Please join us Monday, December 1 at 10:00 a.m. in 232M Baker Hall for this talk given by J.R. Lockwood, PhD, of The Educational Testing Service

Title: Inferring Constructs of Effective Teaching from Classroom Observations: An Application of Bayesian Exploratory Factor Analysis Without Restrictions

Abstract: he dramatic public policy shifts toward increasing teacher ac-

countability have generated numerous sets of student outcome, teach-

ing process and teacher knowledge-based instruments all seeking to

measure the quality of teaching. These instruments are being used

to assess and pay teachers without a clear understanding of what as-

pects of teaching are being assessed, and how the many dimensions

that comprise any one measure relate to those of other measures. We

use data from multiple instruments collected from approximately 450

middle school mathematics and English language arts teachers and

their students to inform research and practice on teacher performance

measurement by modeling the underlying constructs of high-quality

teaching. We make inferences about these constructs using a novel

approach to Bayesian exploratory factor analysis (EFA) that, unlike

commonly-used approaches for identifying factor loadings in Bayesian

EFA, is invariant to how the data dimensions are ordered. Using this

approach with our data reveals two distinct teaching constructs in

both mathematics and English language arts: 1) Practices used by

teachers to instruct and engage students; and 2) Teacher management

of classrooms.We demonstrate the relationships of these constructs to

other indicators of teaching quality including teacher content knowl-

edge and student performance on standardized tests.