University Facilitators (UFs) are liaisons between the University of Alberta and its school partners.
As practicum learning coaches, it is our mandate to ensure that all student teachers have an opportunity to experience a high level of success not only in their practicum experience, but in their quest to become the educators of tomorrow.
Roles and Responsibilities
University Facilitators (UFs) are liaisons between the University of Alberta and its school partners. As such, University Facilitators (UFs) serve a dual role:
- They serve as a facilitator and link between schools and the University; and
- They support Student Teachers with developing the knowledge, skills, and attributes required of Student Teachers by the University and the Teacher Qualification Service.
University Facilitators will:
- Attend scheduled University Facilitator zone meetings with their Field Experience Associate (two per term);
- Make early contact with Principals, School Coordinators, and all Mentor Teachers in assigned schools. Collect pertinent information, prior to the Field Experience, to share with Student Teachers;
- Support Mentor Teachers and School Coordinators to understand their roles, responsibilities, and week-by-week guidelines;
- Receive and respond to the Student Teacher Introductory Email prior to the start of the AFX practicum.
- Conduct 3 observations of each Student Teacher over the course of the field experience, providing oral and written feedback;
- Lead a brief meeting with Student Teacher cohorts if required;
- Support Mentor Teachers, if needed, to provide ongoing written and oral feedback to Student Teachers;
- Document progress of Student Teachers and e-mail visitation log to the zone Field Experience Associate;
- Ensure the Field Experience Associate is aware of potential concerns, Notifications of Concern, and terminations;
- Issue a Notification of Concern in consultation with the Mentor Teacher and Field Experience Associate, if necessary;
- Ensure that Student Teachers have prepared their Initial Growth Plan (by day 10) and reviewed the Initial Growth Plan (by day 25) with their Mentor Teacher;
- Review the draft of the final evaluation to ensure that it is fair, complete, and accurate, providing feedback to the Mentor Teacher if needed;
- Ensure the Student Teachers have completed both the Initial Growth Plan (Day 10) and reviewed Growth Plan (Day 25);
- Collect final evaluations from Mentor Teachers using their district email and your uAlberta email account, check file name and other information for accuracy, name the document according to the file protocol, then submit the evaluation to the Field Experience Associate via your uAlberta email account.
University Facilitators (UFs) are academic staff and retired teachers who represent the University to the school. They report to a Field Experiences Associate and provide support to Student Teachers, Mentor Teachers and School Coordinators and are hired on a term-by-term basis.
If you are an educator with a valid Alberta Teaching Certificate and are interested in becoming a University Facilitator, please complete and submit the UF Application form (available on the EDFX website under FORMS).
Completed applications with attached curriculum vitae (resume) should be emailed to: email@example.com
AFX Week by Week Guidelines
- Meet with Student Teachers at each school to introduce yourself and to outline your expectations.
- Schedule observations of Student Teachers on a regular basis (minimum 3 times during AFX) to provide oral and written feedback.
- Ensure the School Coordinators have recorded the emergency contact information provided by Student Teachers in their Introductory Email.
- Ensure Student Teachers are aware of Delete and Withdrawal Dates.
- Ensure Student Teachers are aware of the Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes, indicated on the Final Evaluation Form, that they are required to demonstrate by the end of their practicum.
- Reinforce the ATA Professional Code of Conduct and Alberta Education Teacher Quality Standards (TQS) within the context of the Field Experience.
- Review the Growth Plan, Growth Plan Review, and Final Evaluation forms to ensure Student Teachers are familiar with them.
- Remind Student Teachers to begin to explore opportunities for extracurricular involvement.
- Be aware of school expectations and ensure they align with University Field Experience course expectations as identified on the website.
- Initiate and maintain communication with Mentor Teachers and/or School Coordinators to support progress of Student Teachers.
- Remind Mentor Teachers and Student Teachers to discuss lesson and unit plan formats and expectations.
- Address concerns of Student Teachers, Mentor Teachers or School Coordinators regarding: Growth Plan, Midpoint Growth Plan Review, or Final Evaluation.
- Review the reasons and conditions for issuing a Notification of Concern. Please err on the side of caution, as this tool gives Mentor Teachers and University Facilitators an opportunity to identify concerns and provide coaching support for the Student Teachers. An NOC also allows an opportunity for the Student Teachers to demonstrate growth in the identified area(s). It is better to issue a NOC in weeks 2-6 rather than week 7 or 8 as one or two weeks may not provide Student Teachers with enough time to gain experience in addressing areas of concern.
- Respond in a timely and consistent fashion to requests for assistance and formal evaluations from School Coordinators, Mentor Teachers and Student Teachers, particularly if Student Teachers are experiencing difficulties.
- Monitor the progress and self-assessment of Student Teachers in order to prepare their Growth Plan by day 10.
- Ensure Student Teachers have completed their AFX Growth Plan by Day 10.
- Ensure that the teaching and planning load is consistent with university expectations.
- Remind Student Teachers to participate in co-curricular/extra-curricular activities (including an exit or hand over strategy).
- Discuss the Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes indicated on the Final Evaluation Form.
- Ensure that reflective conversations occur regularly and frequently between the Mentor Teacher and the Student Teacher.
- Topics UFs may want to discuss with Student Teachers include:
- teaching and learning strategies;
- techniques for measuring and communicating student progress;
- differentiation; and,
- effective classroom management.
- Identify and discuss any issues with Student Teachers and/or Mentor Teachers.
- Conduct an observation of each Student Teacher on a regular basis (minimum 3 times during AFX) to provide oral and written feedback.
- Ensure Student Teachers are engaging in reflective conversations with Mentor Teacher.
- Issue a Notification of Concern, in consultation with Mentor Teacher, if warranted.
- Continue with existing guidelines/responsibilities.
- Ensure Student Teachers and Mentor Teachers collaborate to complete the Growth Plan review by day 25.
- Respond in a timely and consistent fashion to requests for assistance from Mentor Teachers and Student Teachers.
- Ensure they are aware of Withdrawal Dates.
- Continue with existing guidelines/responsibilities.
- Continue with existing guidelines/responsibilities.
- Review the draft of the final evaluation document with Mentor Teachers and Student Teachers. Suggest revisions if necessary.
- Execute your exit strategy for your extracurricular involvement.
- Visit schools to obtain formal and informal feedback from Student Teachers, School Coordinators, and Mentor Teachers.
- Collect Final Evaluation Forms and submit to your Zone FEA via your University of Alberta email account.
It has been our practice to provide University Facilitators with an honorarium that serves as a token of our appreciation for their work in supporting our Student Teachers. University Facilitators receive compensation for kilometers driven to schools and an honorarium for each AFX student supervised. Please refer to the travel claim form and the University Facilitator application form for the current honorarium.
Honoraria payments are processed during the last month of practica. Fall Term payments go out in December and Winter Term payments go out in April.
We expect that University Facilitators make one-to-one contact with their Student Teachers on a weekly basis, either through in-person visits or by phone or email. We also expect that Student Teachers are observed while teaching for about 20 minutes at least three times during AFX. Following the observation, Student Teachers should be provided with written feedback using the observation form (available on the EDFX website under FORMS) and participate in a debriefing conversation of 10-20 minutes with the University Facilitator. Some student teachers may require more frequent feedback or individual support. The decision to provide that support is made at the discretion of the University Facilitator, in consultation with the Field Experience Associate, if necessary.
Ensure that the Mentor Teacher and the School Coordinator are aware of any concerns that you and/or the Student Teacher may be having. It would be helpful to remind the Mentor Teacher of the week-by-week guidelines for both the IFX and AFX programs. Concerns about insufficient mentoring or supervision by the Mentor Teacher should be discussed with the School Coordinator. University Facilitators should not criticize the program nor the classroom practices of a Mentor Teacher.
An NOC can be a coaching tool or a process to address significant areas of concern. The Mentor Teacher should be initiating the creation of an NOC (available on the EDFX website under FORMS) and completing the details of the document with assistance from the University Facilitator. The Student Teacher should be advised of the concern(s) contained in the NOC as soon as possible. Ideally, an NOC would not be issued in the final week of the practicum so that the Student Teacher has time to benefit from the coaching.
The University Facilitator and the Mentor Teacher should meet to issue the NOC to the Student Teacher. The School Coordinator and/or Field Experience Associate may also be involved if desired. The University Facilitator should ensure that the Student Teacher understands the areas of concern and the timeline in which these concerns need to be satisfactorily addressed. The University Facilitator should provide their Field Experience Associate with a copy of all NOCs.
The Field Experience Associate should be contacted immediately and will take over the termination process.
A draft of the Final Evaluation should be reviewed by the Student Teacher and University Facilitator prior to the evaluation due date. After the review, only the Mentor Teacher is allowed to make any and all changes to the document. After this, if there are comments that the Student Teacher finds unfounded, inappropriate, or lacking, a conversation between the Student Teacher and the Mentor Teacher needs to occur. This conversation may be facilitated by the University Facilitator. If the issue cannot be resolved between the Student Teacher, the Mentor Teacher, and the University Facilitator, the Field Experience Associate should be contacted.