Our rationale

There is a constant need for the state and country to identify, recruit and develop quality teachers and leaders. The research clearly shows that teacher and leadership quality significantly impact students’ academic outcomes. University-based teacher and leader training programs must be included in the country’s efforts to reform its educational systems.

Davenport’s College of Urban Education specifically focuses on the preparation and development of professionals serving urban schools. Its programs foster the development of relationships, knowledge and skills that lead to highly effective teaching and leadership. The college’s "on-the-job" training method prepares teachers to differentiate their instruction to reach all children, especially those from underrepresented and underserved communities.

The College of Education follows the principals recommended by the Blue Ribbon Panel on Clinical Preparation and Partnerships prepared by NCATE and released in the report, Transforming Teacher Education through Clinical Practice: A National Strategy to Prepare Effective Teachers for Improved Student Learning in 2010. These principles were later reinforced by the newly released standards of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), and directly address closing "the gap between how teachers are prepared and what schools need." The recommended design principles for clinically-based programs and strategies that are incorporated in the College of Urban Education’s academic include:

  1. Student learning as the focus.
  2. Clinical preparation integrated throughout every facet of teacher education in a dynamic way.
  3. A candidate's progress and the elements of a preparation program are continuously assessed on the basis of data.
  4. Programs prepare teachers, who are expert in content, on how to teach it and how to be innovators, collaborators and problem solvers.
  5. Candidates learn in an interactive professional community.
  6. Clinical educators and coaches are drawn from both higher education and the K-12 sector.
  7. Specific sites are designated and funded to support embedded clinical preparation.
  8. Technology applications foster high-impact preparation.
  9. A powerful research and development agenda and systematic gathering and use of data support continuous improvement in teacher preparation.
  10. Strategic partnerships are imperative for powerful clinical preparation.

Davenport University is responding to the country and state’s need for quality teachers and leaders by creating new prototypes for the 21st century. This paradigm shift will increase the effectiveness in preparing urban students for success.

For more information see our individual program pages for   Masters of Urban EducationCertificate in Urban EducationMasters of Urban Educational Leadership and Certificate in Urban Educational Leadership.

Meet the team

Susan Gunn

Susan Gunn, Ph.D.

Dean, College of Urban Education
Rajah Smart

Rajah Smart, Ed.D.

Department Chair, College of Urban Education