The Graduate Teacher Education program includes three major “capstone” experiences: 1) a practicum course, 2) completion of an electronic portfolio, and 3) completion of either a research thesis or a non-thesis project.
All TED students seeking the full M.A. degree and/or an additional endorsement on an existing teaching certificate are required to complete a 3-credit-hour practicum course (TED678 Reading Practicum, TED690 Reflective Teaching Practicum, or MAT680/SED580 Directed Teaching Practicum), focused on the application of research and theory to actual problems and issues in their chosen concentration area of preK-12 teaching practice.
In TED678 and TED690, major assignments usually include a classroom observation portrait, professional development activity analysis, a case study or action research project, and completion of an electronic portfolio.
In MAT680 and SED580, and for certain concentration areas or endorsements, students may also be required to undergo observation as they teach for a specified number of hours in an actual classroom of the type for which they are seeking an endorsement or degree.
Reflective Professional Portfolio
The electronic portfolio contains artifacts demonstrating the student’s professional competencies, and is based on the SHU Teacher Education Program Learning Outcomes (revised in 2009). Such a portfolio is required of students in order to graduate from any of our M.A. programs. TED students usually begin to assemble their portfolio during TED601 Professional Reading & Writing in Teacher Education.
Final Project or Thesis
Only those TED students seeking to earn the full M.A. degree are required to complete a research thesis or a research-based non-thesis project in order to graduate. Students are expected to identify an area of their professional work that could benefit from quantitative and/or qualitative research, and to investigate and propose possible solutions for existing problems they face.
This work is begun in GRS602 Introduction to Research (or GRS605 Methodology of Research) and completed in GRS694 Thesis/Project Seminar, usually toward the end of the program. Their completed work is stored in electronic archives, and is made available to other SHU students and faculty as appropriate.