Education - Secondary Education (Grades 7-12)
Students at Saint Joseph’s University who major in English, mathematics, biology, Latin, Spanish, Italian, French, chemistry, general science, physics or history may add a double major in secondary education. The combination of these programs provides you with the background required to apply for certification as a high school teacher 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. You work with a primary advisor in your field of study. Additionally, you have the opportunity to work with an advisor from the teacher education department. This helps you to pursue your passion for a particular subject while also preparing to teach after graduation. You are also expected to complete a semester-long student-teaching experience in your final semester at SJU.
Field Experiences and Student Teaching
In addition, the Office of Student Teaching and Field Experiences helps you coordinate field placements in K-12 schools, as well as full-time, 14-week student-teaching placement.
Students who successfully complete the program, maintain a GPA of 3.0 and pass the required PRAXIS exam - a knowledge and skills assessment exam required for certification - can apply for Pennsylvania Level 1 teacher certification (certification is good for six years of teaching before renewal). With level 1 certification in secondary education, certified teachers can take the content exams for teaching other grade levels as well as other content areas. You cannot take the exams for getting certified as a reading specialist, special education or health and physical education unless you complete the respective programs.
The education department also has a strong commitment to the study abroad program here at Saint Joseph’s University. Many of our students have the opportunity to study student education in an international context in such locations as Denmark, Ireland and Spain.
As an education major, you'll have the option to take Service-Learning classes. These classes combine academics with experience and reflection. Lectures, texts, and tests are enhanced by weekly service engaging schools and non-profit agencies that are making a difference in the Philadelphia area.
Flexibility of Opportunities
You have the opportunity to study as a dual major in secondary education and one of the following subject areas leading to certification:
Many education courses at Saint Joseph's University involve a field component to prepare you for your student teaching experience. In these courses, you 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 manage this field component for students. The departments emphasize a strong commitment to urban education and a preferential option for low-income families.