Undergraduate teacher education in curriculum and instruction is built on the guiding principles of the Conceptual Framework for Preparation of Teachers and Other School Personnel:

  1. Professionalism and reflection on the vocation;
  2. Human development and respect for diversity;
  3. Connection of teaching and assessment;
  4. Technology integration;
  5. Understanding of content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and their alignment with standards; and
  6. Collaboration with stakeholders.

The program includes general education, professional education, field experiences and a content major. The professional education experience begins with the Introduction to the Education Profession course and includes four full semesters of field experiences. Through intensive academic and field experience combined with systematic student reflection, the goal of this program is to produce teachers who are competent, collaborative, reflective professionals.

Criteria for entering, matriculating and exiting the program, and for field experiences, graduation and licensure are clearly outlined and monitored by faculty and community professional advisory groups.

Requirements for these criteria are detailed under the Policies heading found at the beginning of the College of Applied Studies section of this catalog. Students should see an advisor in the College of Applied Studies Advising office to determine the appropriate program and check sheet.

Applied Learning

Students are required to complete an applied learning or research experience to graduate from programs in the School of Education.

Applied learning occurs when students develop knowledge, skills and values from personal direct experiences that go beyond the traditional lecture or lab. Applied learning encompasses a variety of activities including service learning, undergraduate research, theses, dissertations and other creative (e.g., live performances) and professional services (e.g., practicums, internships, clinical rotations and cooperative education).

The applied learning experience requirements for the initial licensure programs develop knowledge, skills and values primarily through practicums and internships. These internship experiences allow students to apply educational theory to practice. In addition, students complete a teacher work sample, which is a product of research in the K–12 classroom that includes data collection, teaching, data analysis and reflection.