Cooperating Teacher Resources

Roles and Responsibilities

The primary responsibility of the cooperating teacher is to the education of the pupils assigned to their class. However, Teacher Candidate preparation is also an important professional responsibility.


As a role model, mentor and coach:

As an evaluator:

Assume responsibility for direct supervision, oversight and support to the Teacher Candidate while on site.

Participate in a face-to-face meeting with the Teacher Candidate and the GCU supervisor during the first two weeks of student teaching.

Maintain and document close contact with the Teacher Candidate on a daily basis.

Monitor Teacher Candidate entries on the Clinical Practice Activity Log with verifying weekly initial (see form page 11 of the handbook).

Confer regularly with the Teacher Candidate concerning his or her performance and progress.

Complete Formative Evaluations (Cooperating Teacher Formative Feedback Form (see page 12 of the handbook), Teacher Candidate Collaborative Evaluation Instrument Site Visit #1, #2 and #3 (see appendix), GCU Teacher Candidate Progress Form (see form page 12) and any other informal evaluations) of the Teacher Candidate.

With the GCU Faculty Supervisor, develop and monitor any needed remediation plans for strengthening a marginal Teacher Candidate's performance.

Complete Summative Evaluation (Teacher Candidate Collaborative Evaluation Instrument Site Visit #4 (see appendix)) of the Teacher Candidate prior to the face-to-face meeting with the Teacher Candidate and the GCU Supervisor during the last week of the second eight week session.

Maintain student teaching records and documents for the purpose of evaluating the Teacher Candidate.

The four site visits are formal collaborative observations conducted in conjunction with cooperating teacher utilizing Grand Canyon University's Collaborative Evaluation Instrument.

Provide on-site opportunities for the Teacher Candidate to observe, practice and lead when and where possible.

The four site visits are formal collaborative observations in accordance with InTASC standards (see appendix) and GCU Domain 5: Learning, Leading and Serving. The completion of Grand Canyon University's Teacher Candidate Collaborative Evaluation Instrument is to be conducted in conjunction with GCU Faculty Supervisor (see appendix).

Collaborate with the Teacher Candidate on design and implementation of the Teacher Work Sample, helping them select the best five day unit for the thorough examination of their instruction. This would also include one of the site visits and observations with the Faculty Supervisor be done during the implementation of the Teacher Work Sample.




  • A valid current professional license with proper endorsement for the teaching assignment
  • Master's degree and a minimum of three years teaching experience
  • Full recommendation of the building principal to serve as a cooperating teacher
  • Desire and ability to work cooperatively with Teacher Candidates


Student Teaching Expectations

The following clinical practice expectations for teacher candidates in the College of Education seeks to address the common issues and responsibilities of teacher candidates who are out in schools and school districts in a field experience and clinical practice setting. The statements are designed to be reflective of the fundamental principles and values that are desired of a teacher candidate and his/her professional and personal conduct in the field experience and clinical setting (student teaching). The conduct expectations clarify conduct unbecoming of a student teacher, and thus are subject to disciplinary action. By addressing these issues we seek to respond to and clarify our expectations for all of our teacher candidates who are representing themselves and Grand Canyon University in their role and work with students, cooperating teachers, supervisors and school communities.

Teacher candidates in the College of Education represent GCU's value-based liberal arts institution. All teacher candidates who go out into the field are expected to abide by the responsibilities of university citizenship and to show consideration and respect for personal freedom and property rights of members of the civic, academic and school community. Teacher candidates are expected to abide by ethical, professional and academic standards that are conducive to a positive learning experience. These expectations include, but are not limited to the expectation that the teacher candidate:

  • Gives appropriate attention to college and site placement work
  • Attends class, exercises and engagements as required by the college and school site placement
  • Acknowledges and accepts the responsibility of honorable adherence to the university's and site placement's standards, rules, policies and procedures
  • Supports and exhibits ethical behavior with teacher candidates, faculty, staff, school placement personnel and the community
  • Recognizes and embraces the diversity and personal values of others
  • Exhibits self-direction and self-reliance as a college student and in the pursuit of individual and collaborative learning objectives and goals
  • Acknowledges and accepts personal responsibility and accountability for his or her actions, interactions and communication in all forms with teacher candidates, faculty, staff, school placement personnel and the community
  • Upholds confidentiality and respect for personal or professional information communicated in the placement classroom
  • Adheres to college dispositional expectations, policies and standards of academic honesty
  • Represents themselves solely in all matters related to student teaching performance, evaluation, assessments, disciplinary action, etc.
  • Dresses according to professional attire expectations which can be interpreted as:
    Women: slacks (dress pants), skirts (mid-calf to about two inches above the knee), blouses, shells, cardigans, blazers and dresses
    Men: dress pants, button down shirts, polo shirts (with a collar) and blazers
    Dress not permitted: Anything that is see-through, short, tight or shows too much skin, flip-flops, tennis shoes and jeans that are too loose fitting, ripped or faded. Teacher candidates must also follow the dress code of teachers at the school site.


Cooperating Teacher Training

Professional Dispositions

Learner Goals

Tips for Cooperating Teachers

The Tips for Cooperating Teachers page provides some important steps to take preparing for your student teacher. There are steps a Cooperating Teacher can take to create a supportive environment in which the Teacher Candidate can thrive. This page also includes the standards which will be used to evaluate the Teacher Candidate.

Cooperating Teacher Handbooks

Cooperating Teacher Single Placement Student Teaching Manual

Cooperating Teacher Dual Placement Student Teaching Manual