Accreditation and Program Review

Accreditation and Program Review (Visual Arts-All Grades)

Rochester Institute of Technology is chartered by the New York State Legislature and accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education of Colleges and Schools and New York State Education Department's Office of College and University Evaluation.

Students wishing to review RIT's accreditation information should visit: 

The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) became fully operational as the sole accrediting body for educator preparation providers on July 1, 2013. Its mission is to advance equity and excellence in educator preparation through evidence-based accreditation that assures quality and supports continuous improvement to strengthen P-12 student learning. CAEP has replaced the former Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) accreditation body, which had accredited the Master of Science (MST) Visual Arts-All Grades teacher education program in 2011.  

The next CAEP site visit will be fall 2020. Further information about this visit will be posted soon.

For more information about CAEP visit:

As a component of CAEP accreditation, every Education Preparation Provider (EPP) must report and prominently display data on its website relating to eight Annual Reporting Measures established by CAEP. Educator Preparation Providers may select the data they present as long as it is appropriate to CAEP's measures. The Master of Science for Teachers (MST) Visual Arts-All Grades program reports on the measures listed below.

Measure 1: Impact on P-12 Learning and Development 

CAEP Standard Component 4.1

Teacher performance in New York State is measured through the Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) program. The following link provides general APPR information and current statistics for New York State teacher performance: NYSED Educator Evaluation Data

The MST program gathers data annually from a survey completed by administrators of MST completers (alumni) teaching in their respective P-12 schools one year after graduation. The survey contains a Linkert Scale and narrative questions which ask administrators to rate teachers' impact upon students. Survey questions are aligned with Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) Standards. More information about InTASC Standards can be found at:

Table Summary: Aggregated MST Employer Data

*Data collected from RIT Qualtrics Surveys administered to the completers' first-year employers

The MST program gathers data annually from the New York State Education Department (NYSED) and Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning and Equity (SCALE) regarding edTPA scores of MST completers. SCALE has partnered with the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) to create and deliver the support and assessment program for teacher candidates called edTPA that can be used around the country. edTPA is a performance-based, subject-specific support and assessment system used by educator preparation programs (EPPs) nationwide. edTPA complements a multiple-measures assessment system that allows candidates to integrate what they have learned about effective teaching practice throughout their program and to demonstrate that they can plan, teach, and assess based on knowledge of their students:

The MST program has strong collaborative partnerships with regional school districts and individual school partners, as well as other community stakeholders in order to pursue mutually beneficial and agreed upon goals for the preparation of education professionals. MST candidates begin their edTPA portfolios while student teaching in the program. The MST program uses reported edTPA scores annually as sources of data of candidate performance to inform program review and continuous improvement. More information about the edTPA assessment and CAEP alignment can be found at:

There are five rubrics for each of edTPA’s three core areas — planning, instruction and assessment — with each rubric scored on a five-point scale. Total scores can range from 15 to 75 points. The current NYSED minimum passing score for Visual Arts is 38. The national mean score for all edTPA data is 48.6. Eleven MST completers from the AY 2016-19 cycles completed edTPA . All 11 (100%) passed edTPA. The average mean score for all 11 MST completers was 52.6 with a range of 46 to 57.  

Measure 2: Indicators of Teaching Effectiveness 

CAEP Standard Component 4.2

To gather data regarding teacher effectiveness and impact on PK-12 learners, the MST program piloted a new method to follow completers through surveys and direct observations. The MST program director observed four completers from the AY 2106-2019 cycles. One of four completers from the AY 2016 cohort (25%), two of 10 completers from the AY 2018 cohort (20%) and one of six completers from the AY 2019 cohort (17%) were observed, averaging 20.6%, meeting CAEP recommendations of 20% follow up. The method of observation was linked to the Danielson Framework for Professional Development. The assessment tool and scoring measures were aligned with the New York State Education Department’s Approved Teacher Practice Rubric (part of its implementation of the provisions of Education Law §3012-c regarding Annual Professional Performance Reviews (APPR) of classroom teachers. In addition, the four completers submitted APPR data from their most recent observation and scored administrator observation. Under APPR, teachers and principals receive a number grade every year, which translates to an effectiveness rating. The APPR process is governed by NYSED and aligns with teaching standards. Each school district develops its own evaluation plan within NYSED guidelines. Districts' APPR plans are often different, so APPR scores from all districts cannot be compared in all cases.  The four selected completers’ districts use the common Danielson’s Framework for Teachers as assessment tools. Each classroom teacher receives an overall rating of Highly Effective, Effective, Developing, or Ineffective (HEDI). This rating is provided to NYSED by districts and BOCES.​

AY 2016-19 Completer Overall Impact on Student Learning Based on Danielson Framework

1 = Ineffective 2 = Developing 3 = Effective 4 = Highly Effective

A table of data showing graduate impact.

Student Teaching Evaluation Results

The MST program works with P-12 partners to provide rich and meaningful experiential learning and clinical experiences. The MST program created and implemented formative and summative assessments for the evaluation of teacher candidates during student teaching. All cooperating teachers, from two student teaching placements, per each MST candidate, complete assessment rubrics aligned with national visual arts teaching standards, New York State visual arts teaching standards and InTASC teaching standards. Both cooperating teachers and MST college supervisors complete the evaluation at the midpoint and end of each student teaching placement. All candidates complete a formative and summative self-evaluation as well for both of their student teaching placements. The MST program director reviews all assessments with college supervisors and candidates throughout the clinical experience.  

A table showing indicators of effectiveness.
*Based on assessment evaluations aggregated, portfolios and capstone materials

Table Summary: Aggregated P-12 Teachers, College Supervisors and Candidates Student Teaching Evaluations

*Data gathered from all student teaching assessments completed by cooperating teachers, college supervisors and MST candidates at two clinical placements, formatively and again summatively

Measure 3: Satisfaction of Employers 

CAEP Standard Component A.4.1/4.3

The MST program gathers data annually from a survey completed by administrators of MST alumni (completers) teaching in their respective P-12 schools one year after graduation. The survey contains a Linkert Scale and narrative questions which ask administrators to rate employer satisfaction. The MST program director reviews data with MST faculty annually and uses the information for program assessment and review at the department and institute level.  

Table Summary: Satisfaction of Employers

Measure 4: Satisfaction of Completers 

CAEP Standard Component 4.2/4.4

The MST administration and faculty conduct exit surveys and in AY 2019 piloted disposition surveys completed by MST completers at the time of their program completion. The MST administration also collects data and information form completers through alumni surveys. These surveys are sent after a year of teaching is complete. The MST program director reviews data with MST faculty annually and uses the information for program assessment and review at the department and institute level and continuous improvement.

Table Summary: Aggregated Candidate Exit Interview Data

Aggregated Completer (Alumni) Survey Data 

*AY 2017 and AY 2018, based on inTASC Standards (AY 2019 to be reported in spring 2020)
Ratings scale: 5 - Excellent; 4 - Very Good; 3 - Good; 2 - Satisfactory; 1 - Unsatisfactory
Data collected from annual completer (alumni) surveys after the first year of teaching is completed

A table displaying alumni survey data.

Aggregated Disposition Data 

*Piloted Academic Year 2019
Ratings scale: 4 - Advanced Level; 3 - Proficient; 2 - Progressing; 1 - Unacceptable
Surveys collected from students teaching college supervisors, program director and completers (2019 is the first year Disposition Surveys were administered)

A table displaying disposition data

Selected Testimonials:

Michele Agosto ’94

Role: Supervisor of Art Education, Director of Fine Arts, Buffalo Public Schools

MST’s role in success: “Most instrumental were the discussions we had in our seminars. They were reflective and often eye-opening.”

Gretchen Ettlie ’04

Role: Intro to 2D design adjunct professor at RIT after serving 11 years as Fine Arts Director and Art Teacher at School of the Nations in Macau, China.

MST’s role in success: “The Methods and Materials class was great because we created actual lessons. We presented them to our classmates and got feedback. We also got to see and hear all of their ideas!”

Rhiannon Tobeck ’13

Role: Director and Elementary Art Teacher, Renaissance Academy Charter School of the Arts in Greece, N.Y.

MST’s role in success: “The professors emphasized teaching art through making interdisciplinary connections — a skill that I utilize every day.” 

Mandi Antonucci ’04

Role: Art Teacher, Batavia High School, Lead Art Teacher and Chair of Visual Arts

MST’s role in success: “I most appreciated the way in which the MST program focused on us as artists, not just teachers. This enabled me to concentrate on becoming an artist that is good at teaching, not just a teacher who likes art.

Heather Leck-Leonard Potwin ’11

Role: Art Teacher (2014-18), Hong Kong called Po Leung Kuk Choi Kai Yau School

Currently: The Walworth Barbour American International School in Israel

MST’s role in success: “I am so thankful I was able to student-teach across literally all grades (while enrolled in MST) because my classroom management and academic strategies are now more fluid and I feel better able to handle situations as they come up. I gained a remarkable amount of experience and knowledge from talented professors who encouraged us to push past what we perceived to be our limits. I cannot imagine completing my master’s degree anywhere else.”

Victoria Maria Savka ’18

Role: Art Teacher, Diocese of Rochester - St. Agnes School, Avon and St. Louis School, Pittsford

MST’s role in success: "I learned through the program to maintain enthusiasm for my students, especially those who seem to have none. I have been told by my colleagues that some students have told them that they actually enjoy going to art class now. I learned through the MST program to lead my students with firm enthusiasm and respectful optimism. I believe as teachers we are constantly assessing, but through the MST program my assessments have grown — especially during my student teaching I found new ways of approaching student assessment (and self-assessment!). During my time in the program there was a great emphasis of introduction to new ideas for our students. In my classes I create projects that allow my students to compare and consider the newly presented information to their own lives.”

Jordyn Wolcott ’18

Role: Art Teacher, Letchworth Elementary School, Letchworth, N.Y.

MST’s role in success: “The program director met with both my mother and I in the very early stages of applying to the MST program. It was during that meeting that I knew I had to be a part of this program. The program director talked so highly of her previous students and talked about their success getting jobs after the program. I left the first 'meeting' feeling very confident in that I would be offered a job in art education. Fast forward a year through the program, I received a job in May right before graduation. The program director and the whole MST staff are dedicated and so passionate about teaching and guiding their students in obtaining their goals in becoming artist-teachers. I can honestly say I would not be the art teacher I am today without this program and the beautiful MST journey.” 

Kelly Ryan '18

Role: Art Teacher, Aurora, Colorado

MST's role in success: 

“I think this program is amazing and I always will recommend aspiring educators to head to RIT for their MST. I feel that the cooperating teachers were so knowledgeable and that the professors were always eager to help you in any way. The assignments had a purpose and they were beneficial in my professional practice. I really am appreciative for the help and understanding the professors gave even after graduation. I only wish I lived and worked locally so I could be a future cooperating teacher to pay it forward. Lauren Ramich was the first person I spoke to and her warm demeanor and honest regard for the program sold me. I knew it was going to be a challenge but she helped so much along the way! I even went in during the summer and she helped me plan for my summer teaching job at Sidwell Friends School. I continue to work here and she absolutely made it easier and feel more prepared for my first job. I found that when I was applying for positions that the portfolio gave me the impression I was looking for and helped me in the interview process. The activity when the other teachers came in and offered their time to interview us was very critical in the interview process. I found many schools wanted an example video and/or website portfolio to look at as well. Overall the RIT staff has been amazing to work with and I am very proud to be alumni of this amazing program!”

Misti Roe ’18

Role: Adjunct Professor, NTID/RIT and Nazareth College

MST Role in success: "It was while I prepared for my initial semester of teaching art students that I realized how confident and knowledgeable I had become. As a recent graduate of the MST program and a proud RIT alumna, I had my close-knitted program experience led by engaged and knowledgeable instructors to thank for the level of preparedness I felt as a new art teacher. The comprehensive experience-based curriculum prepared me to enter the classroom with abilities to enthusiastically teach art and connect with my students in meaningful ways."

Brittany Arnold ’19

Role: Art Teacher, Fairport Central School District

MST Role in success: "The MST program has prepared me for a career as an artist-educator by placing me with carefully selected cooperating teachers for my student-teaching experiences. These successful and established teachers have pushed me to be a better educator."

Theresa Dunlavey ’19

Role: Elementary Art Teacher, Rochester City School District

MST Role in success: “The MST curriculum is constantly evolving; it teaches us relevant topics, issues and standards in education. It’s able to do this because the instructors are either still working in, or are involved in some fashion in the public school system. In addition, the instructors fully support the MST students by cultivating an environment of deep respect. They have extremely high standards, hold us accountable and push us to do the very best work possible.”

Measure 5: Graduation Rates

RIT and the MST program report graduation rates annually

A table displaying graduation rate data.

Additional university-level graduation, retention and consumer information can be found at:

Rochester Institute of Technology

Cumulative GPA - VISART-MST vs. All Master's Degrees

*From AY 2015-16 to AY 2018-19
Data compiled from the RIT Office of Institutional Research and Policy Studies

A table of GPA data

Measure 6: Ability of Completers to Meet Licensing

RIT reports the number of teacher candidates who complete New York State Department of Education (NYSED) required certification tests for NYSED Initial/Professional Visual Arts-All Grades certification. Data and test scores are reported by NYSED. The MST Program Director collects self-reported data from completers who are certified out of state. Our program completers consistently exceed the required 80% pass rate on the New York State Teacher Certification Exams (NYSTCE) Certification Exams include:

Table of data.
*Scores collected and aggregated from NYSED and Completer Surveys for out-of-state certification

Measure 7: Ability of Completers to be Hired in Education Positions 

RIT and the MST Program Director collect data from completers regarding their employment. The MST Completer (Alumni) Surveys from AY 2017 and AY 2018 provide insight into the degree to which our program completers are able to be hired in education positions for which they have been trained. Results from the AY 2017 and AY 2018 Alumni Surveys indicate that:

AY 2017

  • 100% of our program completers entered into education positions related to their certification area after graduation 
  • 75% (3 Completers) FTE Art Teachers in Public Education, 25% (1 Completer) Higher Education

AY 2018

  • 100% of our program completers entered into education positions related to their certification area after graduation
    > 80% (8 Completers) FTE Art Teachers in Public & Private Education
    > 10% (1 Completer) PT Art Teachers in Parochial Education 
    > 10% (1 Completer) Per Diem Substitute Art Teacher and FTE Jewelry Design Position 

AY 2019

  • 83% of our program completers entered into education positions related to their certification area after graduation
    > 66% (4 Completers) FTE Art Teachers in Public Education
    > 17% (1 Completer) FTE Long-term Substitute Art Teacher 
    > 17% (1 Completer) entered into continuing higher education

Table of data highlighting alumni hire data.
*Data collected through annual completer (alumni) surveys and RIT's Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education (first destination within six months of graduation report).

More information about education employment landscape data and educational statistics and reporting

Measure 8: Student Loan Default Rates and Other Consumer Information

*Source: RIT Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships

Table of data

Other consumer information about the university can be found at:

The Master of Science for Teachers (MST) in Visual Arts-All Grades program is in the process of completing a self-study report in conjunction with the National Technical Institute for the Deaf’s Master of Science in Secondary Education (MSSE) program. The self-study report will be submitted in preparation for a fall 2020 CAEP Site Team visit. The self-study report gathers evidence that each program meets the five CAEP standards listed below. The evidence and corresponding analysis is used for continuous program improvement. Three MST assessment cycles (academic years 2016-2017, 2017-2018 and 2018-2019) will be included in the self-study report. The self-study report will also include two cross-cutting themes of diversity and technology. Links to cross-cutting theme statements will be published in fall 2019. A glossary of CAEP terms and acronyms used can be found at

STANDARD 1: Content and Pedagogical Knowledge

The provider ensures that candidates develop a deep understanding of the critical concepts and principles of their discipline and, by completion, are able to use discipline-specific practices flexibly to advance the learning of all students toward attainment of college- and career- readiness standards.

STANDARD 2: Clinical Partnerships and Practice

The provider ensures that effective partnerships and high-quality clinical practice are central to preparation so that candidates develop the knowledge, skills, and professional dispositions necessary to demonstrate positive impact on all P-12 students’ learning and development.

STANDARD 3: Candidate Quality, Recruitment and Selectivity

The provider demonstrates that the quality of candidates is a continuing and purposeful part of its responsibility from recruitment, at admission, through the progression of courses and clinical experiences, and to decisions that completers are prepared to teach effectively and are recommended for certification. The provider demonstrates that development of candidate quality is the goal of educator preparation in all phases of the program. This process is ultimately determined by a program’s meeting of Standard 4.

STANDARD 4: Program Impact  

The provider demonstrates the impact of its completers on P-12 student learning and development, classroom instruction and schools, and the satisfaction of its completers with the relevance and effectiveness of their preparation.

STANDARD 5: Provider Quality Assurance and Continuous Improvement

The provider maintains a quality assurance system comprised of valid data from multiple measures, including evidence of candidates’ and completers’ positive impact on P- 12 student learning and development. The provider supports continuous improvement that is sustained and evidence-based, and that evaluates the effectiveness of its completers. The provider uses the results of inquiry and data collection to establish priorities, enhance program elements and capacity, and test innovations to improve completers' impact on P-12 student learning and development.

Detailed information about CAEP standards and components for each standard can be found at:

Cross-cutting Theme of Diversity

RIT, through its policies and practices, is responsible for building an inclusive environment where membership in the community allows for faculty, staff and students to reach their fullest potential, both professionally and personally. RIT is committed to the development, administration and interpretation of policies and procedures in a way that is consistent with our commitment to diversity and is in compliance with federal, state and local laws. RIT’s policies and procedures are administered in a way that supports fair treatment for all faculty, staff, students and the RIT community at large: The model for Inclusive Excellence at RIT has four dimensions: 1.) Access and Success; 2.) Campus Climate and Intergroup Relations; 3.) Education and Scholarship; 4.) Institutional Infrastructure. The dimensions create a framework that helps the institution monitor the progress of diversity and inclusion efforts: The MST program aligns goals, best practices and commitment to inclusive practices and diversity in teacher education preparation with the four domains of RIT’s model for Inclusive Excellence. The MST program’s commitment to diversity and inclusion begins at recruitment and continues through candidate selection, coursework and curriculum, community outreach, fieldwork, clinical experiences and partnerships with key stakeholders. MST candidates are well-prepared for teaching all P-12 learners, leadership in all of America’s P-12 classrooms and are positioned have a positive impact on all P-12 student learning. 

The MST candidate dispositions data, the clinical performance outcomes data (including those sub categories specifically related to diversity) and exit interview surveys, at multiple points in program progression produce empirical evidence of candidates’ ability to teach all P-12 students with cultural responsiveness and cultural respect leading to a positive impact on learning. The partnerships established, specifically with fieldwork, practicums and student teaching placements in Title I and high needs schools, urban and rural districts and special education programs such as Gem in the Rochester City School District, demonstrates the MST program’s commitment to preparing candidates to meet the needs of all P-12 learners while having a positive impact and partnership with under-serviced, diverse and culturally rich populations. MST curricula ensures the infusion of diversity through the study of inclusion, social justice and cultural differences. Candidates' coursework grades in Inclusion, Multicultural Issues in Art Education, Child Development, Professional Practices and Student Teaching indicates candidate competency. MST candidates also participate in community outreach programs that are directly designed to meet the needs of under-serviced students and their families from the City of Rochester, the Seneca people and Compeer of Rochester clients and their mentors. MST candidates are also exposed to a diverse cross-section of practitioners who participate in the monthly MST Distinguished Guest Speaker Series. Topics  for these lectures include but are not limited to Restorative Teaching Practices, Trauma Informed Teaching, Youth Mental Health First Aide: Suicide Prevention, Teaching Art internationally, LGBTQ + Identities and Teaching Students with Multiple Disabilities. Employer and alumni surveys (including those sub categories specifically related to diversity) data are also evidence of MST completers’ ability to meet the needs of all P-12 students, how the program prepares candidates to be proficient in their ability to differentiate, teach culturally responsive and responsibly and develop professional dispositions.

Cross-cutting Theme of Technology

RIT provides a state-of-the-art infrastructure and multiple information and technology services (ITS), training and support for all students, including EPP candidates, faculty and staff: ITS service supports candidates’ admissions, enrollment, registration, orientation, financial aid, student accounts, collections, advising and career through the Student Information System which is an Oracle PeopleSoft application:

The MST program draws upon the university’s vast resources to provide multiple experiences integrating technology and support and tools for candidates to become proficient in applications of digital media and technological capabilities. Through online use of databases, training embedded in curricula, online platforms, technology-based applications with clinical partners and research-based practices using technology, the MST program ensures candidates’ development and abilities to positively impact their students’ learning outcomes and overall engagement. Experiences throughout the academic year allow candidates to develop and demonstrate their skills in guiding their P-12 students to understand, choose and use digital content, social media and technology platforms in appropriate ways as tools for engagement in learning. The MST program also prepares candidates to incorporate technology to improve the effectiveness of school and district functions, enhance instruction and manage student and assessment data, while engaging students in the applications of technology connecting to learning experiences. 

The MST program uses:

  • technology-based collaborations with P-12 partners and stakeholders to provide candidates with pragmatic experience, and to assess student performance outcomes during clinical experiences at multiple key points, specifically related to candidates’ development of technology knowledge, instructional delivery and assessment practices.  
  • multiple measures to monitor and evaluate candidates’ developing content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, pedagogical skills and the integration of technology in all of these domains. 
  • technology-based tools to collect and analyze program and completers' impact on P-12 student learning and development, and the satisfaction of completers and employers in terms of the effectiveness of their preparation. 
  • from recruitment and admissions through exit to collect, organize and analyze data. 

The MST curricula embeds training and the development of candidates’ proficiency integrating technology in their teaching through assigned research, coursework and the use of digital media, tools and electronic platforms. Candidates in Methods coursework create lesson plans, which address the integration of technology into planning, differentiation, instruction and assessment. In Inclusive Issues, candidates learn about assistive technology tools. Candidates demonstrate theory to practice, using technology, as they complete practicum experiences in early childhood and special education settings. In Seminar, MST candidates work with faculty, active and highly qualified practitioners with extensive technology experience, focusing on developing their ability to integrate technology into their clinical placements and teach their own students how to use technology, digital media and tools with thoughtful and appropriate methodology. Candidates work in state-of-the-art computer labs developing their content knowledge and abilities to integrate technology in their teaching and develop capstone materials using Adobe Suite. In Spring 2020, as part of continuous program improvement, MST candidates will also develop their own teaching website in Seminar.   

The MST program also utilizes and provides faculty and candidates’ access to Taskstream, MyCourses, LinkedIn Learning, Myshares, RIT’s Talent Roadmap (online tutorials and professional development classes), webinars, TED: Ideas Worth Spreading, Qualtrics Surveys and library info guides to integrate technology in a diverse cross-section of learning and instructional platforms. 

The Master of Science for Teachers (MST) in Visual Arts-All Grades program at RIT and the Master of Science in Secondary Education program at National Technical Institute for the Deaf are hosting an accreditation visit by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) in the fall of 2020. Interested parties are invited to submit third-party comments to the CAEP site team. Please note that comments must address substantive matters related to the quality of professional education programs offered, and should specify the party's relationship to the provider (i.e. graduate, present or former faculty member, employer of graduates). 

We invite you to submit written testimony either through email or postal to:


[email protected]



1140 19th Street NW, Suite 400

Washington, DC 20036

Such comments must be within the specified period and based on the core tenets of CAEP accreditation standards of excellence, which recognize that:

  • In CAEP's performance-based system, accreditation is based on evidence that demonstrates that teacher candidates know the subject matter and can teach it effectively so that students learn. In the CAEP system, EPPs must prove that candidates can connect theory to practice and be effective in an actual P-12 classroom.
  • A professional education provider that is accredited by CAEP is expected to be involved in ongoing planning and evaluation; engaged in continuous assessment and development; ensure that faculty and programs reflect new knowledge, practice, and technologies; and be involved in continuous development in response to the evolving world of education and educational reform.
  • Comments must address substantive matters related to the quality of professional education programs offered, and should specify the respondent's relationship, if any, to the institution (i.e., graduate, present or former faculty member, employer of graduates). Copies of all correspondence received will be sent to the university for comment prior to the review. No anonymous testimony will be considered

President's Report