The academic catalog is currently being updated for the 2022-23 year. View the Catalog Archive to access the 2021-22 catalog as well as catalogs from previous years.
Elliott Johnson (department head)
Teacher Education Programs: K-6 Elementary, 5-12 Secondary, K-12 Music
All completers of the Luther Teacher Education Program are eligible for a license to teach in Iowa. See the Luther College Education website for information regarding licensure in other states. For complete information regarding the education programs and licensure requirements at Luther, consult the Education Department website. Changes in Iowa state requirements appear periodically, so printed material may be out of date; the Education Department endeavors to keep the departmental website updated. Be sure to consult the Teacher Education Program Handbook. All students pursuing licensure in education must be aware that their course selections will have an impact on the length of their programs and their certification. For this reason, it is important that these students maintain regular contact with their education advisors and with the Education Department staff. It is imperative that Elementary, Secondary and Music Education students with advisors in other departments also seek regular consultation with the Education Department staff and faculty.
Important information for all students interested in the teacher education program:
To be licensed to teach, a student must successfully complete the education program at Luther College. There are three levels of approval within the Teacher Education Program: admission to teacher education, approval for the professional semester, and approval for licensure.
A. Admission to the Teacher Education Program (required before taking any courses at or above the 300-level)
B. Approval for the professional semester (student teaching)
All education majors and minors are required to have various practica that include students from diverse backgrounds. Factors to consider are school size, the percentage of multi-language learners (ELL), culture, race, free and reduced lunch, and school models. All Elementary Education majors, Music Education majors, and Education minors are required to teach for the minimum of a full semester. All those licensed K-12 are required to student teach both at the elementary and secondary grade levels. It is recommended that Elementary majors student teach at a K-2 and 3-6 grade levels. All secondary minors are required to student teach at the [5-8] and [9-12] levels. Additional endorsement areas may require extended student teaching or specific grade levels/ranges. Students seeking licensure in more than one endorsement must meet the requirements for each endorsement.
Requirements for Approval
C. Approval for licensure after completion of the teacher education program, professional semester, and graduation from Luther College.
As an accredited program in the state of Iowa, Luther College prepares students to be eligible for licensure in the state of Iowa; however, Luther students are also eligible to receive a preliminary license in most states. All students must complete the Luther College Education program and meet the Iowa requirements, regardless of the state in which the student plans to eventually teach, in order to be approved for licensure.
Luther College program completion requirements are:
Required for a major: EDUC 185/EDUC 215 (Clinical Experience I in the Schools), EDUC 220, 221, 222, 224, 228, 229, 247, 321, 322, 325, 326, 328, 329, 376, 486, 490 or 493, PAID 450 (Making Decisions for U.S. Schools); HIST 111 or 112 and HIST 126; MATH 123; two lab science courses (one life science and one physical science). Writing requirement in the major is completed with EDUC 229. Elementary majors must receive a "C" or better in each required content knowledge course.
The elementary major requires an academic endorsement or a special endorsement. If more than one endorsement is selected, please speak with your advisor regarding the length of student teaching required. A ninth semester and/or an extended student teaching may be necessary for completion of the program.
At least 76 semester hours (19 course equivalents) must be completed outside of the education (EDUC) discipline.
EDUC 325-EDUC 329 should be taken within one year of student teaching.
Requirements for certification in English, mathematics, science, and social sciences: EDUC 185/EDUC 215 (Clinical Experience I in the Schools), EDUC 220, 221, 252, 352, EDUC 366, 367, 377, 486; PAID 450 (Making Decisions for U.S. Schools). Students are strongly encouraged, but not yet required, to take the EDUC 382 practicum while student teaching since a practicum in content area reading is required in several states. Students seeking certification in mathematics must earn a C or better in MATH 220, 240, and 365.
Second Teaching Area: In the state of Iowa, students majoring in one subject may take fewer semester hours in another subject and be granted an endorsement to teach that subject. This is not transferable to other states. It only applies to students wishing to teach in the state of Iowa. Please check the Education Department website for specific requirements for second teaching areas.
Students who wish to teach K-12 Music should refer to the Music Education major.
View program learning goals for an explanation of learning outcomes in Education.
Seminars for first-year students offered each January term.
The clinical experience requires that students work as active and involved observer-aides under teachers in public/private area schools. Concentrated instruction in preparation for these duties plus seminars accompany the experience. Seminars include the following topics: ethics, professionalism, an introduction to program competencies; and dispositions, including reflective practice. Students taking this course in January must complete application materials in the education department by October 1 to secure a placement for January term. Requires sophomore standing. First-year students are to enroll in EDUC 185 (first-year seminar) offered during January term.
This course is an introduction to the field of education and to educational psychology. The course includes the study of human growth and development within the context of schooling. Emerging teachers enrolled in the course will investigate how children learn, the importance of inclusive learning environments, and the relationship between learning theory, practice, and social and academic development. Topics will include: characteristics of effective teaching; cognitive, language, and social development; assessment; classroom management; culturally sustaining pedagogies; and ethical teaching practices.
This course addresses topics related to equity and inclusion in schools, including stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination, privilege, power, and oppression in regards to culture, race, ethnicity, language, religion, disability, gender, identity, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. Emerging teachers will explore how intersecting issues such as racism and ableism impact student learning opportunities and outcomes. Significant legislation, models of service delivery, and instructional modifications will be introduced so that emerging teachers are prepared to meet the needs of all students.
Planning for effective instruction and classroom environments is the focus of this course. Students learn basics of pedagogy such as writing lesson plans aligned with standards, objectives, and assessments; planning research-based instructional techniques; and integrating electronic media to enhance learning. Application of learning theory and investigation of classroom management are also incorporated. Requires sophomore standing.
This course presents methods for integrating music, visual arts, & physical education/wellness across the curriculum in grades K-6. The benefits and challenges of integrating visual, performing arts, movement, and wellness in daily teaching and learning activities in the elementary classroom will be addressed. This may include classroom instruction and field experiences with children.
Based on a synthesis of research identifying characteristics of highly effective literacy teachers, this course focuses on research-based approaches to effective reading/writing instruction: teacher knowledge, classroom assessment, evidence-based teaching practices, response to intervention (RTI), motivation and engagement, technology and new literacies, and family & community connections. The importance of oral language acquisition, phonemic awareness, phonics and word identification, fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, writing and assessment is also addressed. Web-based dyslexia training is required in this course.
This pre-K to 12 course examines the dynamic relationship between families, school, and the community. The course focuses on collaborative team efforts and the importance of family engagement and empowerment to improve student learning and well being. Professional and ethical responsibilities of working with diverse families and communities will be addressed. This course is required for those seeking early childhood, special education, and English as a Second Language (ESL) endorsements.
This K-12 introductory course includes a historical perspective to the field of learning disabilities and behavioral disorders. This course covers characteristics and etiology, definitions and identification procedures, treatment and intervention, instructional and behavioral methodologies, impact of the disability throughout the lifespan, and current issues in the field.
This K-12 course covers the assessment of career/vocational skills and interests, aspects of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) which specifically address transition, transition meetings, Individualized Education Programs (IEP), community-based instruction, and the school/community services and service providers who would be involved in student transition. This course is required for those seeking the special education endorsement.
An introduction to the general methods of secondary teaching. Such topics as objectives, planning, testing, evaluation, classroom management, instructional techniques, educational technology, media, and the inclusion of special education students in the regular classroom will be considered. Should be taken as close to EDUC 352 as possible. Required for certification in 5-12 secondary education areas. Not required of K-12 music majors.
As a part of the elementary/middle school education sequence the student observes and teaches small and large groups of students in a classroom in the area of literacy. During the clinical experience the student develops and teaches a unit that documents the planning, teaching, assessment and reflection of literacy protocols. This course is co-requisite with EDUC 322 and is based in a public or private school for three weeks.
As a part of the elementary education methods sequence the student observes and teaches small and large groups of students in an elementary/middle school classroom. During the clinical experience, the student develops and teaches a unit that documents planning, teaching, assessment and reflection protocols in the area of mathematics. This course is co-requisite with EDUC 321 and is based in a public or private school for three weeks.
Basic introduction to historical and contemporary theories and methods of English as a second language instruction with an emphasis on methodologies for teaching reading, writing, listening and pronunciation skills within the context of content areas grounded in academic and social/cultural language goals. This course is offered in fall of even-numbered years. Please speak to someone in the Education Department to determine when this course should be taken.
This K-12 course is an introduction to assessment for English language learners including formal and informal tools, interpretation of assessment data, use of data to inform instruction, and the fundamental technical aspects of assessment. This course is offered in the spring of odd numbered years. Please speak to someone in the Education Department to determine when this course should be taken.
This course is an introduction to the pedagogy of a NCTM standards-based mathematics program in the elementary/middle school and the content described by the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. The course focuses on the content strands of statistics/probability, data analysis, and number operations and includes planning, teaching, assessment, diagnosis and evaluation of student learning in mathematics. This course presents current best-practice, research-based instructional methods in mathematical processes, the use of technology in teaching/student learning, and classroom management as it applies to mathematics. Teaching content area strategies within the context of methods coursework provides elementary majors with a model for integrating critical reading and writing instruction within the context of the mathematics discipline.
This course is an introduction to oral and written communication for the twenty-first century, including the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts, the curriculum and pedagogy of a language arts program based on standards established by the International Literacy Association and the National Council of Teachers of English, and the eight components of the language arts in the elementary classroom. It will include integration of the language arts (to include reading/literature, writing/grammar, speaking, viewing, listening and spelling), the use of technology in teaching language arts, and classroom management as it applies to language arts instruction. The course utilizes a comprehensive approach that examines language acquisition and development. Teaching content area strategies within the context of methods coursework provides elementary majors with a model for integrating critical reading and writing instruction within the context of the language arts discipline.
This course is an introduction to the curriculum and pedagogy for social studies instruction based on the National Council of Social Studies Standards. Ten thematic strands frame the instructional planning for elementary and middle level curriculum. Students will develop competencies in specific social studies related skills and become acquainted with current directions and research in elementary social studies including instructional technology. This course is designed to assist pre-service teachers in developing appropriate tools for teaching social studies using an interdisciplinary approach. Teaching content area strategies within the context of methods coursework provides elementary majors with a model for integrating critical reading and writing instruction within the context of social studies disciplines.
This course is an introduction to the curriculum and pedagogy of a standards-based science program in the elementary school, including the Next Generation Science Standards. This course includes hands-on opportunities with the activities that support the inquiry of science as practiced in the elementary school classroom. Teaching content area strategies within the context of methods coursework provides elementary majors with a model for integrating critical reading and writing instruction within the context of the mathematics discipline.
Focuses on the growth and development of the middle school aged student, specifically addressing emotional, physical, social, and cognitive developmental characteristics. A particular emphasis placed on how these factors relate to success in the school setting and how teachers accommodate the learning characteristics of the middle school student. Includes a required practicum in the schools.
This course explores the cognitive and social development of early adolescents and how those lead to unique organizational structures in the middle grades. Methods of teaching designed to meet the diverse needs of middle school students are emphasized. Includes a required practicum in the schools.
This course provides an exploration of various methods, techniques, and materials that are used in the education of students who have learning disabilities and behavioral issues in a variety of different settings including the general education classroom. Methods and materials for instruction in mathematics, reading, written language, spoken language, social skills, listening skills, organizational skills, and skills to enhance life/career choices will be addressed. Must be taken during the junior-level methods course sequence.
This K-12 course is an introduction to the assessment process using specific protocols for formal assessment and instructional planning with a significant emphasis on literacy skill evaluation. The course covers basic technical aspects of assessment, special education legal guidelines, tiered interventions, ethics in assessment, and the interpretation of assessment data.
Advanced study of secondary teaching methods for students seeking licensure in English, mathematics, science and social science. Study of special methods used to teach the individual's major subject area. Teaching methods and professional participation in one's academic discipline will be covered, as well as inclusion of special education students in a regular classroom and applications of technology. Must be taken prior to professional semester. Required for certification in English, mathematics, science, and social sciences. Not required of music majors.
As a part of the secondary education methods course sequence, the student observes and teaches small and large groups of students in a public/private school classroom in the discipline. During the three-week practicum, the student develops and teaches a unit to document planning, teaching, assessment and reflection protocols. Note: taken during the January Term, this course would meet the January II general graduation requirement, and if placed in a middle school classroom would meet the clinical requirement for the middle school endorsement.
Continued study of advanced teaching methods for students seeking licensure in English, mathematics, science, and social science with special emphasis on analysis of best practice, methodological research and curriculum design within the respective content area. This course builds on the content of EDUC 352 and the clinical appointment in EDUC 366 and must be taken prior to EDUC 486.
This course will present constructs and protocols for the assessment, diagnosis, and evaluation of student learning and literacy skills in the elementary/middle school classroom. The course explores the developmental nature of reading with a focus on the range of readers, including striving readers, readers with learning disabilities such as dyslexia, and gifted readers. It also examines: current research on learner characteristics, instructional approaches, and best-practices in classroom assessment of reading skills, both formal and informal.
Introduction to the teaching of literacy in content areas for secondary teachers; procedures used in recognizing content area reading problems, improving reading by developing literacy strategies in reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Required for all students seeking secondary school licensure. and students seeking health certification.
Introduction to the teaching of literacy in content areas for K-12 teachers in music: assessment in content area reading; improving content area literacy by developing strategies in reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Required for all Education K-12 Music Education majors. Requires acceptance into the Teacher Education Program.
This course is 1-semester hour practicum component that is available for secondary and K-12 majors. This may be a requirement in some other states for all teachers. Check the state's licensure website. NOTE: If you are an elementary education major pursuing a reading endorsement, you will student teach in a reading classroom.
Practicum experiences are offered in the reading endorsement for elementary education. Options may include local, regional, and out-of-state placements in literacy intervention programs or summer programs with an emphasis on reading.
Observation and teaching in area schools. Student teaching experiences are offered in each of the following areas: elementary education and secondary education. Those who do 18 weeks of EDUC 486 will register for 2 additional credits during January term.