For additional information about opportunities your college offers, please refer to the College of Education section in this catalog.
Mission - Teaching, leading, and learning in a democratic society.
Philosophy - Believing that schools function as social and political entities as well as for the growth of individuals, the College of Education prepares teachers and leaders to a) to enhance the academic and personal potential of their students, and b) to evaluate the social and ethical implications of educational policies and practices.
Values - The College of Education values expertise to guide our practice, equity to guide our interactions, liberal education to guide our perspectives, and social responsibility to guide our commitment to democratic education. We value these ideals in our preparation of candidates, our development of faculty, and our relationships with the larger community we serve.
Undergraduate Teacher Education Description
The teacher preparation program reﬂects a belief in strong backgrounds in the liberal arts, familiarity with learning theory, and practical experience in diverse settings. Education faculty teach courses and seminars in educational philosophy and psychology, methods and materials, school organization and management, technology, and assessment. Faculty from the College of Liberal Arts and Science teach content-related areas.
Advising and Course Planning
Teacher preparation is an upper-division professional program and second major. During the freshman and sophomore years students work toward fulﬁlling degree requirements, major and minor requirements, and prerequisite courses in education to permit application to the College of Education. State of Michigan policy mandates that teacher preparation candidates must pass all three areas (reading, mathematics, writing) of the Michigan Professional Readiness Exam (PRE) (or their equivalent - please see a CLAS advisor for equivalency information) prior to enrolling in Student Teaching. Students considering an education major should take the PRE as early as possible in their collegiate career. Students must take all three areas of the Michigan Professional Readiness Exam (PRE) prior to applying to the College of Education. CSAT majors are strongly encouraged to pass the MTTC Elementary certification exam during the semester of their CSAT capstone course (SAT 495). Students will have two advisors: an advisor in the student’s content area major and an education major advisor. Transfer students follow the same dual advising process. Students also consult with education faculty prior to admission. Students should discuss career and employment opportunities with their advisors and with the university career center. Candidates should also review policies in the Undergraduate Teacher Education Student Advising Handbook, available at advising sessions. In addition, advising materials and sample four-year course sequences are available in the College of Education Student Information and Services Center.
Due to stringent requirements being set forth by the State of Michigan Department of Education, students pursuing initial certification, first or second renewal of their provisional certification, additional endorsement, school counseling license, professional or administrator certification are now being held to a higher standard. Students who have certain misdemeanors, multiple misdemeanors or a felony may be denied and/or not recommended for any level of certification by GVSU College of Education and/or State of Michigan. If a student is recommended to the Michigan Department of Education for provisional certification, additional endorsement, school counseling license, professional or administrator certification, the conviction could have an adverse effect on being granted a certificate. If a certificate is granted, there is no guarantee of employability.
Deadlines for application to Undergraduate Teacher Education are September 15 for winter admission and ﬁeld placement; February 1 for fall admission and ﬁeld placement. Application packets are available at the Student Information and Services Center. Packets must be complete at the time of application. Students who postpone admission must reapply. Students must follow the holiday break schedule designated by the K-12 district for their school placement/assignment, not the GVSU holiday break schedule. Students should apply during the semester before they expect to do their ﬁrst ﬁeld placement (EDI 330, 331, EDS 332), except for the following:
- Students seeking a CSAT major with special education must apply during the winter semester (February 1) for fall admission.
- Students seeking a CSAT major are strongly encouraged to pass the MTTC Elementary certification exam during the semester of their CSAT capstone course (SAT 495).
- Students seeking a major in music education major must apply during the winter semester (February 1) for fall admission (i.e. fall teacher assisting).
- Students seeking a major in world languages must pass the Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) prior to their student teaching semester.
DeVos Center, Pew Grand Rapids Campus, located in downtown Grand Rapids, MI
Minimum Admission Criteria
In keeping with the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation Programs (CAEP) guidelines and unit policies, Undergraduate Teacher Education considers students who fulﬁll the following criteria. As a unit granting secondary admission, admission requirements are those that appear in the Grand Valley State University catalog at the time of application to the unit. Unless otherwise noted, all requirements must be complete at the time of application.
- Test Scores
- Applicants must submit an official copy of the reading, mathematics, and writing sub-scores from the ACT or SAT.
- Academic Achievement.
- An established 2.7 Grand Valley GPA overall and in the teaching major, minor, and Education major program. Currently, these content area majors require a 3.0 GPA: Art Education, Language Arts, Social Studies, English (major and minor), and History (major and minor). Consult the Grand Valley State University catalog. The minimum Grand Valley GPA must be established by the time of application.
- Most general education requirements completed.
- Significant progress in the content area major as determined by the content area major advisor.
- Significant progress in the content area as determined by the content area advisor.
- For Elementary Education, completion of ENG 308, MTH 221; and MTH 222 or MTH 223 required.
- At least one meeting completed with assigned education advisor.
- All remaining requirements met.
- Secondary Review Process: An established 2.699-2.50 Grand Valley GPA overall and in the content area major, minor and education major program. Currently, these content area majors require an established 2.999-2.7 GPA for secondary review: Art Education, Language Arts, Social Studies, English (major and minor), and History (major and minor).
- Most general education requirements completed.
- Most requirements in the content area major completed, as determined by content area major advisor.
- Significant progress in the content area minor as determined by the content area advisor.
- For Elementary Education, completion of ENG 308, MTH 221; and MTH 222 or MTH 223 required.
- Subject area and certification tests taken and passed during the semester application is submitted (e.g. September applicants take the October test; February applications take the January or April tests). Secondary candidates take the teaching major and minor tests. Elementary candidates take the elementary test and teaching major test. Special education candidates take the elementary test only.
- Two meetings completed with assigned education advisor, including a signed Secondary Review Process form submitted with application.
- All remaining application requirements met.
- Michigan Professional Readiness Exam. All teacher candidates must pass all three areas of the MI Professional Readiness Exam (PRE) or approved alternative prior to student teaching.
- Students seeking the CSAT major are strongly encouraged to pass the MTTC Elementary Exam prior to COE application.
- Prerequisite courses may be in progress during the semester of application, but preference will be given to candidates who have completed the requirements at the time of application. A cumulative GPA of 2.7 or better must be established in these three courses, with no grade lower than C and none of these courses recorded as credit or no credit.
b.) EDI 337 - Introduction to Learning and Assessment (elementary and secondary general education students only)
c.) PSY 301 - Child Development
5. Flex Course 1 - This course is taken before OR after admission to the College of Education. It must be completed before Student Teaching.
(Grade B- or better) or (Grade B- or better) (elementary and secondary general education students only).
Additional required prerequisites for elementary and special education candidates:
b.) MTH 221 ; and MTH 222 or MTH 223 Mathematics for Elementary Teachers I or II or III.
- Advisor Recommendations. One from the content area major advisor/department and another from a College of Education advisor.
- Positive Recommendation. One from an individual who can address the candidate’s ability as a prospective teacher.
- Experience. Documentation of 25 hours of experience with children or youth. The experience must be with the age group for which the applicant intends to seek certiﬁcation. This would rule out, for example, working in the university tutoring center. Special education candidates should have experience working with persons with disabilities, e.g., camp experience, Special Olympics, respite care. For additional options, contact the Community Service Learning Center.
- Academic Progress. Completion of at least 60 semester credits and junior status.
- University Requirements. Completion of university course requirements or test equivalents in Writing 150 and Mathematics 110 .
- Felony Conviction Statement. Review procedures for those who have been convicted or pled no contest to a felony or certain misdemeanors are available from the College of Education. Conviction or a plea of no contest may cause the candidate to be denied for admission, ﬁeld placement, or ﬁnal certiﬁcation.
- Copies of myPath and current course listings of classes being taken at another college or university.
- Two copies of current resume on plain white paper.
All admissions decisions will be rendered by the Dean of the College of Education based on faculty recommendations.
Field Placement Requirements
Flex Course 2 - This course is taken after admission to the College of Education. It must be completed before Student Teaching. (Grade B- or better).
Teacher Assisting (Education EDI 330 , EDI 331 , EDS 332 )
Upon admission to Undergraduate Teacher Education, the student will be placed in teacher assisting for the following semester, contingent upon an interview and acceptance by the school administrator. Students who postpone their entrance after admission must reapply as new applicants if they seek readmission. Field placements are generally made within a 50-mile radius from campus unless further placement is deemed necessary for suitable supervision and effective use of unit resources. See the College of Education undergraduate Advising Handbook for additional placement policies.
Student Teaching (Education EDI 430 , EDI 431 and EDI 432 , EDS 471 , EDS 472 )
- Submission of completed application packet by September 15 for winter placement, February 1 for fall placement.
- Completion of Teacher Assisting with a grade of B- or better and positive recommendations.
- Completion of EDF 310 , and EDR 320 or EDR 321 , with a B- or better.
- Completion of EDT 370 , and EDS 378 or EDS 379 (elementary and secondary general education students only) with a B- or better.
- Continued 2.7 GPA overall and in the content area major, minor, and education major sequence. Currently, these content area majors require a 3.0 GPA: Art Education, Language Arts, Social Studies, English (major and minor), and History (major and minor).
- Interview and acceptance by school administrator.
Students must inform the Associate Director for Placement if they must withdraw from a ﬁeld placement course. Notiﬁcation must be immediate and in writing. Failure to do so will result in removal from the program.
International Teaching Certificate Program
The goal of this program is to recognize the importance of preparing teachers to be culturally competent in a global society. This program will recognize the candidate’s interest in preparing to teach diverse populations in domestic or foreign settings. The courses required for completion of the certificate are typically accomplished in 2 semesters. All courses required for the certificate, except EDF 320 (1 credit), are also required for a degree in Teacher Education and Michigan Teacher Certification. Additional courses, beyond those required for the Certificate of International Teaching Experience, are required to earn a degree in Teacher Education and Michigan Teaching Certification. Admission into the College of Education is required. Students must earn a bachelor’s degree to earn this certificate. Completion of coursework with grade of B- or better is required.
Courses needed to obtain certification:
- / OR /
- Participation in one of the following COE study abroad programs:
- Teacher assisting in South Africa
- Teacher assisting in Spain
- Teacher assisting/student teaching in Germany
- Student teaching with COST program
Upon completion of requirements the candidate will receive recognition on his/her transcript and a certificate of completion.
Recommendation for the Michigan Provisional Certiﬁcate requires the following:
- Completion of degree requirements and content area major, minor, and education major program requirements.
- An established 2.7 Grand Valley GPA overall and in the content area major, minor, and Education major program. Currently, these content area majors require a 3.0 GPA: Art Education, Language Arts, Social Studies, English (major and minor), and History (major and minor).
- Grades of B- or better and positive recommendations in professional ﬁeldwork courses, EDF 310 , EDR 320 or EDR 321 , EDT 370 , EDS 378 or EDS 379 ; EDI 330 , EDI 331 and EDS 332 , EDI 430 , EDI 431 and EDI 432 , EDS 471 , and EDS 472 (elementary and secondary general education students only), and EDF 485 .
- Passing scores on the three areas of the Michigan Professional Readiness Exam (PRE) (reading, mathematics, and writing) or approved alternative.
- Passing scores on Michigan Subject Area Tests. Elementary candidates must pass the Elementary Test; if they also pass subject area tests in their academic areas or special education endorsement areas, these will also be added to their certiﬁcates. Secondary candidates must pass subject area tests in their teaching major and minor.
- Current certification of CPR (Adult/Child) Instruction and First Aid (Standard or Basic).
- If your criminal background information has changed since you originally applied for admission to the College of Education, contact the Associate Director of the Student Information and Services Center (SISC) to confirm the change(s) are on file in SISC.
Post-baccalaureate Additional Endorsement Requirements
Students may return to Grand Valley State University to obtain a post baccalaureate endorsement to append to their teaching certificate by adding one or more content areas. Students may choose to add any endorsement for which Grand Valley State University has approval from the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). Students must meet all of the MDE requirements for an endorsement, which includes taking and passing all courses identified on the endorsement planned program (course substitutions will be permitted with prior departmental approval), meeting GVSU GPA program requirements, taking and passing the associated subject area test for the endorsement through the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification and meeting any and all other requirements, which might include, but not be limited to, a criminal background check and providing other university transcripts.
PLEASE NOTE: To be recommended to the Michigan Department of Education by Grand Valley State University to add a content area endorsement to an existing Michigan teaching certificate, the student must be certified at the appropriate level. Six credits of the planned program minor and twelve credits of the planned program major must be earned at Grand Valley State University. For a complete list of the content area endorsements that Grand Valley State University offers, please check out the following link to our Grand Valley State University website: www.gvsu.edu/clasadvising/endorsements-87.htm
For additional information about opportunities your college offers, please refer to your college’s section in this catalog.