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Secondary Education

The College of Education offers programs leading to certification in secondary education in English, History, Mathematics, and Political Science. We also offer a P-12 program leading to certification in Music. These programs are organized to promote strong academic work in the content field along with certification course work and field experiences. The goal of these programs is to provide teacher candidates a degree in their academic discipline while promoting the knowledge, skills, and experiences that are prerequisites to effective instruction. The College of Education works hand-in-hand with the College of Arts and Sciences to coordinate these programs. 

Candidates who plan to teach grades 6-12 must enroll in the appropriate secondary program. Requirements for each program are established jointly by the School of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences and respective departments. Candidates are assigned academic advisors from within the respective academic school or department and the College of Education. The College of Education plans and schedules courses in the professional sequence. All programs are designed to lead to eligibility for the initial teaching certificate in Georgia.

Candidates should be familiar with the basic requirements for all undergraduate teacher education programs listed previously, denoting requirements specifically for Teacher Education candidates. Changes in major program requirements must be approved in writing by the Dean of the College of Education and the dean of the appropriate academic school or college.

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Undergraduate Program

Bachelor of Arts

Education Center

Dr. Rachel L. Abbott
Dean and Associate Professor
229-931-2145
rachel.abbott@gsw.edu

Faculty & Staff

Secondary Education

Certifications are offered in English, History, Mathematics, Political Science, and Music.

Admission Requirements

Core Curriculum Requirements

Candidates must meet the General Core Curriculum requirements as established by the University for each Teacher Education program. A GPA of 2.5 or higher is required for courses used to meet General Core Curriculum requirements.This applies to course work taken at other institutions as well as at Georgia Southwestern State University. Transfer students must meet the same core GPA requirements. Because of the several options in Teacher Education programs, the specific courses required in Area F of the core will vary from program to program. Candidates should take such courses only with the approval of the appropriate academic area advisor. COMM 1110, THEA 1110 or demonstrated competence in Speech is a requirement in all Teacher Education programs. COMM 1110 or THEA1110 may be taken in Area B to satisfy this requirement.

Admission to Teacher Education

Admission to Teacher Education is required for a candidate to enroll in all 3000- 4000 level program courses. A grade of C or higher is required in each professional and teaching field course, and an institution grade point average of 2.50 is required for both Student Teaching and graduation.

Program Details

Professional Sequence

The professional sequence consists of twenty-six semester hours of professional education courses. Admission to Teacher Education is required for a candidate to enroll in all 3000-4000 level education courses including EDRG 3060, EDUC 3200, EDUC 4620, EDSC 4060, EDSC 4080, EDSC 4100, EDSC 4970, EDSC 4980, EDSC 4990, EDUC 4970, EDUC 4980, and EDUC 4990.

Required Teaching Field Courses

Teaching field requirements are established by the academic departments and the School of Education. A grade of C or higher is required in each course applied to a teaching field, and an institution grade point average of 2.75 is required for both Student Teaching and graduation. All teaching field courses in addition to required General Core Curriculum courses, Certification Core courses, and the professional sequence courses must be completed prior to Student Teaching. Specific requirements for English, history, mathematics, and music can be found in Arts and Sciences departmental information.

Mathematics with Teacher Certification

The Mathematics w/ Teacher Certification major is a collaborative program between the College of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences. As such, GSW students who choose to pursue Mathematics w/ Teacher Certification will receive a content degree in Mathematics from the College of Arts and Sciences as well as complete their certification coursework through the College of Education. The mission of this program is to provide each candidate a strong foundation in content knowledge, pedagogical skill, and school-based practice.

Program Goals

As established by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and the National Council for Teachers of Mathematics, the Mathematics w/ Teacher Certification Program is committed to graduating candidates who: 

  • Know, understand, and apply the process of mathematical problem solving.
  • Reason, construct, and evaluate mathematical arguments and develop an appreciation for mathematical rigor and inquiry.
  • Communicate their mathematical thinking orally and in writing to peers, faculty, and others.
  • Recognize, use, and make connections between and among mathematical ideas and in contexts outside mathematics to build mathematical understanding.
  • Use varied representations of mathematical ideas to support and deepen students’ mathematical understanding.
  • Embrace technology as an essential tool for teaching and learning mathematics.
  • Support a positive disposition toward mathematical processes and mathematical learning.
  • Possess a deep understanding of how students learn mathematics and of the pedagogical knowledge specific to mathematics teaching and learning.
  • Demonstrate computational proficiency, including a conceptual understanding of numbers, ways of representing number, relationships among number systems, and the meaning of operations.
  • Candidates emphasize relationships among quantities including functions, ways of representing mathematical relationships, and the analysis of change.
  • Use spatial visualization and geometric modeling to explore and analyze geometric shapes, structures, and their properties.
  • Demonstrate a conceptual understanding of limit, continuity, differentiation, and integration and a thorough background in techniques and application of the calculus.
  • Apply the fundamental ideas of discrete mathematics in the formulation and solution of problems.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of concepts and practices related to data analysis, statistics, and probability.
  • Apply and use measurement concepts and tools.
Resources

 

Program Curriculum

History with Teacher Certification

In an historically enriched classroom students are challenged to grapple with real historical evidence, to interrogate primary sources, and to consider questions of bias and temporal context, all while learning how to draw conclusions and to contrast ‘lived history’ with ‘textbook history,’ to see that history is not simply a matter of presidents and generals but includes the experience of ordinary Americans. In such classrooms both teachers and students will realize that names and dates are only tools, not ends in themselves, and that such historical detail has a far better chance of finding its way into long-term memory if connected to history as a way of thinking, one that students find meaningful and engaging.

- (Cohen & Stoll, 2010, p. 2)

Cohen, R., & Stoll, M. (2010). Introduction. In D. Turk, R. Mattson, T. Epstein, & R. Cohen (Eds.), Teaching U.S. history: Dialogues among social studies teachers and historians. New York: Routledge. 

One central concern of public education in the United States is to help prepare students for civic action and participation in civil society. As such, history education should play a foundational role in this process. History allows students to explore civic themes such as culture, power and authority, social and political organization, economic processes and distribution patters, and individual and collective development and identities. As a collaborative project between the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education, the History w/ Teacher Certification program is designed to provide teacher candidates with a strong foundation in content knowledge, pedagogical skill, and school-based practice. As such, GSW students who choose to pursue History w/ Teacher Certification will receive a content degree in History from the College of Arts and Sciences as well as complete their certification coursework through the College of Education.

Program Goals

As established by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and the National Council for the Social Studies, the History w/ Teacher Certification Program is committed to graduating candidates who:

  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of culture and cultural diversity.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of time, continuity, and change.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of people, places, and environment.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of individual development and identity.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of individuals, groups, and institutions.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of power, authority, and governance.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of science, technology, and society.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of global connections and interdependence.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of civic ideals and practices.
  • Possess the knowledge, capabilities, and dispositions to organize and provide instruction at the appropriate school level for the study of history.
Resources

 

Program Curriculum

English with Teacher Certification

Program Goals

As established by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and the National Council for Teachers of English, the English w/ Teacher Certification Program is committed to the following goals:

Attitudes for English Language Arts
  • The program shall prepare candidates who, through modeling, advisement, instruction, field experiences, assessment of performance, and involvement in professional organizations, adopt and strengthen professional attitudes needed by English language arts teachers.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who create an inclusive and supportive learning environment in which all students can engage in learning.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who use English language arts to help their students become familiar with their own and others’ cultures.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate reflective practice, involvement in professional organizations, and collaboration with both faculty and other candidates.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who use practices designed to assist students in developing habits of critical thinking and judgment.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who make meaningful connections between the English language arts curriculum and developments in culture, society, and education.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who engage their students in activities that demonstrate the role of arts and humanities in learning.
Knowledge of English Language Arts
  • The program shall prepare candidates who are knowledgeable about language; literature; oral, visual, and written literacy; print and non-print media; technology; and research theory and findings.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of and skills in the use of the English language.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of the practices of oral, visual, and written literacy.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of reading processes.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of different composing processes.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of, and uses for, an extensive range of literature.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of the range and influence of print and non-print media and technology in contemporary culture.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of research theory and findings in English language arts.
Pedagogy for English Language Arts
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate the dispositions and skills needed to integrate knowledge of English language arts, students, and teaching.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who examine and select resources for instruction such as textbooks, other print materials, videos, films, records, and software, appropriate for supporting the teaching of English language arts.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who align curriculum goals and teaching strategies with the organization of classroom environments and learning experiences to promote whole-class, small group, and individual work.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who integrate interdisciplinary teaching strategies and materials into the teaching and learning process for students.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who create and sustain learning environments that promote respect for, and support of, individual differences of ethnicity, race, language, culture, gender, and ability.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who engage students often in meaningful discussions for the purposes of interpreting and evaluating ideas presented through oral, written, and/or visual forms.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who engage students in critical analysis of different media and communications technologies.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who engage students in learning experiences that consistently emphasize varied uses and purposes for language in communication.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who engage students in making meaning of texts through personal response.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who demonstrate that their students can select appropriate reading strategies that permit access to, and understanding of, a wide range of print and non-print texts.
  • The program shall prepare candidates who integrate assessment consistently into instruction by using a variety of formal and informal assessment activities and instruments to evaluate processes and products, and creating regular opportunities to use a variety of ways to interpret and report assessment methods and results to students, parents, administrators, and other audiences.
Resources

 

Program Curriculum

Music with Teacher Certification

The Music w/ Teacher Certification major is a collaborative program between the College of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences. As such, GSW students who choose to pursue Music w/ Teacher Certification will receive a content degree in Music from the College of Arts and Sciences as well as complete their certification coursework through the College of Education. The mission of this program is to provide each candidate a strong foundation in content knowledge, pedagogical skill, and school-based practice.

Program Goals

As established by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and the National Association of Schools of Music, the Music w/ Teacher Certification Program is committed to the following goals:

Performance
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess technical skills requisite for artistic self-expression in at least one major performance area at a level appropriate for the particular music concentration. Programs shall prepare candidates who possess an overview understanding of the repertory in their major performance area and the ability to perform from a cross section of that repertory.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess the ability to read at sight with fluency.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess knowledge and skills sufficient to work as a leader and in collaboration on matters of musical interpretation. Rehearsal and conducting skills are required as appropriate to the particular music concentration.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess keyboard competency. Experiences in secondary performance areas are recommended.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess growth in artistry, technical skills, collaborative competence and knowledge of repertory through regular ensemble experiences. Ensembles should be varied both in size and nature.
Aural Skills and Analysis
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess an understanding of the common elements and organizational patterns of music and their interactions, and the ability to employ this understanding in aural, verbal, and visual analysis.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess sufficient understanding of musical forms, processes, and structures to use this knowledge in compositional, performance, scholarly, pedagogical, and historical contexts, according to the requisites of their specializations.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess the ability to place music in historical, cultural, and stylistic contexts.
Composition and Improvisation
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess rudimentary capacity to create derivative or original music both extemporaneously and in written form.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess the ability to compose, improvise, or both at a basic level in one or more musical languages, for example, the imitation of various musical styles, improvisation on pre-existing materials, the creation of original compositions, experimentation with various sound sources, and manipulating the common elements in non-traditional ways.
History and Repertory
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess a basic knowledge of music history through the present time.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess an acquaintance with repertories beyond the area of specialization. All students must be exposed to a large and varied body of music through study and attendance at recitals, concerts, opera and musical theater productions, and other performances.
Technology
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess a basic overview understanding of how technology serves the field of music as a whole.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who possess a working knowledge of the technological developments applicable to their area of specialization.
Synthesis
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who work independently on a variety of music problems by combining their capabilities in performance; aural, verbal and visual analysis; composition and improvisation; and repertory and history.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who form and define value judgments about music.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate the tools to work with a comprehensive repertory, including music from various cultures of the world and music of their own time.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who understand basic interrelationships and interdependencies among various professions and activities that constitute the music enterprise. 
Music Competencies for Teachers
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who are competent conductors, able to create accurate and musically expressive performances with various types of performing groups and in general classroom situations.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who are able to arrange and adapt music from a variety of sources to meet the needs and ability levels of school performing groups and classroom situations.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate functional performance abilities in keyboard and voice, as well as in instruments appropriate to the student’s teaching specialization.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate the ability to apply analytical and historical knowledge to curriculum development, lesson planning, and daily classroom and performance activities.
Teaching Competencies for Teachers
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who teach music at various levels to different age groups and in a variety of classroom and ensemble settings in ways that develop knowledge of how music works syntactically as a communication medium and developmentally as an agent of civilization. This competency includes effective classroom and rehearsal management.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate an understanding of child growth and development and an understanding of principles of learning as they relate to music.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate the ability to assess aptitudes, experiential backgrounds, orientations of individuals and groups of students, and the nature of subject matter, and to plan educational programs to meet assessed needs.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate knowledge of current methods, materials, and repertories available in all fields and levels of music education.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate the ability to accept, amend, or reject methods and materials based on personal assessment of specific teaching situations.
  • Programs shall prepare candidates who demonstrate an understanding of evaluative techniques and ability to apply them in assessing both the musical progress of students and the objectives and procedures of the curriculum.
Resources

Program Curriculum