Clinical supervision in todays
Clinical supervision in todays

Clinical supervision in todays

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  • Pages: 6 (3054 words)
  • Published: December 13, 2018
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Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to present the definition of clinical supervision and some basic concepts that are currently being used in the clinical supervision of public schools today. By having a clearer understanding of these definitions and concepts, prospective supervisors in public education will be better equipped to do their jobs.

Problem Statement

A situation has occurred due to the ever-increasing demand for supervisors in public education today in which those entering supervisory positions may not be properly equipped to supervise. This is primarily due to the fact that they may not understand all that is expected of them. To use economic terminology, the “demand is exceeding the supply”. As a result, supervisors may be placed into supervisory positions without a clear understanding of some definitions and concepts which have come into the realm of education fairly recently. Supervisors cannot do their jobs effectively if they are not properly educated in the roles and responsibilities of the clinical superviso


r. The following study may serve as a review of some current definitions and concepts.

Background Information

The earliest supervisors in America’s schools were often nothing more than overly critical “snoops” whose main job was to find what a teacher was doing wrong and report it to the teacher’s superiors. Today we refer to this type of supervisor as a “snoopervisor”. It was more likely that a teacher would receive a reprimand or dismissal as a result of those supervisory visits.

The role of the school supervisor has changed drastically from the humble beginnings of America’s schools. Our public school system has gone through many different stages of development. Likewise, our educational supervisors have evolved as well.

Need for the Study

Since our public school system has gone through so many changes, (and continues to do so), a clear understanding of the responsibilities of clinical supervision is needed in order to properly prepare those wishing to serve in that capacity. Today’s supervisors must know what is expected of them and some of the more current methods and concepts being used in clinical supervision.

Research Questions

To achieve the purpose of this study the following questions will be examined:

? What is clinical supervision?

? What are some of the basic concepts currently being used in clinical supervision?

? How can clinical supervisors help their teachers become better educators?

Definitions of Terms clinical supervisor – anyone in the public school system that directs and oversees the performance of teachers. clinical supervision- guidance designed and given to improve a teacher’s classroom performance

coaching- a person who trains or gives instruction to another (teacher or educator)

school and school system policy – rules and regulations of the school system and the local school in which they teach

curriculum – the sum total of all experiences under the auspices of the school. (If the school endorses it, it is part of the curriculum.)

curriculum developer- on

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who is responsible for making the decisions concerning what curriculum is to be offered at a school

“marginal” teacher- a teacher who is barely within a lower standard or limit of quality

stress -to be subjected to physical or mental pressure, tension, or strain

Limitation of the Study

The research information in this study is limited to the study of school supervisors in the public school system. This study focused on supervisors who oversee the grade levels of Kindergarten through the 12th grade of high school. This study does focus on supervisors of colleges or other secondary educational institutions although much of this information may apply in those areas as well.


It is, therefore, the primary goal of this study to collect, compile, and organize information that will help to prepare those wishing to serve as school supervisors so that they may better understand some of the terminology and concepts in clinical supervision.


One of the more common roles of today’s school supervisor is that of providing teachers with the support they need to become better teachers. Today’s supervisor must be a coach or mentor, a “teacher’s teacher”, so to speak. Where supervisors once tore down teachers and criticized them, today they build up teachers and edify them.

The first use of the term “clinical supervision” was in 1961 when Morris Cogan used it in a proposal entitled Case Studies and Research in Clinical Supervision at Harvard University. Cogan defined clinical supervision in the following way:

“Clinical supervision may therefore be defined as the rationale and practice designed to improve the teacher’s classroom performance. It takes its principal data from the events of the classroom. The analysis of these data and the relationship between teacher and supervisor form the basis of the program, procedures, and strategies designed to improve the student’s learning by improving the teacher’s classroom behavior.”

From Cogan’s definition of clinical supervision we can see that the emphasis is on improvement of the teacher’s performance. This makes the role of today’s supervisor more of a supportive role. With that definition in mind, how can supervisors help teachers to become better teachers? What can supervisors do to improve the educational system in which they work? In the following study are a few examples of contemporary practices and concepts being utilized today to answer those questions. First of all, supervisors are concerned with the quality of teachers they have in their school and school system.

It is the job of supervisors to make sure that the teachers working in their school system are the best teachers possible, and that they are working to the best of their ability. Once teachers have been selected and hired, they must know that the supervisor is there to support them and help them to improve their teaching skills. In an article in Educational Digest, Thomas Harvey and Larry Frase put it this way:

“Coaching is not an option for school leaders but a basic function, along with counseling, mentoring, tutoring, confronting, and supporting. All of these will increase the commitment to quality and productivity.”

This simply means that supervisors must engage the teachers (as well as themselves) in a

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