The Graduate School of Education's (GSE) teacher preparation program is designed to develop
professionals committed to excellence, equity, and social justice in their
teaching practice. New Jersey is a uniquely diverse and urban state, as defined
by the following: large numbers of students from historically marginalized
linguistic, economic, and cultural backgrounds; high-poverty districts or
schools; and population density combined with educational inequality. GSE's teacher preparation program aims to
develop a generation of teachers with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions
to teach and advocate for all students as well as the ability to learn from
students and their communities. Teachers
prepared at the GSE learn to critically analyze the social politics of urban, rural,
and suburban schools and use that analysis to inform their teaching practice as
they advocate for each other and their students, and for best practices within
schools. Our students benefit from working with some of the best education
faculty in the world and gain real-world experience partnered with
carefully selected mentor teachers in the economically, racially, ethnically,
and linguistically diverse communities and schools in New Jersey. They engage
in clinical work in school- and community-based settings located in urban
partner districts where they develop unique skills to prepare them for success
in our nation's increasingly diverse schools. An urban and social justice teacher education program
prepares candidates to
meaningful understandings of diverse students, their experiences, and
- analyze the
social, economic, historical, and political dimensions of urban settings and
teach diverse students, including those from historically marginalized
linguistic, cultural, and economic backgrounds;
- identify and
disrupt instances and patterns of discrimination and marginalization, and
develop their students' critical and active citizenship capacities;
constructivist, student-centered approaches with explicit instruction and
understand their disciplines and create learning experiences that make
disciplinary content knowledge accessible to students; and
competent, rigorous, and reflective practitioners.
Certification programs exist in the following teaching areas (K-12): agriculture, biological science, dance, English, foreign language (Chinese, French, German, Italian, Latin, Russian, and Spanish), mathematics, music, physics, physical science, social studies, and special education. A certification program in elementary education (K-6) with subject matter specialization for the middle grades (5-8) or preschool through grade 3 (P-3) is also available. Most of these programs are offered directly by the Graduate School of Education (GSE), but some are offered by other units of the university in cooperation with the GSE.
The certification program in music education is a four-year program and is offered by the Mason Gross School of the Arts. All of the other teacher preparation programs are sponsored by the GSE and are five-year programs. In these programs, the baccalaureate degree is awarded after four years by the School of Arts and Sciences, Mason Gross School of the Arts, or the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, and the master's degree in education is awarded by the GSE after one more year of study. A recommendation is made to the state of New Jersey after the successful completion of the fifth year of the program.
Admission: Students apply to and are admitted to these programs during the second semester of the junior year; the study of professional education begins during the junior or senior year and continues with an internship and advanced professional studies in the fifth year. Admission into the education programs is competitive.
To be considered for admission students must demonstrate proficiency in written and oral communication and have successfully completed a college-level mathematics course. Additionally, applicants must have successfully completed 05:300:200/201 Introduction to Education with Clinical Field Experience, and 05:300:306 Principles of Classroom Learning. Admission is based upon the cumulative grade-point average; passing/minimum required scores on one or more of the ACT, SAT, GRE, or Praxis Core Combined Exam for Educators; performance in the introductory education courses and related fieldwork; letters of recommendation; and a written personal statement.
Program Requirements: Individuals preparing for subject area certification must major in the field in which they are planning to teach. Elementary education students and special education students must major in any appropriate liberal arts field.
In addition to the major, education programs include coursework in educational psychology, social and philosophical foundations of education, and methods of teaching, as well as fieldwork and student teaching. All programs also have a required distribution of liberal arts courses. Coursework is required in the following general education areas: arts, humanities, mathematics, science, technology, and psychology. Additionally, demonstration of competence in a foreign language at least equal to that of the second college semester is required.