Secondary Education Major

The best way to share your passion with others is to teach it. Students at Saint Joseph’s University who major in English, mathematics, biology, Latin, Spanish, Italian, German, French, history, political science or international relations may add a double major in secondary education. The combination of these programs provides students with the background required to apply for certification as a high school teacher (for grades 7 through 12) in their specialty area.

The education major includes courses focusing on adolescent development, the social context of schooling, linguistic and cultural diversity, instructional design and learning assessment, and accommodating instruction to diverse learning challenges. Students work with a primary advisor in their field of study, as well as an advisor from the teacher education department, in order to pursue their passion for a particular subject while also preparing to teach after graduation. Students are also expected to complete a semester-long student-teaching experience in their final semester at SJU.

Many education courses involve a field component to prepare majors for their student teaching experience. In these courses, students spend three hours per week in a high school. Field experience requirements increase in responsibility from first observing teachers in their area of study, then assisting with small group work, and finally preparing and teaching lesson plans. The teacher education and special education departments have strong relationships with local public, charter and private schools and will facilitate this field component for students. The departments emphasize a strong commitment to urban education and a preferential option for low-income families.

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