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Clinical Practice Work Group

Final Recommendations and Supporting Materials

The Clinical Practice Work Group was convened in June 2017 to examine the current regulations related to field experiences and student teaching in New York State teacher preparation programs. During February and March 2018, the workgroup sought feedback on their draft recommendations from the education community through a survey and 11 regional meetings. The feedback was incorporated into the following recommendations at the last work group meeting in March 2018. The work group supported the recommendations unanimously.
The Board of Regents Higher Education Committee discussed the workgroup recommendations at their meeting on May 8. During the discussion, the Commissioner explained that the Department will consider the recommendations and would present proposed regulation amendments for field experiences and student teaching at a future Board meeting. Information presented at the May Board of Regents meeting is available through the links below.

Clinical Practice Committee Charge

Clinical practice is critical to the professional development of teacher candidates. The clinical experiences during teacher preparation programs, beginning with early field experiences and culminating in student teaching, enable candidates to develop their pedagogical skills and apply knowledge gained from their coursework. The amount of time and quality of the clinical experiences in a program can greatly impact the ability of candidates to positively impact student learning in their future classroom.

The edTPA Task Force recognized that the length of student teaching can also play a role in candidates’ success on the edTPA. In their report to the Board of Regents Higher Education Committee, they recommended convening a work group to:

“explore the current regulatory framework and institutional practices regarding student teaching. The committee should examine the amount of time teacher candidates spend student teaching and the content requirements of student teaching. Although the edTPA should be a factor in this exploration, the working group should attend to other developmental factors that are part of a successful clinical practice profession and the edTPA should not be positioned as the leading factor to motivate recommendations for change.”

The Department created the Clinical Practice Work Group in response to the report and expanded the scope of the work group to all clinical experiences. Examining all clinical experiences simultaneously will allow the work group to consider how they build upon each other and provide candidates with the tools to transition into student teaching and their teaching career. The work group will ultimately make recommendations to the Board of Regents Higher Education Committee regarding clinical practice in teacher preparation programs.


The Clinical Practice Work Group members will engage in the following activities through December 31, 2017.

  1. Define field experiences and determine best practices during experiences prior to student teaching, considering the number of field experience hours, types of field experiences, activities and/or competencies developed during field experiences, how activities and/or competencies are documented, how field experiences build upon each other, and the relationship between field experiences and coursework.
  2. Define student teaching and terms related to it (e.g., residency, length of a day) and determine best practices during student teaching, considering the number of days and placements, activities and/or competencies developed during student teaching, how activities and/or competencies are documented, and approaches to student teaching (e.g., coteaching).
  3. Define EPP and school-based clinical educator roles and responsibilities and determine best practices related to candidate support, including clinical educator qualifications, professional development for school-based clinical educators on supporting candidates, and school/district and higher education partnerships.
  4. Craft recommendations with a rationale to the Board of Regents Higher Education Committee related to teacher preparation programs.