Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth Minor

Second Advisor

Dr. Gloria McDaniel

Third Advisor

Dr. Harrington Gibson


Acheson and Gall (2011) wrote about the tension between teacher evaluation and clinical supervision. In their research they discuss the intent of clinical supervision to be a model for coaching and supporting professional growth as compared to more traditional models of teacher evaluation that were often associated with fear as a motivator. This program evaluation examines the nature of the formal observation in the teacher evaluation process and seeks to explore its role in developing reflective practitioners and promoting professional growth. This study involved researching the perspectives of teachers and administrators regarding their perceptions of the value of the formal observation process in improving teaching and learning. The data was collected through surveys and interviews and analyzed for patterns in responses.

As a result of the research from this program evaluation, it was determined that the current formal observation process mandating an in-person observation of instruction is limited in its ability to foster the development of reflective practitioners. Several factors create a context that devalues what should be an optimal opportunity for professional growth. The passive role of teachers in the process, the high stakes nature of the observation as the central component in the larger evaluation process, the lack of a collaborative structure and the administrator-driven nature of the experience result in a process that has little impact on improving instruction in this study. The recommendations from this program evaluation include the exploration of alternative models for the current structure of the formal observation in the teacher evaluation process in Illinois.