Throughout your demonstration teaching (DT) experience, your clinical supervisor will observe you a minimum of six times to evaluate your performance in the classroom. You will also receive a mid-term and final evaluation completed by your clinical supervisor and your host teacher to evaluate your demonstrated professional interactions and behaviors over the course of the assignment. These observations and evaluations are designed to gather data about your skills as a prospective teacher and to allow you to demonstrate mastery of the objectives deemed necessary for you to show your competence in lesson presentation, classroom environment and management, explanation and demonstration of content, and academic monitoring.
You and your clinical supervisor, along with your host teacher, will determine a schedule for your observations. Together you will schedule your observations at various times of day and on different days of the week so that your clinical supervisor may fully observe the breadth of your skills and abilities. In addition, one of the observations may take place at a time not known to you in advance so that your clinical supervisor may observe you during a normal day when you do not anticipate being observed. Do not delay scheduling these observations as time tends to move very quickly during DT!
Your clinical supervisor will work with you to evenly space the observations throughout you DT experience so that you have time to think about and incorporate what you learned from each previous observation. Observations will typically occur seven to ten days apart and will last a minimum of 45 minutes and a maximum of two hours. The clinical supervisor will conduct pre-observation and post-observation conferences with you to review your lesson plans and discuss results, respectively. Pre-observation conferences may take place in person, via email, or by telephone. Post-observation conferences must take place in person or on the telephone, preferably the same day that the observation takes place but no more than 48 hours after the observation.
During longer placements, the clinical supervisor will work with you and your host teacher on the observation schedule to evenly distribute observations throughout the assignment. In the case of split placements, such as for special education or early childhood education, your clinical supervisor and host teacher will complete the first three observations and midterm as part of the first placement and the last three observations and final during the second placement. The third and sixth observations take place in conjunction with the midterm and final evaluations, respectively. Both your clinical supervisor and your host teacher provide you with a midterm and a final evaluation, whereas only your clinical supervisor completes observations. In addition, where authorized by school administrators and/or district officials, principals (or other supervisors) may provide one or more independent observations.
While you must meet all objectives, we anticipate that you might be unable to do so in the early observations. That is simply part of the learning process. If you receive ratings of 0, 1, or 2 on your observation form, your clinical supervisor will describe the observed performance and provide specific steps for improvement (both learning and practice elements) in the comment boxes on the form so that you can use the feedback to improve as you prepare for the next observation session. It is your responsibility to change your practice and to improve in every area of concern. If you do not address concerns and improve upon them in future observations, your clinical supervisor, host teacher, and the Teacher Success team may implement an Intervention Plan and/or extend your placement to allow additional time for you to demonstrate competence. If you fail more than two observations, your midterm, or your final, you are at risk of failing the entire DT assignment.
WGU believes it is important for you to spend time in multiple classroom settings during DT so you can experience the unique and varied environments teachers construct to support the array of diverse learning and social needs found within schools. You are required to schedule these supplemental classroom observations, as your HT directs, with other teachers across grade/subject levels to occur during the last two weeks of the assignment (or final week for split placements) in various classrooms with diverse learners you may not have experienced in your assigned classroom such as, special education, gifted and talented, ELL, resource and/or alternative school settings. Your host teacher and clinical supervisor will not formally document these additional classroom observations. The intent is not to use the entire final two weeks (or last week in split placements) observing other classrooms but incorporate opportunities for you to experience other classrooms and teaching methods to provide you a well-rounded experience. These additional experiences may serve as important artifacts for your professional portfolio or topics for a future job interview.
Note: Department of Defense (DOD) candidates have a somewhat different schedule for observations. The clinical supervisor is aware of this schedule and will contact you to schedule your observations. Please contact the Teacher Success team at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.
To learn more about the competencies your clinical supervisor and host teacher will evaluate you on, please view the observation and evaluation forms linked below:
Note: Rubrics are linked within each form. Links are located below the title of each sub-section.
The observation form prompts refer to items observed in a “moment of time” observable performance, based on a teacher candidate's specific lesson.
The evaluation form prompts include content and pedagogy questions, as well as teaching dispositions and professional behaviors, that refer to items observed over a designated period of time.