National Association of Professors of Middle Level Education

Current Issues in Middle Level Education (Volume 18 • Number 2 • Fall 2013)

Table of Conents

Gahan Bailey

Embracing a Common Focus: A Framework for Middle Level Teacher Preparation (pdf)

Shawn A. Faulkner, Northern Kentucky University

Penny B. Howell, University of Louisville

Chris M. Cook, Northern Kentucky University


Abstract: As more and more states make a commitment to specialized middle level teacher preparation, teacher education programs across the country must make the necessary adjustments to ensure middle level teachers are prepared to be successful and describe their personal experience in statement Unfortunately, individual state and institutional requirements often make this challenging and can result in inconsistent experiences, expectations, and requirements. In an effort to provide a common focus for middle level teacher preparation, this piece proposes the Framework for Effective Middle Level Practices through the analysis of three key documents in middle level teacher preparation—National Middle School Association’s position statement on the Professional Preparation of Middle Level Teachers (2006), National Middle School Association’s This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents (2010), and Anfara and Schmid’s (2007) synthesis of research on effective teaching practices at the middle level. Illustrative practices are suggested for the use of the Framework in middle level teacher preparation.


Ruebel and Galloway

Upping the Ante:  Video and Tagging Software to Improve Teacher Candidate Performance (pdf)

Kim K. Ruebel, Ph.D., Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Western Carolina University

Diane Galloway, Ph.D., Middle Level Program Coordinator, University of Texas at Arlington


Abstract: This pilot study resulted in changes to how we support and understand the teacher candidate learning process. Student teachers recorded videos of several teaching segments and later both researchers and student teachers utilized software to identify, tag, and analyze teaching performances. The study was based on the following assertions: teacher candidates need to own their professional growth, and teaching behaviors can be identified, rated for proficiency and analyzed as a collection of techniques to enhance student learning. The findings suggested that use of the software has expanded our ability to document candidate performance and proficiency. Candidates not only became critically self-evaluative but also identified missed opportunities in teaching segments.


Cherry Watts

Do Principals and Teachers Agree about the Middle School Concept? (pdf)

Cherry Watts, Ph.D., University of Tennessee at Martin

Allen H. Seed, Ph.D., Retired from University of Miami

Louis A. Franceschini III, Ph.D.,  University of Memphis


Abstract: In 2009, the Tennessee Professors of Middle Level Education (TPOMLE) examined how Tennessee schools implemented the middle school concept.   Of concern was the impact that emphasis on accountability and achievement had on the middle school concept which emphasizes the development of the whole child.  A survey was developed based on the tenets of middle level reform presented by George and Anderson (1989). The survey was then distributed to all Tennessee schools which contained middle level grades. The intent of the survey was to determine the degree to which the principles and tenets of the middle school concept were considered important and implemented in Tennessee schools. The results indicated that middle level educators considered the principles of the middle school concept to be important and that most felt that their school implemented these principles. The researchers then examined if teachers and administrators agreed or disagreed on the importance and implementation of the middle school concept.