Abstract

This exploratory study examined the frequency and content of text-based interactions between special education mentors (n=22) and mentees (n=50) within the Electronic Mentoring for Student Success Program (eMSS). Perceived outcomes of participants, based on an open ended survey question, were also analyzed. The Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Continuum (InTASC) Model Core Standards (2011) were used to qualitatively code the conversations between novice teachers and their mentors. Support for all standards was found with learning environments (n=850), professional learning and ethical practices (n=878), and leadership and collaboration (n=906) being the most common topics of discussion. However, several standards (i.e. assessment and content knowledge) were difficult to code because demonstration is required which cannot be observed in an asynchronous site. Frequency of interactions revealed a surprising result that mentors posted (n=675) twice as often as mentees (n=322). Mentees reported perceived outcomes in three main areas: collaboration, pedagogical knowledge, and emotional support.

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