Assessing & Training Educators on Dispositions

Assessing Educator Dispositions Professional Development

Welcome to the "Assessing Educator Dispositions" (Wasicsko, 1977a) professional development. At the conclusion of this four part module you have the option of completing an assessment through The National Network for the Study of Educator Dispositions that will allow you to become a certified "Professional Perceptual Rater" (Wasicsko, 1977a). Obtaining this certification to rate the dispositions of teacher candidates provides increased reliability and validity and increases the likelihood of hiring the teachers with the desired dispositions.

Materials Used in this Professional Development Section
Below are links to the materials that accompany Parts two – four. If printing, consider the environment and print two-sided copies. Materials numbered 1 – 4 will be referenced throughout the Parts and should be readily available while viewing the Parts.

  1. Click here for “Assessing Applicant Dispositions” PowerPoint
  2. Click here for “Assessing Educator Dispositions” self-instruction training manual
  3. Click here for Dispositions “Post-Test Materials Set #1”
  4. Click here for Dispositions “Post-Test Summary Scoring Sheet”
  5. Click here for Dr. Mark Wasicsko’s article “The Fourth Factor for Hiring” – sample disposition questions for use in an interview and the “Disposition Quick Check” rubric.
  6. Click here for Additional Disposition Resources from the Northern Kentucky University College of Education and Human Services

Part One
Teachers are Life Changers
6 minutes

Randy Poe, Superintendent of Boone County Schools, examines why individual students, and entire districts, can benefit from implementing dispositional hiring techniques for teachers.

Part Two
Introduction to Dispositions
24 minutes

Matt Rigg, Assistant Director of Human Resources for Boone County Schools, discusses the importance of examining the dispositions of teacher candidates. By examining characteristics of one’s favorite and worst teachers, plus answering the question about hiring good teachers versus teachers who are motivated to get better, one will gain an understanding of the power good dispositions have within effective teachers.

Perceptual rating of teacher candidates is not a new concept, but one that is often overlooked. By examining the combined works of Dr. Arthur C. Combs and Dr. Mark W. Wasicsko (Combs, 1976; Wasicsko, 1977a, 1977, 2007), one will gain insight into perceptual theory and how it applies to teachers. After gaining a basic understanding of perceptual theory, dispositions will be categorized into four areas: dispositions toward one self, toward others, about purpose and a general frame of reference.

Part Three
Using the “Perceptual Rating Rubric”
39 minutes

The use of a perceptual rating rubric will allow one to qualitatively rate an area that may seem to most subjective in nature--dispositions. Whether a teacher candidate is answering a written “Human Relations Incident” question or a verbal question during an interview, the same perceptual rating rubric is used to assess a candidate’s dispositions within the four categories referenced in part two: dispositions toward one self, toward others, about purpose, and a general frame of reference (Wasicsko, 1977a).

Participants will practice using the perceptual rating rubric for each of the four dispositional categories. After scoring the Human Relations Incident, participants will compare their score to that of Professional Perceptual Raters. The Professional Perceptual Raters provide rationale for selected scores that, in turn, will help participants in this training hone their own perceptual rating skills (Wasicsko, 1977a).

Participants use the rubric in its entirety, thus providing an insightful dispositional measurement of teacher candidates and their potential for effectiveness. Participants should complete the practice materials found on pages 41 – 66 of “Assessing Educator Dispositions”
(Wasicsko, 1977a) before attempting to complete the “Post-Test Materials”. The practice materials include professional perceptual rater rationale for scoring, which will be beneficial when completing the post-test.

Part Four
Earning your “Professional Perceptual Rater” Certificate
10 minutes

Completing the first three parts and reviewing the information in “Assessing Educator Dispositions” (Wasicsko, 1977a) will prepare participants for the culminating assessment: “Post-Test Materials Set #1.” Successful completion of the post-test allows an individual to earn the title of “Professional Perceptual Rater.” More importantly, it will allow the individual earning the certificate to more confidently and accurately assess the dispositions of teacher applicants, thus increasing the likelihood of hiring the most effective teacher--a caring, student-focused individual who is highly motivated to continually get better. Complete “Post-Test Materials Set #1” (Wasicsko, n.d.a) and submit Scoring Sheet (Wasicsko, n.d. a p. 28) to receive a rater reliability score.

Congratulations on your completion of the “Assessing Educator Dispositions” (Wasicsko, 1977a) professional development! Even though you have completed the professional development, your use of dispositional strategies has just begun. Use of the perceptual rating rubric during employment screening is a powerful tool that can be used in the hiring process for teachers, administrators, staff and even for screening volunteers.

By adding dispositional questions to the interview process, you will be able to listen for a candidate’s dispositions first hand and see how a candidate reacts to the questions. The combination of hearing and seeing how candidates respond will be very telling. In some cases, you may be shocked that a person looks so good on paper, as the result of an impressive resume, but can falter on disposition questions.

For more information on questions that provide insight into dispositions that you may consider adding to your interview process, as well as a disposition “Quick-Check” rubric for use with site-based decision making groups, click here. Dr. Mark Wasicsko’s article “The Fourth Factor for Hiring” (2005) describes the answers he looks for when asking disposition type questions of candidates for faculty positions within a university setting. Included with the article is a list of additional disposition interview questions categorized into the four categories of dispositions as addressed in the training modules. Finally, a dispositions “Quick-Check” (Wasicsko, 2005) is provided for members of an interview panel who have not been through the entire disposition training modules but who still need to be aware of screening candidates for their dispositions.

The information provided, along with a “Professional Perceptual Rater” (Wasicsko, 1977a) certification, will add confidence that effective candidates are being hired and that all students in your district will more readily become college, career, and life ready!

*All citations on this page are referenced on the annotated bibliography page.
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