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iSTEP Institute

iSTEP Institute brings together teacher educators from around the world to give them the time, focus, and resources to share their understanding of teacher education, interact with Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP) faculty and staff, and plan for their own enhancements.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no iSTEP Institute in the spring of 2022. Get to know the program below and check back in the fall of 2022 for updates on future iSTEP events and registration.

iSTEP attendees paying attention

What is iSTEP?

iSTEP is a one-week institute that convenes teams of teacher educators from around the world to observe teacher education at Stanford. Participants engage with Stanford faculty, teacher candidates, and experienced staff, and tour K–12 schools to meet cooperating teachers and administrators. The institute culminates with participating teams designing action plans that apply STEP principles to their local contexts.

“I was inspired to work more with themes such as marginalization and equality together with the students, and I was inspired to strengthen the relationship between our campus and clinical partners.”

-- participant from Norway

Female teacher working with a table of students.

About the Stanford Teacher Education Program

The Stanford Teacher Education Program has been consistently recognized among the top-ranked teacher preparation programs in the United States. STEP prepares teacher leaders with an understanding of the strengths and needs of a diverse student population, and with a commitment to equity for all students.

The program is designed to connect scholarship, research, and practice; foster a commitment to inquiry and reflection in the classroom; and encourage collaboration across individuals, institutions, and communities.

Learn more about STEP

“We had a very intense week, and every moment was dedicated to exchanging ideas. Lunch, dinner, and both the school visits were good opportunities for exchanging ideas among the participants and the STEP team.”

--participant from Brazil

About the institute

Stanford formalized iSTEP Institute, or Inquiry into the Stanford Teacher Education Program, in 2010 in response to requests from educators to observe the STEP program.

During a typical iSTEP week participants:

Examine principles of powerful education

Participants spend time in the Center for Educational Research at Stanford (CERAS) analyzing the core principles of STEP and observing STEP classes, and meeting with GSE faculty. Participants also attend a consultation between a small group of teacher candidates and their university supervisors.

Experience STEP clinical placements

Participants visit STEP’s K–12 partner schools to observe teacher candidates in their clinical placements, as well as to meet with school administrators. Schools include small charter schools, large comprehensive high schools, comprehensive high schools with small learning communities, and diverse elementary schools.

Develop networks

Throughout the week, participating teams meet to discuss how to apply the principles of powerful teaching to their local contexts. On the final day, participants debrief and summarize their experiences, as well as present their action plans and timelines for the future.

View a PDF of a sample weekly agenda

Applying to iSTEP

  • We strongly recommend that participants be comfortable with written and spoken English.
  • Sending teams, rather than individuals, is critical to achieving the goals of the institute.
  • Tuition for the institute is $2,500 per participant and covers materials, seminars at the university, visits to the schools, the opening dinner, and the closing lunch.

Check back in the fall of 2022 for more details about applications, travel, transportation, and accommodations.

Contact us

For more information about how the iSTEP Institute might support your work in teacher education, contact

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