Secondary Education

Requirements & Courses

  • Additional Requirements

    In addition to completing appropriate coursework in the Education Department and in the teaching major, students must meet Alma College graduation requirements and demonstrate personal characteristics suitable for entering the teaching profession.

  • SECONDARY EDUCATION MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

    The Secondary Education Major may only be completed with another valid Alma College teaching major. Some certification endorsement areas require an additional teaching major. All teacher candidates are strongly encouraged to complete at least one additional subject area for certification. 

    The Secondary Education Major consists of 36 credits of a required Professional Sequence of Education courses:

    1. EDC-130 (2 cr) with 103 (1 cr).
    2. EDC-230 (3 cr) with 203 (1 cr); EDC 240 (4 cr).
    3. EDC-311 (1 cr); 312 (1 cr); 303 (1 cr); EDC-346 (4 cr); 370 (2 cr); 373 (3 cr) (except for Special Education major). Prerequisites include Admission to the Teacher Education Program.
    4. EDC-430S (3 cr) with 490S and 491S (10 cr). Prerequisites include successful completion of all other courses of Secondary Education Major and Admission to Student Teaching.
  • Michigan Secondary Standard Certification Requirements

    This certificate allows teaching in grades 6-12 in subjects in which the candidate has a teaching major, minor or additional endorsement. To be recommended for certification, the candidate must complete the following:

    1. The Secondary Education Major, requirements listed above, with a 2.5 GPA and no Education course may be taken Pass/Fail, except for 1 credit placement classes, or be graded below a 2.0 (C).
    2. A Teaching Major with a 2.75 GPA. Additional endorsement areas for certification must also be met with a 2.75 GPA.
    3. An overall cumulative GPA of 2.75.
    4. Students must also pass the appropriate MTTC subject area test in their subject area major. To be recommended for certification in an additional endorsement area, candidates must also pass the appropriate MTTC subject area test in that subject. For initial certification, MTTC subject-area passing scores will remain valid for five years.
    5. Students must provide proof of valid CPR and First Aid cards as required by the Michigan Department of Education.
  • Secondary Teaching Endorsements (Majors and Minors)

    Alma College offers the following teaching majors and/or minors for students seeking secondary certification:

    • Biology (major or minor)
    • Business, Management, Marketing and Technology (major only)
    • Chemistry (major or minor)
    • English (major or minor)
    • History (major only)
    • Mathematics (major or minor)
    • Music (K-12 comprehensive major only)
    • Physical Education (major only; see EDC department)
    • Physics (major or minor)
    • Social Studies (additional endorsement, group major, must also complete History major; see EDC Department for advising)
    • Spanish (major)
    • Special Education — Learning Disabilities (K-12 major only)
  • Social Studies Additional Endorsement (Group Major - Secondary)

    All Secondary Teaching students who wish to add a Social Studies Endorsement must also complete a major in History. Students MUST see the Education Department for advising on this major.

    Forty-eight credits which must include:

    1. ECN-111 (4 cr) and 112 (4 cr)
    2. GGR-101 (2 cr), 102 (2 cr), and 201 (4 cr)
    3. POL-101 (4 cr) and 121 (4 cr)
    4. HST-100 (4 cr), 101 (4 cr), 104 (4 cr), 105 (4 cr), and 206 (4 cr) (students may double count up to two of the above HST courses for the HST teaching major and the SST group teaching major)
    5. EDC-445S (4 cr)
    6. For certification, take and pass the MTTC Social Studies test.

    No course graded below 2.0 (C) may count toward a Social Studies Group Major; a 2.75 GPA is required.

  • Special Education — Learning Disabilities Endorsement (K-12 Major only) (Secondary or Elementary)

    Thirty-six credits which must include:

    1. EDC-150 (2 cr) with 105 (1 cr)
    2. EDC-250 (3 cr) with 205 (1 cr)
    3. EDC-255 (4 cr), 350 (4 cr), 355 (4 cr)
    4. EDC-450 (3 cr) with 405 (1 cr)
    5. EDC-453 (4 cr) and EDC-455 (3 cr) with 495 (6 cr)
    6. For certification, take and pass the MTTC Special Education — Learning Disabilities test.

    No course graded below 2.0 (C) may count toward a Special Education — Learning Disabilities K-12 Major; a 2.75 GPA is required.

    Special Education majors do not take EDC-373. It is possible for secondary majors to complete the Special Education major without an additional teaching major / minor; however, it is not recommended. 

  • Additional Requirements

    In addition to completing appropriate coursework in the Education Department and in the teaching major, students must meet Alma College graduation requirements and demonstrate personal characteristics suitable for entering the teaching profession.

Teacher Certification
  • The Michigan State Board of Education certifies all teachers. Alma College is authorized to recommend to the State Board those students who have completed a bachelor’s degree, passed state required Subject Area Tests in teaching majors and minors, and successfully fulfilled all requirements of the Teacher Education Program. The Education Department offers majors leading to elementary or secondary certification. The Department also offers a non-certification Educational Studies Major and Minor.

    Certification requirements are subject to change by action of the State Board of Education and may not be reflected in this catalog.

  • Teaching Major and Minor Requirements: Requirements for Teaching Majors and Minors are in the subject area department listings. Requirements for group majors or minors are listed in the Education Department listing and students should consult with the Education Department Chair about requirements. Majors and minors not listed here are not approved for certification. (These requirements are subject to change and reflect compliance with the standards and rules established by the Michigan State Board of Education.)

    Graduation Requirements: Students who are in the elementary or secondary Teacher Education Certification Program shall only be deemed as satisfying graduation requirements when all required education courses for certification are complete.

  • Alma students may seek either secondary or elementary certification. For certification purposes, students are responsible for completing teaching majors and minors, including secondary or elementary majors, as described at the time of declaration of that major/minor.

  • Classroom Placement Students — Background Check

    Michigan school districts require anyone who has contact with children in their school buildings, including staff or volunteers, to provide the district with documentation that he or she has not been placed on the central registry for substantiated abuse or neglect. All students who have an Education course with a classroom placement must have a background check completed at the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) prior to beginning in their assigned classroom. This is free of charge and DHHS records must be current. See the Education Department for more details. 

  • Student Teachers — Fingerprinting Procedure

    School districts require fingerprinting of student teachers. All student teachers must have the Criminal Background Check Livescan fingerprinting procedure completed by July 15 prior to beginning student teaching in their assigned district. Livescan must be completed at a Michigan Department of Education-approved site and is a statewide procedure. A fee is charged for this service and fingerprint records must be valid within one year. See the Education Department for more details.

  • Admission to the Teacher Education Program (TEP)

    The Education Department reviews all applicants and judges their suitability for entrance to the program during the student’s sophomore year. For full approval students must have the following:

    1. Formal application for admission to the TEP, including completion of a writing component (TEP essay), submitted by the January deadline. Information about the writing component, completed during Fall term, will be available from the Education Department. If you have any questions, please see the Chair of the Education Department. (Students who decide to seek teacher certification after the sophomore year can be admitted late but may require extra time to complete the program).
    2. A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0
    3. ENG 101 with a grade of C or above and MTH 100, or demonstrate proficiency by placement into a higher level course.
    4. Scores meeting accreditation requirements in reading, math, and writing on a nationally normed assessment.
    5. Evidence that the student is making an effort to acquire competence in the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences.
    6. Evidence that the applicant has personal characteristics conducive to success in the teaching profession (as indicated by disposition assessment forms, the recommendation of the Education Department, and a Felony Conviction Statement confirming that the student has not been convicted of any act contributing to the delinquency of a minor or involving moral turpitude).
    7. Good standing - academic and student life.
    8. Passing scores for content and writing on the TEP essay.

    Please be aware that these requirements are subject to change in accordance with state or national accreditation mandates. All major(s) and minor(s) must be declared through the Registrar’s Office at the time of TEP application.

  • Admission to Student Teaching

    The Education Department reviews a student for admission to Directed Teaching (Education 490-491). For full approval students must have the following:

    1. Admission to the Teacher Education Program.
    2. A formal application for student teaching submitted by November 15 of the academic year prior to student teaching.
    3. A 2.75 overall GPA.
    4. For secondary: a GPA in the area(s) of concentration - Teaching Major(s) of 2.75; if applicable, a C or above in all classes in the Social Studies endorsement.
    5. For elementary: a GPA in the Teaching Major(s) of 2.5 with C or above in all courses (2.75 required for K-12 Special Education - Learning Disabilities major)
    6. A 2.5 GPA in Education courses and a grade of C or above in all courses.
    7. In compliance with State of Michigan specifications, satisfactory demonstration of
      • high academic achievement.
      • successful group work with children in classroom placements.
      • knowledge of research-based teaching.
      • working knowledge of modern technology and use of computers
  • Additional Notes
    1. Admission to the Teacher Education Program is a prerequisite for all classes at the 300 level and above for certification candidates.
    2. Note on scheduling: it is expected that students take no more than one placement class in any semester.
    3. Once approved for student teaching, the requirements must be retained in order to begin the student teaching term.

Courses

  • EDC
    103
    .
    Foundations of Secondary Education
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: EDC-130 concurrently
    A 40-hour field experience to provide hands-on, realistic yet transitional experience/opportunity for those interested in teaching at the high school or middle school level. Must take EDC-130 concurrently. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    130
    .
    Foundations of Secondary Education
    2 credits
    Prerequisite: EDC-103 concurrently
    A beginning course that is meant to help the pre-service teacher understand the realities of teaching and the education profession in general. A foundation to assist the student in making a better, more informed career choice about becoming a secondary teacher while also providing cases that secondary teachers must effectively face every day. Required for secondary certification. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    180
    .
    Issues and Ideas in Education
    2-4 credits
    Survey of topics to broaden understanding of teaching and learning. Open to prospective teachers and others interested in education in the United States or in other societies. Course fee.
  • EDC
    190
    .
    Field Experience in Education
    1 credit
    Arranged assignment in an education setting intended to enhance a student’s understanding of teaching and learning. Requires instructor permission.
  • EDC
    203
    .
    Child Development and Education - Field
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing
    A 40-hour placement in classrooms concurrent with EDC-230. Provides an introduction to the professional roles and responsibilities of teaching all children. Students will be placed in a “home” classroom and work closely with that teacher to observe, assist, and work closely with students applying psychology principles and learning theories. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    230
    .
    Child Development and Education
    3 credits
    Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing; EDC-203 concurrently
    An overview of psychological theories and research applied to classroom learning. The course includes study of concepts in human development - cognitive, affective, physical, emotional, moral, and social; study of learning, motivation, and assessment; developmentally appropriate practice; an overview of processes of human development in childhood and adolescence with a focus on socialization and education; and study of the influences of family, community, and culture on education. Required for elementary and secondary certification. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    240
    .
    Learning Env and Reflective Teaching
    4 credits
    Prerequisite: Sophomore Standing
    Examination of characteristics of productive classroom learning environments. Analysis of cases of teaching and learning; evaluation of instructional strategies and activities, technologies, and resources that enhance learning for all learners; planning for classroom management. Includes peer teaching. Required for elementary and secondary certification. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    303
    .
    Secondary Ed Methods and Experience
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval; EDC-311 concurrently
    Topics and issues in instructional planning, teaching, and assessment are explored in-depth and with particular emphasis on secondary education and specific subject areas. Students spend 30 hours in secondary classroom placements, working in their major(s) content areas, and will have specialized teaching methods support in those subjects with an emphasis on best practices. Required for secondary certification. Fall only. (Specific topics offered as EDC-303B, EDC-303E, EDC-303H, EDC-303MA, EDC-303MU, EDC-303PE, EDC-303S).
  • EDC
    311
    .
    Topics Seminar A
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval or EDS Major or Minor; EDC 301, 361, and 363 concurrently for Elementary majors; EDC-303 concurrently for Secondary majors.
    Introduction to issues and topics in instructional planning, differentiation, and instructional strategies. Required for elementary and secondary certification, and EDS major and minor. Fall only.
  • EDC
    312
    .
    Topics Seminar B
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval or EDC Major or Minor; EDC-302, 360, and 362 concurrently for Elementary majors.
    Introduction to issues and topics in the historical context of schooling and current issues in education, assessment, and the professional roles of educators. Required for elementary and secondary certification, and EDS major and minor. Winter only.
  • EDC
    346
    .
    Teaching Reading in Middle & Senior High
    4 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval
    Survey of strategies for teaching, diagnosing and improving word recognition, comprehension and study skills. Survey of student language needs and program planning for reading instruction at the middle and senior high school levels. May include a service learning component. Required for secondary certification. Fall only.
  • EDC
    370
    .
    Instructional and Assistive Technology
    2 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval or EDS Major
    Builds on basic skills and knowledge demonstrated through successful completion of Technology Modules so that students are well prepared to use technology effectively and appropriately for multiple purposes in their teaching. Students learn to use technological tools, operations, and concepts to enhance learning and assessment, productivity, communication, and professional development. Students learn about the ethical, legal, physical, and psychological issues and principles of technology use in schools. Students utilize technology for curriculum planning and for instruction, including on-line learning experiences. Students learn to use assistive technologies to enhance the learning of all children in ways that best meet individual needs. Required for elementary and secondary certification.
  • EDC
    373
    .
    Special Education for Classroom Teachers
    3 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval
    Introduction to the teaching of exceptional students. Review of historical and legal issues in special education. Characteristics of exceptional learners, birth through adolescence. Examination of materials and methodology appropriate for instructing exceptional learners in inclusive classrooms. Includes eight-hour practicum. Required for elementary and secondary certification (except Special Education major). Winter only.
  • EDC
    385
    .
    Education Practicum
    1 credit
    Requires instructor permission.
  • EDC
    399
    .
    Education Independent Study
    1 credit
    Prerequisite: Junior Standing; Permission
    Individual investigation of an educational problem planned with faculty in Alma’s Education Department.
  • EDC
    430S
    .
    Student Teaching Seminar - Secondary
    3 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval; ST Approval; Take EDC-490S and EDC-491S concurrently
    Reflection on student teaching and professional issues. Classroom inquiry and analysis; self-reflection and professional development plans; representation in portfolio, web and interviews; legal and ethical issues. Required for secondary certification. Note: Students must be approved for student teaching and have completed all core education and teaching major/minor courses prior to beginning student teaching. See department for exceptions.
  • EDC
    445F
    .
    Methods in World Languages E/S
    2 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval
    Students spend 30 hours in a language classroom placement specific to the student’s major and level (elementary or secondary) and will have specialized teaching methods support in World Languages with an emphasis on instructional planning, teaching, and assessment. Required for elementary (K-5) and secondary (6-12) World Language certification.
  • EDC
    445S
    .
    Secondary Methods in Social Studies
    4 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP Approval
    Survey of special teaching methods in student’s major field of social studies. Required for secondary social studies certification.
  • EDC
    480
    .
    Topics in Education
    2-4 credits
    Prerequisite: Permission
    Survey of a selected topic chosen for study. May be taken more than once for credit.
  • EDC
    490S
    .
    Directed Teaching - Secondary
    5 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP and ST Approval
    Teaching under the direction of a cooperating teacher in the public schools. Applications must be filed by November 15 of the academic year prior to directed teaching. Pass/fail only. Required for secondary certification. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    491S
    .
    Directed Teaching - Secondary
    5 credits
    Prerequisite: TEP and ST Approval
    Teaching under the direction of a cooperating teacher in the public schools. Applications must be filed by November 15 of the academic year prior to directed teaching. Pass/fail only. Required for secondary certification. Fall/Winter
  • EDC
    499
    .
    Education Independent Study
    4 credits
    Prerequisite: Senior Standing, EDC or EDS major, and Permission
    Individual investigation of an educational problem or development of a creative, usable project.
  • EDC
    500
    .
    Senior Thesis
    2-4 credits
    Prerequisite: Permission
    Required for departmental honors.