Mathematics Teacher Education with University within School model and Flipped Classroom Technique; University Within School: A University-School Partnership Model for Teacher Education

Thursday, 12 May, 2016
Starting time: 
Garanti Bank Amphitheatre

TED University Center for Teaching and Learning is inviting our academicians to the seminars entitled “Mathematics Teacher Education with University within School model and Flipped Classroom Technique” by Assist. Prof. Dr. Zelha Tunç Pekkan, and “University Within School: A University-School Partnership Model for Teacher Education ” by Prof. Dr. Mustafa Özcan  (MEF University).

“Mathematics Teacher Education with University within School model and Flipped Classroom Technique”


I taught ‘Introduction to Mathematics Teaching course’ using Flipped classroom. This was the first time I used flipped classroom to teach this course. The main objective of the course was to introduce the ‘mathematics teaching’ profession to first year students and to have pre-service teachers some teaching experience with children. For this course, we also adapted University within School model, where we valued the experience of being at our work places which is ‘schools.’ MEF University adopted this model for the whole Faculty of Education.  Flipped classroom technique was adopted university wide. Therefore, this course is unique that it connects both University within school model and flipped classroom method.

In Flipped classroom, it is essential to use videos. Throughout 14 weeks of instruction, we had four main sources of videos:

1)  videos that I created related to reading the book called ‘Empowering Beginning Middle School Teachers’

2)  pre-service teachers’ own created videos (related to their teaching of 6th grade students)

3) videos that I took last year during my own teaching of 5th grade mathematics classroom

 4) YouTube videos from a well known mathematics educator, Jo Boaler- Stanford University, about mathematics education.

In the presentation, I will discuss how we used the videos, what the benefits and disadvantages of using them are.

Using University within School model, each pre-service teacher was assigned to a pair of students that they taught parallel concepts to the school mathematics. They had 8-weeks of one-to-one teaching for 2 hours per week.  Related to pre-service teachers’ interactions with 6th grade students, they had weekly reflection journals which they answered structured questions. In the presentation, I will discuss the details of their journals and the feedbacks they gave about their experiences related to the foundations of this course.


Zelha Tunç-Pekkan was born to a family of teachers. After she graduated from Middle East Technical University, Science and Mathematics Education in 2000, she moved to USA. She got her M.S. degree from Indiana University in 2002 and PhD degree in Mathematics Education from University of Georgia in 2008. For her post-doctoral studies, she worked in an interdisciplinary project for teaching fractions with computational tools at one of the most prestigious computer schools in the world, Carnegie Mellon University. After offering undergraduate and graduate courses at the University of Pittsburgh, she taught full year high school mathematics in İstanbul, Turkey. Later, she worked as a faculty member at Yeditepe University, İstanbul and directed many research projects on school-university partnerships. During 2013, she offered graduate courses at the University of Pittsburgh. Since 2014, she has been working as the chair of department of mathematics education, Faculty of Education and Vice Dean at MEF University and teaching middle school mathematics at a public school in Istanbul. She is leading the pioneering team in Turkey, namely MEF Mathematics Teacher Education Team and uses Flipped classroom methods for teacher education programs.

“University Within School: A University-School Partnership Model for Teacher Education”


Universities are the places where scholarly research is undertaken about children regarding their development, motivation and learning. Schools are the places where practitioners use the scientific knowledge produced in universities. To improve both the quality of teacher education and the education provided in K-12 schools, the collaboration between the colleges of education and K-12 schools is not an option but a necessity.

The model, University within School covers everything about teacher education from conceptual framework to selection of students and teaching practice. The dimensions of the model are: (1) Conceptual Framework, (2) Leadership, (3) Faculty Members, (4) Teacher Candidates, (5) Curriculum, (6) Method, and (7) University-School Partnership. Specific objectives of the model are: (1) educating professional teachers, (2) improving student achievement in partner schools, (3) professional development of teachers, (4) professional development of teacher educators, (5) doing research on local educational problems, and (6) creating a signature model of teacher education.

This model has been implemented at MEF University and its partner schools since fall 2014. Assessment of the model through empirical studies shows that the model has a promising future in Turkey. In this presentation the model will be described and also examples from its implementation will be provided.


Prof. Dr. Mustafa Özcan is the Dean of the Faculty of Education at MEF University. He began his career as an elementary school teacher and worked for four years with bilingual students. He continued his education in the area of educational sciences, taught at teacher education schools and worked as an assistant superintendent. Dr. Özcan completed his Master’s degree and began to study towards a PhD in the Department of Social Foundations of Education at the University of Ankara, College of Educational Sciences. Dr. Özcan moved to America to the University of Iowa, College of Education in 1988, during which time he developed a theory for improving teacher performance. He graduated with a PhD in 1993. Dr. Özcan worked as a teacher educator at Clarke University and Rhode Island College in the USA for 22 years. During these years, he developed a university-school partnership model for teacher education, which is called University within School. His two books on teacher education are: Teachers in the Information Age (2011), and University within School (2013). Dr. Özcan worked as a consultant for TED, Bahçeşehir, and Mehmet Akif Ersoy Universities, for the Ministry of National Education and TÜSIAD and taught at Gazi University, College of Education. In April 2016, he presented his ‘University within School’ model at the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Annual Meeting. He also presented his University within School model in various conferences in Turkey, Cyprus, Finland, Italy and the United States.