Student Learning Outcomes

At Hood College, we are committed to teaching excellence. Program goals and learning outcomes identify what we expect students to learn, think critically about and accomplish in their courses and programs of study at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. We believe an integrated learning approach that combines a strong grounding in the liberal arts with advanced study in the major and opportunities for internships and research initiatives is the best way to prepare students for lives of purpose and civic engagement.

Graduates earning a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Hood College:

  1. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs are grounded in a child development knowledge base. They use their understanding of young children's characteristics and needs, and of multiple interacting influences on children's development and learning, to create environments that are healthy, respectful, supportive and challenging for each child through:
    • Knowing and understanding young children's characteristics and needs, from birth through age 8;
    • Knowing and understanding the multiple influences on early development and learning; and
    • Using developmental knowledge to create healthy, respectful, supportive and challenging learning environments for young children.
  2. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that successful early childhood education depends upon partnerships with children's families and communities. They know about, understand and value the importance and complex characteristics of children's families and communities. They use this understanding to create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families, and to involve all families in their children's development and learning through:
    • Knowing about and understanding diverse family and community characteristics;
    • Supporting and engaging families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships; and
    • Involving families and communities in young children's development and learning.
  3. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that child observation, documentation and other forms of assessment are central to the practice of all early childhood professionals. They know about and understand the goals, benefits and uses of assessment. They know about and use systematic observations, documentation and other effective assessment strategies in a responsible way, in partnership with families and other professionals, to positively influence the development of every child through:
    • Understanding the goals, benefits and uses of assessment — including its use in development of appropriate goals, curriculum and teaching strategies for young children;
    • Knowing about and using observation, documentation and other appropriate assessment tools and approaches, including the use of technology in documentation, assessment and data collection;
    • Understanding and practicing responsible assessment to promote positive outcomes for each child, including the use of assistive technology for children with disabilities; and
    • Knowing about assessment partnerships with families and with professional colleagues to build effective learning environments.
  4. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs understand that teaching and learning with young children is a complex enterprise, and its details vary depending on children's ages, characteristics, and the settings within which teaching and learning occur. They understand and use positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation for their work with young children and families. Candidates know, understand, and use a wide array of developmentally appropriate approaches, instructional strategies, and tools to connect with children and families and positively influence each child's development and learning through:
    • Understanding positive relationships and supportive interactions as the foundation of their work with young children;
    • Knowing and understanding effective strategies and tools for early education, including appropriate uses of technology;
    • Using a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate teaching/leaning approaches; and
    • Reflecting on own practice to promote positive outcomes for each child.
  5. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs use their knowledge of academic disciplines to design, implement, and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for each and every young child. Candidates understand the importance of developmental domains and academic (or content) disciplines in early childhood curriculum. They know the essential concepts, inquiry tools and structure of content areas, including academic subjects, and can identify resources to deepen their understanding. Candidates use their own knowledge and other resources to design, implement, and evaluate meaningful, challenging curriculum that promotes comprehensive developmental and learning outcomes for every young child through:
    • Understanding content knowledge and resources in academic disciplines: language and literacy, the arts music, creative movement, dance, drama, visual arts; mathematics; science, physical activity, physical education, health and safety; and social studies;
    • Knowing and using the central concepts, inquiry tools and structures of content areas or academic disciplines; and
    • Using own knowledge, appropriate early learning standards and other resources to design, implement and evaluate developmentally meaningful and challenging curriculum for each child.
  6. Candidates prepared in early childhood degree programs identify and conduct themselves as members of the early childhood profession. They know and use ethical guidelines and other professional standards related to early childhood practice. They are continuous, collaborative learners who demonstrate knowledgeable, reflective and critical perspectives on their work, making informed decisions that integrate knowledge from a variety of sources. They are informed advocates for sound educational practices and policies through:
    • Identifying and involving oneself with the early childhood field;
    • Knowing about and upholding ethical standards and other early childhood professional guidelines;
    • Engaging in continuous, collaborative learning to inform practice; using technology effectively with young children, with peers and as a professional resource;
    • Integrating knowledgeable, reflective and critical perspectives on early education; and
    • Engaging in informed advocacy for young children and the early profession.
  7. Field experiences and clinical practice are planned and sequenced so that candidates develop the knowledge, skills and professional dispositions necessary to promote the development and learning of young children across the entire developmental period of early childhood in at least two of the three early childhood age groups (birth — age 3, 3 through 5, 5 through 8 years) and in the variety of settings that offer early education (early school grades, child care centers and homes, Head Start programs) through:
    • Opportunities to observe and practice in at least two of the three early childhood age groups (birth — age 3, 3-5, 5-8); and
    • Opportunities to observe and practice in at least two of the three main types of early education settings (early school grades, child care centers and homes, Head Start programs).

Graduates earning a bachelor’s degree in elementary/special education from Hood College:

Elementary Education

  1. Know, understand and use the major concepts, principles, theories and research related to development of children and young adolescents to construct learning opportunities that support individual students’ development, acquisition of knowledge and motivation.

  2. Curriculum Focus
    • Demonstrate a high level of competence in use of English language arts and they know, understand, and use concepts from reading, language and child development, to teach reading, writing, speaking, viewing, listening, and thinking skills and to help students successfully apply their developing skills to many different situations, materials and ideas;
    • Design and implement age-appropriate inquiry lessons to teach science, to build student understanding for personal and social applications and to convey the nature of science;
    • Use the major concepts and procedures that define number and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement and data analysis and probability. Consistently engage problem solving, reasoning and proof, communication, connections and representation;
    • Integrate the study of history, geography, the social sciences and other related areas—to promote elementary students’ abilities to make informed decisions as citizens of a culturally diverse democratic society and interdependent world;
    • Use the content, functions and achievements of the performing arts (dance, music, theater) and the visual arts as primary media for communication, inquiry and engagement among elementary students;
    • Apply the major concepts in the subject matter of health education to create opportunities for student development and practice of skills that contribute to good health; and
    • Use human movement and physical activity as central elements to foster active, healthy life styles and enhanced quality of life for elementary students.

  3. Instructional Focus
    • Plan and implement instruction based on knowledge of students, learning theory, connections across the curriculum, curricular goals and community;
    • Understand how elementary students differ in their development and approaches to learning, and create instructional opportunities that are adapted to diverse students;
    • Use a variety of teaching strategies that encourage elementary students’ development of critical thinking and problem solving;
    • Use the knowledge and understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior among students at the K-6 level to foster active engagement in learning, self-motivation, and positive social interaction and to create supportive learning environments; and
    • Use the knowledge and understanding of effective verbal, nonverbal and media communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration and supportive interaction in the elementary classroom;
  4. Know, understand, and use formal and informal assessment strategies to plan, evaluate and strengthen instruction that will promote continuous intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of each elementary student.

  5. Professionalism Focus
    • Demonstrate awareness of and reflect on the practice research on teaching, professional ethics, and resources available for professional learning; continually evaluate the effects of professional decisions and actions on students, families and other professionals in the learning community and actively seek out opportunities to grow professionally; and
    • Establish and maintain a positive collaborative relationship with families, school colleagues, and agencies in the larger community to promote the intellectual, social, emotional, physical growth and well-being of children.

Special Education

  1. Understand how exceptionalities may interact with development and learning and use this knowledge to provide meaningful and challenging learning experiences for individuals with exceptionalities through:
    • Understanding how language, culture and family background influence the learning of individuals with exceptionalities, and
    • Using the understanding of development and individual differences to respond to the needs of individuals with exceptionalities.



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  2. Create safe, inclusive, culturally responsive learning environments so that individuals with exceptionalities become active and effective learners and develop emotional well-being, positive social interactions and self-determination through:
    • Collaborating with general educators and other colleagues create safe, inclusive, culturally responsive learning environments to engage individuals with exceptionalities in meaningful learning activities and social interactions;
    • Using motivational and instructional interventions to teach individuals with exceptionalities how to adapt to different environments;
    • Intervening safely and appropriately with individuals with exceptionalities in crisis.



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  3. Use knowledge of general and specialized curricula to individualize learning for individuals with exceptionalities through:
    • Applying central concepts, structures of the discipline, and tools of inquiry of the content areas taught, and organize this knowledge, integrate cross-disciplinary skills, and develop meaningful learning progressions for individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Using general and specialized content knowledge for teaching across curricular content areas to individualize learning for individuals with exceptionalities; and
    • Modifying general and specialized curricula to make them accessible to individuals with exceptionalities.



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  4. Use multiple methods of assessment and data-sources in making educational decisions through:
    • Selecting and using technically sound formal and informal assessments that minimize bias;
    • Applying measurement principles and practices to interpret assessment results and guide educational decisions for individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Collaborating with colleagues and families use multiple types of assessment information in making decisions about individuals with exceptionalities; and
    • Engaging individuals with exceptionalities to work toward quality learning and performance and provide feedback and guidance.



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  5. Select, adapt, and use a repertoire of evidence-based instructional strategies to advance learning of individuals with exceptionalities through:
    • Considering an individual’s abilities, interests, learning environments, and cultural and linguistic factors in the selection, development, and adaptation of learning experiences for individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Using technologies to support instructional assessment, planning, and delivery for individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Applying augmentative and alternative communication systems and a variety of assistive technologies to support the communication and learning of individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Using strategies to enhance language development and communication skills of individuals with exceptionalities;
    • Developing and implementing a variety of education and transition plans for individuals with exceptionalities across a wide range of settings and different learning experiences in collaboration with individuals, families, and teams;
    • Teaching to mastery and promoting generalization of learning; and
    • Teaching cross-disciplinary knowledge and skills such as critical thinking and problem solving to individuals with exceptionalities.



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  6. Use foundational knowledge of the field and the their professional Ethical Principles and Practice Standards to inform special education practice, to engage in lifelong learning, and to advance the profession through:
    • Use professional Ethical Principles and Professional Practice Standards to guide the practice;
    • Understanding how foundational knowledge and current issues influence professional practice;
    • Understanding that diversity is a part of families, cultures, and schools, and that complex human issues can interact with the delivery of special education services;
    • Understanding the significance of lifelong learning and participating in professional activities and learning communities;
    • Advancing the profession by engaging in activities such as advocacy and mentoring; and
    • Providing guidance and direction to paraeducators, tutors, and volunteers.



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  7. Collaborate with families, other educators, related service providers, individuals with exceptionalities, and personnel from community agencies in culturally responsive ways to address the needs of individuals with exceptionalities across a range of learning experiences through:
    • Using the theory and elements of effective collaboration;
    • Serving as a collaborative resource to colleagues; and
    • Collaborating to promote the well-being of individuals with exceptionalities across a wide range of settings and collaborators.

Graduates earning a master's degree in curriculum and instruction from Hood College:

  1. Are committed to students and their learning through:
    • Making knowledge accessible to all students. They act on the belief that all students can learn. They treat students equitably, recognizing the individual differences that distinguish one student from another and taking account of these differences in their practice. They adjust their practice based on observation and knowledge of their students' interests, abilities, skills, knowledge, family circumstances and peer relationships.
    • Understanding how students develop and learn. They incorporate the prevailing theories of cognition and intelligence in their practice. They are aware of the influence of context and culture on behavior. They develop students' cognitive capacity and their respect for learning. Equally important, they foster students' self-esteem, motivation, character, civic responsibility and their respect for individual, cultural, religious and racial differences.
  2. Know the subjects they teach and how to teach those subjects to students through:
    • A rich understanding of the subject(s) they teach and appreciate how knowledge in their subject is created, organized, linked to other disciplines and applied to real-world settings. While faithfully representing the collective wisdom of our culture and upholding the value of disciplinary knowledge, they also develop the critical and analytical capacities of their students.
    • Command of a specialized knowledge of how to convey and reveal subject matter to students. They are aware of the preconceptions and background knowledge that students typically bring to each subject and of strategies and instructional materials that can be of assistance. They understand where difficulties are likely to arise and modify their practice accordingly. Their instructional repertoire allows them to create multiple paths to the subjects they teach, and they are adept at teaching students how to pose and solve their own problems.
  3. Are responsible for managing and monitoring student learning through:
    • Creating, enriching, maintaining and altering instructional settings to capture and sustain the interest of their students and to make the most effective use of time. They also are adept at engaging students and adults to assist their teaching and at enlisting their colleagues' knowledge and expertise to complement their own. Accomplished teachers command a range of generic instructional techniques, know when each is appropriate and can implement them as needed. They are as aware of ineffectual or damaging practice as they are devoted to elegant practice.
    • Engaging groups of students to ensure a disciplined learning environment, and how to organize instruction to allow the schools' goals for students to be met. They are adept at setting norms for social interaction among students and between students and teachers. They understand how to motivate students to learn and how to maintain their interest even in the face of temporary failure.
    • Assessing the progress of individual students as well as that of the class as a whole. They employ multiple methods for measuring student growth and understanding and can clearly explain student performance to parents.
  4. Think systematically about their practice and learn from experience through:
    • Exemplifying the virtues they seek to inspire in students -- curiosity, tolerance, honesty, fairness, respect for diversity and appreciation of cultural differences -- and the capacities that are prerequisites for intellectual growth: the ability to reason and take multiple perspectives to be creative and take risks, and to adopt an experimental and problem-solving orientation.
    • Drawing on their knowledge of human development, subject matter and instruction, and their understanding of their students to make principled judgments about sound practice. Their decisions are not only grounded in the literature, but also in their experience. They engage in lifelong learning which they seek to encourage in their students.
    • Striving to strengthen their teaching, accomplished teachers critically examine their practice, seek to expand their repertoire, deepen their knowledge, sharpen their judgment and adapt their teaching to new findings, ideas and theories.
  5. Are members of learning communities through:
    • Contributing to the effectiveness of the school by working collaboratively with other professionals on instructional policy, curriculum development and staff development. They can evaluate school progress and the allocation of school resources in light of their understanding of state and local educational objectives. They are knowledgeable about specialized school and community resources that can be engaged for their students' benefit, and are skilled at employing such resources as needed.
    • Finding ways to work collaboratively and creatively with parents, engaging them productively in the work of the school.

Upon earning a master's degree in educational leadership from Hood College:

  1. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by collaboratively facilitating the development, articulation, implementation and stewardship of a shared school vision of learning through the collection and use of data to identify school goals, assess organizational effectiveness and implement school plans to achieve school goals; promotion of continual and sustainable school improvement; and evaluation of school progress and revision of school plans supported by school-based stakeholders through:
    • Collaboratively developing, articulating implementing and stewarding a shared vision of learning for a school;
    • Collecting and using data to identify school goals, assess organizational effectiveness and implement plans to achieve school goals;
    • Promoting continual and sustainable school improvement; and
    • Evaluating school progress and revise school plans supported by school stakeholders.
  2. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by sustaining a school culture and instructional program conducive to student learning through collaboration, trust, and a personalized learning environment with high expectations for students; creating and evaluating a comprehensive, rigorous and coherent curricular and instructional school program; developing and supervising the instructional and leadership capacity of school staff; and promoting the most effective and appropriate technologies to support teaching and learning within a school environment through:
    • Sustaining a school culture and instructional program conducive to student learning through collaboration, trust, and a personalized learning environment with high expectations for students;
    • Creating and evaluating a comprehensive, rigorous, and coherent curricular and instructional school program;
    • Developing and supervising the instructional and leadership capacity of school staff; and
    • Promoting the most effective and appropriate technologies to support teaching and learning in a school environment.
  3. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by ensuring the management of the school organization, operation, and resources through monitoring and evaluating the school management and operational systems; efficiently using human, fiscal, and technological resources in a school environment; promoting and protecting the welfare and safety of school students and staff; developing school capacity for distributed leadership; and ensuring that teacher and organizational time is focused to support high-quality instruction and student learning through:
    • Monitoring and evaluating school management and operational systems;
    • Using human, fiscal and technological resources to manage school operations;
    • Promoting school-based policies and procedures that protect the welfare and safety of students and staff within the school;
    • Developing school capacity for distributed leadership; and
    • Ensuring teacher and organizational time focuses on supporting high-quality school instruction and student learning.
  4. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by collaborating with faculty and community members, responding to diverse community interests and needs, and mobilizing community resources on behalf of the school by collecting and analyzing information pertinent to improvement of the school’s educational environment; promoting an understanding, appreciation, and use of the diverse cultural, social, and intellectual resources within the school community; building and sustaining positive school relationships with families and caregivers; and cultivating productive school relationships with community partners through:
    • Collaborating with faculty and community members by collecting and analyzing information pertinent to the improvement of the school’s educational environment;
    • Mobilizing community resources by promoting an understanding, appreciation and use of diverse cultural, social and intellectual resources within the school community;
    • Responding to community interests and needs by building and sustaining positive school relationships with families and caregivers; and
    • Responding to community interests and needs by building and sustaining productive school relationships with community partners.
  5. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by acting with integrity, fairness, and in an ethical manner to ensure a school system of accountability for every student’s academic and social success by modeling school principles of self-awareness, reflective practice, transparency, and ethical behavior as related to their roles within the school; safeguarding the values of democracy, equity, and diversity within the school; evaluating the potential moral and legal consequences of decision making in the school; and promoting social justice within the school to ensure that individual student needs inform all aspects of schooling through:
    • Acting with integrity and fairness to ensure a school system of accountability for every student’s academic and social success;
    • Modeling principles of self-awareness, reflective practice, transparency and ethical behavior as related to their roles within the school;
    • Safeguarding the values of democracy, equity and diversity within the school;
    • Evaluating the potential moral and legal consequences of decision making in the school; and
    • Promoting social justice within the school to ensure that individual student needs inform all aspects of schooling.
  6. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by understanding, responding to, and influencing the larger political, social, economic, legal and cultural context through advocating for school students, families and caregivers; acting to influence local, district, state and national decisions affecting student learning in a school environment; and anticipating and assessing emerging trends and initiatives in order to adapt school-based leadership strategies through:
    • Advocating for school students, families and caregivers;
    • Acting to influence local, district, state and national decisions affecting student learning in a school environment; and
    • Anticipating and assessing emerging trends and initiatives in order to adapt school-based leadership strategies.
  7. A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student through a substantial and sustained educational leadership internship experience that has school-based field experiences and clinical internship practice within a school setting and is monitored by a qualified, on-site mentor through:
    • A substantial field and clinical internship experience that provides significant field experiences and clinical internship practice for candidates within a school environment to synthesize and apply the content knowledge and develop professional skills identified in the other Educational Leadership Building-Level Program Standards through authentic, school-based leadership experiences;
    • A sustained internship experience that provides a six-month, concentrated (9–12 hours per week) internship that includes field experiences within a school-based environment; and
    • An on-site school mentor who has demonstrated experience as an educational leader within a school and is selected collaboratively by the intern and program faculty with training by the supervising institution.

Graduates earning a doctorate degree in Organizational Leadership from Hood College:

  1. Reflect in order to globally analyze personal and professional values and principles as a leader, assess their own leadership styles, evaluate their strengths-based leadership styles, and develop strategies to become more effective leaders through:
    • Conducting personal and professional leadership analysis and reflection;
    • Comparing and contrasting leadership strategies using theories and models to understand mindful leadership; and
    • Engaging in on-going leadership development throughout the program.
  2. Strengthen the responsible administration of financial, social, ecological and human resources through:
    • Analyzing financial information and reporting findings to compare and contrast with industry standards to develop recommendations to uphold the highest standards of fiscal responsibility;
    • Applying leadership skills to identify and develop a plan to address organizational or community needs;
    • Analyzing sustainability strategies of an organization or community to identify sustainability challenges and issues; and
    • Completing a needs assessment in human resources in an appropriate organization and then design a plan to address two to three of the most significant needs.
  3. Equip leaders with the necessary skills and competencies to effectively initiate and manage change to transform organizations and communities in today’s competitive environment through:
    • Applying leadership and change management theory to organizational issues and challenges to enhance organizational effectiveness;
    • Analyzing challenges and issues facing an organization or community to develop a set of recommendations to remain sustainable and competitive; and
    • Developing a strategic plan using best practices in leadership theory and change management to reflect an understanding of systems-thinking and responsible stewardship.
  4. Position candidates to work closely within the larger community by providing a forum for area professionals to network and collaborate with others who share their interests in leadership, service and development of communities through:
    • Interacting with leaders from communities to develop a leadership network and align with leaders and organizations to support mindful leadership development;
    • Participating in doctoral program sponsored activities and reflecting on experiences and their impact on serving as mindful, authentic leadership; and
    • Developing a project designed to impact the community through your specialization coursework.
  5. Prepare leaders to employ pedagogical, empirical and research skills to effectively initiate, conduct and evaluate independent research through:
    • Presenting a concept paper outlining a proposed theoretical framework intended for research study (lit review, theoretical constructs and theoretical framework);
    • Conducting independent research using appropriate pedagogical and empirical skills; and
    • Defending your research findings.

This program meets International Reading Association standards and also fulfills the standards set forth by the Maryland State Department of Education for licensure as a reading specialist.

Graduates earning a master's degree in reading specialization from Hood College:

  1. Understand the theoretical and evidence-based foundations of reading and writing processes and instruction through:
    • Conducting empirical research that describe the cognitive, linguistic, motivational and sociocultural foundations of reading and writing development, processes and components, including word recognition, language comprehension, strategic knowledge and reading-writing connections;
    • Understanding the historically shared knowledge of the profession and changes over time in the perceptions of reading and writing development, processes and components; and
    • Understanding the role of professional judgment and practical knowledge for improving all students’ reading development and achievement.
  2. Use instructional approaches, materials, and an integrated, comprehensive, balanced curriculum to support student learning in reading and writing through:
    • Designing or implementing an integrated, comprehensive, and balanced curriculum;
    • Applying appropriate and varied instructional approaches, including those that develop word recognition, language comprehension, strategic knowledge, and reading–writing connections; and
    • Using a wide range of texts (e.g., narrative, expository, and poetry) from traditional print, digital, and online resources.
  3. Use a variety of assessment tools and practices to plan and evaluate effective reading and writing instruction through:
    • Understanding the types of assessments and their purposes, strengths, and limitations;
    • Selecting, developing, administering and interpreting assessments, both traditional print and electronic, for specific purposes;
    • Incorporating assessment information to plan and evaluate instruction; and
    • Communicating assessment results and implications to a variety of audiences.
  4. Create and engage students in literacy practices that develop awareness, understanding, respect, and a valuing of differences in our society through:
    • Recognizing, understanding, and valuing the forms of diversity that exist in society and their importance in learning to read and write;
    • Using a literacy curriculum and engaging in instructional practices that positively impact students’ knowledge, beliefs, and engagement with the features of diversity; and
    • Developing and implementing strategies to advocate for equity.
  5. Create a literate environment that fosters reading and writing by integrating foundational knowledge, instructional practices, approaches and methods, curriculum materials, and the appropriate use of assessment through:
    • Designing the physical environment to optimize students’ use of traditional print, digital and online resources in reading and writing instruction;
    • Designing a social environment that is low risk and includes choice, motivation and scaffolded support to optimize students’ opportunities for learning to read and write;
    • Using routines to support reading and writing instruction (e.g., time allocation, transitions from one activity to another, discussions and peer feedback); and
    • Using a variety of classroom configurations (i.e., whole class, small group, and individual) to differentiate instruction.
  6. Recognize the importance of, demonstrate, and facilitate professional learning and leadership as a career-long effort and responsibility through:
    • Demonstrating foundational knowledge of adult learning theories and related research about organizational change, professional development and school culture;
    • Displaying positive dispositions related to their own reading and writing and the teaching of reading and writing, and pursue the development of individual professional knowledge and behaviors;
    • Participating in, designing, facilitating, leading and evaluating effective and differentiated professional development programs; and
    • Understanding and influencing local, state or national policy decisions.