The fallibility of traditional recruitment methods is something I’ve touched on regularly on this blog over the past few months, and it’s clear that there needs to be a better way of recruiting the right people for a particular role. Nowhere is this more so than in the teaching profession.
A recent study, published in the Elementary School Journal, suggests that the key to success may be a new video assessment tool created by the researchers.
The study was driven by the increasing focus in the education world for more effective methods of both selecting talented individuals and preparing them for successful entry into the profession.
"We need tools to track teachers’ progress through their preparation and the early part of their careers to ensure that they are developing their understanding and practice of effective teaching and, in order to do this, we need assessment tools that can predict teachers’ future classroom behaviors," the authors reveal.
The research focused its attention on its newly developed measure for gauging the skill level of a new teacher. The tool called the Video Assessment of Interactions and Learnings (VAIL) was tested for reliability and accuracy. The tool itself provides teachers with a series of short video clips, before then asking them to describe how they would support certain aspects of learning, and whether they can provide specific examples of how they would do this.
"In this study, we gave the VAIL to 270 early childhood teachers in different parts of the country, recorded actual classroom instruction and scored the effectiveness of their interactions with students using a standardized observation protocol known as the Classroom Assessment Scoring System," the authors say.
Good on the Video, Good in the Classroom
The results from the research clearly showed that if a teacher was shown to be effective at identifying interactions via the video, they were then likely to be just as effective at teaching in the classroom. The success of the test in predicting strong teaching performance leads the researchers to believe it should be included as a fundamental part of the recruitment process.
"In essence, this means that the VAIL could possibly be used in selection and monitoring of teachers in a way that few tools that currently exist can," they say.
The researchers were also pleased that their test seemed to perform equally well across all ages and ethnicities, suggesting that it has a certain robustness to it that should please recruiters.
The hope is that the tool will be used to assess potential teaching ability in young people, who can then be supported and developed into this most challenging of careers. The authors also reveal that the tool can be used at various stages of the teacher training process, to ensure that trainee teachers are suitably prepared for life in the classroom.
It’s certainly an interesting development, and with the recruitment of great teachers being so important to us as a society, hopefully, this tool will be a useful aid in ensuring this happens.
Do you think that this could be a useful tool in the recruitment process? Your thoughts and comments below please...