Glossary of Terms


A process of assessing and enhancing academic and educational quality through voluntary peer review. NCATE accreditation informs the public that an institution has a professional education unit that has met state, professional and institutional standards of educational quality.

Advanced Preparation

Programs at post-baccalaureate levels for:

  1. The continuing education of teachers who have previously completed initial preparation, or
  2. The preparation of other professional school personnel.

Advanced preparation programs commonly award graduate credit and include masters, specialist and doctoral degree programs as well as non-degree licensure programs offered at the graduate level.

APs or FEAPs

Abbreviation for Florida Educator Accomplished Practices. The State of Florida's adopted teacher standards that reflect twelve generic effective teaching principles.

Assessment System

A comprehensive and integrated set of evaluation measures that provides information for use in monitoring candidate performance and managing and improving unit operations and programs for the preparation of professional educators.


The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. C.A.E.P. is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the accreditation body for colleges and universities that prepare teachers and other professional personnel for work in elementary and secondary schools. Through its voluntary, peer review process, C.A.E.P. ensures that accredited institutions produce competent, caring and qualified teachers and other professional school personnel who can help all students learn.


Individuals admitted to, or enrolled in, programs for the initial or advanced preparation of teachers, teachers continuing their professional development, or other professional school personnel. Candidates are distinguished from "students" in P-12 schools.

Competencies and Skills Required for Teacher Certification in Florida

Competencies and Skills Required for Teacher Certification in Florida, Fifteenth Edition, is available online and contains the latest approved revisions in requirements for demonstrating knowledge and skills in the areas of Professional Education, General Knowledge and approved Subject Area (certification coverage areas). Competencies and skills reflected in the Eleventh Edition are the bases for the Florida Teacher Certification Examination.

Conceptual Framework

An underlying structure in a professional education unit that gives conceptual meanings through an articulated rationale to the unit's operation, and provides direction for programs, courses, teaching, candidate performance, faculty scholarship and service, and unit accountability.


The subject matter or discipline that teachers are being prepared to teach at the elementary, middle and/or secondary levels. Content also refers to the professional field of study (e.g., special education, early childhood, school psychology, reading or school administration).


The values, commitments and professional ethics that influence behaviors toward students, families, colleagues and communities and affect student learning, motivation and development as well as the educator's own professional growth. Dispositions are guided by beliefs and attitudes related to values such as caring, fairness, honesty, responsibility and social justice. For example, they might include a belief that all students can learn, a vision of high and challenging standards, or a commitment to a safe and supportive learning environment.


Differences among groups of people and individuals based on ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status, gender, exceptionalities, language, religion, sexual orientation and geographical area.


English to Speakers of Other Languages. The State of Florida has determined 25 ESOL Performance Standards for teachers. ESOL endorsement is achieved through mastery of these objectives. ESOL endorsement is required for all primary language teachers, which includes all elementary education majors and all English secondary majors.


Exceptional Student Education addresses students ages 3-21 who have disabilities and/or who are gifted.


A physical, mental or emotional condition, including gifted/talented abilities, that requires individualized instruction and/or other educational support or services.

Field Experiences

A variety of early and ongoing field-based opportunities in which candidates may observe, assist, tutor, instruct and/or conduct research. Field experiences may occur in off-campus settings such as schools, community centers or homeless shelters.

Florida Educator Accomplished Practices

Established in late 1996 by the State Board of Education, Florida Educator Accomplished Practices (FEAPs) are now viewed by the Florida Department of Education (DOE) as the main basis for assessing teacher performance at the preprofessional, professional and accomplished educator levels.

General Education Knowledge

Theoretical and practical understanding generally expected of a liberally educated person. General education includes developing knowledge related to the arts, communications, history, literature, mathematics, philosophy, sciences and the social studies, from multicultural and global perspectives.

Global Perspectives

An understanding of the interdependency of nations and peoples and the political, economic, ecological and social concepts and values that affect lives within and across national boundaries. It allows for the exploration of multiple perspectives on events and issues.

Initial Teacher Preparation

Programs at baccalaureate or post-baccalaureate levels that prepare candidates for the first license to teach.

Institutional Standards

Candidate knowledge, skills and dispositions identified by the institution to reflect its mission and the unit's conceptual framework.


Generally, the post-licensure and/or graduate clinical practice under the supervision of clinical faculty; sometimes refers to the pre-service clinical experience.


The Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium, a project of the Council of Chief State School Officer (CCSSO) that has developed model performance-based standards and assessments for the licensure of teachers.

Knowledge Bases

Empirical research, disciplined inquiry, informed theory and the wisdom of practice.

Multicultural Perspective

An understanding of the social, political, economic, academic and historical constructs of ethnicity, race, socioeconomic status, gender, exceptionalities, language, religion, sexual orientation and the geographic area.

Pedagogical Content Knowledge

The interaction of the subject matter and effective teaching strategies to help students learn the subject matter. It requires a thorough understanding of the content to teach it in multiple ways, drawing on the cultural backgrounds and prior knowledge and experiences of students.

Pedagogical Knowledge

The general concepts, theories and research about effective teaching, regardless of content areas.

Performance Assessment

A comprehensive assessment through which candidates demonstrate their proficiencies in subject, professional and pedagogical knowledge, skills and dispositions, including their abilities to have positive effect on student learning.


An accumulation of evidence about individual proficiencies, especially in relation to explicit standards and rubrics, used in evaluation of competency as a teacher or in another professional school role. Contents might include end-of-course evaluations and tasks used for instructional or clinical experience purposes such as projects, journals and observations by faculty, videos, comments by cooperating teachers or internship supervisors, and samples of student work.

Professional Development Schools

Specially structured schools in which the P-12 school and higher education faculty collaborate to:

  1. Provide practicum, student teaching and internship experiences;
  2. Support and enable the professional development of school and higher education faculty;
  3. Support and enable inquiry directed at the improvement of practice; and
  4. Support and enhance student achievement.

PDSs require the institutional commitment of colleges and universities, school districts, and teachers' organizations.

Professional Knowledge

The historical, economic, sociological, philosophical and psychological understandings of schooling and education. It also includes knowledge about learning, diversity, technology, professional ethics, legal and policy issues, pedagogy, and the roles and responsibilities of the profession of teaching.

Professional Standards

Candidate knowledge, skills and dispositions set by the specialized professional associations (SPA program standards) and adopted by NCATE for use in its accreditation review. Professional standards also refer to standards set by other recognized national organizations/accrediting agencies that evaluate professional education programs (e.g., the National Association for Schools of Music).


Written and shared criteria for judging performance that indicate the qualities by which levels of performance can be differentiated, and that anchor judgments about the degree of success on a candidate assessment.


Sheltered Instructional Observation Protocol is a planning and evaluation tool that addresses modifications made for English language learners.


Specialized Professional Associations. The national organizations that represent teachers, professional education faculty and other school personnel who:

  • Teach a specific subject matter (e.g., mathematics or social studies),
  • Teach students at a specific developmental level (e.g., early childhood, elementary, middle level or secondary),
  • Teach students with specific needs (e.g., bilingual education or special education),
  • Administer schools (e.g., principals or superintendents), or
  • Provide services to students (e.g., school counselors or school psychologists).

Many of these associations are constituent members of NCATE and have standards for both students in schools and candidates preparing to work in schools.


Written expectations for meeting a specified level of performance. Standards exist for the content that P-12 students should know at a certain age or grade level.

State Standards

The standards adopted by state agencies responsible for the approval of programs that prepare teachers and other school personnel. State standards may include candidate knowledge, skills and disposition.

Student Teaching

Pre-service clinical practice for candidates preparing to teach.


Children and youth attending P-12 schools as distinguished from teacher candidates.

Technology, Use of

What candidates must know and understand about information technology in order to use it in working effectively with students and professional colleagues in the:

  1. Delivery, development, prescription and assessment of instruction;
  2. Problem-solving;
  3. School and classroom administration;
  4. Educational research;
  5. Electronic information access and exchange; and
  6. Personal and professional productivity.


Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages is a professional educators organization that sets standards in five areas:

  1. Language;
  2. Culture;
  3. Planning, Implementing and Managing Instruction;
  4. Assessment; and
  5. Professionalism.


The institution, college, school, department or other administrative body with the responsibility for managing or coordinating all programs offered for the initial and continuing preparation for teachers and other school personnel, regardless of where these programs are administratively housed. Also known as the "professional education unit."

The Chair of the Department of Education has the authority and responsibility for the operation of the education unit at Stetson University. The chair of the counseling department is responsible for the operation and coordination of the school guidance program. Both chairs are under the auspice of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and are monitored by the Arts and Science Graduate Committee.