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Elementary & Secondary Education: A Guide to Research: edTPA

What is the edTPA?

edTPA stands for Education Teacher Performance Assessment.

Developed by faculty and staff at the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning, and Equity (SCALE) located at Stanford University. Stanford University is the exclusive author and owner of edTPA.

The first standards-based assessment to become nationally available in the United States.

34 states and the District of Columbia are using edTPA.

edTPA is a subject-specific assessment with versions in 27 different teaching fields covering Early Childhood, Elementary, Middle Childhood and Secondary.

Why are we taking the edTPA?

To ensure that the nation’s increasingly young and inexperienced teacher workforce is prepared to meet the academic needs of all students.

Intended to be used as a summative assessment given at the end of an educator preparation program for teacher licensure or certification and to support state and national program accreditation.

Is designed to evaluate how teacher candidates plan and teach lessons in ways that make the content clear and help diverse students learn, assess the effectiveness of their teaching, and adjust teaching as necessary.

When did it become part of our certification requirements?

Fall 2013

Goals of edTPA

Improve student outcomes.

Improve the information base guiding improvement of teacher preparation programs.

Strengthen the information base for accreditation and evaluation of program effectiveness.

Be used in combination with other measures as a requirement for licensure.

Guide professional development for teachers across the career continuum.

What is required to complete the edTPA?

A subject-specific learning segment of 3-5 lessons from a unit of instruction taught to one class of students.

Video clips of instruction

Lesson plans

Student work samples

Analysis of student learning

Reflective commentaries. 

Who scores portfolios?

edTPA scorers include teacher educators from the programs participating in edTPA, as well as other qualified teacher education faculty, clinical supervisors of student teachers, K-12 teachers, administrators, and National Board Certified Teachers.

How much does it cost?

Cost is $300.

If you have to resubmit it, it’s $400 to resubmit the whole portfolio or $100 per task. 

Where do you submit it?

Online to Pearson Publishers at:

Tips for taking the edTPA


Send out your permission slips as soon as possible with a letter introducing yourself and explaining why you are videotaping the class during student teaching.

When videotaping, you'll probably have a few students who won't have parental permission to be videotaped. That's okay. Just put those students off to the side where they can still see what you are doing but not in the view of the camera.

Use first names only! If you have two students with the same name look at that student and give them a visual cue to go ahead after calling on them. 

Videotape yourself for multiple lessons in case you need to redo that task section. 

 Other suggestions:

Complete the Contexts for learning for math and ELA early because they are just demographics about the class and school. 

Work on it a little bit each day/night. Do a few prompts each night.

If you get frustrated, take a break and then go back to it. 

Take more than the 3 required work samples to give you a range of ability levels to show the different levels and needs of your students, but chose which 3 you want to use. 

Mask all names and school names (confidentiality).

Don't stress out over it! It only makes it worse! 

Pick a date to submit by, but don't set it in stone! You want to feel comfortable when submitting it. Keep in mind that the date you choose to submit by isn't permanent. You don't have to pick a date and let them know, you just pick a date to submit it electronically. If you don't feel comfortable submitting it by your goal date, then wait until the next one and go back through and overlook it until you feel as confident as you can about submitting it! 

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask your classmates, professors, or supervisors.