The next chapter for teacher education

Teacher in classroom.

A Harvard teacher fellow in the classroom. Photo by Jill Anderson

3 min read

The Harvard Graduate School of Education has launched the Teaching and Teacher Leadership (TTL) master’s program — the last leg of its seven-year effort to reimagine how the school will prepare education professionals to attack the complex challenges facing learners of all ages, now and into the future. The launch of the TTL Program embodies the core commitment that drove HGSE’s curricular innovation: The school’s longstanding dedication to expansive, equitable, transformational opportunity for learners everywhere.

When the TTL Program welcomes its first cohort of students in 2022–23, it will join the four other programs that launched this year as part of HGSE’s redesigned master’s degree, which also includes coursework dedicated to broad foundational knowledge and specific domain- and role-based expertise.

A focus on teachers

TTL will represent a significant advancement in Harvard’s focus on teachers, exploring the most effective ways to prepare both teachers and teacher leaders and to create schools that can respond to the challenges the world faces today. Dual teacher certification pathways will build on the work of the Harvard Teacher Fellows (HTF) Program, founded in 2015 as an innovative model to prepare Harvard College students to become teachers, as well as the successful legacy of HGSE’s Teacher Education master’s program (TEP). And TTL’s leadership strand will prepare experienced teachers for new roles in schools. With those two elements together, HGSE is poised to expand and elevate teacher education at the university and in the field.

“This really is the capstone of our reimagining of the master’s degree for professionals seeking to have meaningful impact in improving education for communities around the world,” says HGSE Dean Bridget Long. “The creation of the TTL program is part of a tremendous effort to advance our training and engagement of aspiring educators while building on the lessons and success of our earlier programs. HGSE has long been committed to preparing innovative, equity-minded educators — and to charting pathways across the university for the study and practice of education, which is one of the central issues of our time.”

By consolidating multiple and previously separate teacher education pathways under one umbrella, TTL will provide holistic preparation for new and experienced educators, drawing on research-backed practices that are effective and inclusive.

“TTL will expand and drive forward HGSE’s historic mission to change lives through education — to prepare our master’s students to design and lead transformative learning experiences. We’ve designed TTL to welcome the diverse range of students — with various levels of experience — who seek to contribute to society as educators. I’m especially excited about the benefits of mixing our pre-service teacher candidates with teacher leaders who come to HGSE with more experience and insight,” says Heather Hill, the Hazen-Nicoli Professor of Teacher Learning and Leadership and faculty co-chair of the new program.