The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is the leading voice on educator preparation. AACTE represents more than 800 postsecondary institutions with educator preparation programs dedicated to high-quality, evidence-based preparation that assures educators are ready to teach all learners.


AACTE's members across the country prepare educators to meet the needs of every learner through innovative practice, rigorous programs, and continuous improvement.


AACTE leads the field in advocating for and building capacity for high-quality educator preparation programs in a dynamic landscape.


AACTE is committed to:

Quality – AACTE champions high-quality preparation that ensures the effectiveness, diversity, and readiness of professional educators to serve all students.

Advocacy – AACTE advocates for federal and state policies that enable institutions to pursue continuous improvement and innovation in educator preparation.

Partnerships – AACTE advances partnerships between colleges of education and PK-12 institutions at every level to ensure educator preparation strengthens classroom instruction, supports local schools, and reflects student needs.

Core Values

AACTE and its members hold central key values that undergird their work.

  • Serving all learners – Today's educators enter highly diverse schools – students with disabilities, English language learners, gifted and talented students, children from low-income families, children with a multitude of racial, ethnic, cultural backgrounds, etc. – and AACTE members are committed to ensuring that their candidates are ready to be successful with all of their students.
  • Equity – Preparation programs are committed to preparing educators who have a deep belief that every child can learn and should be given equitable opportunities to learn.
  • High-quality learning – AACTE members are committed to providing high-quality learning environments both on their campuses and in PK-12 classrooms, where candidates practice what they learn frequently and under supervision of faculty and PK-12 practitioners.
  • Professionalism – AACTE and its members prepare candidates who are ready to be not only successful educators but also members of the larger professional community. Candidates graduate from their programs with a clear understanding of the ethical responsibilities of being an educator and the opportunities for contributing to the larger good of their districts and states.
  • Diversity – AACTE members are committed to increasing the diversity of their faculty and the educators they prepare so that they more accurately reflect the diversity within PK-12 schools.
  • Scholarship and knowledge production – AACTE members are committed to high research standards and to producing scholarship that contributes to educational practice.
  • Accountability – AACTE members hold themselves to high standards and embrace accountability measures that demonstrate programs' effectiveness and contribute to program improvement.
  • Infusing current knowledge and practices into programs – AACTE members are committed to preparing educators who understand how children learn and can utilize high-impact instructional strategies in their classrooms – such as leveraging technology, analyzing student data, etc.

Strategic Goals

  • Accelerate meaningful improvement in educator preparation by promoting and supporting the adoption of high standards for accountability and assessment that are linked to PK-12 student outcomes. AACTE respects the diversity of preparation providers across the country but also recognizes the need to reach consensus on defining key components of high-quality preparation programs and meaningful measures of accountability and assessment for programs and candidates. Additionally, the Association must work more seriously toward bridging the gap between the higher education and non-higher education providers.
  • Lead the charge to secure state and federal policy that advances high-quality student learning through educator preparation and development. One of the key functions of AACTE is to advocate on behalf of its members and to develop their advocacy skills to strengthen federal and state policies on educator preparation. Preparation providers must be at the table as Congress, the presidential administration, and state policy makers deliberate on policies that impact the profession.
  • Launch and sustain system-wide initiatives to promote the diversity of the professional community and to prepare educators who can serve diverse learners. AACTE has an explicit commitment to increasing the diversity of the teaching workforce and the professoriate and to ensuring that candidates are ready to meet the needs of diverse learners.
  • Advance implementation of high-quality learning practices. As research and practice reveal more to the profession on what contributes to an effective preparation program, AACTE will leverage those findings through increasing members' opportunities to understand and incorporate them into their own programs.

Innovation Exchange

Innovation Exchange logo The Innovation Exchange is a AACTE initiative that supports university-based educator preparation programs in responding to the changing demands of the workforce and in preparing educators to meet the needs of PK-12 learners. The activity and programming of the Innovation Exchange are guided by the following four interdependent components: Pedagogy, Workforce Development, Capacity Building, and Documentation and Synthesizing Research.

Learn more

Become a Member!

See what membership with AACTE has to offer and the many benefits available to you.

Learn more