Programs for Initial Teacher Licensure
- Early Childhood (PreK-2)
- Elementary (1-6)
- English as a Second Language (PreK-6, 5-12)
- Moderate Disabilities (PreK-8, 5-12)
- Content Areas
- Arts (PreK-6, 5-12)
- Biology (8-12)
- Chemistry (8-12)
- Digital Literacy/Computer Science (5-8)
- Earth & Space Science (8-12)
- English (5-12)
- General Science (5-8)
- History (5-12)
- Humanities (5-8)
- Mathematics (1-6, 5-8, 8-12)
- Mathematics/Science (5-8)
- Modern Foreign Languages: French (PreK-6, 5-12), Spanish (PreK-6, 5-12)
- Physics (8-12)
- Social Science (5-12)
The total master’s degree program of 36-39 credit hours is composed of 18-21 credit hours of core courses, 12-18 credit hours of concentration courses and 3-6 credit hours of educational theory courses. Upon completion of the specially designated (**) courses and the practicum, the student will be eligible for recommendation to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for the Initial License. This may enable the student to be eligible for a full-time teaching position while continuing study in the master’s degree program. At the completion of all the required courses, students will be recommended for graduation with the degree Master of Education.
The College reserves the right to alter program requirements as necessary to remain in compliance with Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education licensure standards.
Prepracticum Field Experiences
Prepracticum hours are required prior to the practicum. Prior to the practicum all graduate students seeking the Initial License are required to complete and document clock hours of monitored, field-based experience. The number of hours and the requirements reflect the license area. These field experiences will prepare candidates by acquainting them with the school and classroom environment at the appropriate grade level and content area(s) with a variety of typical and atypical students of different gender, racial, linguistic and socioeconomic backgrounds. Prepracticum hours requirements are noted on the program of study for each license. Contact the graduate office for specific requirements for the license you seek.
Eligible graduate students file a completed practicum application form with the Graduate Office the term before they plan to enroll in the practicum. Before the application is approved, academic records are reviewed to determine that candidates have completed all academic and field requirements and have been accepted into the graduate program, and have passed all applicable tests of the MTEL (Massachusetts Test for Educator Licensure).
Prior to the practicum a meeting is held with the supervising practitioner, the teacher candidate and a college supervisor. Information and paperwork are given to the supervising practitioner and teacher candidate. This first three-way meeting provides opportunity to discuss roles, responsibilities, and expectations of the practicum; the evaluation forms of the practicum; the licensure regulations; and the Practicum Manual.
The practicum evaluation forms for the graduate student are required for the Initial License. Specific time and site requirements of the practicum are as follows:
The teacher candidate must complete:
- A practicum of 12 weeks for a minimum of 360 clock hours-3 credit hours
- At least 180 clock hours of teaching, taking on direct instructional responsibilities
- The practicum at an approved school site, at the appropriate grade level, teaching the appropriate field of knowledge for the license sought:
- Early Childhood requires a practicum of 240 hours in grades 1-2 and 120 hours in preK-K; At least one of two setting must include children with disabilities.
Teacher candidates have a total of five formal observations. After each of the observations the supervisors hold a conference with the candidate to critique the lesson, discuss the progress of the practicum, and review the contents of the reflective log which each candidate is required to keep. A copy of the written evaluation is given to the candidate after each observation.
Three of the conferences must include the College supervisor, supervising practitioner and the teacher candidate. At the midterm three-way conference, the teacher candidate must have started to collect evidence for elements that represent the Professional Standards for Teachers, and the supervising practitioner and College supervisor review it at that time. By the final three-way conference, all evidence for the Measure of Student Learning and the Student Feedback Analysis must be completed for the Candidate Assessment Performance.
Candidates are required to attend seminars during the practicum. These seminars, along with individual advising sessions, are designed to help candidates reflect on their teaching and make appropriate pedagogical adjustments. Additionally, they will have opportunities to dialogue with other professionals in their fields, gain help as they enter the job market, and be guided through the licensure process.
Assigning the final grade for a practicum is the responsibility of the supervisors and the college supervisor. The grade is based on the following:
- Cooperating practitioner’s assessment using rubric
- Log presentation throughout the teaching experience
- Overall assessment of growth
- Seminar participation
- Comparison with College standard for grading practica teachers