Ursinus College Catalog

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Education

Associate Professors Spencer (Chair), Mackler.

The Education Department offers an interdisciplinary approach into the study of the history, philosophy, psychology, and methodology of teaching and learning in public and private schools of the United States. Seminal educational texts, such as those of Rousseau, Emerson and Dewey, are studied and analyzed in the context of more recent educational theorists and reformers. Field experiences in every course help students to ground theory into the logistics and realities of the present day classroom. With an emphasis on action research, reflectivity, and social agency, coursework entails inductive, collaborative, and active learning through student-generated interests, readings, projects, and presentations.

The Education Department is a service department which does not offer a major in education, but does offer teaching certification in 14 disciplines, a minor in elementary education, and a minor in secondary education. Students who are considering careers in educational settings or who seek to broaden their liberal arts knowledge base often enroll in the introductory or elective education courses to ascertain the extent of their interest in pursuing additional coursework.

The Ursinus College Teacher Education Program is dedicated to preparing education professionals who can effectively inspire, motivate, and educate all of their students for positive participation in a culturally and technologically expanding world.

This includes:

  • Learning the history and basis of education to build a foundation to integrate different perspectives and a broad creative attitude.
  • Enabling students to adapt to the shifting institutions of individual school and state education programs in order to meet the needs of all students, including those in a variety of districts containing a multitude of resources.
  • Valuing exceptionalities, differences of cultures and lifestyles as a foundation of a pluralistic democracy.
  • Collaborating with fellow educators by way of field-work, resources, and professional organizations.
  • Applying knowledge and experience achieved in Ursinus College’s education program to the ever-changing modern world.

Teaching Certification

The Teaching Certification program prepares students for entry-level knowledge and skills for public or private school positions in the following disciplines:

Biology (7-12)

General Science (7-12)

Latin (K-12)

Chemistry (7-12)

German (K-12)

Mathematics (7-12)

English (7-12)

Health and Physical Education (K-12)

Physics (7-12)

Environmental Studies (K-12)

Social Studies (7-12)

French (K-12)

Japanese (K-12)

Spanish (K-12)

 

Students seeking teaching certification must fulfill the following requirements before they can be officially admitted into the Ursinus College Teacher Certification Program:

  • Completion of 48 hours of college-level study;
  • Completion of CIE-100 and CIE-200;
  • Completion of one course in Mathematics; and one four-credit Q course, or two four credit courses in mathematics;
  • Completion of EDUC-210;
  • Passing scores on the Pre-Service Academic Performance Assessment (PAPA, Reading, Writing, Mathematics) or qualifying SAT or ACT scores (inquire in the Education department);
  • Attainment of an overall GPA of 3.00

Teacher candidates must maintain the required overall GPA every semester thereafter, to be able to student teach and to be eligible for recommendation for teaching certification. To complete the observation hours required for most education courses, teacher candidates are required to file a Pennsylvania Criminal Background Check, Federal Criminal History Record (finger prints) and a PA Child Abuse History Clearance. They must also provide verification of a negative TB tine test. Additional information on clearances may be obtained from the Education Department.

One year prior to student teaching, teacher candidates must schedule an interview with the Education Department for approval to register for EDUC-405 (Student Teaching) for the following year.

In addition to maintaining an overall GPA to be eligible to student teach candidates must meet all of the following criteria to achieve certification:

  • A 3.00 average in Education Department core courses (210, 265, 320, 350, 360, 375, and 443).
    Note: Students seeking certification in Health and Physical Education are required to complete ESS-355 and 356 instead of EDUC-350 and 443.
  • Specified major departmental GPA in the candidate’s certification area;
  • Recommendation by the candidate’s major department;
  • Attain at least a grade of B in student teaching;
  • Pass the PDE 430 Evaluation;
  • Pass Praxis II (Content Area) exams;
  • Demonstrate good moral character.

The Pennsylvania Department of Education will certify candidates for the provisional Instructional I certificate upon recommendation of the Education Chair who serves as the State Certification Officer for the College. (Pennsylvania requires U.S. citizenship for certification, except for the teaching of foreign languages.) Reciprocal agreements extend certification eligibility to most states, but some states require additional certification tests. Candidates who wish to teach outside Pennsylvania should contact state Education Departments for further information. Eligibility for permanent certification in any state depends upon successful full-time teaching and professional development requirements which vary among individual states.

Teacher Certification Course Sequence

The following are the recommended course sequences for teacher certification. Students and major advisors should consult the Education Department, especially in cases that do not conform to these sequences. All Education coursework must be completed prior to student teaching. Advising sheets for each certification subject area are available through the Education Department.

Note: Field experience hours in local public schools are required in EDUC-265, 320, 350, 375, and 443. Students must arrange transportation for all field experiences and student teaching. Students enrolled in any course with a required field experience must file a PA Criminal Background Check, a PA Child Abuse History, and a PA Federal Criminal History Record (finger prints). They must also provide verification of a negative TB tine test. See the Education Department for details.

The courses listed below are four credits unless noted otherwise.

 

Student Teaching in Spring Semester

Year 1

EDUC-210 Foundations of Education

   

Year 2

EDUC-265 Educational Psychology (5 hours field experience)
EDUC-320 Diversity of Learners (10 hours field experience)

 

 

Year 3

EDUC-350 Curriculum and Instruction (15 hours field experience)
EDUC-360 Teaching English Language Learners (2 credits)
EDUC-375 The Inclusive Classroom (15 hours field experience)

 

 

Year 4

Fall Semester EDUC-443 Methods Practicum (2 credits) (25 hours field experience)

 

Spring Semester EDUC-405 Student Teaching (12 credits)

 

Spring Semester EDUC-406 Professional Applications (2 credits)

 

(See 9th semester and athletics/employment note below.)

   
 

Student Teaching in Fall Semester

Year 1

EDUC-210 Foundations of Education

   
Year 2

EDUC-265 Educational Psychology (5 hours field experience)

 

EDUC-320 Diversity of Learners (10 hours field experience)

   
Year 3

Fall Semester  EDUC-350 Curriculum and Instruction (15 hours field experience)
Fall Semester EDUC-375 The Inclusive Classroom (15 hours field experience)

 

Spring Semester  EDUC-360 Teaching English Language Learners (2 credits)
Spring Semester EDUC-443 Methods Practicum (2 credits) (25 hours field experience)

   
Year 4

Fall Semester EDUC-405 Student Teaching (12 credits)
Fall Semester EDUC-406 Professional Applications (2 credits)

 

Note: EDUC-405 and 406 are taken concurrently and should not be scheduled during a student’s participation in athletics or employment. No other courses, day or evening, may be scheduled. While most students complete student teaching during their senior year, some students elect to student teach in a 9th semester; see the Education Department for details.
Health and Physical Education (HPE) certification students do not take EDUC-350 and EDUC-443; instead, they should take ESS-356 (fall semester only; 28 hours field experience) and ESS-355 (spring semester only; 12 hours field experience). Both courses require clearances and are offered every other year.

Requirements for Minors

Students from any major may choose to minor in Education.

Minor in Elementary Education

Students who expect to pursue careers in which they will work with pre-school or elementary school-age children may minor in Elementary Education. This option can strengthen eligibility for admission to graduate school in such areas as elementary school teaching, school guidance or psychology, speech pathology, etc. Course requirements include EDUC-210, 265, and 320; PSYC-345; and one from EDUC-402, 434, or 446. (PSYC-330 is recommended.)

Minor in Secondary Education

Students who express interest in working with adolescents often decide to minor in Secondary Education. Course requirements include EDUC-210, 265, and 320; PSYC-355; and one from EDUC-402, 434, or 446. (PSYC-330 is recommended.) 

Courses

EDUC-210. Foundations of Education Dr. Spencer, Dr. Mackler.

This course introduces students to the philosophical, sociological, political, and historical foundations of the contemporary public school system in the United States, with a special emphasis on the secondary school. The central aim of the course is to develop students’ ability to think about complex questions related to the purposes and practices of schooling in a democratic society. The course will be seminar-style, with students expected to engage collaboratively in philosophical discussions about essential questions in education. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS.)

EDUC-265. Educational Psychology Dr. Spencer

An examination of psychological principles and how they can illuminate processes of learning and teaching, especially among adolescents. The course will explore cognitive, social, emotional, and moral development in multiple social contexts. It will also emphasize theories of learning and motivation and apply these to the development of positive and productive classroom learning environments. Field experience required. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS.)

EDUC-320. Diversity of Learners Faculty

An examination of multiple forms of diversity among schoolchildren and legal and procedural aspects of educating diverse students in regular classrooms. The course will focus on foundational knowledge about students with various types of disabilities as well as those who are English Language Learners (ELLs); historical and legal factors that have shaped the education of ELLs and students with disabilities; and processes of collaboration and cooperative teaching that have become integral to the practice of inclusive education. Field experience required. Prerequisite: EDUC-210 and 265; or permission of instructor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS, D.)

EDUC-350. Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Spencer, Dr. Mackler

Approaches to planning, assessment, and instruction for secondary school classrooms. The course aims to provide knowledge and skills necessary for a successful student teaching experience and, beyond that, a conceptual framework for long-term professional growth and excellence. Students will construct unit and lesson plans grounded in philosophical foundations, in core ideas and standards within their academic disciplines, and in knowledge of student diversity and development. Topics will include Understanding by Design, inquiry learning and other teaching strategies, multiple forms and functions of assessment, and the evaluation and use of varied instructional materials. Prerequisites: EDUC-210 and 265. Field experience required. Three hours per week. Four semester hours.

EDUC-351. Research Faculty

Readings and fieldwork designed to introduce students to research methods in education. Students select topics and write a proposal which must be approved by an education adviser. Regular meetings and progress reports and a final paper are required. Prerequisites: EDUC-210 and 265. One semester hour.

EDUC-352. Research Faculty

Same as EDUC-351 but offered in spring. One semester hour.

EDUC-360. Teaching English Language Learners Faculty

Approaches and methods for teaching English Language Learners (ELL) in content area classrooms. Topics will include the process of language acquisition, sociocultural characteristics of ELL students, appropriate instructional strategies to make content comprehensible for ELL students, and appropriate assessments for ELL students. Prerequisites: EDUC-210, 265, 320. Two hours per week. Two semester hours.

EDUC-375. The Inclusive Classroom Faculty

Methods of teaching to meet the needs of diverse learners. The course will emphasize planning, instructional, and assessment strategies that enable regular classroom teachers to meet individual needs while fulfilling common curricular goals. Topics will include the establishment of positive and inclusive learning environments, literacy development and instruction, assistive technology, and principles and practices of differentiated instruction. Prerequisites: EDUC-210, 265, 320. Field experience required. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS, D.)

EDUC-381. Internship Faculty

An off-campus academic/work experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an on-site supervisor. Students must document their experience according to the requirements delineated in the College catalogue section on Internships. Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Prerequisites: Students must have completed 12 semester hours of education coursework and have permission of the supervising faculty member to be eligible for an internship. Graded S/U. 120 hours.Three semester hours.

EDUC-382. Internship Faculty

An off-campus academic/work experience under the supervision of an internship adviser and an on-site supervisor. Students must document their experience according to the requirements delineated in the College catalogue section on Off-Campus Study. Open to juniors and seniors. The term during which the internship work is performed will be noted by one of the following letters, to be added immediately after the internship course number: A (fall), B (winter), C (spring), or D (summer). Internships undertaken abroad will be so indicated by the letter I. The intern must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Prerequisites: Students must have completed 12 semester hours of education coursework and have permission of the supervising faculty member to be eligible for an internship. Graded S/U. 160 hours. Four semester hours.

EDUC/GWMS-402. Identity and Diversity Faculty

An examination of privileges and challenges that come with our roles as individuals and as members of various groups, chosen and unchosen. The course will explore how individual educational experiences are shaped and structured by sociological and historical contexts, especially among individuals who have considered themselves outsiders in terms of race, social class, gender, and/or educational status. Prerequisite: EDUC-210 or permission of instructor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS, D.)

EDUC-405. Student Teaching Faculty

A laboratory course consisting of observation and student teaching. Supervision is provided by faculty in the department of education and normally by other members of the College community in cooperation with teachers from local schools. Conferences and critiques occur between College faculty and student teachers. The course is open only to fourth-year students who meet published academic criteria. In order to receive the College’s recommendation for teacher certification, the student teacher must earn a grade of at least B in this course. Prerequisites: EDUC-210, 265, 320, 350, 360, 375 and 443. Taken with EDUC-406, as part of the Professional Semester. Twelve semester hours.

EDUC-406. Professional Applications Faculty

This course is taken concurrently with student teaching, and gives students an opportunity to engage in guided practice during their student teaching experience. Lesson planning, classroom management and student assessment will all be addressed. Two hours per week. Two semester hours.

EDUC-434. Curriculum Seminar Faculty

A study of selected topics relevant to reforming education in today’s schools, with special attention to curriculum development. Includes field research. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (SS,)

EDUC-443. Methods Practicum Spencer, Faculty

A field-based exploration of teaching and learning in the various subject areas offered in the College’s teacher education program. Students will be placed in field experiences according to their broad field of specialization (mathematics, science, world languages, English, or social studies), with teachers who will immerse them in the observation, analysis and application of instructional approaches in that subject area. Students must budget time to visit schools roughly once per week, for a total of 30 hours over the course of the semester. On-campus evening sessions will be devoted to subject-specific group work, discussion of field experiences, and the distribution and discussion of important resources in the various subject areas. Prerequisites: EDUC-210, 265, 320, and 350. Field experience required (25 hours). Taken the semester prior to student teaching. Two hours per week.Two semester hours.

EDUC-446. Issues and Trends in Contemporary Education Dr. Spencer, Dr. Mackler

This course will introduce students to advanced research in Education by engaging them in an interdisciplinary examination of a broad theme or question about the field of Education. Topics will vary with the instructor(s), will reflect the broader educational goals of valuing exceptionalities, differences of cultures and lifestyles as a foundation of a pluralistic democracy. Prerequisite: EDUC-210 or permission of instructor. Three hours per week. Four semester hours. (D, SS.)

EDUC-491. Research/Independent Work Faculty

Independent investigation of an aspect of teaching, using both the library to examine relevant literature and the school setting as a laboratory for applying theory. Oral progress reports and a major paper are required. Written consent of the research adviser and departmental faculty must be presented at the time of registration. Four semester hours. (I.)

EDUC-492. Research/Independent Work Faculty

Same as EDUC-491, but offered in the spring semester. Four semester hours. (I.)

EDUC-493. Student Teaching Faculty

A laboratory course consisting of observation and student teaching. Supervision is provided by faculty in the department of education and normally by other members of the College community in cooperation with teachers from local schools. Conferences and critiques occur between College faculty and student teachers. The course is open only to 9th semester/post baccalaureate students who meet published academic criteria. In order to receive the College’s recommendation for teacher certification, the student teacher must earn a grade of at least B in this course. Prerequisites: EDUC-210, 265, 320, 350, 360, 375 and 443. Taken with EDUC-406, as part of the Professional Semester. Four semester hours.