During the on-site visit, teams look for evidence that the unit and its programs are current and dynamic and that they meet the standards and maintain a level of quality worthy of professional accreditation. Teams conducting continuing visits also determine whether the areas for improvement cited at the previous NCATE review have been addressed or are being addressed.
The BOE team will be primarily interested in determining the quality of the unit’s candidates and graduates, as measured by their ability to help all students learn. To that end, the BOE team will spend a substantial amount of its time during the visit examining and assessing the data generated by the unit’s assessment system and the quality of that system. As the visit progresses, BOE team members will make initial judgments about the unit meeting each of the standards. These initial findings will identify areas in which the judgments of team members differ, alert the BOE team of additional data-gathering activities needed on campus and in schools, and focus the BOE team’s discussions as it deliberates on its findings.
Team members may also observe a sample of professional education classes and visit schools. The team decides which classes to visit. The NCATE coordinator should prepare faculty to expect visitors if their class is scheduled for an observation. If there are special circumstances that would preclude these observations, the team chair should be so informed.