At this stage the candidate leads in the design of a learning progression. Evaluation of the teacher candidate occurs through joint reflection and assessment with the expert practitioner.
The Residency – the teacher candidate works collaboratively with the cooperating teacher to design long-term learning progressions based on district, state, and national standards. As the candidate takes the lead they continue to work in tandem to insure growth in student achievement. Residency includes a comprehensive assessment of the candidate: university supervisor's evaluations, cooperating teacher's evaluations and edTPA (Wisconsin's mandated, national teacher performance assessment).