Date of this Version
The Nebraska Educator 1 (2014), pp. 4-31.
This research investigated the impact of an Urban Immersion (UI) program which partnered urban schools with a university’s teacher preparation program. The UI program provided experiences for pre-service teachers by completely immersing them, along with their university instructors, in urban schools where they worked and learned alongside K-12 teachers and students. Data collected from pre- and post-experience surveys provide statistically significant evidence that the UI program reshaped the perceptions of pre-service teachers regarding urban schools and also increased their confidence and interest in teaching in an urban setting. The success of traditional field experiences is indecisive (Mason, 1999; Sleeter, 2001); however, approaches such as the UI program may positively impact the recruitment of teachers to urban schools. This innovative approach to pre-service teacher preparation has tremendous potential. Longitudinal research will be important as this urban university and the local urban school district work together to provide high-quality educational opportunities for all of their students.