Surveying the landscape of teacher education in New York city: Constrained variation and the challenge of innovation

Author/s: 

Donald Boyd

,

Pamela Grossman

,

Karen Hammerness

,

Hamilton Lankford

,

Susanna Loeb

,

Morva McDonald

,

Michelle Reininger

,

Matthew Ronfeldt

,

James Wyckoff

Year of Publication: 
2008

In this article, the authors describe the state of teacher education in and around the large and diverse school district of New York City. Using multiple data sources, including program documents, interviews, and surveys of teachers, this study attempts to explore the characteristics of programs that prepare elementary teachers of New York City public schools, including the kinds of programs that exist, who enters these different programs, who teaches in the programs, and what characterizes the core curriculum. A central question concerns the amount of variation that exists in the preparation of elementary teachers for a single, large school district. Despite the number and variety of programs that exist to prepare elementary teachers, the authors found the overall curriculum and structure of teacher education to be more similar than different. To understand this lack of variation, the authors draw on organizational theory, particularly, the concept of institutional isomorphism, to examine the case of teacher education. The authors conclude with recommendations for what it might take to change the landscape of teacher education in the context of a large urban district.

Education Level:

APA Citation

Boyd, D., Grossman, P., Hammerness, K., Lankford, H., Loeb, S., McDonald, M., Reininger, M., Ronfeldt, M., & Wyckoff, J. (2008). Surveying the landscape of teacher education in New York city: Constrained variation and the challenge of innovation.