The Teacher Education Department offers high-quality learning opportunities and extensive clinical experiences to meet your personal and professional goals as a teacher candidate in Bilingual/ Bicultural Education, Early Childhood Education, and Elementary Education.
You will have the opportunity to interact with knowledgeable and caring faculty experienced in the Pre-K – Grade 12 classrooms who are ready to help you apply the latest research knowledge and best instructional practices in your teaching. You will engage in community and professional experiences that prepare you to teach all students in culturally and linguistically diverse school settings.
The Teacher Education Department encompasses three undergraduate initial teacher licensure programs: for undergraduate candidates who wish to become licensed teachers in the State of Illinois in Bilingual Education, Early Childhood Education and Elementary Education. All teacher preparation programs in the Teacher Education Department are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (N.C.A.T.E.) and the Illinois State Board of Education (I.S.B.E.).
Early Childhood Education
Upon completion of the program, the student will meet the current State of Illinois standards for Early Childhood Education (ECED) licensure.
The student will:
- Develop skills, insights, and attitudes crucial to effective teaching of young children
- Develop knowledge of the education of young children from birth to eight years of age
- Become aware of Early Childhood education program models and designs
- Develop necessary pedagogical competencies for teaching young children
- Utilize current research and exposure to classroom practices to understand how young children develop and learn
- Become familiar with the National Association for the Education of Young Children (N.A.E.Y.C.), its principles, guidelines, and ethics for working with young children.
The Early Childhood Education Program offers courses of study leading to the Bachelor of Arts degree. The major in Early Childhood Education includes 49 credit hours of required courses.
In completing the undergraduate major in Early Childhood Education, students will:
(a) become knowledgeable of the diverse philosophies and models of early childhood curricula, identify the instructional needs of children in multicultural groups and of exceptional children mainstreamed into the regular classrooms;
(b) acquire skill in designing and implementing curriculum in early childhood and primary programs in all subject matter areas; become knowledgeable of the role of informal and formal instruction in the child’s acquisition and development of literacy skills;
(c) acquire skill in using diagnostic and assessment techniques for evaluation as a basis for curriculum planning, and develop competence in utilizing positive classroom management procedures.
Required Professional Sequence Courses:
NOTE: Students are expected to complete courses in one Block before moving into the next. However, if only one course is remaining in a current Block, students can be permitted to move ahead into the next Block, as long as the remaining course is not a clinical experience course.
Eligibility for Student Teaching:
- Students must complete all the specified requirements and pass the ILTS Content Area test to be eligible for student teaching.
- In order to be authorized for student teaching, students must meet with the program advisor for an academic record review.
- To qualify for student teaching, students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.75 in the Professional Sequence.
- No required professional education course may be taken more than twice to achieve an acceptable grade.
- To be entitled to licensure by the State of Illinois, a student must earn a grade of B or better in clinical courses and in student teaching
This program is undergoing curricular changes. Please consult the department for the latest requirements and information.
The Elementary Education Program provides students with knowledge of philosophical and psychological elements of teaching and learning, general and specific methods of instruction, and clinical experiences of at least 100 hours in local schools prior to the full-day student teaching experience.
Upon completion of the Program students will:
- Meet current State of Illinois standards for Elementary Education Licensure
- Gain knowledge of philosophical and educational principles underlying the teaching of elementary students.
- Gain knowledge and practice methods of teaching elementary students.
- Qualify for Elementary Education Endorsement
- Complete 100 clock hours in a local school and a student teaching experience.
Students completing the Elementary Education major will:
- have theoretical and practical knowledge of principles of curriculum development and design which reflect best practices in elementary schools
- have an understanding of and the skill with children- differentiate instruction of diverse backgrounds and abilities
- know how to plan, implement and integrate a variety of learning activities for student-centered classrooms
- have attained specialized knowledge of content and instructional materials, as well as skills in using technology in elementary schools
- effectively apply classroom management techniques demonstrating an understanding of collaborative learning strategies and group processes
- have attained skills in designing instruments to assess student performance and in using assessment to improve teaching and learning
- be able to integrate learning activities in contexts which are interesting and meaningful to elementary school students
- be reflective educators who are committed to life-long professional development and growth.
- Students who complete this program qualify for elementary education licensure. Upon licensure, they are eligible to teach elementary school (grades K-6).
Degree and Program completion/Entitlement Requirements
In order to graduate from the program and be entitled to state licensure, students must complete a minimum of 120 hours of study which include the following requirements:
- University General Education Program
- Professional Education Coursework
- Approved Minor or Area of Concentration
- Additional Courses and Tests Required for State Licensure
- Program Completion Criteria
- To meet the graduation requirement of 120 hrs.
Bilingual/Bicultural Elementary Education
Upon completion of the Program, the student will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education and meet current State of Illinois standards for Elementary Education licensure with a Bilingual-Bicultural endorsement.
The student will
- Develop skills, insights, and attitudes crucial to effective teaching for the bilingual/bicultural child
- Become aware of ongoing multilingual education programs.
- Become conversant in both first and second languages in teaching subject matter areas.
- Realize the importance of ethnic-cultural ties to the learning process
- Develop the necessary pedagogical competencies for the teaching profession.
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