Education/Teacher Education Programs
Elementary Education, Special Education
The teacher education programs take a practical, multifaceted, student centered approach to preparing teachers. Content knowledge and pedagogy are developed to prepare teacher education students for teaching all learners. Professionalism in diverse school contexts is modeled and practiced through courses and related field experience. Teacher education students create a portfolio focused on self-reflection to document growth toward program goals.
The School of Education has adopted the INTASC (Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium) standards for the teacher education program, effective with students beginning the program in the fall of 2011. Students must satisfy these ten standards to complete one of our programs and be recommended for a teaching license. These standards are education-specific manifestations of the college-wide learning goals described on page 6 of this catalog.
INTASC Standards 2011
Standard 1: The teacher understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences.
Standard 2: The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards.
Standard 3: The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self motivation.
Standard 4: The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the discipline(s) he or she teaches and creates learning experiences that make these aspects of the discipline accessible and meaningful for learners to assure mastery of the content.
Standard 5: The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.
Standard 6: The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making.
Standard 7: The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context.
Standard 8: The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage learners
Standard 9: The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner.
Standard 10: The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning, to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth, and to advance the profession.
All students who wish to pursue an undergraduate education licensure program must make formal application for admission to the Teacher Education Programs. Students who enter Westminster as freshmen are encouraged to complete all or most of their Liberal Education courses in the first three semesters and register for EDUC 302 in their fourth semester. Students who apply for admission to the School of Education as transfer students are encouraged to contact the Westminster College Office of Admissions at least a semester before they plan to transfer. The admissions process includes the following steps:
Students are admitted each semester and acceptance or denial to the program is based upon the review of applications by the Education faculty and the Teacher Education Program Advisory Council.
The following courses may be taken prior to formal admission to the Education Programs: EDUC 201, 205, 220, 221, 252, 300, 302, 303, and SPED 303. Students may not enroll in other education classes without being admitted to the program.
Note: All upper division, education transfer courses must be approved by the Dean or Program Director.
To student teach, students must have been admitted to the Teacher Education Program and must complete the requirements listed below.
Appeal Process: A student has the right to appeal a decision denying admission to the Teacher Education Programs or denying the opportunity to student teach. The student has fifteen days after receiving a denial letter to petition the Dean, in writing, for reconsideration.
Note: Formal admission to the Teacher Education Program does not guarantee a recommendation
All students must maintain a 2.75 cumulative GPA and a 3.0 cumulative GPA in education courses and have a minimum grade of C+ in all education courses. In credit/no credit education courses, students must perform work at the level of C+ or higher to receive credit. Education courses may only be repeated once.
All students must complete the appropriate state required content test(s) in order to meet the requirement for an initial Utah Level I teaching license.
Students must meet the college-wide graduation requirements:
All degree-seeking students must satisfy general program requirements listed above and must also satisfy requirements detailed under the specific education program.
Students who are seeking their first licensure must take a minimum of 30 credit hours in education at Westminster College and must also meet college residency requirements. All coursework must be planned with the student’s advisor. Elementary education majors must have an academic or teaching content minor.
Acceptable academic or teaching minors and acceptable transfer academic or teaching minors must be approved by the dean or program director.
Completion of an approved academic or teaching minor is required (see individual program listings for details). Students must pass the requisite Praxis Test before applying for student teaching.
Recommended Plan of Study for Elementary Education (K–6)
Westminster undergraduates interested in secondary education are encouraged to consider the Accelerated Master of Arts in Teaching Secondary Program, open only to graduates of Westminster College who have completed the following courses as part of their undergraduate studies:
EDUC 303 Teaching with Technology
This program allows students who have completed a bachelor’s degree in a teaching subject to complete the requirements for a Masters Degree and a secondary teaching license in one year after graduation. Students who choose this program will take only the four Education courses listed above as undergraduates, allowing them to focus on preparation in their teaching discipline. Students who are considering applying for the Accelerated MAT Secondary program should meet with the program director early in their undergraduate career, preferably before their junior year.