Dispositions, Education Programs, and the Social Justice Requirement
NCATE 2002 Assessment Guidelines
“Unit assessments must also reflect the dispositions identified in its conceptual framework and in professional
and state standards. Often team reports do not indicate any connection between dispositions specified
in the conceptual framework and dispositions that are assessed. For example, if the unit has described
its vision for teacher preparation as ‘Teachers as agents of change’ and has indicated that a commitment
to social justice is one disposition it expects of teachers who can become agents of change, then it is expected
that unit assessments include some measure of a candidate’s commitment to social justice.”

One:Because democracy requires a substantive concern for equity, the faculty of the School of Education is committed, in theory and practice, to social justice . . . We believe that an education centered on social justice prepares the highest quality of future teachers . . . We recognize the challenges we face in preparing educators to be advocates for those on the margins of society . . . Given the historical roots of injustice, we are committed to helping practitioners see the vast possibilities of moving toward an equitable and just world knowing that ‘extreme inequalities in matters of race, gender and class often survive on the implicit understanding that there is no alternative’ . . . Our teacher candidates and other school personnel are prepared to demonstrate a knowledge of, language for, and the ability to create educational environments based on various theories of social justice.”

Two: Candidates “are assessed on the conceptual framework themes of diversity and social justice, themes that emphasizes the need for candidates to be knowledgeable about, sensitive to and responsive to issues of diversity and social justice as these influence curriculum and pedagogy, school culture, relationships with colleagues and members of the school community, and candidates’ analysis of student work and behavior.” A pilot of the school’s dispositions evaluation form with 159 initial candidates and 155 advanced candidates “showed that our initial candidates met or exceeded expectations on average with respect to at least 88% of the 8 dispositions, and advanced candidates met or exceeded expectations on at least 83% of the dispositions.”

CUNY (other than Brooklyn)
“As a community of learners, we actively engage in teaching, research and service for the purposes of . . . 
championing social justice.”
“Teacher and counselor education is a movement for social change,” based on the theme of “Education
for Social Action.”
“The foundation of liberal learning informs the professional education strand in an innovative thematic
approach that emphasizes personal responsibility and global understanding that encourages the
construction of communities committed to enacting social justice.”
“Educating for social justice means our actions as well as our words seek full participation for all people
in a global society. SUNY Cortland’s commitment to social justice focuses on the ongoing problems of
a democratic society, contemporary social problems, rural and urban education, and environmental responsibility.
Through enrollment in our teacher education program, candidates demonstrate an awareness of issues of
social justice, equality, and democracy facing our society.” (pp. 18-19)
Candidates provide evidence of their understanding of social justice in teaching activities, journals,
and portfolios . . . Candidates understand and evaluate the varied approaches to multicultural reform,
and identify social action as the most advanced level.” (emphasis added)
Other New York
The program prepares teachers “who will be scholarly in their academic pursuit and committed to social justice.”
California State University, Long Beach
The program “prepares socially responsible leaders for a rapidly changing, technologically-rich world.”
California State University, San Marcos
We are committed to diversity, educational equity, and social justice.”
Central Connecticut
The program aims at “influencing educational and social policies at the local, State, and national levels
. . . All professional preparation programs should . . . serve as an advocate for groups that have been
traditionally discriminated against.”
University of Colorado
Students in the program must demonstrate a “shared commitment to evidence-based policy and
practice and to democracy, diversity and social justice.”
Florida International
The program seeks “to develop professional partnerships that promote meaningful educational, social,
economic and political change.”
University of Florida
“Exemplary professionals develop a moral vision to guide their practice and to help them reflect
upon and improve it. Their moral vision defines ‘justice, responsibility, and virtue’ in the context of their work.”
Clark Atlanta
The motto of the school’s education program is “Preparing Critical Thinking Change Agents
for Social Justice in Urban Schools and Communities,” and states that its goals include “to
serve as a change agent and proponent of change agentry to improve the human condition
with a focus on the advancement of educational services” and “to develop emerging theories to
support change agentry principles and processes.”
“Positive social change does not occur without enlightened leadership. This leadership
can be provided by the academy and profession itself,” with students being made “aware
of the continuing threats to the promise of free public education for future generations.”
Georgia Southern
Educators “must understand the political nature of education.” (p. 2)
Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis
Teachers must “value and teach about diversity” and “capitalize on the potential of school
to minimize inequities” by agreeing to “act as a change agent,” “mediate when learners
need help to . . . change attitudes”, and “challenge negative attitudes.”
University of Kansas
The program operates under the theory that “addressing issues of diversity includes being
more global than national and concerned with ideals such as world peace, social justice,
respect for diversity and preservation of the environment.”
University of Louisville
“Teaching for change refers to the development of teachers who teach to the high standards
of social justice.” (p. 1) The Education program seeks “to promote social justice in the
school and larger community”, with prospective teachers required to “provide evidence” of their
commitment to social justice. (pp. 3-4)
University of Southern Maine
Prospective teachers must demonstrate “a sense of responsibility to speak on behalf of and
respond to the needs of our identified constituent groups and to promote social justice.”
Towson State
Prospective teachers must demonstrate “a commitment to ethical practice, inquiry, knowledge,
competence, caring, and social justice in a democratic society.”
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
“We expect our graduates to be leaders in their schools as well as advocates for democracy and
social justice.”
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
 “Our approach is shaped by our fundamental commitment to social justice and diversity and
by our belief in the essential importance of national and international perspectives as we advance
education as a model for the nation.”
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Teachers must display dispositions to “know and respect the influence of race, ethnicity, gender,
religion, and other aspects of culture on a child’s development and personality” by “demonstrating
the belief that diversity in the classroom, in the school, and in society is a strength” and by
selecting materials, developing lessons, and promoting classroom environments that counteract
negative stereotypes and bigotry.”
North Carolina
“Over the past several years, there has been a growing interest among Duke undergraduates
 in the complex problems our nation faces and ways they as college graduates might contribute
to resolving these issues. The Program in Education offers undergraduates ways to explore these
pressing problems involving issues of race, class, and gender, particularly in relation to schools.”
North Carolina State
“Our inquiry and practice reflect integrity, a commitment to social justice, and the value of diversity
in a global community.”
University of North Carolina
“Excellence entails a commitment to fully developing candidates, not only academically but also
in moral and political senses.” (emphasis added)
Cleveland State
“Our mission is to prepare professionals who reflect our commitment to educational excellence
across the life-span through teaching, research, and service focused on leadership,
social justice, and partnerships in addressing contemporary urban needs.”
“The questions we ask and our firm belief in the value of the individual are rooted in a democratic
tradition founded on social justice. Education is our prime vehicle for creating the ‘just’ society.
In all of our efforts in education we are preparing citizens to lead productive lives in a democratic
society characterized by social justice.”
Oregon State
“We are committed to the values of diversity and social justice in a global society”; the
Education program’s goal is to “produce culturally competent educators who embrace diversity and social justice.”
Portland State
“We develop our programs to promote social justice, especially for groups that have been historically disenfranchised.”
South Carolina
University of South Carolina
The program aims at “preparing educators to have a sincere understanding and appreciation
of diversity as we challenge ourselves and others to work for social justice.”
University of Vermont
The ultimate purpose of these activities [in the Education Program] is to create a more humane and
just society, free from oppression, that fosters respect for ethnic and cultural diversity, and maximizes
human potential and the quality of life for all individuals, families and communities.”
George Mason University
Teachers must demonstrate a disposition for a “commitment to democratic values and social justice,”
including such inherently political requirements as understanding “systemic issues that prevent full
participation” and “advocate for practices that promote equity and access.”
We demonstrate our belief in the value of diversity by . . . modeling and promoting social justice.”
Washington State University
The program featured “annual events that involved the college faculty staff and students as well
as the larger community in focusing on and promoting social justice”
The teacher education program “has a commitment to social justice in schools and society,”
while using education “to transcend the negative effects of the dominant culture” and having
candidates demonstrate a “desire to work for social justice, particularly in an urban environment.”
(pp. 8, 15, 19)