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e-Mentor Manual

Certificate of Teaching Mastery


Part 5: Assessment and Evaluation


Mentors are not expected to grade candidates’ reflections or assignments. Instead, we encourage you to engage candidates in conversations about key concepts explored in the course by commenting on candidate assignments, responses, reflections, and self-assessment activities. We are relying on your expertise and professional experience to ensure that candidates who are not ready to progress to the next assignment in the course are informed of this and encouraged to master their grasp of the concept or improve their assignment(s) before moving on. This may be as simple as encouraging the candidate to elaborate, provide a specific example from their own practice, or revise their response or assignment based on your feedback or a discussion thread that developed in response to the original post. Please also keep in mind that we believe that candidate responses are never inadequate or insufficient, and prefer instead to characterize CTM candidates as either "ready" or "not ready" to move on. 


If you decide that an assignment submitted by the candidate you are mentoring does not reflect his/her potential, is completed hastily or carelessly, please engage them in a discussion by responding, for example, in the following manner:


"I have read your response carefully, and I'd like to discuss this idea a bit more before you move on to the next unit/assignment. I'm curious what you mean when you say that ..." 


The above is a non-confrontational statement that shows the candidate that you found value in her/his work, but that more discussion is needed to clarify some points and give the candidate an opportunity to engage with the topic in a way that more accurately attests to her/his grasp of the material. 


In other words, assignments that you consider incomplete or inadequate should be used as opportunities for discussion and greater engagement with the topic. 


5.1 End-of-Course Self-Assessment


When the candidate has completed all required assignments in the course, she/he will complete the End-of-Course Self-Assessment (PDF). The completed self-assessment will be posted on the candidate’s e-Portfolio. You are expected to respond to this self-assessment and provide feedback on its completeness and accuracy. This activity is also your opportunity to assess the candidate’s entire body of work in the course. The candidate’s self-assessment will be your starting point. Begin by responding to the points raised by the candidate, but also refer to other e-Portfolio entries or discussions that took place in this course and which can be used to discuss the candidate’s grasp of the key concepts explored in the course. We hope that you will see this as an opportunity to provide a more descriptive and conversational summary of the candidates work and progress. 


You can also use this discussion to reflect on some memorable conversations that you'd had with the candidate or comment on how much you enjoyed working together. Your feedback can also include “Thoughts for the Future” – discussion of one or two specific concepts that, in your opinion, the candidate should pay special attention to. For example, as the candidate moves on to the next course in the program, you might want to use this final discussion as an opportunity to encourage the candidate to think about specific concepts, reflect more on some of her/his work, or consider specific questions about her/his practice, or teaching and learning in general. In other words, the CTM is about conversations, so it is important to leave the candidate with something to think about as he/she moves on to the next stage. It is possible that the next course will provide an opportunity to explore this issue in greater depth.


In other words, let this discussion grow out of the candidate’s self-assessment, but then expand it to include other examples of candidate’s work. This startegy allows both of you to take a step back and discuss what has been accomplished and how well, but it does not diminish the candidate’s sense of ownership of her/his progress because the discussion emerges from the candidate’s self-assessment.


5.2 Summative Evaluation Sheet


Once you've had an opportunity to thoroughly respond to and discuss your candidate's End-of-Course Self-Assessment, you will be ready to fill out the Summative Evaluation Sheet (PDF) where you can specify whether or not the candidate is ready to move on to the next course. This evaluation should not be a surprise to the candidate. If you have doubts about the candidate's readiness to tackle the next course, please express them to your candidate and the CTM Coordinator as soon as they emerge. Please also use your interactions with the candidate as opportunities to encourage her/him to ensure successful progress towards the criteria in the Summative Evaluation Sheet. 


Please consult Part 2 of this manual for additional information.


5.3 Mentor Evaluation Form 


Once the Summative Evaluation Sheet has been shared with the candidate, the candidate will have an opportunity to evaluate the mentor. This will be done using an anonymous evaluation form. The results will be emailed to the Coordinator of the Certificate of Teaching Mastery program and then shared with the mentor. 


For a sample Mentor Evaluation Form, click here


5.4 Providing Meaningful and Timely Feedback


We all know that our school-age and/or college- level students expect feedback sooner rather than later. Teachers are no different, so it is important to indicate how and in what time frame you will provide feedback to the candidate's submitted assignments. For example: you may inform the candidate that you will respond with constructive questions, request for clarification, constructive advice, feedback, etc. within two to three working days. This should be communicated to the candidate during the initial stages of your mentoring life cycle. The candidate needs to be aware of how often you will be responding to his/her work.


Ask the candidate what her/his response time to your feedback will be. Keep in mind that many candidates will not have daily access to the Internet and that they might have to pay to access the Internet. Also, please keep in mind that some candidates may need to travel to a place where they can access the Internet. Candidates who are single or retired/unemployed are likely to have more time than candidates who are working full-time or raising children. That is why it is very important for you and the candidate you are mentoring to learn as much as possible about each other so that expectations are not unrealistic.


If you are unable to provide timely feedback for some reason (vacation, illness, etc.), it is important that you let both your candidate and the CTM Coordinator know that you will be unavailable. If you anticipate a prolonged absence, a temporary replacement mentor will be found in order to provide your candidate(s) with uninterrupted support and guidance.


5.5 Development of the Candidate’s e-Portfolio


Throughout the program, candidates are expected to use their e-Portfolios to post assignments, reflect on their work and classroom practice, document their engagement with ideas, and self-assess their progress. Their e-Portfolio is also a place where the mentors will post comments and feedback, and where candidates are expected to engage in discussions with their peers and mentors.


In the course of completing the CTM program, a candidate's e-Portfolio can grow to include hundreds of entries, many of which will have online discussions attached to them in the form of comments. At the end of the course, the candidate's e-Portfolio will be evaluated by the CTM Review Board. The Board will evaluate the extent to which the e-Portfolio reflects the candidate's engagement with the material and his/her growing grasp of the concepts and developing mastery as an educator. The CTM Review Board will then determine whether or not the candidate is ready to receive the certificate.


In your role as mentor, you are encouraged to remind your candidates that everything they post in their e-Portfolios, including their responses to comments posted by mentors and other TWB members will be evaluated by the CTM Review Board during the evaluation process. The e-Portfolio is the candidates’ workspace and an eveolving document of their engagement with the program, with their mentors and peers.


Back to the e-Mentor Manual

Part 6 of the Mentor Manual


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