Teacher education programs in the School of Arts and Sciences emphasize the development of knowledge, attitudes, and skills which constitute professional competence and caring. Programs provide strong preparation in teaching to the New York State Learning Standards, and ensure a sound understanding of the educational needs of students across the range of developmental levels encompassed by the certificate. Course work and practical experiences in a variety of communities enable students to work effectively with a diverse student population, and to practice skills for interacting with parents or caregivers. Several of the education courses, starting from the freshman year, require extensive field work and close collaboration with local schools.

The Education Department, in collaboration with other departments in the School of Arts and Sciences and area schools, provides a series of learning activities and field experiences leading to the initial New York State teacher certification in childhood education (Grades 1-6), adolescence education (Grades 7-12), and visual arts education (Grades K-12). Additional course work and fieldwork prepare students for dual certification in the following areas: childhood/early childhood (Birth-Grade 2), childhood/middle childhood specialist (Grades 5-9), childhood/students with disabilities, adolescence/middle childhood specialist (Grade 5-9), and adolescence/students with disabilities.

The Education Department values a strong academic major for teachers and educators in all fields. As this is also the position adopted by the teacher education movement across the country, the School of Arts and Sciences requires an academic major along with the teacher certification program.

The following are acceptable majors for candidates in the childhood education certification area: art history, biology, chemistry, classics, communication arts, economics, English, French, history, interdisciplinary studies, Latin, mathematics, philosophy, political science, psychology, religious studies, sociology, and Spanish.

Admission to the Education Department

Students from the School of Arts and Sciences are allowed to enroll in three courses, EDU 118, EDU 120, and EDU 239Z, before applying for formal admission to a teacher education program. After the completion of 45 credits of college study, students will be required to file a written application of admission. Typically students will file during the spring semester of their sophomore year, prior to the advisement period, after completing the three department courses.

Requirements for admission to the Education Department include:

  1. Written application form with writing sample;
  2. Overall GPA of 2.7 after 45 credits of college study and no outstanding incomplete grades;
  3. B- competency in all Education Department program course work;
  4. Passage of the New York State Teacher Certification Examination in Liberal Arts and Sciences;
  5. Recommendations from fieldwork supervisors;
  6. Recommendations from advisor in major department and advisor from the Education Department; and
  7. Competency level performance on a standardized measure of reading comprehension. Mathematics competency is evaluated by performance in liberal arts core math course.

Continuing status in the Education Department requires students to maintain an overall 2.7 GPA and to attain B- competency in all program course work.

Dual Certificates with Childhood Education

Students may qualify for a second certificate with childhood education in one of three areas: early childhood education (birth-grade 2), middle childhood specialist (grades 5-9), and students with disabilities (grades 1-6). Students must complete all requirements for the childhood education certificate as well as specific additional course and field work requirements for the second certificate. Eligibility to enroll in graduate level courses is determined by the CNR Graduate School. The following are required of students wishing to enroll in courses in the CNR Graduate School of Education: a 3.0 GPA in all undergraduate Education Department course work, a recommendation of the chair of the Education Department, and the successful completion of the Graduate School writing sample.

Additional requirements for Students with Disabilities at the Childhood Education Level Certificate:

EDU 370Z Fieldwork: Special Education, 1 cr. (Additional 50 hours)
EDU 375Z Curriculum and Techniques for Teaching Children with Disabilities in Inclusive and Self-Contained Settings, 3 cr.
EDU 494Z Observation and Student Teaching: Special Education, 5 cr.
SED 643 Educational Assessment of the Special Child, 3 cr. (Graduate level)

Students will need to complete a course in statistics (either PSY 230 Psychological Statistics OR MTH 117 Elementary Statistics) as a prerequisite to taking SED 643. Candidates preparing to teach students with disabilities at the childhood level will complete EDU 493Z for 5 credits at either grade level (4-6) and EDU 494Z for 5 credits in special education-childhood level at the other grade level.

Most teacher education programs are designed for a B.A. degree which requires students to earn a minimum of 90 credits in liberal arts. Depending on the academic major and area of certification, students may need to exceed the minimum requirements of 120 credits.

Modifications in teacher education programs will comply with the state's changes in certification requirements. Students need to consult regularly with their Education Department advisor regarding the latest program requirements in their area of certification and out-of-state certification requirements.

Students in the Education Department of the School of Arts and Sciences, as well those in the Graduate School of the College are required to take the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations. During 2000-2001, 159 students completed registered programs on the undergraduate and graduate levels. During this year, 95% of those who took the Assessment of Teaching Skills-Written subtest passed, and 92% of those who took the Liberal Arts and Sciences subtest passed. Statewide institutional pass rates were 96% and 95%, respectively.

Certification programs are subject to change by the New York State Education Department without prior notification.

The dean and the faculty of the School reserve the right to be selective in admitting students to the Teacher Education Programs and to student teaching, and in recommending students for state certification. To maintain eligibility to continue in the Education Department after admission, students must attain a B- competency level in all professional course work, receive positive evaluations from field placement teachers and college faculty, and earn overall GPA of 2.7.

The Education Department has an articulation agreement with Westchester Community College to facilitate their graduates' entrance into the teacher education programs. Individuals from other two- and four-year colleges are also successfully accommodated in the programs. Transfer students must meet with the department chair before registering for any classes. These students are expected to meet CNR program standards. Therefore, transfer credits in teacher education program courses with grades below B- will be accepted only at the discretion of the department chair.

Courses in the teacher education programs are taught by over twelve full-time faculty from the Education, English, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Social Work and Physical Education departments, as well as by carefully selected adjunct faculty who are practitioners in the field. Teachers, reading specialists, and administrators from local schools occasionally teach departmental courses off campus, in nearby public school buildings.