Content Specialization Requirements*
Not a Stand-Alone Field
A 2.50 Grade Point Average Required
* Health Education is Not a Stand-Alone Field. Candidates specializing in Health Education must also obtain a certification in another content area. Students typically combine Health Education with Physical Education, Science Education or another secondary education major.
**Will also meet the P ED 101M General Studies requirement; if specializing in both Health Education and Physical Education.
***Will also meet General Studies requirements.
The Bachelor of Science in Education
Preparing teacher candidates to enter the teaching profession is the primary responsibility of the Department of Education. Teacher candidates may earn a degree in a variety of content areas and/or endorsements in order to teach in early education, elementary, middle, or secondary classrooms. The Bachelor of Science in Education degree will qualify a teacher candidate for recommendation of initial licensure to the West Virginia Department of Education. This is a requirement, even if the candidate intends to teach in another state. Through reciprocal licensure agreements, graduates may qualify for 92 licensure in other states. Graduates may receive one-year probationary certification while filing to become a citizen of the United States, or when filing a declaration of intent to become a naturalized citizen.
As of January 1, 2002, all applicants for initial licensure must be fingerprinted and undergo state and federal background checks. Individuals convicted of a felony may not be eligible for certification to teach. Convicted felons should determine their eligibility for certification with the West Virginia Department of Education prior to entering the teacher education program.
Candidates graduating with the Bachelor of Science in Education degree must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 120 semester hours including (1) the Program of General Studies including three hours of History, (2) the requirements for the content specialization(s), and (3) the Professional Education component. Candidates are also required to meet criterion scores on PRAXIS I: Pre-professional Skills Tests (PPST) and PRAXIS II: Subject Assessments (some specializations require more than one subject assessment) and the Principles of Learning and Teaching Test. Candidates must also meet West Virginia certification requirements.
Candidates, who enter teacher education and graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Education, may seek certification in the following areas:
- Elementary (Grades K-6) prepares candidates to teach in elementary schools. This program may be combined with additional specializations.
- Content Specializations (Grades 5-9, 5-Adult, 9-Adult) prepare teacher candidates to teach at the secondary level. Specialization programs are available in Art, Biology, Business, Chemistry, English/ Language Arts, General Science, Health, Mathematics, Physical Education, Spanish Education or Social Studies.
- Content Specializations (Pre K-Adult) prepare teacher candidates to teach in early education through adult education. Programs are available in Art, Music, Physical Education or Spanish Education.
- A Special Education Endorsement in Multi-categorical K-6 may be combined with Elementary K-6.
- A Special Education Endorsement in Multi-categorical 5-Adult may be combined with a secondary core content specialization (i.e., Biology, English, General Science, Mathematics, or Social Studies).
- Early Childhood Special Education (Pre K-K) prepares teacher candidates to teach children from birth through kindergarten, and children with disabling conditions from birth through age eight.
The Professional Education Component
All teacher education candidates must earn a 2.75 GPA in the Professional Education component, and complete the following courses with a grade of C or better.
Coursework in the Professional Education component that is older than ten years may have to be repeated.
The Special Methods Component
Students in Pre K-Adult, 5-9, 5-Adult, and 9-Adult content specializations must complete the special methods of teaching course(s) with a grade of C or better. These courses are offered through the academic divisions/departments which offer the content specialization.
Admission to Teacher Education
Candidates for the Bachelor of Science in Education degree must be officially admitted to the Teacher Education Program prior to taking EDUC 306 . Applications should be submittedto the Division Office for processing.All candidates will be notified by letter concerning their admission status.
Candidates must complete 100 hours of documented volunteer experience working with children in organized settings prior to admission to the Teacher Education Program.Appropriate volunteer experiences might include: Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts, Energy Express, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, tutoring in after-school or summer programs, camp counselors, etc.The 100 hours of experience must be documented through letters from teachers, supervisors or leaders.All documentation must be included in the candidate’s portfolio when he/she applies for admission to the Teacher Education program.The 100 volunteer hours are in addition to any required field practicum hours.
Prior to admission to the Teacher Education Program, candidates must also satisfy the following requirements:
- Successful completion of a minimum of 40 hours, which must include 19 hours from the General Studies Program, with a 2.00 grade point average.The general studies courses must include the following:
- English - 6 hours
- Communication Arts - 3 hours
- Mathematics - 3 hours
- Natural Science - 4 hours
Social Science - 3 hours
(Note:Candidates in the Elementary K-6 Program should select from GEOG 200 , HIST 101 or HIST 102 .)
Completion with grade of C or better and documentation of asuccessful 25 hour school-based field experience.
- Attainment of an overall grade point average of 2.75 or better in all work completed (including transfer credit).
- Successful completion of the PRAXIS I Pre-professional Skills Tests(written verification from the testing service must be received by the Division of Education Office), and a required demonstration of speaking and listening (CART 101 ).A waiver for Praxis I may be obtained by providing documentation from the Registrar’s Office, reflecting an ACT composite score of 26 or higher, SAT re-centered score of 1125, or completion of a master’s degree.These waivers are accepted only in the State of West Virginia. Certification requirements for other states may include Praxis I test scores.
- Submission of a Professional Portfolio with acceptance by a Teacher Education Admission Committee. Requirements for the portfolio are available in the Division of Education Office.Portfolios will be due in the Division of Education Office the last working day of September during the fall semester, and the last working day of February during the spring semester.Candidates whose portfolios are not approved by the Teacher Education Admission Committee will be given recommendations for improving their portfolios or will be counseled concerning their admission to the teacher education program.
- Successful completion of an interview with a Department of Education faculty committee when indicated.
- Declaration of a specific and accurate major and content specialization(s) through the Division of Education and Human Performance office.
CAUTION:Candidates not meeting application deadlines or admission criteria will be denied admission to the Teacher Education Program and must reapply.
Admission to Student Teaching
Student teaching (supervised directed teaching) is a semester of professional experiences in a public school setting(s).The teacher candidate must file an application for admission to student teaching by the end of the fourth week of the semester proceeding the semester in which the student teaching is planned.
Candidates will be notified by letter of their eligibility.Additionally, all candidates must attend a mandatory placement meeting held the semester prior to student teaching. Placement meetings are held on the last Wednesday in September and the last Wednesday in February.
Due to licensure and accreditation regulations, admission requirements may be revised.Therefore, candidates should check current requirements with the Coordinator of Clinical Experiences.
The following criteria must be met in order to be eligible for admission to student teaching:
- The teacher candidate must be admitted into the Teacher Education Program.
- All coursework must be completed. Credit for all coursework including transfer courses, correspondence courses, individual study courses, etc., must appear on the candidate’s transcript at the time of the eligibility deadline.
- Music education majors must complete a technology competency exam.
- All required school-based field experiences must be successfully completed.
- The following minimum grade point averages must be attained:
- An overall 2.75 in all course work taken.
- An overall 2.00 in General Studies.
- An overall 2.75 in the professional education core component, with no grade less than a C.
- The required grade point average for the teacher candidate’s content specialization(s).
- Evidence of a current negative tuberculin test (PPD) that extends throughout the student teaching semester must be presented to the Division of Education Office.The PPD or an X-ray are the only acceptable tests and are valid for two years.
- Passing scores on PRAXIS II:Subject Assessments (some specializations require more than one subject assessment) and Principles of Learning and Teaching Test (PLT) must be attained. Written verification from the testing service must be received by the Division of Education Office prior to the deadline for eligibility to student teach. The eligibility deadline is the last day of the semester prior to the student teaching semester.
Student teaching is a full time professional experience.Teacher candidates should not enroll in extra coursework, or engage in extra-curricular activities which interfere with student teaching. Exceptions to this must be approved by the Coordinator of Clinical Experiences.
Candidates working toward the Bachelor of Science in Education degree are advised that all phases of teacher education require cooperative efforts between Concord University and the public schools or other agencies.The superintendent, or legal representatives of these agencies or schools, and the representative of the University shall have the authority, after consultation, to reject placement or terminate the participation of any candidate who fails to meet the professional standards of the cooperating school, agency, or the University.During student teaching, the reports of the supervising teacher(s) and the recommendation(s) of the University Supervisor are essential components in determining the eligibility for graduation and recommendation for licensure.
CAUTION:Candidates not meeting application deadlines, admission criteria, and/or not attending the mandatory placement meeting will be denied student teaching.Candidates may reapply the following semester.
The Division of Education and Human Performance provides a variety of measures to facilitate candidates’ successful performance including the following:
- Assignment of an appropriate advisor;
- Special summer advising;
- Report of mid-term grades;
- Resources and study materials for PRAXIS I testing preparation;
- Individual letters to candidates upon application and acceptance to the program;
- Individual interviews;
- Individual letters to candidates upon application and acceptance to student teaching;
- Student teaching placement meetings provide for discussion and questions;
- Exit interviews with student teachers identify program strengths and recommendations for program improvement.
A variety of support services are available including the Concord Child Development Center, Student Support Services and the Financial Aid Office.
Graduation criteria include the completion of a minimum of 120 hours, the required GPAs, successful completion of all state-required tests, and the completion of all coursework to meet program certification requirements. Graduation with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education will not be granted unless a teacher candidate also satisfies all West Virginia teacher certification requirements which includes a state and national background check.
To prepare to teach in a middle school, candidates should have a minimum of two disciplines at the 5-9 level or combine a 5-9 field with another content specialization. A high school teacher must have at least one content specialization at the 5-Adult or 9-Adult level (the only exceptions to this rule are Art 5-Adult and Health 5-Adult which require a second specialization). Teacher candidates must complete EDUC 318 , Content Area Reading, and special methods courses within their content specialization(s). Three hours of history must also be completed as part of the General Studies Program.