In the Guilford College Education Studies Department, we envision an end to out-dated, teaching techniques; our graduates are well prepared to be agents of change, focusing on creating child-centered environments that place the needs of the student learner at the forefront.
Guilford students develop a repertoire of teaching approaches, enlightened but not confined by developmental perspectives; they learn to attend to the processes of learning as much as the quality of their students’ products and performance. Teaching should always begin with understanding who the student is.
In both our coursework and our field placements, we recognize that in order to become agents of change, teachers must assume the role of active ethnographers within the classroom or school, acknowledging that finding the “right” way to teach must be based on careful observation, inquiry and analysis of context.
All students do a cross-cultural education internship, often during a semester abroad. Internship locations have included Japan, London, Ghana, China, Italy and various locations throughout the United States. Locally, students have opportunities to work Hispanic, Montagnard-Dega and other populations. Our students come to understand themselves as global citizens who must seek insight into all cultures and voices in order to meet the needs of diverse learners.
Every student who graduates from our program has completed at least 100-150 hours of internship prior to their student teaching. Public and private school administrators comment that our graduates are among the best prepared teachers they hire. They have been cited for their intelligence, ethical behavior, creativity, community-building skills, ability to meet the needs of all learners, and confidence.
Fields in Education
Students interested in careers in education, (teaching in K-12 settings; preparing for school administration or counseling; or moving into higher education leadership) will fulfill the requirements for securing the chosen certification area or for entering the preferred graduate school. Students in education studies complete double majors (one in education studies and one in another of their choice), providing them with specialized courses, interdisciplinary knowledge, and skills that better prepare them for entering the teaching profession or for acquiring the background needed for graduate study.
Students seeking teaching certification in a selected area: elementary education K-6; secondary English; secondary social studies; Spanish K-12; French K-12; and possible secondary science will complete the courses and field work needed to secure a “highly effective” North Carolina teaching license. Students in education studies may also simultaneously earn endorsements in other content areas. After completion of their undergraduate degree in education and the necessary paperwork, education studies majors are eligible to teach in public schools in NC and most other US states with the desired North Carolina teaching license.
Students interested in school administration, counseling, or higher education leadership will gain the background that prepares them for obtaining advanced degrees and/or certifications needed to pursue their chosen profession. Education studies advisors provide detailed information on various careers, as well as on certification requirements and application assistance for graduate school. Also provided, are financial aid information; as well as study sessions and materials for state required Praxis tests associated with the various certification areas. Over 90% of our students are hired to teach within one semester after graduation, and 100% have gotten into the graduate programs of their choice.