Students studying together in the Library

Academics at UofSC Aiken

Undergraduate and Graduate Programs

View Programs of Study

1. Completer Effectiveness and Impact on P-12 Learning and Development (Component R4.1)

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Graduate Observations of Teaching Effectiveness SC Formal Evaluation Data – (In-Service Teachers – Induction Year Teachers-USCA Graduates)

Contribute to P-12 Student Learning Growth and Apply Professional Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions:

The Expanded ADEPT evaluation is administered by school districts during a teacher’s second year in the classroom. Developed by the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) the Expanded ADEPT rubric seeks to create an evaluation system that is “…valid, reliable, and fair and that produces actionable and constructive feedback to support professional growth” (Expanded ADEPT Support and Evaluation Guidelines, 2018, p.3). The rubric includes four domains: planning, instruction, environment, and professionalism, and twenty-three indicators. Each indicator is detailed by a series of descriptors found in the ADEPT 4.0 rubric. Central to the South Carolina Teaching Standards is the idea of student growth, which is assessed through Student Learning Objectives (SLOs). The SLO reflects the teacher’s ability to: “…set appropriate goals for student learning and development, accurately measure and analyze student growth, and to plan, implement, and adjust instruction to ensure maximum student progress” (Expanded ADEPT Support and Evaluation Guidelines, 2018, p.7). Impact data is measured through the Student Learning Objective evaluation (SLO). Student Learning Objectives (SLOs) are a tool for actionable reflection used in teacher evaluation systems as a student growth measure. SLOs are monitored over the duration of time the students are with the teacher for instruction, which may be a full academic year, a semester, or quarter (depending on the context in which the teacher leads instruction).” Retrieved from https://ed.sc.gov/educators/educator-effectiveness/measuring-student-growth/slo/ On an annual basis, classroom teachers select a SLO and provide benchmarking pre and post data and artifacts to demonstrate their instructional impact on student learning. For the AY 2020-21, of the USCA graduates evaluated (N=47) 44 passed (93.62%) their 4.0 and SLO evaluations. For the first three domains and corresponding indicators, USCA graduates scored within .20 (of a 4.0 score) of the SC state averages and within the proficient range of scores. In the fourth domain (professionalism), USCA graduates scored higher (range .20 - .39+) in all indicators than the state averages for professionalism. Results demonstrate that USCA (induction year teachers) graduates in AY 2020-21 are highly effective educators who positively impact P-12 learners’ growth. Further, these SCDE evaluation scores for classroom-based teachers were within 2.5 percentage points of the statewide average.

1. State Graduate 4.0 and SLO Impact Data and Observations of Teaching Effectiveness

Alumni Surveys

Contribute to P-12 Student Learning Growth and Apply Professional Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions:

In addition, alumni from the Alumni Advisory board were surveyed using a Likert scale (1-4, needs improvement – exemplary, with a 3 as proficient) regarding how well the EPP prepared teacher candidates for the classroom. The response rate was low with an N of 9. The survey has also been distributed to EPP alumni from the last two academic years, those responses were not available at the time of this report. However, even with the low N, some trends were evident and worth noting. Areas where the alumni scored their preparation at proficient or higher (3.0. +) were creating collaborative learning spaces, collaboration with families and school community to foster student learning growth, professional development and reflection to improve instructional practices, teaching diverse populations, and engaging and empowered learning. The two areas, where the alumni ranked their professional program preparation the lowest (2.5 and 2.56) were in assessment to guide decision-making and aligning instruction to school district evaluation criteria.

2. UofSCA School of Education Alumni Survey

2. Satisfaction of Employers and Stakeholder Involvement (R 4.2; R 5.3)

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Employer - TEAC (Teacher Educator Advisory Council) Feedback

Employer survey evidence analyzed from the past 3 academic years related to USC Aiken graduates who completed their 1st – 3rd year of teaching in the 2018-19, 2019-20, 2020-21 school years, 22 of 52 employers responded (42% response rate) to surveys sent regarding 81 teachers (N=27 total responses or 33%). Employers rated USCA graduate overall preparedness at a 3.6/4 (scale of unprepared to well-prepared). Highest averages (3.63 – 3.78) were demonstrated in content knowledge and pedagogy, summative assessment, lifelong learning, and meeting 1st year responsibilities. Scores in the 3.52-3.59 range fell in lesson planning, setting expectations, formative assessment, and learning environment (behavioral management). Lowest ratings (3.48 average) were noted in long range planning. Of the 26 qualitative comments offered by school administrators, 20 were positive and spoke to overall preparedness, 4 were negative and centered on behavioral management, and 2 were neutral. These results align with the trends in preparedness noted in the alumni survey data evidence (See Satisfaction of Completers).

Further, the TEAC (Teacher Educator Advisory Council) is made up of SoE faculty, school district administration, and mentor teachers has consistently offered feedback regarding the strengths of USCA teacher education graduates: 1) familiarity w/ evaluation process and system; 2) Professionalism; 3) Collaboration; 4) Content Knowledge. The TEAC members also recommended a stronger focus on the science of reading and cooperative group work strategies in our professional program. Anecdotally, the 2020-21 cohort 13 produced First Year Teachers of the Year and we have had 50+ 1st Year Teachers of the Year over the past 5 academic years. Also, the majority of 2020-21 interns in ACPSD were offered teaching contracts for the 2020-21 school year. The EPP supports mutually beneficial partnerships with stakeholders through professional development for educators, research collaborations, contract courses for district partner teachers, conference presentations, CT and US quality surveys, Teacher Educator Advisory Council semi-annual meetings where TEAC stakeholders participate in survey validation, revision, and creation, support with dispositional development and completer quality, and promote induction year mentoring ACPSD program plan revision.

In addition, UofSCA has professional development school partnerships for all program areas of study. Methods courses are taught within partner schools with corresponding clinical experiences. Clinical educators are highly qualified and are evaluated by professional program teacher candidates each semester.

3. Employer Surveys (AY 2018-19; 2019-20; 2020-21) – Summary

4. Teacher of the Year & First Year Teacher of Year AY2020-21

3. Candidate Competency at Program Completion (R3.3)

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Final Evaluation Internship (Pre-service Teachers)

For the academic years 2015-16 through AY2020-21, 100% of USCA student teacher interns passed their student teacher semester across all School of Education professional programs. Further, a review and analysis of the SCTS 4.0 data (internship evaluation) indicates that USC Aiken student teacher interns were most challenged in domains of Instruction and planning but still scored above the 3.0, proficient score. Interns scored the highest in professionalism and environment. The AY 2020-21 (N=68) composite score for all 4.0 rubric domains (instruction, planning, environment, professionalism) was 3.19/4.0. The individual domain composite scores were as follows: Instruction (3.10); Planning (3.06); Environment (3.4); Professionalism (3.34). Deeper disaggregation into the domain subcategories showed lowest scores for most programs in Assessment (Planning Domain). However, interns scored 2.45+ in all rubric areas (scale range 1.0 to 4.0) on average across all 4 ADEPT Domains in the 2020-21 academic year. The target (proficient_ SC 4.0 Rubric score range in South Carolina for all practicing teachers is (2.26-3.75).

5. AY 2020-21 SCTS Rubric 4.0 Data Tables

6. 2015-21 Student Teacher Results Summary

Praxis II Pass Rates – ETS and Title II

In AY2020-21, the licensure exam data (PLT - pedagogy and Praxis II - content), the overall institutional pass rate was 92% (1% above the overall the state pass rate). The academic year 2020-21 showed an upward trend in pass rates from the previous academic year, N=48 (PLT pass rates Early Childhood = 100%; Elementary Education = 92%). For the Praxis II content area exams, (Early Childhood had a 100% pass rate with N=20; Elementary Education candidates’ pass rates ranged from 83-100%, N=17-19; Special Education completers, N=11, earned a 100% pass rate) exams. In AY 2019-20, where the available pass rate data was limited (majority of areas had an n<10), the Praxis II content area exam pass rates overall (Early Childhood – USCA = 91%; Elementary Education – USCA = 81%; ) and for the PLT exams, only one program had an N>10 test takers (Elementary Education – USCA = 89% pass rate) exams. Therefore, the AY2020-21 pass rate data for the Praxis PLT and Praxis II (overall and by program area) indicate an upward trend in licensure pass rates from AY2019-20 to AY2020-21. The Title II Report data was not available at the time of the Annual Report submission. The 2022 Title II Report for AY 2020-21 will be uploaded and tagged upon submission to Title II in spring 2022.

7. State Praxis Data 5 yr. 2015-21.

8. Title II Praxis Test Results AY 20-21

9. 2020-21 USCA- SC ADEPT Aiken Assurances

10. 2022 Title II Report – not available at the time of the CAEP Annual Report Submission, will be linked once submitted.

Student Learning Objective (SLO) Assessment

The Student Learning Objective (SLO) assessment was implemented beginning in the fall 2018 semester per South Carolina requirements. This is a summative internship assessment based on measuring the impact of PK-12 student learning and therefore, the measurement of PK-12 student learning growth, progress monitoring is essential to the assessment goals. The data from the academic year 2020-21 indicated that all teacher interns achieved near mastery (3.0) in every category. The overall School of Education (SoE) teacher intern outcomes for the 2020-21 academic year demonstrated an average 2.77 score (out of a possible 3) or 92% mastery of the 10 SLO rubric areas. The scores were varied across all teacher interns and program areas, indicating sufficient preparation of the fall 2019 interns in all areas. The interns’ performance was highest (range of 2.75 - 3 out of a possible score of 3) in the rubric areas of: historical trend data analysis, baseline data, post-assessment, development of learning goals, and alignment of standards to students’ learning growth targets. Rubric areas where teacher interns performed in a mean score range of 2.61 – 2.72 or higher were understanding of student population, classroom environment, and instructional strategies. As in the previous 2019-20 academic year, the primary area of concern was the progress monitoring plan (formative assessment) where the interns scored lowest of all rubric areas averaging 2.44 across all program areas. Therefore, the USC-Aiken SoE faculty reflected in the AY 2020-21 on how to better implement formative assessment and progress monitoring practices throughout the USCA professional program practicum courses. Further, the SoE faculty reflected on the disaggregated data by program area and overall to determine our continuous improvement areas of focus delineated by program of study.

11. SLO Master Data Fall 2020- Spring 2021

12. Continuous Improvement Data (Academic Years 2018-19 thru 2020-21 Data Overview).

Completer/Recent Alumni Surveys

Academic year 2020-21 completer/recent alumni survey (N=46) satisfaction data results indicate high satisfaction ratings with the EPP in all areas. Due to EPP-wide continuous improvement efforts, the EPP completer/recent alumni data from the Fall 2017-Spring 2021 (N=184) academic years (AY’s) indicate that USC-Aiken SOE completers/recent alumni feel well-prepared to teaching in diverse K-12 contexts. The alumni rated their satisfaction level ("satisfied" or "very Satisfied") for overall EPP preparation in a range of 65-93% with significant upward trends each academic year from the spring to fall semesters. For the AY 2020-21, over 85% of recent alumni were satisfied with their educator preparation programs. The majority of satisfaction percentages (70%+) fell in the "very satisfied" to "satisfied" range. Upward trends were noted from fall 2017 – Spring 21 in the preparation areas of: academic advising, professionalism, and instructional strategies. Areas of strength from fall 2020 – Spring 2021 (N=59) were noted in: overall satisfaction, high expectations, learning environment, content integration, assessment to improve learning, diverse learners, high expectations, and instructional strategies. Long range planning, teaching and technology course, online methods courses, and ELL instructional strategies were the areas that the recent alumni had rated as the least satisfactory but still trended upward from the from the fall 2020 to the spring 2021 semesters. A discrepancy was also observed with the preparation of recent alumni to prepare diverse learners as an area of strength in AY 2019-20 and 2020-21 yet the biggest area of weakness related to preparation to teach English language learners (ELL’s). The EPP faculty collaborated on goal setting to strengthen all preparation areas, specifically long range planning, integrating teaching and technology, and ELL instruction) in the 2020-21 and 2019-20 academic years to include required unit plans or e-portfolio of lesson(s) across programs, integration of teaching and technology, teaching ELLs integrated within all professional program practicum curricula and courses. Culturally responsive lesson planning and more detailed differentiation for diverse learners was added to the USCA Lesson Plan template used across the EPP. In addition, recent alumni’s qualitative feedback overwhelmingly spoke to the quality of instructors and teaching content methods/pedagogy in the School of Education professional program. Due to EPP-wide continuous improvement efforts, from spring 2019 to fall 2020 previous areas of weakness grew toward areas of strength in the areas of academic advising, classroom management, and teaching diverse learners. As part of its continuous improvement efforts, the EPP reviews the recent alumni survey data on a bi-annual basis and makes modifications to individual programs and EPP-wide.

13. a. and b. Education Post Internship Surveys 2020-21

13a document

13b document

4. Ability of completers to be hired in education positions for which they have prepared

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Graduate, Certified, & Employment Data

* For the 2017-18 student intern cohort, 88% held full-time teaching positions in academic year 2018-19 while 10% had unknown employment status during the 2018-19 academic year. One candidate (2%) did not seek certification or teaching employment. For the 2018-19 cohort, 86% of completers had contracted teaching positions for the 2019-20 school year. In academic year 2019-20, 80% had contracted employment for the current 2020-21 school year. For the 2020-21 cohort of completers (N=65), 86% (56/65) had contracted employment by September, 2021.

For USCA EPP graduates in the academic year 2015-16, over 90% earned licensure in their program of study. In 2016-17, >80% of SOE graduates had received initial certification status. In 2017-18, 94% of graduates earned initial teacher licensure in South Carolina. In 2018-19, 83% of SoE graduates earned initial licensure status. In 2019-20, 82% of candidates earned initial certification status. In 2020-21, 92% earned initial licensure by September 2021.

Candidate Milestone Data:

14. Intern AY2020-21 (Graduate, Certified, & Employment Data Charts)

16. Grad Cert Data AY 2015-16 thru AY 2020-2

Enrollment/Graduate Data & Candidate Milestone Data

The graduation data indicate that the last five academic years have shown rising and falling trends in the graduation numbers of candidates completing the USCA School of Education professional program. The number of EPP completers (graduates with certification) had decreased 5% from AY 2016-17 (n=55) & 2017-18 (n=50), but rose significantly in AY 2018-19 (+27.5% from AY 2017-18 , n=50; through 2018-19, n=69), AY 2019-20 (-20% from AY 2018-19 n=69; through 2019-20, n=55), and AY 2020-21 (+15 % from AY 2020-21, n=55; 2020-21, n=65).

Further, the data indicate that the last four academic years have shown an upward trend in the enrollment number of diverse candidates admitted into the professional program. From fall 2017 through spring 2021, the ethnic and racial diversity of the EPP candidates averaged 21% (AY 2017-18: 6% male and 14% diverse candidates; AY 2018-19: 15% male and 25% diverse candidates; AY 2019-20: 11% male and 22% diverse candidates; AY 2020-21: 16% male and 23% diverse candidates). At the program level, from fall 2017-spring 2021 diversity percentage trends ranged from 21-25% for all programs. Of particular note is the EPP's recruitment of male and diverse candidates. To further improve male and diverse candidate enrollment, the EPP collaborated with Aiken County Public Schools, Aiken Technical College and the Call Me Mister scholarship program. The first Call Me Mister cohort was admitted in the 2019-20 academic year at UofSCA. The EPP also focuses on the critical needs areas in South Carolina including special education, Secondary (science and math) and middle level (all content areas). The EPP is working on developing dual degree programs for science and teacher education majors. Further, the EPP's Aiken Scholars program recruits high school students identified as gifted in STEM areas. The students engage in advanced high school classwork and undergraduate level STEM courses at USCA. The EPP also has a well-established Teaching Fellows program that recruits the highest caliber of high school seniors who are interested in entering the field of education. Throughout the professional program, EPP candidates' dispositions are tracked and monitored for growth. An EPP-wide diversity focus has allowed more proactive and effective mentoring of candidates.

Over the past three years, a phenomenon has occurred at our institution that was marked by an increase in the number of first-generation college students. While we value all these dimensions of diversity, our recruitment and retention plan is focused for now on setting benchmarks related to gender and race. Using this criteria, our goal is to increase the number of diverse, highly qualified teacher candidates EPP completers by a minimum of 10% across all programs by May 2023.

15. USCA AY 2016-21 SoE Enrollment and Completion Data

View Programs of Study

2. Satisfaction of Employers and Stakeholder Involvement (RA 4.1)

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Employer and TEAC (Teacher Educator Advisory Council) Feedback

The Masters in Education (M.Ed.) program was approved by the South Carolina Commission of Higher Education in 2019. The first cohort of completers with an N<10 (N=7) were in AY 2020-21. The program was not included in the last CAEP accreditation review in Spring 2020 as the first cohort of completers with a low n (N<10) were in AY 2020-21. All add-on endorsements were approved by the state.

The M.Ed. in Educator Leadership program had its first cohort of completers in 2020-21. As a minimum of 6 months is required to begin collecting completer data, the employer surveys and TEAC feedback will not be collected until the AY 2021-22 and forward.

Further, with a N<10 no valid inferences can be made from the data evidence.

General Program Information

  • Designed to develop Teacher Leaders
    • Teacher Leader endorsement
    • Preparation for being a Classroom Leader, Grade Level Leader, Instructional Coach, Mentor, Curriculum Specialist
      *Does not lead to principal certification
  • Program Goals
    • develop administrative skills such as management, supervision and decision-making
    • focus on preparing school leaders to be instructional leaders
    • improve instruction and in turn improve student learning

1. 2018 06 13 CHE MEd Ed Leadership Approval

2. MEd Leadership Program

3. Candidate Competency at Program Completion (RA3.4)

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Completer/Recent Alumni Surveys

Upon completion of the M.Ed. Program, six of the seven initial cohort completers evaluated the quality of preparation as educator leaders in the M. Ed. program. Most noted preparation areas were:

  • Building leadership capacity
  • The value of the Action Research noted
  • Graduate level vs. Undergraduate topics

As the first cohort of M.Ed. in Educator Leadership graduates were in the 2020-21 academic year, alumni survey data (minimum of six months post-graduation) was not available for the AY2020-21 cohort.

Capstone projects indicate 100% (n=7) are well prepared to take on educator leadership roles in their school contexts and districts and areas of endorsement.

2.MEd Leadership Program

4. Ability of completers to be hired in education positions for which they have prepared

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #
 

All completers in the M. Ed. program in AY 2020-21 (N=7) were practicing educators and/or administrators seeking a Master’s in Educator Leadership with an add-on endorsement in one of the following areas:

  • English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
  • Gifted & Talented (GT)
  • ECE Special Education (ECE-SPED)
  • Middle Level Education (MLE)
  • Literacy / Read to Succeed Teacher (R2S)
  • Online Teaching (Ed Tech)
  • Project based Learning (PBL)

We will continue to track the graduates and their career trajectory.

Employer surveys will also be conducted at the end of the AY 2021-22 year.

2.MEd Leadership Program

View Programs of Study

1. Impact on P-12 Learning & Development

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Student Learning Objective (SLO) Assessment

The Student Learning Objective (SLO) assessment has been implemented beginning in the fall 2018 semester per South Carolina requirements. The SLO replaced the Teacher Work Sample as a proprietary assessment for all educational preparation programs across South Carolina. This is a summative internship assessment based on measuring the impact of PK-12 student learning and therefore, the measurement of PK-12 student learning growth, progress monitoring is essential to the assessment goals. The data from the fall 2019 semester indicated that all teacher interns achieved mastery in every category. Due to the pandemic and the switch to fully virtual instruction in the Spring 2020 semester, the SLO requirement was exempted by the South Carolina Department of Education. Therefore we have data from the fall 2019 semester only for the SLO for AY 2019-20. The overall School of Education (SoE) teacher intern outcomes for the 2019-20 academic year demonstrated an average 2.77 score (out of a possible 3) or 92% mastery of the 10 SLO rubric areas. The scores were varied across all teacher interns and program areas, indicating sufficient preparation of the fall 2019 interns in all areas. The interns’ performance was highest (range of 2.75 - 3 out of a possible score of 3) in the rubric areas of: historical trend data analysis, baseline data, post-assessment, development of learning goals, and alignment of standards to students’ learning growth targets. Rubric areas where teacher interns performed in a mean score range of 2.61 – 2.72 or higher were understanding of student population, classroom environment, and instructional strategies. As in the previous 2018-19 academic year, the primary area of concern was the progress monitoring plan (formative assessment) where the interns scored lowest of all rubric areas averaging 2.44 across all program areas. Therefore, the USC-Aiken SoE faculty reflected in the fall of 2020 on how to better implement formative assessment and progress monitoring practices throughout the USCA professional program practicum courses. Further, the SoE faculty reflected on the disaggregated data by program area and overall to determine our continuous improvement areas of focus delineated by program of study.

1.SLO Master Data Fall 2018-Fall 2019

2. Fall Retreat 2020 Data Analysis Goal Review (Academic Years 2017-20 Data Overview)

CAEP Standard 4 Embedded Case Study - Developing Case Study of Impact Data.

Data on trends not yet available. Due to the pandemic, impact data was not available from completers in the academic 2019- 20 school year. The upcoming embedded case study will cover impact data from 2020-21 and 2021-22 academic years.

*Instrumental Embedded Case Study - Data is currently being gathered for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 cohort of 1-3 year teachers (USCA alumni). Data will be provided in the 2020-21 Annual Report (submission 2022).

2. Indicators of Teaching Effectiveness

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Final Evaluation Internship (Pre-Service Teachers)

For the academic years 2019-20, 100% of USCA student teacher interns passed their student teacher semester across all School of Education professional programs. Further, a review and analysis of the SCTS 4.0 data (internship evaluation) indicates that USC Aiken student teacher interns were most challenged in domain of Instruction. It is the lowest rated domain overall in both semesters (Fall 2019 = 2.97/4.0, Spring 2020 = 2.96/4.0). The Special Education program completers consistently scored highest in all four domains (instruction, planning, environment, and professionalism) for the academic year 2019-20. Deeper disaggregation into the domain subcategories showed lowest scores for most programs in Assessment (Planning Domain) and Managing Behavior (Environment). However, interns scored 2.67+ in all rubric areas (scale range 1.0 to 4.0) on average across all 4 ADEPT Domains in the 2019-20 academic year. The target (proficient_ SC 4.0 Rubric score range in South Carolina for all practicing teachers is (2.26-3.75).

3. AY 2019-20 SCTS Rubric 4.0 Data Tables

4.a. 2015-20 Student Teacher Results Summary

4.b. Student Teacher Pass Rate Summary 2019-20

SC Formal Evaluation Data – (In-Service Teachers – Induction Year Teachers  - USCA Graduates)

The number of 1 st year induction teacher graduates from UofSC Aiken successfully passing their formal evaluations (SCTS Rubric 4.0 & SLO) for AY 2019-2020 was 82.69%. Further for these SCDE evaluations for classroom-based teachers (former SAFE_T) AY 2018-19 USCA graduates (induction teachers) earned a pass rate of 92.86% (within 2 percentage points of the statewide average) in the academic year 2018-19 with the SLO average impact on student learning was 0.03 compared to a 0.06 statewide average for AY 2018-19 and .04 compared to 0.04 statewide for AY 2019-20. Further in former years, for the prior SAFE-T Formal Evaluation (AY 2015-18) over 93% SAFE_T formal evaluation pass rates were evident for the for the 2017-18 academic year, >97% for AY 2016-17, and >92.8% in AY 2015-16.

5. USCA Graduate 4.0 Results AY 2019-20 (SCDE ADEPT Observations of Teaching Effectiveness)

6. Benchmark Data for CAEP Annual Report 2021

CAEP Standard 4 Embedded Case Study - Developing Case Study of Impact Data. Data on trends not yet available. Due to the pandemic, impact data was not available from completers in the academic 2019- 20 school year. The upcoming embedded case study will cover impact data from 2020-21 and 2021-22 academic years.

*Instrumental Embedded Case Study - Data is currently being gathered for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 cohort of 1-3 year teachers (USCA alumni). Data will be provided in the 2020-21 Annual Report (submission 2022).

3. Satisfaction of Employers

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Employer - TEAC (Teacher Educator Advisory Council comprised of superintendents, school administrators, master cooperating teachers and university supervisors from partner school districts and SOE faculty) Feedback

Employer survey evidence analyzed from the past 3 academic years related to USC Aiken graduates who completed their any of their 1st – 3rd year of teaching in the 2018-19, 2019-20 school years and/or the 2020 fall semester. 22 of 52 employers responded (42% response rate) to surveys sent regarding 81 teachers (N=27 total responses or 33%). Employers rated USCA graduate overall preparedness at a 3.6/4 (scale of unprepared to well-prepared). Highest averages (3.63 – 3.78) were demonstrated in content knowledge and pedagogy, summative assessment, lifelong learning, and meeting 1st year responsibilities. Scores in the 3.52-3.59 range fell in lesson planning, setting expectations, formative assessment, and learning environment (behavioral management). Lowest ratings (3.48 average) were noted in long range planning. Of the 26 qualitative comments offered by school administrators, 20 were positive and spoke to overall preparedness, 4 were negative and centered on behavioral management, and 2 were neutral. These results align with the trends in preparedness noted in the alumni survey data evidence (See Satisfaction of Completers). Further, the TEAC (Teacher Educator Advisory Council) is made up of SoE faculty, school district administration, and mentor teachers has consistently offered feedback regarding the strengths of USCA teacher education graduates: 1) familiarity w/ evaluation process and system; 2)Professionalism; 3) Collaboration; 4) Content Knowledge. Anecdotally, the 2019-20 cohort produced multiple First Year Teachers of the Year and we have had 40+ 1st Year Teachers of the Year over the past 5 academic years. Also, all 2019-20 interns in ACPSD were guaranteed teaching contracts for the 2020-21 school year. The EPP supports mutually beneficial partnerships with. stakeholders through professional development for educators, research collaborations, contract courses for district partner teachers, conference presentations, CT and US quality surveys, Teacher Educator Advisory Council semi-annual meetings where TEAC stakeholders participate in survey validation, revision, and creation, support with dispositional development and completer quality, and promote induction year mentoring ACPSD program plan revision.

7. Employer Surveys (AY 2018-19; 2019-20; Fall 2020) - Summary

8. Employer (TEAC) Feedback of UofSC Aiken SOE Graduates

4. Satisfaction of Completers

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Completer/Recent Alumni Surveys

2019-20 completer/recent alumni survey (N=46) satisfaction data results indicate high satisfaction ratings with the EPP in all areas. Due to EPP-wide continuous improvement efforts, the EPP completer/recent alumni data from the Fall 2017-Spring 2020 (N=125) academic years (AY’s) indicate that USC-Aiken SOE completers/recent alumni feel well-prepared to teaching in diverse K-12 contexts. The recent alumni rated their satisfaction level ("satisfied" or "very Satisfied") for overall EPP preparation in a range of 60-95% with significant upward trends each academic year from the spring to fall semesters. For the AY 2019-20, over 70% of recent alumni were satisfied with their educator preparation programs. The majority of satisfaction percentages (70%+) fell in the "very satisfied" to "satisfied" range. Upward trends were noted from fall 2017 – Spring 2020 in the preparation areas of: academic advising, professionalism, and instructional strategies. Areas of strength from spring 2019 – Spring 2020 N=52) were noted in: overall satisfaction, high expectations, learning environment, assessment to improve learning, and instructional strategies. The Special Education program marked the most significant growth compared to the all other programs in the EPP (marked growth in 8 of 12 preparation measurement areas). Further from Spring 2019 - Fall 2020, additional areas of strength were noted in academic advising, qualitative classroom management, and teaching diverse learners. Long range planning and ELL instructional strategies were the areas that student had rated as the least satisfactory but still trended upward from the from the spring 2019 – spring 2020 semesters. A discrepancy was also observed with the preparation of recent alumni to prepare diverse learners as an area of strength in AY 2019-20 yet the biggest area of weakness related to preparation to teach English language learners (ELL’s). The EPP faculty collaborated on goal setting to strengthen all preparation areas, specifically long range planning, academic advising, integrating teaching and technology, and ELL instruction) in the 2018-19 and 2019-20 academic years to include pre-professional academic advisor, more intensive academic advising training and support, required unit plans or e-portfolio of lesson(s) across programs, and revisions to required diversity-focused courses within all professional program practicum curricula and courses. Culturally responsive lesson planning was also considered. In addition, recent alumni’s qualitative feedback overwhelmingly spoke to the quality of instructors and teaching content methods/pedagogy in the School of Education professional program. Due to EPP-wide continuous improvement efforts, from spring 2019 to fall 2020 previous areas of weakness grew toward areas of strength in the areas of academic advising, classroom management, and teaching diverse learners. As part of its continuous improvement efforts, the EPP reviews the recent alumni survey data on a bi-annual basis and makes modifications to individual programs and EPP-wide. Further, more longitudinal data from alumni surveys for 1-5 year graduates (alumni) will be collected starting in AY 2020-21, as the EPP has improved tracking of graduates beyond their first year of teaching.

9.a. Education Post Internship Exit Surveys 2019-20

9.b. Fall Retreat 2020 Data Analysis Goal Review (Academic Years 2017-20 Data Overview)

10. Program Goals and Continuous Improvement 2019-20

5. Graduation Rate

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Enrollment/Graduate Data & Candidate Milestone Data  

The graduation data indicate that the last four academic years have shown rising and falling trend in the graduation numbers of candidates completing the USCA School of Education professional program. The number of EPP completers (graduates) had decreased 5% from AY 2016-17 (n=55) & 2017-18 (n=50), but rose significantly in AY 2018-19 (+27.5% from AY 2017-18 , n=50; through 2018-19, n=69), and AY 2019-20 19 (-20% from AY 2018-19 , n=69; through 2019-20, n=55). The drop in completers may have been negatively impacted by the pandemic and the move to fully virtual teaching in the Spring 2021 semester.

Further, the data indicate that the last three academic years have shown an upward trend in the enrollment number of diverse candidates admitted into the professional program. From fall 2017 through spring 2020, the ethnic and racial diversity of the EPP candidates averaged 21% (AY 2017-18: 6% male and 14% diverse candidates; AY 2018-19: 15% male and 25% diverse candidates; AY 2019-20: 11% male and 22% diverse candidates). At the program level, from fall 2017-spring 2020 diversity percentage trends ranged from 21-25% for all programs. Of particular note is the EPP's recruitment of male and diverse candidates. From AY 2017-18 through AY 2019-20, there was an 270% increase in male candidates (from 3 in 2017-18 to an average of 8 from 2018-20) and % increase (from 7 candidates or 14% in 2017-18 to an average of 14.5 or 23% diverse candidates from academic years 2018-20) in diverse candidates. To further improve male and diverse candidate enrollment, the EPP collaborated with Aiken County Public Schools, Aiken Technical College and the Call Me Mister scholarship program. The first Call Me Mister cohort was admitted in the 2019-20 academic year at UofSCA. The EPP also focuses on the critical needs areas in South Carolina including special education, science, math, literacy, middle level (all content areas), and ELA/English and literacy. The EPP is working on developing dual degree programs for science and teacher education majors. Further, the EPP's Aiken Scholars program recruits high school students identified as gifted in STEM areas. The students engage in advanced high school classwork and undergraduate level STEM courses at USCA. The EPP also has a wellestablished Teaching Fellows program that recruits the highest caliber of high school seniors who are interested in entering the field of education. Throughout the professional program, EPP candidates' dispositions are tracked and monitored for growth. An EPP-wide diversity focus has allowed more proactive and effective mentoring of candidates. Finally, the EPP participates in the Rural Teacher Initiative, providing significant financial assistance to candidates who agree to teach in a high need area of the state upon graduation.

Over the past two years, a phenomenon has occurred at our institution that was marked by an increase in the number of first-generation college students. While we value all these dimensions of diversity, our recruitment and retention plan is focused for now on setting benchmarks related to gender and race. Using this criteria, our goal is to increase the number of diverse, highly qualified teacher candidates EPP completers by a minimum of 10% across all programs by May 2023.

11. USCA AY 2016-20 Intern Master Data

12. USCA Recruitment & Retention Plan Timeline

13. 2020 Title II Report (AY 2019-20)

6. Ability of Completer to Meet Licensing, State, & Title II Requirements

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Graduate, Certification, Employment

For USCA EPP graduates in the academic year 2015-16, over 90% earned licensure in their program of study. In 2016-17, >80% of SOE graduates had received initial certification status. In 2017-18, 94% of graduates earned initial teacher licensure in South Carolina. In 2018-19, 83% of SoE graduates earned initial licensure status. In 2019-20, 82% or 45/55 candidates earned initial certification status.

Candidate Milestone Data:

11. USCA AY 2016-20 Intern Master Data (Graduate, Certification, Employment Charts)

Praxis II Pass Rates: ETS and Title II  

The licensure exam data (PLT and Praxis II) indicate that for three out of four of the past academic years EPP pass rates have been within 1 percentage point of the statewide South Carolina average (2016-17: 100% pass rate, 2017-18: 98% pass rate, 2018-19: 94% pass rate) However, in 2019-20, the pass rate was 70% overall because 15 candidates struggled with individual subject area tests while passing the majority of the exams) and majority of area the pass rate data was not available because the n<10, due to the low n, confidentiality, and no valid inferences can be made from n<10. In AY 2019-20, where the available pass rate data was limited (majority of areas had an n<10), the Praxis II content area exam pass rates overall (Early Childhood – USCA = 91%; Elementary Education – USCA = 81%; ) and for the PLT exams, only one program had an N>10 test takers (Elementary Education – USCA = 89%) exams. Further, when prior academic year data was disaggregated by program area and exam, all program areas that had a n>10 (in each academic year) demonstrated high pass rates (within 2% of SC pass rates) over the three academic years of fall 2016 – spring 2019 for the Praxis II (Early Childhood – USCA = 96%/SC = 98%; Elementary Education – USCA = 100%/SC = 98%) and the PLT (Early Childhood – USCA = 100%/SC = 98%; Elementary Education – USCA = 100%/SC = 99%; Secondary Education 2018-19 – USCA = 100%/SC=99%) exams.

*Benchmarking Data USCA benchmarked with USC-Upstate to compare and contrast our Educator Preparation Programs’ quality based on Title II data and South Carolina SAFE-T (prior to AY 2018-19) and CBT (SCTS 4.0 and SLO, AY 2018-19 (evaluations of graduates in induction year).

Title II Data: Praxis Exam Pass Rates (Content Areas and Pedagogical Exams) Compared to UofSC-Upstate, the pass rate percentages for UofSCA were 3- 5% points higher than UofSC-Upstate in academic years 2016-17 through AY 2018-19 with a considerably lower number of test takers (222 vs. 512), making the 3-5 percentage point difference more statistically significant. UofSCA’s content and pedagogical preparation of candidates appears to be comparable to UofSC-Upstate’s preparation in content and pedagogy.

For 4 academic years, USCA and USC-Upstate initial licensure program graduates have earned a high pass rate (USCA: 93.02. – 97.37%; USC-Upstate: 95 - 97.5%). Both institutions’ pass percentages for their interns’ evaluations were over 93%.

ADEPT Formal evaluations 2015-2019: UofSCA vs. UofSC-Upstate For the 4 academic years benchmarked (AY 2015-16 through AY 2018- 19), UofSCA and UofSC-Upstate initial licensure program graduates have earned a high pass rate on their induction year SCTS 4.0 (2018- 19) and SAFE-T (evaluations (UofSCA: 93.02. – 97.37%; UofSCUpstate: 95 - 97.5%). UofSC-Upstate’s pass rates were between 2- 4.6% higher than UofSCA’s pass rate, but USC-Upstate each year had almost double the graduates as USCA, making the passing numbers higher for each academic year. Also, it was unclear from the benchmarking materials received from USC-Upstate whether the data was for completers for each calendar year or academic year, making it difficult to compare completers’ pass rates. That said, both institutions’ pass percentages for their student teacher interns’ evaluations were over 93% for all four years measured (UofSCA – academic year and UofSC-Upstate – calendar year). Further, the SLO score serves as an adjustment for an educator’s overall teaching effectiveness rating. An SLO score of 4 will increase the teacher’s overall rating by .25, while an SLO score of 1 will decrease the teacher’s overall rating by -.25. A SLO score of 2 or 3 will have no effect on the teacher’s overall rating. For AY 2018-19, UofSCA induction year teacher graduates earned +.04 increase to their overall evaluation rating compared to UofSC-Upstate at +.06 increase. The difference was not statistically significant.

14 a. Praxis Assessment Pass Rates 2019-20

14 b. Praxis Data 2015-19

14 c. Praxis Test Results IE 19-20

15. 2019-20 USCASC ADEPT Aiken Assurances

13. 2021 Title II Report – AY 2019- 20

6. Benchmarking 2015-19

7. Employment Rate

Measure Analysis of Trends Source – Evidence #

Graduate, Certified, & Employment Data

* For the 2017-18 student intern cohort, 88% held full-time teaching positions in academic year 2018-19 while 10% had unknown employment status during the 2018-19 academic year. One candidate (2%) did not seek certification or teaching employment. For the 2018-19 cohort, 86% of completers had contracted teaching positions for the 2019- 20 school year. In academic year 2019-20, 80% had contracted employment for the current 2020-21 school year. The remaining 20% of completers in AY 2019-20 employment could not be verified at the time of this report.

Candidate Milestone Data:

11. USCA AY 2019-20 Intern Master Data (Graduate, Certified, & Employment Data Charts)

8. Student Loan Default Rates & Other Consumer Information

USC Aiken Student Loan Default Rates. Per financial aid, our Fiscal Year 2017 (October 1, 2016 through Sept. 30, 2017) student loan cohort default rate was slightly lower than the national default rate at 9.3% (the national default rate was 9.7 % for FY 2017)

https://www2.ed.gov/offices/OSFAP/defaultmanagement/cdr.html

2019-20 Average Annual Salary of Teacher in South Carolina was $53,329.00 The average for Aiken County Public Schools was $54,433.00 (SCDE).

https://ed.sc.gov/finance/financial-data/historical-data/teacher-salary-schedules/

1. USC Aiken Average Cost of Attendance $9,712 (in-state); $14,941 (out of state) Academic Year 2019- 20 per the USCA Office of Institutional Effectiveness.

Undergraduate Programs

MajorDegreeConcentrationOnline Degree Completion
Applied Computer Science Bachelor of Science Cyber Security  
Applied Computer Science Bachelor of Science Applied Gaming  
Applied Mathematics Bachelor of Science    
Art Bachelor of Arts Art History  
Art Bachelor of Arts Graphic Design  
Art Bachelor of Arts Studio and Digital Art  
Biology Bachelor of Arts
   
Biology Bachelor of Science Environmental Remediation and Restoration  
Biology Bachelor of Science General  
Biology Bachelor of Science Molecular Biology  
Business Administration & Management Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
Accounting Option for online completion via Palmetto College
Business Administration & Management Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Finance  
Business Administration & Management Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Management Option for online completion via Palmetto College
Business Administration & Management Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Marketing  
Chemistry Bachelor of Arts    
Chemistry Bachelor of Science General  
Chemistry Bachelor of Science Biochemistry  
Chemistry Bachelor of Science Computational Chemistry  
Chemistry Bachelor of Science Engineering  
Clinical Laboratory Science Bachelor of Science    
Communication Bachelor of Arts   Option for online completion via Palmetto College
Early Childhood Education Bachelor of Arts in Education
   
Early Childhood Education Bachelor of Arts in Education   Salkehatchie campus
Early Childhood Education Bachelor of Arts in Education   Sumter campus
Earth Systems Science Bachelor of Science    
Elementary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education    
Elementary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education   Salkehatchie campus
Elementary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education   Sumter campus
Emerging Media Bachelor of Arts    
English  Bachelor of Arts    
Exercise & Sports Science Bachelor of Science Allied Health  
Exercise & Sports Science  Bachelor of Science Basic Sciences  
Exercise & Sports Science  Bachelor of Science Health and Fitness Management  
History  Bachelor of Arts    
Industrial Process Engineering
Bachelor of Science    
Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts Integrated Research  
Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts Multidisciplinary Studies  
Mechanical Engineering Bachelor of Science    
Middle Level Education Bachelor of Arts in Education English  
Middle Level Education Bachelor of Arts in Education Mathematics  
Middle Level Education Bachelor of Arts in Education Sciences  
Middle Level Education Bachelor of Arts in Education Social Studies  
Music Bachelor of Arts Instrumental Studies  
Music Bachelor of Arts Piano Studies  
Music Bachelor of Arts Vocal Studies  
Music Bachelor of Arts K-12 Choral Teacher Certification   
Music Bachelor of Arts K-12 Instrumental Teacher Certification   
Nursing Bachelor of Science in Nursing BSN Tradtional  
Nursing Bachelor of Science in Nursing RN/BSN Completion 100% Online
Nursing Bachelor of Science in Nursing   Sumter campus
Political Science Bachelor of Arts    
Psychology Bachelor of Science    
Sociology Bachelor of Arts General  
Sociology Bachelor of Arts Criminology and Criminal Justice  
Sociology  Bachelor of Arts Human Social Services  
Secondary Education Bachelor of Science in Education Biology  
Secondary Education Bachelor of Science in Education Chemistry  
Secondary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education Comprehensive Social Studies  
Secondary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education English  
Secondary Education Bachelor of Arts in Education Mathematics  
Spanish Bachelor of Arts   Language, Literatures, and Cultures  
Spanish Bachelor of Arts   Translation and Interpretation  
Special Education Bachelor of Arts in Special Education   Option for online completion via Palmetto College
Theatre Bachelor of Arts    
Writing Bachelor of Fine Arts Creative Writing  
Writing Bachelor of Fine Arts Professional Writing  

Undergraduate Minors

A minor prepares the student in a second field which may or may not be directly related to the major field.

Anthropology and Human Geography
Art History
Biology
Business
Chemistry
Communication
Computer Science
Creative Writing
Criminology and Criminal Justice
Educational Studies
Geology
History
International Relations
International Studies
Literature
Mathematics
Music
Neuroscience
Philosophy
Political Science
Professional Writing
Psychology
Religious Studies
Sociology
Spanish
Studio Art
Theatre
Women’s and Gender Studies

Preprofessional Programs

USC Aiken offers classes that meet the requirements for pre-dentistry, pre-law, pre-medicine, pre-pharmacy, and pre-veterinary science.

Students who wish to pursue a career such as forestry, plant science, animal science, horticulture, agronomy, cooperative education programs, marine science, etc. may complete one or more years at USC Aiken.

Pre-Dentistry
Pre-Law
Pre-Medicine
Pre-Pharmacy
Pre-Veterinary Science

Graduate Programs

Program NameDegreeOnline Degree Completion
Applied Clinical Psychology MS  
Business Administration (Accounting) MBA 100% Online
Business Administration (Finance) MBA 100% Online
Business Administration (General)  MBA 100% Online
Business Administration (Project Management) MBA 100% Online
Educator Leadership MEd 100% Online

The Admissions staff at the University of South Carolina Aiken understands that the college selection process can be overwhelming. Our staff is dedicated and prepared to help you with information about the University and our admissions process.

Your enrollment counselor is your personal contact at USC Aiken. If you have a specific question, please feel free to contact him/her.

Find Your Enrollment Counselor

Contact Admissions Staff