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    American University
    Mar 24, 2023  
American University Catalog 2019-2020 
American University Catalog 2019-2020 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Undergraduate Programs in the School of Education

Students who enroll in the Elementary Education (BA)  must complete a broad range of coursework that includes: coursework in literature, the arts, health, history, social sciences, biological sciences, and physical sciences. In addition, candidates for the baccalaureate degree in elementary education must also complete an undergraduate concentration or minor. A concentration or minor is between 15-17 hours in one subject area, which helps to ensure that graduates have expertise in one subject area.

Students who obtain a Secondary Education (Second Major Only)  (English, Math, Science [Biology, Chemistry, Physics], and Social Studies) complete education courses as a second major while completing majors in humanities, arts, natural or social sciences. Both degrees lead to a teaching certification and licensure in the District of Columbia.

The undergraduate teacher education curriculum is intentionally sequenced and scaffolded to build on participants’ knowledge of theory and practice. Three prerequisites are required for formal admission to SOE’s undergraduate Teacher Education Program. Students are exposed to foundational educational information in EDU-205 Schools and Society  prerequisite class. In addition, students must complete EDU-321 Field Experience: Observation and Analysis  as a prerequisite class. Students are also required to complete EDU-420 Psychology of Education  as a prerequisite class. EDU-205  provides a multidimensional view of schools, teachers, and students. This social and intellectual foundation course serves as a basis for studying contemporary education and the issues of racism, sexism, finance, governance, innovations, and the social context of American education. The course includes lectures, discussion groups, cooperative learning, Internet activities, and independent projects. EDU-321  includes weekly observations in diverse classroom setting at both middle and high schools in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia. EDU-420  surveys the research literature on learning theories and human development with an emphasis on the role of educators. The course includes a focus on issues and theories related to multicultural education, special education, evaluation, memory and cognition, and instructional design.

During students’ senior year, undergraduate candidates complete two major field based experiences - practicum and student teaching and complete over 500 hours in an elementary education classroom. This clinical-based experience primarily involves observation and small group instruction. The two-day per week practicum spans 14 weeks and results in over 100 hours of classroom experience. Student teaching is completed during the candidates’ final semester at the university. Student teaching is a five-day a week placement for 15-weeks and results in over 400 hours of classroom experience. During student teaching, candidates are enrolled in a required seminar. During the student teaching placements, candidates prepare lesson plans, attend parent conferences and professional development workshops, provide direct instruction to students and assess the performance of their students.

The education minors offer students an opportunity to explore their educational interests beyond teaching. The Education Studies (Minor)  is designed for students with an interest in education policy, urban education, curriculum and instruction, teaching, early childhood education and international education. The Special Education (Minor)  is designed for students with an interest in exceptionality, disabilities policy and advocacy, and for those interested in teaching. The minors do not lead to teacher certification.


    Major Program (UG)Minor (UG)