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Disposition Development Frameworks (Rubrics)

Disposition Strand Development Frameworks (Rubrics)

.pdf file of Disposition Strands below
Role of Self
Collaboration and Communication
Critical Care
Intentional Professional Choices
Navigation: Flexibility and Adaptability
Imagination and Innovation

Rubric Structure

Each strand is laid out across a rubric with the following descriptions:
  • Counter evidence & blind spots
  • Awareness
  • Commitment
  • Enactment
These rubric descriptions should not be read as developmental stages. The rubrics should be used to locate a candidate’s actions, language, assumptions, or behaviors in order to raise consciousness about the role that dispositions for teaching are playing and to further the teacher candidate’s development as an equity-minded educator. Disposition development is dynamic and fraught with complexity. A teacher candidate may successfully enact one disposition while simultaneously be building an awareness of another. A teacher's awareness in one disposition strand can change toward enactment for some students and have blind spots with others. The rubrics intentionally do not a numerical scale so as to avoid conveying a linear sense of progression and recognizing that dispositions develop in stops and starts, with two steps forward and one step back, in spiral and iterative loops.

The role of context. The rubrics are meant to convey how a teacher candidate is manifesting dispositions in a particular context. In some contexts, awareness may be all that is within the possibility for the teacher candidate. In other contexts, enactment may be possible, and whether the teacher candidate seizes the opportunity to enact will depend on many things--the teacher candidate’s knowledge, skills, and dispositions for knowing what and how to do what is needed in a particular circumstance.

Impact of teaching dispositions on students.
The ultimate test of enacting dispositions is the impact that a teacher has on students. It is also likely that students in the classroom will experience opportunities to learn, create, and express in response to a teacher candidate’s actions in quite different ways. In other words, while a teacher may be showing or enacting dispositions that are aligned with the rubrics, they may be creating enabling learning environment for some students and, at the same time, they may be creating a learning environment that ignores or stifles other students. This is a complex dance in the classroom and this dispositions framework can assist teacher educators and teacher candidates in making sense of how dispositions toward equity-based teaching are operating to support student learning.

Moving toward enactment. Moving toward enactment in the rubrics is the desired state of being as a teacher in our idealized framework. However, teaching contexts and the teacher candidates’ knowledge and skills play a significant role in whether enactment is possible. Thus, the rubrics are best used as a diagnostic, reflective, and coaching framework to build awareness of areas that need development, to acknowledge successful enactment, and to promote deeper understanding of contextual and systemic elements that inhibit the enactment of equity-minded teaching and learning.

Awareness, commitment, and enactment

When a teacher candidate demonstrates awareness, they recognize and understand the importance of the disposition for successful student learning and healthy, productive classrooms. They may be able to cite theory behind its importance or recognize it when they see it in other teachers’ classrooms.

When a teacher candidate demonstrates commitment, they not only understand the importance of the disposition for successful student learning, but they seek to make it part of their own teaching repertoire. Yet, they have not been able to enact the disposition, possibly because of circumstance (structural limitations at that point in their teaching program or clinical placement particulars, as examples) or ability (attempts are unsuccessful or not yet made; enactment occurs with some students, some of the time, or in some contexts).

When a teacher candidate enacts a particular disposition, we see this disposition in action, live and at play in the classroom. It is evident in their interactions with students, their embodiment of teaching in the classroom, and they ways in which they work with colleagues, families, and school/ district leadership.

Critical Incidents: Counter evidence and blind spots

This element of the rubric identifies teacher behaviors that suggests dispositions for teaching that impede and/ or work against successful learning diverse classrooms and schools. Unlike the porous spaces between Awareness, Commitment, and Enactment, a bold line stands between Awareness and indicators that suggest Counter Evidence and Blind Spots. The line stands as a hard-stop demarcation for evidence of dispositions that can potentially harm children’s learning opportunities. Whether the manifested dispositions are rooted in conscious behaviors or are due to blindspots of the teacher candidate, teacher educators working with the candidates who demonstrate counter-evidence should take this opportunity to actively and immediately coach the candidate out of this part of the rubric.

In early implementation of MnEDS, supervisors and cooperating teachers spoke of their discomfort with or avoidance of identifying a teacher candidate’s behavior as counter evidence. They found the counter evidence category intimidating and worried about the potential high-stakes nature of identifying evidence on that part of the rubric. They wanted to help the candidates formatively and did not want to blemish their assessment record with evidence that they thought they could work through with the candidate.

In response, MnEDS has been adjusted to include blind spots in this part of the rubric to account for times when teacher candidates are unaware that some of their behaviors related to a disposition can be harmful to students or might impact their success as a classroom teacher (for example, one the primary causes of not being re-hired as a teacher in local school districts is related to dispositions). Such actions and comments may be inadvertent and unintentional, yet they still obstruct successful teaching and impede student learning. Both counter evidence and blind spots remain on the rubric and teacher educators are encouraged to view (and coach their teacher candidates to view) this element of the MnEDS rubric as an opportunity for learning and change. Teacher educators must capitalize on the language of the MnEDS rubrics to help identify and coach teacher candidates toward dispositions that are conducive to successful teaching and teaching for equity. Please see the coaching resources for further support materials.