Undergraduate School of Education Admission

Admission to the Professional Educator Certification Track

Candidates are formally admitted to a Professional Educator Certification Track after completion of four semesters of full-time or full-time equivalent (minimum 60 credits) of college level study. There are three Professional Educator Certification Tracks: Grades PreK-4 (Early Childhood Education), Grades 4-8 (Middle Level Education), and Secondary/K-12 Education.

Candidates will be admitted to the Professional Educator Certification Track on the basis of their qualifications with a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 and qualifying scores on the required PDE approved tests of basic skills. Content area QPAs are also reviewed for candidates in secondary/K12 education programs. Additionally, all candidates are required to submit an application that includes a demonstration of their progress toward meeting the Themes and Domains of the Leading Teacher Program. A limited number of candidates may be admitted for admission to the certification program who do not meet the minimum QPA but who have passed the required basic skills exams.

Learning Outcomes

The Leading Teacher Program meets the standards of excellence for the practice of teaching in the 21st century. Teacher candidates are challenged throughout the Leading Teacher Program to develop beginning expertise in the critical aspects of becoming a leading teacher and to pursue continuous improvement in the following domains:

  • Domain I –Becoming a Learning Theorist. This domain emphasizes an understanding of pedagogy and the cognitive and affective process that will address the learning needs of people of all ages.
  • Domain II –Becoming a Curriculum Designer. This domain emphasizes curricular decisions based on research theory, informed practice, and recommendations of the learned societies.
  • Domain III –Becoming an Expert in School Context. This domain explores the intellectual, ethical, cultural, economic, political, and government influences upon schools including traditional and emerging perspectives.
  • Domain IV –Becoming a Master Practitioner. This domain develops competence in instructional strategies, technology, reflective practice, school-community-professional linkages and academic training.
  • Domain V –Becoming an Instructional Leader. This domain emphasizes the leader and knowledge of self in relationship with the group and the relationship with the community and society.

Additionally, learning experiences that reflect the themes of Leadership, Diversity and Technology are infused throughout the Leading Teacher Program.

Leadership - A leading teacher is a life-long learner inspiring a community of learners to pursue continuous improvement and growth.

Diversity - A leading teacher is an advocate, creating learning experiences that demonstrate sensitivity, acknowledging students of all abilities and valuing human differences.

Technology - A leading teacher is an architect building learning environments that acknowledge and incorporate the power of technology.

Teacher candidates in the School of Education must comply with all Pennsylvania Department of Education requirements for certification. State regulations change from time to time and have precedence over University catalogs and School of Education Handbooks for minimum requirements. Teacher candidates will be notified of any modification regarding programs of study. The Office of Student and Academic Services, the Undergraduate Advisors, and Program Directors make the program requirements and changes known to students.

Special Education

The Leading Teacher Program (LTP) provides all education majors with significant preparation in adapting instruction to meet the needs of students with learning and behavior challenges. This model reflects best practice in collaborative partnerships and the knowledge and competencies necessary for educating students with disabilities in the nation's schools. This preparation is transcripted as special education course credits (LTSP) in each of the three certification programs. Teacher candidates interested in adding certification in special education may enroll in the B.S.Ed. Dual Certification in General and Special Education. This is a Dual Degree Special Education (K-12) and General Education (PK-4, Middle Level, or Secondary) program, or they may choose to apply for the Master of Education LTP in Special Education. Candidates may be able to start this graduate coursework while still enrolled in their UG certification program.