Department of Education
As a student in The College of Idaho’s Department of Education, you will gain a thorough knowledge of educational theory, best teaching practices, and the content you can apply in the classroom. We are committed to improving student learning in K-12 classrooms by preparing you to be an outstanding teacher. The department works collaboratively with K-12 practitioners, professional organizations, policy makers, and other departments across campus to support our students’ development as outstanding educators. Field experiences in K-12 classrooms are integrated with coursework throughout the program. Students preparing for elementary certification complete an interdisciplinary major that provides pedagogy as well as a significant background in mathematics, science, history, and social studies in addition to a minor in the humanities and fine arts. Students preparing to teach at the secondary level complete a content major in their first teaching field, a minor in education, and additional minors in two other PEAKS. One of these minors is normally a second teaching field.
Both the elementary and secondary preparation programs culminate in a fifth-year internship with placements in multiple grade levels and, in the case of secondary candidates, different subject areas.
Students admitted to the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program complete two summers of study in addition to the fifth-year internship as part of their graduate degree program. The Department also offers a graduate degree in Curriculum and Instruction: TESOL and Bilingual for certified teachers. For more information, follow the link to "Graduate Programs" at the top of this page
Students completing programs leading to elementary or secondary education certification may elect to complete an endorsement for teaching Literacy, English as a new language (ENL), or bilingual education.
The Department also offers a minor in Education Studies for students who are not interested in obtaining certification as a teacher, but who wish to learn more about the field of education.
Why study education at The College of Idaho?
In your education coursework and the rest of your classes at The College of Idaho, you’ll experience professors who teach from the heart. Here, learning from experienced educators who have a passion for teaching, you’re in the perfect place to embark on a career in which you will impact countless young lives as an elementary, middle or high school teacher.
THE CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK
The education department at The College of Idaho strives to be an Educative Learning Community. The conceptual framework of our educative learning community is one based on John Dewey’s understanding of educative experiences that encourage personal and community growth (Dewey & Archambault, 1964). It is a community where students are provided with a reflective, caring environment so that the process of becoming a teacher can be explored. It is a community where students are offered a vision of schooling that promotes and helps create a more just and democratic society.
COMMUNITY OF LEARNERS- An educative learning community counters the image of the teacher as a “technician” with one of the teacher an active participant in issues that affect the larger educational community (Apple & Beane, 2007). Rather than avoid a discussion of values, this perspective advocates the necessity of such discussions because teaching is, at its core, a value-laden enterprise (Goodland, Soder, & Sirotnik, 1990). The program, based upon students who learn and grow together, encourages on going “conversations” about meaningful issues central to a liberal arts education.
CRITICAL & CARING PEDAGOGY- An educative learning community takes the position that a hopeful, democratic future depends upon educators committed to emancipatory education (Giroux, 1997). It reflects Landon Beyers’ description of an emancipatory curriculum in teacher education as one that is designed to emphasize the following: equal access to knowledge, images of human equality, development of a “critical consciousness,” self-reflectivity, creativity, cultural acceptance, moral responsibility, democratic empowerment, and a pedagogy of caring (Beyer & Apple, 1998). It affirms Nel Noddings’ belief that for schools to be true centers of learning, they must embrace caring in all its forms – care for self, for intimate others, for associates and acquaintances, for distant others, for nonhuman animals, for plants and the physical environment, for the human-made world of objects and instruments, and for ideas (Noddings, 2005).
CONSTRUCTIVIST LEARNING- An educative learning community takes a constructivist perspective toward classroom practice in which learning is seen as active, purposeful, and generated from within. This perspective, rooted in Piagetian principles of development and drawing on Vygotsky (Tryphon & Voneche, 1996), extends the notion of the construction of knowledge from one that is primarily an individualized and internal process to one that more comprehensively encompasses social foundations of thinking (Bruner, 1986). In this view, knowledge is not only embedded in socio-historical and socio-cultural elements, but is actually generated through shared interactions and individual internalization (Wertsch, 1991).
Career opportunities for education majors and minors
The College of Idaho has a proud tradition of producing top-notch educators. Our graduates have gone on to successful careers in teaching and school administration, earning countless awards, grants and recognitions for their outstanding work as educators in Idaho and around the world. Education majors may also go on to earn graduate and doctoral degrees and teach at the college level.